Recharging the batteries…

Last week I drove south full of anticipation and excitement. I was headed to a photography workshop hosted by Amy & Tony Hoffer outside of Philadelphia, PA. I’ve admired their work for quite awhile, and have been regularly impressed — maybe even astounded by — their ability to capture motion, emotion and creative lighting all simultaneously. I had also heard Tony talking business on an A Man to Fish Podcast, and much of what he had to say resonated with me. When I saw that the Hoffers were offering a 2-day intensive workshop I jumped at the chance to go, and looking back on it I am exceptionally glad that I did! Joined by nine other wedding photographers from all over, we spent near 14 hours each day dissecting our businesses, our shooting processes — and our past work (eek!) — our marketing and just about anything else a room full of hungry photographers could come up with. And Tony and Amy were beyond open about their insanely successful studio, and that only bred openness and honesty amongst the rest of us. The “Hoffshop” was eye-opening on so many levels, beyond informative and absolutely refreshing. I’ve returned to New Hampshire with new ideas, lots of psych for the coming wedding season and eleven new friends who I look forward to following in 2013.

Below are a handful of images from my trip south, starting with the towers of the Delaware Memorial Bridge as I passed over at sunset. Growing up in Delaware this pretty much always marked the end of my trip home, but on this trip it was just the beginning…

I’d forgotten how beautiful West Chester, PA is…

Arriving at the Sweetwater Farm Inn and Grace Winery where I would be getting little sleep for the next two day…

It can never be a bad day out with wine close at hand. Day 1 started with lunch and introductions by all…

… and quickly moved into shooting. Tony demonstrates how to keep a horse from eating his clients, and other stuff too…

A couple of images taken in between discussions over light, posing, perspective, etc…

We ended for dinner with a “you can make something interesting and engaging no matter how ugly your surroundings are” exercise, and then headed back out with lights and new volunteer models as the sun was going down.

Darkness is no reason to stop. We walked-through lighting setups until everyone’s toes were numb, and then did a few more 🙂

Day 2 was spent around a table for 14 hours. Nothing interesting to show there, but LOTS to think about!

I’ll end with a group photo by Tony, which doubled as a posing example…

(Top: April & Bryan, Tony and Dan. Middle: Roddy, Amy, Eric (me!) and Marcia. Bottom: Sharron, Mike, Sarah and Holly.)

Thanks to Tony and Amy for hosting an incredible workshop. And special thanks to all of the other attendees!