Free giveaways: Full WPPI 2015 Passes

Free giveaways: Full WPPI 2015 Passes

I have been a professional photographer for the past twelve years now. In that time, my career has covered a lot of ground. I’ve met some incredible people who have changed my life, I’ve done work that is beyond what I would have ever guessed I’d do, and my family has grown substantially not just in people count but in collective experience. In those twelve years, I’ve attended the WPPI Convention in Las Vegas eleven times. I’d missed my very first opportunity – I didn’t quite know what was going on that first year. In that time, I’ve watched this convention change in size, scope, venue and leadership. I’ve met literally thousands of people along the way, and I’ve been fortunate enough to make some truly great friends from all those initial conversations. I’ve also shared a few highlights of my experience here, from the first time I presented a platform talk in 2009 to the first time I spoke for Nikon in 2013 (and my gorgeous family “partied” with me in Vegas) to last year, when I won the WPPI Adorama Inspire Award. And, um, then proceeded to race off the stage immediately. My full-on, emotional Do Over regarding that stage flight is here. *Warning: it gets sappy.

Nikon Tamara Lackey WPPI Las Vegas, free giveaways

Thanks, again, to Mike Corrado for this photo.

  This year I will be returning to WPPI in Last Vegas again. And I hope you do, too. Well, return or come for the first time. It’s truly such a very cool experience – educational, empowering, informative, and beautifully community-building. The internet is fabulous and all, but there’s nothing like spending time with tens of thousands of human beings who love what you love and love it how you love it and are excited to talk, share, show and teach it with their human voices and you can look at their human faces and hug their human bodies. (That last part might have started to sound weird, but hopefully you know what I mean.) Basically? Real, Human Connection = Awesome. To that end, I will be giving away THREE free giveaways, that is THREE Full WPPI 2015 Platform Passes. Each of these passes will give you access to the entire show, from every single presentation delivered there to the giant expo at The MGM Grand. Note that on site, in Vegas, these full passes will cost you up to $399 each. Yes, that’s just one dollar short of four hundred dollars. And there’s so, so much to do when you get there. I am currently planning on doing at least the following things – with quite a few things to add that I’m still sorting out: Friday – Sunday: Judging the WPPI International Print Competition Monday: Morning: Filming new reDefine Shows for AdoramaTV 3pm – 4pm Joining Nikon Theater Presents:  Live.  Work.  Succeed.  A Women’s Forum for Entrepreneurial Photographers. Once again, I  will be joining the fabulous Bambi Cantrell and Dixie Dixon for this forum specifically addressing the experiences/challenges of women in the photography industry – along with SOLUTIONS, as each of us have different career goals, family life concerns & are working across different genres – portraits, weddings, and fashion.  The forum will also be moderated by my friend, Photofocus’ Melissa Niu. We did this last year, and we had some incredibly engaged attendees, answered a bunch of excellent questions – and were sure we’d want to do it again before we’d even finished the program. Programs like these are just one of the reasons I’m proud to be a Nikon Ambassador. 7pm Co-hosting a Dinner with Mylio, rather aptly described by Shutterbug Magazine as an addictive organizer, although there’s a whole lot more to it than that. Check out what I, Joe McNally, Chase Jarvis, Matthew Jordan Smith and Scott Kelby all have to say about our experiences here. Tuesday: 12pm Giving a presentation and new lighting demo for ProFoto 1pm: Speaking and doing a live shoot at Nikon Theater, on the Expo Floor 4pm: Delivering my Platform Presentation across gigormous room(s) 319-320, a brand new, live world multi-media program that dives deep into Lighting/Posing/Expression and Creating Dynamic Portraits. I LOVE this program, very excited to deliver it! HUGE GRATITUDE to my platform sponsors: Nikon Nations Photo Lab, who is offering a $50 credit to new customers, just use promo code “NEWJANTAM” when ordering through the ROES system Adorama, with lots of new programs on Adorama TV Animoto, now offering 20% off an annual pro subscription with promo code “Tamara15” and Mylio, who is now giving a FULL ADVANCED trial for one month via this link. I will be giving out tons of free giveaways during this program from these amazing companies! free giveaways, WPPI 2015, Tamara Lackey Wednesday: 10:15pm: Speaking and doing a live shoot at Nikon Theater, on the Expo Floor Afternoon: Filming new reDefine Shows for AdoramaTV 7pm: The WPPI Awards Show *Still quite a lot MORE coming together on these dates. check back on this list if you’d like to connect while in Vegas.   SO, how do you win one of these? Well, the other day I was speaking on stage and offered a free giveaway to one person in the audience who could most quickly and most passionately tell me why they love to be alive. One woman jumped up with some rather incredible enthusiasm, won the prize, and then sent in this note afterwards: Hi, Tamara, I really enjoyed your presentation. Your style of photography captures the fun and movement of life. I won the 10 songs from Triple Scoop with lifetime rights for being the person happiest to be alive in the room.  I am a children’s kidney doctor turned photographer because of ongoing cancer treatment (5 years strong!)  You can bet I am happy! Jumping up and down like a maniac at 8 AM in the morning is nothing… I am just super thrilled that my body is able to execute such moves 🙂

I love this note. I love this passion for life. I respect this passion for life – and I greatly feel it, too.
Tell me what it is about your life that you love so much, or you can leave a brief comment below and email us more at the studio, if you feel too shy to elaborate here. I’ll pick three winners by the end of this week – so you can start planning this fantastic trip as soon as possible.
Just leave your words in the comments below. I can’t wait to hear what you have to say.
See you at WPPI 2015! I mean, you DO want to go to Vegas, right? You don’t want to miss out on sightings like these, right?!
Free giveaways, Tamara Lackey, WPPI 2015

92 responses to “Free giveaways: Full WPPI 2015 Passes”

  1. I live with enthusiasm because there is no better way to live. I am inspired to see others do what they love and bring joy to others. I love living this way because it is contagious. My husband is my greatest cheerleader and I am on this photography journey that I love so much to express that enthusiasm and zest for life each image at a time. I tell my clients if they don’t like dance parties are your wedding/session we may not be a good match. 😉 I can’t wait to see you on stage and hope I can get that pass to see even more of you and the other amazing speakers!

  2. I am sitting right now at my desk using my foot to rock my 3 month old baby boy to sleep in his car seat. We have found he really likes to take his afternoon naps in his car seat. My 23 month old little girl is playing in the playroom and will soon be going down for a nap. My 4 year old big little girl is just finishing up a bath and my 6 year old was just dropped off for afternoon kindergarten by my wife who is heading out for a new haircut and clothes for her return to work from maternity leave next week. I know next week when my wife is back at work, days with the kids will be very hard. I also know that it will get a little easier as they get older. I am thankful for these children we were blessed with after being told by a doctor 8 years ago that we wouldn’t have any children without a bunch of help. We chose to let God be in control and when the timing was right he blessed us with 4 beautiful children who were all born at home naturally. I have already registered for WPPI this year but if you pick me I would love to give the pass the another studio owner in my area who I have become good friends with and shoot under sometimes. This would really help in getting him to his first WPPI and give me a friend to travel with.

  3. I will be emailing you! Thank you for the opportunity and sharing your love for life 🙂

    Hannah Cooper

  4. This is an amazing way to have a contest! I feel that life is meant to love, and our purpose is to love others! And my hope is to spread that love around like wildfire, showing and giving it away freely. My life is amazing, strange, and stressful – but all of it is a gift! Seeing a smile on my children’s faces, laughing with my husband, or making a stranger’s day is a gift to them that is also a gift to myself. The beauty in people all around us inspires me to keep my chin up every day and keep giving love! It would be awesome to come share that love and joy all around WPPI! Thank you for this reminder to acknowledge all the things about life we love! That in itself is a gift! 🙂

  5. Cammel Hurse says:

    Well one thing I most enjoy about my life is the way that I’m able to touch the hearts & minds of those around me. Weather their a friend, classmate, coworker or love one. I enjoy doing what I love & seeing the impact it makes in others lives.

  6. In every moment in life, there is an opportunity to make an effort to be completely present. I feel that by doing this we are not only raising our own consciousness, but of those around us as well. As Ram Das said, “Be Here Now.” THIS is why I love life; we have the opportunity to embrace this philosophy within ourselves and through our outer expressions. In my case that outward expression is landscape photography. I love the fact that every day, whether I accomplish it or not, there is an opportunity to seize the moment. If I can capture a fraction of a second of light through the lens, inspire someone to seek out nature, and experience their own sacred moment, I’ve found satisfaction. So here’s to life! Here’s to nature! And here’s to inspiring one another! See you on the trail!

  7. Erika Doss says:

    Why I’m happy to be alive… I was a little girl in Brazil who used to stare at the moon and think the world was sooo grand and that I would never be anything beyond a Brazilian little girl. However I believed in my dreams and after moving to the USA to study film, became a mother, got to travel around documenting people’s relationships, got to work with some great people, famous and not…, I am a life photographer who loves to preserve that picture if the little girl staring up at the stars…

  8. Thank you for the opportunity! Love this beautiful industry we are in!! <3

  9. Cesar Palima says:

    Awesome! Looking forward to see you in Vegas!

  10. Rodney Ramos says:

    Thank you for sharing, I loved reading your blog. I hope to see out at the WPPI!

    Rodney Ramos – Sacramento, CA

  11. Kira baron says:

    I am thankful for my two children, super supportive husband who happens to be my wedding photography partner And an amazing job (wedding & portrait photographer) that I love and look forward to doing. These are the things I enjoy most in life! What a fun positive contest! My husband and I would really love to go to WPPI and we will actually already be in Vegas that week 🙂

  12. Life is full of miracles… everyday, everywhere on every little things… we live for a purpose that we are being led towards by our Creator. Embedded within our daily lives are countless blessings that most of us fail to notice… some big… some small… Sometimes I sit back and reflect on all the blessings we recieve… it makes me realize that we need to share and appreciate those blessings… our careers, our health, our families, …
    I guess, I live to appreciate what is given to us… and follow a path that has been laid out for us…. to live a purpose driven life..

    Hope to see you in Vegas.. !

  13. Gayle Vehar says:

    My love for life and photography go hand in hand. I haven’t always lived my life with enthusiasm. Between a few bouts with depression and anxiety, there have been some dark days. But photography has helped me see the beauty around me. Whether it be the everyday moments with my children or the beauty in the world I live in, I feel happiness when I can capture and share the beauty I see with others. Photography has truly been a gift—one I so desperately needed! I am thankful for it everyday!

  14. Andrew V Gonzales says:

    Thank you for the opportunity! I am excited to Email you with a response!

  15. Shannon D'Amico says:

    What about my life I love so much? What an awesome question! I can look around so often and get lost in comparing my life to others and look past the amazing blessings that surround me each day. What I love about my life is that… I do have challenges and I have faced hardships that have made me stronger and challenged me to rise above and see the beauty in the mundane and the ordinary. Being a Mom of two crazy boys I forget to reflect on what makes me ME and how beautiful the mess I live in really is. I wouldn’t change that for the world. As I struggle for balance between family and work, I am thankful for all the things that take up my time for my life is full! it is full of love and people and really I love my life so much because of the chaos that comes along with those things! Through laughter and tears there is never a dull moment that is for sure! Thank you for letting me reflect and share a little of my heart here. This might be the tip of the ice berg and I might go journal another page or two of why I love my life over cup of tea while the house is quiet! 🙂

  16. Jen McMorran says:

    It is the simple things that are so easily overlooked in which I am finding “the Joy” in my life. My joy comes from waking my sleeping children every morning in a heated/air-conditioned home; where we have clean, fresh water delivered to our fingertips and electricity to preserve our food. I am joyful for the free education from qualified educators that my children receive and access to medial care when needed. But my greatest joy is watching my children grow to become best friends. Through their quiet conversations and infectious giggles, they are learning to be responsible, loving, caring individuals who will one day use their Joy to make their world a better place!

  17. I had to think really hard about what in my life makes me happy- not because I am unhappy or am not grateful to God for every single blessing of just breathing and being here tostumble through raising 5 awesome kids, but because I have an awful memory. It had been that way since I was a little girl. I have always had the worst memory of anyone I have ever known and it’s actually what pushed me to become a photographer. I wanted to document the happy and the alive, the sad and trying and the everywhere in between because I just can’t remember. Images bring back feelings and that gift to give makes me incredibly happy.

  18. Rachael B says:

    I’m happy to be alive because I have a relationship with God, an amazing husband, three gorgeous children, good health, and the opportunity to pursue my passions. Even without all of those, though, the first would be enough. So many things to be thankful for; thanks for the reminder!!

  19. Ray Baca says:

    The world has lost a brave soul in the fight against cancer with the passing of Stuart Scott. His fighting spirit and bold determination will live on as we seek to put an end to cancer. Please help keep Stuart’s spirit alive through a donation in his memory.

    Don’t give up…don’t ever give up!

    I was fortunate enough to be at the Pit in Abq NM in 1983 to see NCSU win the national championship game. I have always admired Jimmy V and find his speech at the ESPY’s one of the best in US history. Being a huge fan of ESPN those same emotions came back with the passing of your good friend Stuart Scott. Hearing Robin Roberts talk and to view your images of this amazing man was heartbreaking to say the least!
    “you beat cancer by HOW you live, WHY you live, and in the manner which you live.”

    So, I try to live my life to its fullest… take advantage of being a photographer by capturing life moments and giving back when I can. Nothing breaks my heart more than when one of my brides grand parents passes away…but knowing I was there to capture them on the wedding day and able to give them an image the bride will cherish forever is super cool!

    I am rambling but you are a motivation. You shared personal stories of you and Stuart and that must have been tough on you. OH…and the fact that you didn’t think twice about posting a picture of you with two different boots on at the store…showing that you are a REAL person!
    Keep up the great work inspiring all of us.
    A mutual friend Erin Costa is always raving about you by the way!

  20. Oscar E says:

    I love the fact that every day is a new beginning with new adventures and challenges. You never really do know what you are going to get each day. Trying to live everyday to its fullest is a challenge in itself and is a reason why I love photography and the ability to have freedom to photograph anything and to go places and meet new people. People are what really make each day special for me and I hope us all.
    Imagine a world where we are all alone. It just would not be the same. By asking ourselves, how can I affect someones life in a positive way today? If anyone I try to teach this to my girlfriend’s kids most. Hopefully I am a positive influence and they go on to treat other people the same way. Kind of like paying it forward or pretty much treating people like you want to be treated. It sounds cheesy and all but it is truth. That would simply make everything that much better.

  21. Nicole says:

    I love life because… well whats not to love? I’ve been blessed with two amazing children, they are my everything and am so lucky to be able to stay home with them at this stage… while I pursue my goals of being a successful newborn photographer. I went to wppi in 2009 or 2010, I don’t remember but I didn’t know anything about anything, other than I wanted to make my life long hobby more than that. In 2011 my boy came and so I started up again for a bit then in 2013 my daughter came and (while pregnant I had no interest in photography whatsoever)…. 2014 was the first year I was really able to focus on it again, I shot a lot and learned a lot and now I am really ready for wppi again, I can go to the exhibit ( which I got a pass for) and really know what I’m looking for this time. I have debated buying the pass…I fell kinda bad spending that much…on top of leaving my family to go to Vegas for a few days. I really want to but I’ve been hoping to find a discounted one or some other miracle help me get one. This year for my growth photographically was great, Spiritually I grew as well, I’ve watched my grandmother go through cancer for a 2nd time and beat it!! Again! One of my Best friends for 20 years… Also going through it, and doing great, I believe she will beat it too… I love life because everyday is a gift and I’ve been reminded that I need to appreciate and live in each moment.

  22. JenC says:

    I love that I finally found the right doctors to properly diagnose me autoimmune diseases properly and find and treat my cancer! For the time in 7 years I am actually starting to feel like ME again and can workout, clean the house and cook all in the same day again! I’m also thankful for the groups I found on Facebook as support groups for my medical conditions and all the guidance and support they give. And most of all my husband and best friend for sticking by me the past 7 years which have been terrible and for carrying me along this past year as I navigated the scary diagnosis of cancer!

  23. Tamara, it would rock my world this year to win this. I am celebrating my 30 years of business of being a photographer and I am an avid NIKON user. I love the series they are doing of women, and would love to be a part of that whole show where I can meet you in person. Being a woman in this field when I started was a whole different game with shooting film and now digital makes the world open up for so many. I was one of the first women shooting cars and car wheels back when I graduated from the Art Center college of Design. It would be an honor to sit in a chair and hear you in person about your business and even your life and how you give back to the world. BEST…Jeanine

  24. Erica kolb says:

    I love the quote off the bucket list. ” has your life brought you joy? Do you bring joy to others”? This line from the movie rings so true to me. Photography is such a beautiful way to truly express thoughts, feelings and emotions. I feel so privileged to work with clients. When they allow me into their lives to help capture a small moment in time. I find great joy in looking for the small details that might be over looked. When that client finds something beautiful and meaningful from that little moment I know I brought them joy. What a wonderful way to capture joy.

  25. Oh, wow. I love my life because it has been hard. I’ve lived through multiple tragedies, the worst being when I lost my brother and mother in span of six months when I was in my early twenties. But I’ve learned to embrace the hardness of life because I wouldn’t be where I am without it. I wouldn’t be waking up every day with my molecules bouncing with energy, urging me to create, to capture those moments that people sometimes are too busy to notice. Because I lost those moments with people I loved so very much, it gives me immense pleasure and joy to capture them for others. To see what they cannot, and capture it forever so they can look back years from now and remember. The joy of it simply makes my soul shine.

  26. Kathy Nolan says:

    You know what makes me happy to be alive? What’s going on right now on the Humans of New York Facebook page. A random meeting between a student and a street photographer has resulted in a movement that has gone on do so much for a school in one of NYC’s most at risk neighborhoods. It proves that just one person can make a huge difference (something I try to teach my kids every day). Check it out – “Humans of New York” on Facebook. It’s the story of Vidal and Mott Hall Bridges Academy. Amazing, amazing stuff to prove that the world is a beautiful place if you give it the opportunity to shine.

  27. Jeannette says:

    This is so wonderful!!
    I love every aspect of my life!! My husband, my high school sweet heart and I have been blessed with four amazing children. 2 boys, 2 girls. We are fortune to live in the small town I grew up in and I love that my children will be raised just like we were! I love spending every second with my family! We teach our children to be kind, caring and respectful to others. Pay it forward are words we live by! So I can say with every fibre of my being I am a proud mom & I love my life!
    It was heart warming to read all the comments!!

  28. What I love so much about being alive is that I am fulfilling my dreams. I have overcome so much self doubt and lack of self confidence in the last couple of years. I am living in the present, taking more chances than I ever had in the past, manifesting positive outcomes by being and believing in myself, who I am and what I want to attract. For years I did what I was “supposed” to do based on the pressures of society. In the last year I have read as many books as possible on manifesting my dreams, changing my thoughts to change my life and be the person who I feel that I am inside. The biggest part of this growth process has been hearing my children verbalize it. One night while watching the voice someone said something about living their dream and my youngest said to me “Mommy, you are living your dream and I hope someday I get to live my dream too”. I am living my life as I hope my children do and find love in what they are doing.

  29. Jewel says:

    What I love about being alive is finding sacred beauty in evey place and in every person. As photographers I think we are blessed with the responsibility of helping others to see and to appreciate that beauty. I have had serious health struggles for many years but even in those dark moments l am in awe of the power of laughter, joy, an honest word, a smile, an embrace, and ultimately, of love. Thank you for sharing yours, Tamara.

  30. shelley says:

    I was born an “oops” my parents didn’t think they could have more kids and didn’t want them. It was apparent in their parenting. They were largely absent parents. They divorced when I was 5. By 8 I was staying home alone cause my dad didn’t care and my mom wanted to spend every minute with her new man. At 12 we moved in with the new boyfriend. By 14 my mom moved me into an apartment by myself cause I just wasn’t wanted around. If I had been a thug kid, I could see a parent struggling with that. But I was a straight A student, in the National Honor Society, President of the French Club, flute playing, award winning jock kid. My parents were the only ones that didn’t show up for award ceremonies and sports parents night. I had a horrible first marriage that I only got into to escape my parents, well my mom, dad just didn’t come around. That marriage ended in divorce and my ex ruining many aspects of my life and turning lots of people against me, in any way he could. He told me he would make sure I died alone and lonely. Today I have a husband and 3 children with him. My oldest kids barely speak to me. But I have 3 of the most beautiful blessings to be happy for. I don’t want them to ever feel alone and sad like I did. Do we dance and sing and act silly. I let them know how proud I am off every accomplishment, no matter how small. I teach them that happiness and love will bring you so much more in life.

  31. ShaneyH says:

    Hi Tamara,

    The thing I love so much about my life is my husband. We’ve just moved 10,000 miles from his homeland to where I grew up, to start again from scratch. We’re living in the back of my parent’s house, desperately trying to grow our tiny new photography business, while I work three jobs seven days a week and my homesick husband clocks 14-hour days editing photos and learning as much as he can- and it can be so disheartening, like you’re running up an escalator that’s constantly moving you downwards- and it sucks!. But every time I come home cranky and exhausted I remember that I love him and believe in him, and that’s why we’re doing this- so we can create a stable base and a new home so we can have a family. And when I feel like giving up- he’ll put a laundry basket on his head and pretend to be a Dalek from Dr Who and make me laugh. And then little things happen like we have a win- something as simple as the clients loving the photos we took, and it’s an awesome feeling, that surge of pride and knowing we did it together, that something we did made someone else feel great. He allows me to chase my dreams and be totally quirky and he’s my family- what I love so much about my life is that my husband is in it. Because that makes the difference.

  32. Josh says:

    I never had the chance to meet my grandfather. He loved to take pictures of our family and his trips around the world. This was the only way I could connect to who he was at an early age. My mom would tell us stories about him but the pictures would always draw me in.

    After joining the military I have been to places I knew I would never travel to again in my lifetime. Then when I became a father I knew just how precious it was to capture our fleeting moments.

    This is what has led me into photography, to document my family, share our precious moments, and to connect with others. As I learn and grow in my own voice my only regret is that I didn’t start earlier. My family praises me in my effort that I humbly shrug off and my wife thanks me for my dedication while at the same time asking me to stop filling the closet with camera gear.

    I recently left the military after being accepted into the photojournalism program. I was elated to learn and have the chance to get some of the best schooling in the world and rub elbows with decorated story tellers from my fellow military family. As life would have it I made the hard decision to leave the military giving up the coveted school but in return gaining the precious time with my family. The fact of leaving for school for 5 months after just returning from 8 months in Afghanistan was not easy to sell to my 9 month pregnant wife and 8 year old daughter. My daughter had seen me off in 2010 when I left for Baghdad and again in 2013 when I left for Kandahar. She was ready for me to be home all the time.

    I love being able to have the choices and opportunities we have in this country. I love being able to spend time with my family. I love learning and growing as a person. I love being able to have a positive impact on others. I love stories of others and soaking up all I can about them. I love how my daughter hams it up for the camera. I love how I can catch my family off guard and post funny pictures of them. I love how a picture can tell a powerful story. I love how our pictures will connect with our grandkids and great grandchildren.

  33. I love so much looking back over my life so far and seeing how things just seem to fall into place. I started my “grown-up” life a bit early on by having a baby at age 19. Since then I have had 3 more kids and have been blessed to be able to work part time while raising them. The 2 main part time jobs I have had both happen to be in the photography industry… first as a sales consultant for a local photography studio and now I work as a newborn photographer for the local hospital. Now that my kids are a bit older, I can focus more on my career and am looking forward to building my own photography business. This is such an exciting time for me and I am soaking in all the knowledge that I can while I take on this big endeavor. I would LOVE to get this pass as I was already invited to join my neighbor and fellow photographer to the convention but the cost is holding me back since I am already spending my money on establishing my business. It would be so awesome to be surrounded by fellow photographers and experience something like this! While it would be a dream come true, I already feel like I am living the dream getting to be a mom and having the privilege of documenting such joyous moments in people’s lives!

  34. Tammie krein says:

    Wow what a question. What do I love about my life. Sure I could say all the easy answers family , job, friends. But not really mean it. What I love what I finally have come to realize is life. I have not enjoyed a lot of time on earth always worrying and wishing. I am now happy with me and my life. I realize that it’s not to late to fulfill my passion. To go after something that I want to take time and “smell the roses”. What else is there but time. And there’s never enough of it . I have become interested in me now and what I want . I love my photography and I love my halloween and the two are my passion. I dream of pictures I can take and then I write them in a notebook so I can work on my dreams. I wake up and take a deep breath and enjoy the sounds and the breathing of my Great Danes lying next to me in bed. I look at the sky and breath the sun in deep. Once you understand what life is to you it’s a most interesting time….

  35. Cindy Marr says:

    I love the people in my life! And my dog!!! I believe in surrounding myself w positive and passionate people….it’s contagious!
    I feel those very types of people would be at this conference and I would love to go. New to photography but would love to soak up all the knowledge I could like a sponge 🙂
    Can’t imagine the new friendships/mentors that would form as well!!
    Thank you for the opportunity.

  36. Pam says:

    This would be so awesome!

  37. What I love about life? What is there not to love? I love the life that I got to live, a mix of pure luck and decisions that I have made. That’s probably true for most people, but I truly think I have been very fortunate though out my life, so the paths I took just made it even better. It’s that I have everything, or that I haven’t have hard times, but is just about ATTITUDE.
    I love to life and enjoy every moment, the hard ones, the fun ones and even the sad ones; it’s all part of the package.! It would be hard to appreciate the good moments with out working and wishing for them.
    If I win this contest, I’ll say, once again, I’d lived a fortunate life! 🙂

  38. Emailing you my comment. 🙂

  39. Reva says:

    I love that every day I have the opportunity to be a better mother. I am a mother to 3 children. Being a mom is not all peaches and cream, the way everyone makes it seem like. It’s hard to be a mother, wife, and full time housekeeper. But when I put the mess and chaos in the back of my mind, and look at my healthy and beautiful children, I know it’s all worth the work. I went through infertility and miscarriages on my road to motherhood so I truly know that everyday is a blessing. My mantra for life is ‘you only have today’. I try to be focused on my kids, not worry about tomorrow and shower them with the love that they need!!!

  40. Most of my life, I had always felt a little lost. I had low self-esteem and didn’t really know what I wanted to do with my life. Two things were pretty constant though — I loved taking pictures and I loved animals. I never thought about photography as a career because I was just way too shy. Fast forward to 4 years ago when I decided on a whim to buy my first DSLR. I taught myself to shoot in manual by going to a Nature Center 3-4 times a week for months on end. I loved it! Being with nature and capturing things that most people take for granted, gave me such peace. It also gave me confidence. After shooting for about 6 months, I entered the Nature Center’s annual photography contest and came in 2nd place. I was beyond excited!

    Shortly after that, I started my photography business. I’m still trying to figure out my speciality, but I love newborns. I also recently became more educated in animal rights, especially for factory-farmed animals and became a vegetarian about 7 months ago. I think what I love about newborns and animals, is their innocence. I love capturing their innocence, and even though neither one can talk — I love capturing their personalities.

    I truly believe that we’re placed on this earth for a reason. It’s only now that I’m finally seeing what my purpose is and that’s why I love my life. No matter how old you are or where you are in your life, you can still find your purpose, your drive, what makes your heart happy… I love that I’ve found my purpose and that I can use my camera as a tool to help people be kinder to animals… And I love having a job where I can get my baby fix!

  41. Amy Medina says:

    I LOVE my life! Why? Because I am abundantly blessed! God has done miraculous things in my life! There are so many blessings and miracles in my life I would need to write a book. But, I will share with you one of the biggest. This March just days after the WPPI Convention, my husband and I will be 5 years sober from alcohol. Alcoholism nearly destroyed us, physically, mentally, spiritually, financially . While we both drank, my husband had been at it longer and was in “end stage”. We were both ill, however he was dying. I asked him to get help and he agreed. However, he was almost too weakened to survive detox and at one point I was told by Dr.s he may not survive the night. He did but was severly damaged and was left barely able to speak, and was so weak he unable to walk or even sit up or feed himself. I was told he may never fully recover. But he DID make a FULL recovery and he celebrates life by being an avid cyclist. Though a life long artist, I celebrate life by taking photos. Counting blessings all around me one shutter click at a time. I have a beautiful marriage to my best friend. We have a beautiful daughter graduating high school this year. We have good jobs, food to eat, clothes on our back among our many blessings. We are ALIVE and Life is AWESOME!

  42. Rebecca says:

    I love that I have so many fantastic friends and colleagues in this industry that are so very encouraging and helpful. I love that even though I haven’t found my prince charming yet I can come up with a crazy idea to have my fellow photographer friends photograph me as a bride because one day it will be too late. This is a 2015 goal so stay tuned on that one. AND I love that they don’t think I am crazy for doing it. I love that I get to photograph precious newborns and then hand them back to their parents to raise. One day maybe I will have my own but for now loving on these tiny humans gets me through. I love that when I go to visit my nephew that he is instantly excited to see me. I love that I know that I can call my mom if I am having a bad day and she will listen. AND I would LOVE to win this! I already have my flight and hotel room and need to the pass next;) If I don’t win I will buy this weekend but it would be amazing to win so I can invest a little bit more $ back in my business, myself, and I would even figure out a way to pay it forward!

  43. Lisa Hughes says:

    So many great stories! I loved reading them! I just love capturing life’s moments with photography. I think in pictures. I communicate in pictures. I just wish I could SHOW you how thrilled I’d be to win a ticket to the WPPI conference! Thanks for your consideration!

  44. Monica says:

    mmmmm… I adore this question! I grew up as a child surrounded by so many different environments. Bounced around different relatives homes and sometimes I witnessed people who didn’t live their lives to the fullest, who didn’t see themsefs beautiful, who felt defeated and stressed. These are very well feelings I used to feel on a regular basis and sometimes still struggle with. However after finding my outlet , my passion in photography I learned that sometimes a single photo or experience with photography can change a persons life. I have had the honor of meeting so many people and for a brief period in time be allowed into their lives. Being able to do this has shown me that in just a few moments you can make others feel beautiful, feel confident, feel important and then those feelings In turn start to change the way they live their life’s, and then they live them that way- not defeated, not feeling like the weight of the world is on their shoulders. Not always forever but if I can even give others a minute of a glimmer of confidence then that is what I am here to do. To touch others with my photography , to show others how truly beautiful they are , inside and out. And if that helps them at all. That’s what makes life worth living. Which was the opposite of what I grew up with. And I will forever continue to try to touch others with that worth, and I will continue to remind myself of the same feelings and instill those into my own daughter, so she can take on any challenges in her life with grace.

  45. Valerie says:

    Why do I love my life?….well for starters, I’m blessed each morning I get to roll over and open my eyes to start another day and do what I love! Sadly, I didn’t always think this way. It wasn’t until I realized just how precious our lives are. It took me losing my youngest son to understand how blessed we are each day to be able to wake up, breathe, and do the simplest things in life that bring us pleasure. I now look at my life as a gift from God. I don’t let a day go by without trying to improve the gift I was blessed with, and that’s taking photographs that make my heart smile and those I photograph smile. I’ve discovered a talent I never knew I had through the death of my son. I know how much I cherish each photograph I have of him and I try to give my clients photos they can look back on years from now and smile at the memories of that day. I’ve learned that good can come out of a tragedy, and for learning that life lesson, I love and cherish my life now more than ever!

  46. I love life because everyday is a new day with new beautiful things, From my amazing family my 3 beautiful babies and husband who is my rock, my awesome photography clients that i love so much for their support and my dreams all coming true opening my first photo studio that Ive worked the last 5 year to accomplish!! I’d love to go to the WPPI and learn from all you amazing photographers that I look up to !! Especially you Tamara, It would be such an honor to meet you!!

  47. Ed Geels says:

    I would LOVE to win your very generous giveaway Tamara! I am an Amsterdam based photographer who dies weddings and kids and family portraits. I read “The art of Childrens Photography” a few years back, and still look at it once in a while for inspiration. If I happen to win this I will definitely be coming to see you speak, and to learn from all the great photographers there. Las Vegas is a very long way from Holland so this prize would really help me on my to WPPI this year! Even if I dont win I will do my very best to come to Vegas next month.
    Anyway, this is such a great incentive that I had to try and win the WPPI this way. All the best, Eddy.

  48. Phil Wood says:

    There are so many reasons that I love to be alive, however there’s limited space and time so I’ll try to focus on the more important parts. I have been happily married for over 22 years. For us every year, day, and minute has been an adventure. From our first house, to the birth or our two daughters and the many chapters of their lives. I have worked as an engineer at the same company for just over 15 years and have loved every minute of it. We recently hired a recent new college grad, and at lunch one day he asked dont you ever get tired of it. Without hesitation I said no! I then went on to explain that every morning when I walk thru that door, I get to do things I enjoy, with friends that I’ve now known for several years. In another chapter our youngest daughter is in high school and will graduate in a couple years and then we will move to the next chapter in our adventure. Trust me this will be an exciting chapter. For our oldest daughter she in college now and that’s a few eye opening chapters on its own! She to will be graduating soon and that will open a new chapter in our lives. Because of my children and their many activities I rekindled my love of photography, and have have continued to photograph our adventures. While I’m not sure wher life will lead us next, we look forward to the journey. If rumors count for anything, weddings and grandchildren may be part of the upcoming chapters as well. And so the story of why I love to be alive continues. I don’t know if this was exactly what you were looking for, but it was fun to think about and flip thru the pages with you….

  49. Brandon says:

    You know, I really do love life. I’m extremely blessed to have an amazing support system & I’m happy to see the start of my career take shape. I love people. I love exploring new ideas & listening to cool new music. I loveeeee what I do. With photography I could meet amazing new people & experience others’ lifestyle’s. I love that I don’t have the desire to fit in! ✨ There’s a lot of things I’ve gone through to get to this point & I know there’s so much more to learn. I’m only 18 years old so I’m very excited to see where I could take my photography, but I don’t want to take the journey there for granted. This post made me happy seeing everyone’s comment’s that show their appreciation towards what they love. I’m glad that we could all share the same passion!!

  50. Rebecca says:

    My life? Every moment is a blessing! The list is too long to share here…….but tomorrow is my birthday. I WILL CELEBRATE!!! I’ll celebrate with a great family and beautiful friends. I will honor my elders who gave me the gift of storytelling. I will think about the way that photography has changed my life. Having worked for 20 years in Public Transportation, I recently made a conscious decision to start over. It was a choice that I had to make for my health and it was one of the hardest things I’ve done. I made the decision in great physical pain that paled in comparison with the mental and emotional challenge that I would face. In the beginning, I didn’t know what I would do. Besides my son, family and friends, the one thing that I kept close to my heart during this time was my camera. It has been two years, AND LIFE IS WONDERFUL!! I am a full time mom to a handsome 10 year old, a substitute teacher, and a photographer 24/7/365. I’m so fortunate to be able to say that I truly LOVE what I do. Looking back, I realize that God had a plan for me. I breathe better, I love better, I feel better, I live better! I took your class at Photoshop World in Las Vegas last year. Thank you for sharing your passion!

  51. Lisa says:

    Thanks so much for the opportunity to win this! I love hearing you speak! You are so passionate and inspiring! What I love about my life is that I am a new mom! After struggling with infertility and multiples miscarriages we have a beautiful 6 month old baby boy. He has brought so much love, joy and healing to our family. Being a new mom is so much fun but also so exhausting! And figuring out how to be a new mommy and run a photography business is no easy task! Thank goodness I have such an awesome husband. But I am loving life and soaking up all the sweet moments with my son as he is already growing too quickly. I love this time in my life. I love being a mom. I love seeing the bottles on the kitchen counter, toys scattered across the floor and his tiny socks at the bottom of the laundry basket. I love his smiles when he wakes up, hearing him giggle, his slobbery kisses, the way he snuggles into my neck when tired and that his first word was mama. I love how his tiny fingers wrap perfectly around mine and I love kissing his adorable little toes. This is the family I had prayed for and hoped for. He is our miracle baby and I am so thankful to God for allowing me to be his mom.

  52. Mary Bush says:

    Passion….the desire to create, can become difficult when you wake up and it’s 5 below zero, and the desire to stay under the covers and you’d rather dream than do. After decades of creating, and just when you thought you’ve found yourself, the changes in our industry, and the world, can either force some to close their doors and change paths, or rewind and replant and embrace the change. The latter can certainly keep you feeling alive, because you feel all the pain, the fear, the grief, and best yet, the joy. I’ve come close to not being alive more than once, and miss too many who are no longer. I was at WPPI a few years ago when I learned that my father was going in for a heart surgery within days. While we spoke several times after, I never did get to see him alive again. Last year, I was fortunate to be there, and enjoyed some spirited conversation with you in the trade show! WPPI is always inspiring….a great recharge. I so appreciate speaking with the new generation who actually show respect when they learn that I used to photograph weddings for 25 years….with film. As I write this, I am in awe of the passion that abounds within, to go & make the most of my day…being alive. I may not see you in Vegas, but I will thank you for this little exercise today. Keep it up, dear one!

  53. Miguel Fuentes says:

    Hi Tamara.

    I’m doctor and I live in Mexico. A few years ago I work next to Texas frontier, get married and make a beautiful family. But my city’s insecurity increases and moved to Abilene Tx. Once to week cross and work and return.
    I buy a Nikon to take pictures to my son. And i can curiosity to learn and practice photography like professional. With my wife we travel to seminars and workshops, knowing new friends! But never we are assisted WPPI. if I win promise to my wife we will going to Las Vegas! !!

  54. Guo says:

    I appreciate having individual freedom in life. I’m always reminded by news headlines that this is not the case for many. I cherish it, I love it, I can’t do what I do without it.

  55. Mia Kruk says:

    Thank you for the opportunity. ..i don’t know if I’m to late to share why I’m excited to be alive. I almost die 2 times when I was delivered my 2 baby’s is first with my son now he is 10th yrs old..I lost so much blood and the second baby is with my daughter who was right 8 yrs old , the same doctor who delivered my son..cut my bladder by mistake and she didn’t even know how to sew the bladder and waited for availsble neurological doctor then they had to gave me 5 blood transfusion. I was lucky the second time to be alive and watch my 2 babies growth and healthy. And I’m happy and excited with my 2 beautiful kids and so precious. ..thankful and grateful to god gave me this opportunity to be fulfilled the live that God gave me. And more realize that life is so precious like my precious kids. That’s why from the day my first bornSon till the 2nd daughter I always took picture of my kids..every moment try to record the beautiful memory of my kids and that’s why also I love picture and love to learn to take a beautiful pictures and wants know how to capture a precious moment. Thank you.

  56. Katy says:

    What is it about life that I love so much? I love deep questions that get me thinking 🙂 There is so much to be grateful for…the more I challenge myself to be in the moment the more I notice all the little things that make the everyday so beautiful. I love waking up next to my husband, the mere sound of my son’s voice, a good book, this delicious cup of coffee in front of me 🙂 But above all else, I love people. I love all these other human beings I share this planet with. I love how they challenge and push me to be a better person, how they make me cry, scream, laugh, love, and essentially live with every once of my being. How merely the upward turn of their mouth within another’s gaze can change everything. I love how unique we all are but yet fundamentally so, so similar. This opportunity we have to spend marveling at God’s creation is amplified 1000% merely by the fact that we get to share it with someone else.

  57. Cintia Dana says:

    Hi Tamara,
    I’ve been taking your Creative Live classes online for so long and had the opportunity to meet you last year (I actually have YOU and me in my Facebook cover!) You’re one of the most inspiring photographers that I’ve known and your personality captures all my attention.
    Regarding my life, I love God, my daughter and photography… essentials for my happiness.
    Thanks for being part of my progress, not only in my photography but also as a better human.
    Best of luck in Vegas!!!!
    Love, Cintia Dana

  58. Ashley says:

    Happiness to me is defined by that feeling you get by helping others. Whether it’s through a portrait session, giving your to-go box to a homeless person, volunteering at an animal shelter, etc; All that truly matters here in this life are the relationships we cultivate, honoring each other and God. Being a photographer has given me the opportunity to document just that and it has been an honor to share this gift with others, which brings me the ultimate joy personally and professionally! Love all that you do for this community, Tamara! Hugs, xo

  59. Tonya Risser says:

    How can I keep this simple? I’ve enjoyed photography since I was a little girl making my little brother pose, and my cats…lol. Before I ever did it to make money people would ask me to photograph their weddings, their families etc., I jumped In and began to grow. In the last couple years I had some health set backs due to an antibiotic the doctor gave me. I am a fighter…I spent thousands to get better…could barely photograph during that time because it hurt too much, so I took some long breaks, it was just too discouraging. I took a hit, and wondered if I’d ever get back to it. I never stopped photographing my 5 children, that kept me going, and I even attended WPPI last year to keep me positive. I love photography, and tho I have had some serious set backs I will never stop shooting, and will never give up the one passion I have outside of Jesus, family, and relationships! Would be honored to win this amazing gift.

  60. I started to read the inspiring messages. A lot of tear jerkers. I don’t envy you and having to make a decision. Im turning 30 this year, my second year as a pro photographer, and also my second year without my Dad. I didn’t know how important life truly is until I lost something I loved more than I knew. Most take a lot of things for granted and don’t stop to think about what’s important.. That is until it’s gone. I work in retail also and I love conversing with people and when the opportunity comes up I always try to remind people how important each breath is. I took care of my Dad his last 4 months on the planet stuck in a hospital day in and out with one issue after another. I don’t wish it upon anyone, and everyone has different experiences. My Dad bAiled on myself and my sisters at 10 years old but we found forgiveness 11 years later and I am so grateful for the couple years I’ve been able to say I have a Dad. He’s the one who pushed me to do photography and go after my dreams. Thank you Dad! Doing family photo sessions is only worth it because I know 15 years from now those kids will be grown up remembering parents thru the artwork I created. There’s no cooler feeling! Also I wrote to you as “cuddly captures photography” years ago when I came across a random fb user who you done photos for and I started following your work. You were the second photographer I knew by name. Now I know at least 60 pros. I’m glad you were one of the first because your so true to life as it is. 🙂 thank you.

  61. The first thing that came into my mind when I read your blog was my family. Every day I look at them and I am filled with such pride and an overwhelming feeling of deep love. When my first son Jackson was born, he went into respiratory distress and was very sick. He had to be transferred by ambulance to another hospital to save his life. For 18 days I prayed and promised god that if he healed him, I would give him the best life I possibly could. Fast forward 5 years and my second son Mason contracted a rare life threatening illness called Kawasaki’s disease, he was admitted to the PICU and spent a week there getting treatments to heal his very sick body. Then my sweet baby girl Kelsey came into the world a month to early she was gravely ill and we almost lost her. Grand total my husband and I have spent 43 days sitting in NICU’s and PICU’s and have been through 6 soon to be 7 surgeries on my children. My point in telling you all this is to explain the prospective that it has given me. Everyday I get to hold them is the best thing ever. Going through all of this has taught me so many wonderful lessons about what is important in life. My kids are so amazing, they were born fighters. So I know it may seem very basic that I say my children are what I love most about my life, but being Jackson, Mason and Kelsey’s mom is the best thing that has ever happened to me. They are a true blessing. The happiness they bring us can’t be accurately be described in words. It literally makes me all warm and fuzzy when I look at their gorgeous faces.

  62. Janice Mueller says:

    Photography is expressing emotion through an art. Being able to make people happy and to make them feel beautiful is a great thing. Life is to be lived and loved. No matter what happens you have to get up every morning and hold your head up high and keep on learning. Have a passion to learn and grow.

  63. Lisa Easter says:

    As said by Shaw “Life is not about creating yourself but finding yourself”. This journey is consistently a wonderful experience to find myself where I am creatively and consistently continues to grow. The aspirations and visions I have for the next few years may be so beyond my reach but I have no competition holding me back from where I want to be but myself. I am my own competition. How can any career compete with capturing memories that tell a story to live on for decades or perhaps beyond? We are magical in what we do and our vision. Keep your own personal vision alive.

  64. Opportunities was the very first thing that popped in my head when reading this post. I love that I have the opportunity to follow my dream to be a photographer, no matter how much I struggle to realize my fullest potential. The fact that I had the opportunity to experience 4 different colleges, and in turn many, many different relationships and lifestyles, seems outrageously amazing to me. The path toward self discovery I had the opportunity to follow at the age of 19 because of the intense love and support from my family and friends! All of the sadness and grief I suffered through to allow me the opportunity to realize the true, honest love I had in most parts of my life and the lack there of in the other parts of my life. It is all the opportunities I have had in my short lifetime thus far that have led me to live a more fulfilling life with much love, passion and meaningfulness and less hate and dissatisfaction.

  65. So many reason to jump with joy. Are mine any greater than any of yours? I don’t think so in compassion. But through my own glasses, my life is amazing. I’m okay with the challenges and ups and downs. Those are what make the normal things seem like amazing things! im blessed with five healthy children. Plus two gorgeous healthy grandbebes. Yes, im the lucky one. All is good!!!

  66. Sam says:

    Thanks for this excercise that’s made me think! 🙂 I’m not going to give any sad sop stories on why you should pick me. I’m not going to make stuff up in order to gain any sympathy. We all have lemons. Some of us have a lemon tree, some have lemon forests while one thing is certain in life? Yes, we all have them. It’s what we do with the harvest that sets us apart. It’s the opportunity in life to make a lemon choice ( what do with them ) that makeshift happy! Yes it’s the ability as humans to have a choice! It’s simply my choice to be happy to to be alive! It’s my choice to make lemonade and lemon pie with the the lemons I stumble on.

    With that said I sing to you in my Booby M voice to the tune and butchered Lyrics of “Don’t worry Be Happy” … Singing to you as I sip on se of Life’s Lemonaide at 3:02 am.

    Don’t worry be happy! 🙂

    Here is a little reply to your blog Bobby and I wrote note for note!

    In every life we have some trouble if you don’t pick me it’s no trouble.

    Don’t worry be happy! I am it’s my choice!

    Ain’t got no ticket for this show. If don’t go, someone else is will clearly go!

    Don’t worry be happy! I am it’s my choice!

    WPPI say your $$$ for the pass is late. Tammy say you didn’t win you’ll just have to wait.

    Don’t worry be happy! I am it’s my choice!

    Ain’t got no pass ain’t got no ticket! Ain’t got no money without your help I’ll just have to miss it.

    Don’t worry be happy! I am it’s my choice!

    I’ve been given lemons and have learned to make lemonade. It is my choice!

    In closing, thank you for this eye opener!

    Life is unpredictable and can change and end in a second. Being happy today, thankful for now is my choice! Leaving yesterday behind and tomorrow for later is my choice!

    It’s my choice to be happy and grateful for what I have instead of wasting away time yearning for what I haven’t.

    It’s my choice to be happy to be able type this message and post to this blog. I am happy that someone will get a free pass for WPPI and hell I’m happy there are those who will pay. Im happy there are those who will go and happy there are those who will forgo! I’ll be happy if I stay, happy if go, you see I’m just happy to be alive!

  67. Frances says:

    I love life because I’ve seen how temporary and fleeting life is. Our time with our families, friends, neighbors is so precious and fleeting. After losing my grandmother to heart failure and seeing both my father and grandfather enduring open heart surgery, it was very clear what my purpose in life was… to utilize my love for photography to document the moments around me and to “heal hearts one photo at a time…” This is what I strive to do each day as I’ve been given a gift to share with others. I’d very much love the opportunity to further this passion and develop my skills as a photographer. I am currently at a crossroads in my career and having an opportunity to nurture the fire within and grow as a photographer at WPPI would be a precious gift! 🙂

  68. Terri Bryant says:

    Thank you for engaging so many to share what they love about life! For me, it’s the feel of my daughter’s small hand in mine, her pure joyous laugh and the absolute love she gives without asking for anything in return. She has inspired me to help lead The Gold Hope Project, an organization that provides free photography services to families fighting childhood cancer. We are about to relaunch and I would love to reimmerse myself in photography to gear up to help even more families in 2015. Life is so precious and these children are so amazing in their fight- how can we not appreciate the love in the world? let’s celebrate the gift of life, no matter how short and help find a cure to give them more life.

  69. I am GLAD TO BE ALIVE because I have God in my life and 5 kiddos who help me see that! I have been blessed with a career that touches my soul and a family that has supported me from my first click of the shutter. I am so grateful for the opportunity to have been able to document this life around me so that moments, weeks or even years from now, I am able to look back and get that rush of emotions from that moment it happened.
    I am glad to be alive because of all of them!

  70. Ashley Lamb says:

    I love this post! I’ve had the privilege of hearing your speak once and it was absolutely amazing. This may come across as cheesy but photography has really changed my passion for life. I got a camera for Christmas in 2014 and since then have spent every free minute learning as much as I can. Photography has taught me so much about life. Life really is what lens you choose to record it in. I’m so grateful for that gift of perspective. I absolutely love being a Mom. It has been the joy of my life to see my children grow. My youngest son was diagnosed with autism this past year and I realized how much of my passion for photography was linked to him. He has a lot of trouble connecting. Photography has given me such amazing connected photos of my son to really inspire me to keep working with him, to keep working on my skills. I would love for all families to be able to have connected photographs with their children. Life moves so quickly. Photographs are our only opportunity to record the present so we can not only be grateful in the moment, but be reminded of the moments to be continually grateful. I would cherish and love the opportunity to learn more. Life is such an unbelievable blessing. Thank you for taking the time to read!

  71. When I started following you, it was for the great natural and joyfull pictures. Then, when I saw you with your family, and the way you were together, and how you honored the friend you lost,and showed so much of feelings, I confirmed that great art comes from great hearts.
    I don´t photograph for much long, It used to be a hobby, since I had a great professional photographer at home, my brother. But then, when we lost him to leucemia, I couldn´t stand anything about photography for 16 years.Time passed, I lost my parents, almost lost my baby, and fighted cancer 3 years ago.
    My life changed. I wanted to do something special.and photography came back to my life. I wanted to register the world from my eyes, express my feelings, and nothing could do me happier..
    Now It is my passion, and I´m so glad to do so. The beauty, the love, the feelings, everything I see and register from my lens, always makes my heart beats,puts a smile on my face. Life is so wonderful and so beautiful. And I´m so thankfull for still been around to enjoy the ride.
    I live in Brazil, so know that you have fans all around! Thank you.

  72. I love that because of our full time photography business my husband and I get to live the life we want. We get to be available to our kids, we get to be available to one another and family, we also get to capture some pretty awesome memories for people and meet some great couples! We live a schedule that most of the time we get to choose. We get to run our own business together. I love that I get to wake up in the morning make some coffee and plan our days together. I am grateful for this life.

  73. Manuela Wzorek says:

    I’m a Brazilian attorney that for different reasons changed my life to live in Raleigh with my husband and my little baby Santiago. As part of this change, I decided to pursue a new career and became a photographer. The steps are still slow in my new job, with a lot of challenges in front of me, but I’m sure I will never give up because I really believe that photography is a way of translating stories and moments through my camera which keep me ALIVE knowing that my job will reflect the happiness of the others.
    Thank you Tamara for the opportunity and you’re a real font of motivation for my career. Manuela Wzorek

  74. steve becker says:

    I walked into the 2014 WPPI conference at the MGM grand hotel and who is the nicest person who greets me and remember my name! Tamra Lackey, says from across the room. Hey Stephen Becker how are you? She must have remebered the WPPI -on the road atlanta adventure. in 2011, I believe. I love her presentations, she was working with Cliff Mauntner from Philly at the Scott Kelby Photo shop world in Atlanta, Such a nice person to acknowledge me from across the room with 500 people and actually remember my name! She works really hard at helping people, a great photographer

  75. Megan Hayes says:

    I love to be alive because I believe every single person has a purpose and has the opportunity to make a difference for the better through each step they take and word they speak. Building relationships and letting the love of Christ shine through to family, friends and just random people I encounter are what brings true joy in life for me and what makes me incredibly grateful to be alive.

  76. The winners for the WPPI 2015 Full Platform Passes – I started out by narrowing them down to only 100. Yeah, that’s *how* beautiful so very many of the entries were, between blog comments and the personal messages sent. If you didn’t win, it didn’t mean your message didn’t move me. Truly heartfelt words, and I so appreciate the effort each and every one of you made to share them.

    That being said, I’d like to extend a full WPPI Platform Pass to each of the following:

    Jeanine HIll Photography
    Amy Medina
    Andrea Elkind Fotografia
    Rustin Michael Cerveny
    Lakese Anderson

    Please email us at studio at tamara lackey dot com to get your pass!

  77. Patti Cornetet says:

    I have been involved in photography most of my life and next to God and my family it has been my love and passion in life. I have had jobs as early as when I was 20 years old and have been published in local books in our area several times. Like many mothers, I had to place my career on hold for many years as I raised my children but mostly because my fourth child, whom we adopted as an infant, was born with life threatening issues and many disabilities and struggled medically for many, many years. But through it all we reached all our goals and unlike the doctors earlier predictions she survived all the challenges they placed in front of her and now she is my assistant! So now in my 50’s I finally began looking to taking my part time love into a full time career. Then to my surprise I found that grandpa and I soon were to be raising children again! So again parents to who is now a 2 year old grandchild, our lives are full but even more necessary to go back to work because of all his needs.

    The last 20 years have been full of challenges for me a nd my family. We have dealt with so many challenges with our daughter to only find myself being diagnosed with a rare muscular disease, Carnitene Deficiency, and then an autoimmune disorder, Primary Sjogren’s Disease, which became systemic several years ago. Even though it has attacked nearly every part of my body I have overcame each struggle through faith and I guess strength within myself as a mother because “I have had to”. I have had to undergo over 15 surgeries now and my children have nicknamed me their bionic mom because I am probably 40%+ titanium and in 2008 I suffered a severe vascular stroke in the middle of the night that had affected the vision in both my eyes and caused me to deal with seizures for many months. At that time doctors and family believed that any chance of me continuing to be a photographer was over. I was determined to prove my doctors and family wrong and fought like heck to get to the other side better than I was before the stroke. I In fact, sadly I haven’t had a lot of support from family because they would just rather me stay at home and do nothing other than be there for them, something both my doctors and I agree that would surely shorten my life. I admit I didn’t get there but I did achieve 95% so I sure cannot complain about that! I am very happy to be alive and every 6 months when I see my oncologist I am thrilled with the news that I don’t have to come back for 6 more months. I have cherished each moment on this Earth and vowed to give back to others. I believe God gives us each gifts for a reason and we are to use those gifts for others. Whenever possible I give my time and talents to those in need or to my community.

    right now my goal is to educate myself with as much information as possible so that I can offer each client the best possible service available. I realize where my gifts are, I just need to refine my tools and get as good as I can get and continue learning as much as I can. My goal before I leave this world is to become Licensed as a Professional Photographer. I so want to achieve this in my life and I know I can do it with hard work, it is the financial part that is killing me. We just do not make that much money to where I have the spare income to go to events like these or private classes or group classes with photographers such as yourself.

    thank you for this opportunity.

  78. Amber Hurd says:

    2015 is my year! I’d love to win this and bring one of my fellow amazing photog moms that is looking to expand their portfolio. I’m focusing deeply on my photography education this year and would love to learn from one of the best….

  79. Jamie Corpus says:

    This last year I lost my eldest son. He was my best friend even my soul mate if you will. I spent 2 months with him in the ICU and knew as only a Mother would the sefomd i laid eyes on him what the outcoke would be. It was like being in agonizing labor but rather than getting a new beautiful baby..I had to give mine back. He was a young adult and i was truly blessed to be his Mother. I learned through those many weeks to look for Blessings every single opportunity i had as i was in tuat hospital. I learned what was truly important, what mattered and what did not. And while it was the most painful time of my life. .I gained a sense of wisdom and empowerment as i advocated for my son and his wishes if he were ever in a position as we were now facing. I waloed away broken but with a new sense of freedom and renewal of truly appreciating and loving this life i was blessed to continue to live. It helped ke to survive through the tragedy of losing my child, but also to live life with new purpose and intention. To love and be grateful for my life and the journies that lay ahead. I have my moments of sadness. But i have a new LOVE for life. So Ive dusted off my camera that has been sitting untouched and im on a mission of renewal to get back to the thing that brings me such Love and Joy and that is Photography. I am Blessed and truly grateful to love and to live amd to be able to give others joy by capturing their mokents that will be partmof their Families legacy.

  80. Anya says:

    You know me, I’ll be home in my sweats. However, I’ll be waincthg from afar on twitter! You go! You’ll have to tell me if there’s anything cool and new for studio stuff. Can’t wait to hear all about it. We’ll definitely have to have our girl’s day to get caught up!

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