March 12th, 2014

Jana and Michele take on Vegas | WPPI 2014

We went to Vegas for WPPI (Wedding and Portrait Photographer Conference and Expo), a week long event, with TONS of classes and a huge expo with products and services for all kinds of photographers. While we were in class learning from some of the most ahhmazing photographers in the world the majority of the time, we did get some time to do other “Vegas things”.

*Disclaimer – most of these images are from our cell phones and haven’t been edited. Don’t judge.

This was the view from our room and also, us pretending to be hairdressers.

The first day we were there, we rented a car and went to Red Rock Canyon. We also went and bought groceries while we had the rental car – a huge $$ saver for anyone looking to save their money for the slot machines or the Michael Jackson Cirque du Soleil, or the Thunder from Down Under show (we unfortunately did not get to see this one).

I put on my hiking attire and off we went.

The opening night party was at Hakkasan in MGM Grand. So… you wonder, what happens when you put thousands of wedding photographers, who attend 20+ weddings a year but never get to dance at them, in one of the top nightclubs in Vegas? One hell of a dance party. We left super sweaty and almost deaf, and would totally do it all over again.

Some Las Vegas strip sightseeing – from left to right (top first) – the Stratosphere (Jana wanted to go on the roller coaster that drops you off the side, but no one was brave enough to go with her….maybe next year), the indoor gondola ride at the Venetian, the ceiling at the entrance of the Bellagio, Bellagio fountains, painted ceiling at the Venetian, Eiffel Tower, Statue of Liberty, Las Vegas Strip!

Here’s a few snapshots from some of our favorite classes!

One afternoon we had some free time and asked a Vegas resident where we should eat lunch. Without hesitation he told us Hash House A Go Go and added that it was on Man vs. Food.

Okie dokie. We went on a mission.

We had breakfast for lunch. It is UNREAL how good some eggs and hash browns can be. Here you see me, with my before and after. Apparently I was hungry. Or the $30 price tag was enough to convince me to keep eating.

Anddddd…here’s Jana’s before and after. She just drank a lot and ate a little 😉 (I’m really just kidding. Really.)

Some photography related stuff you say? Oh yeah. Here’s the wonderful folks at Canon demonstrating how they lovingly clean our cameras and lenses so they work flawlessly on wedding day and a snapshot of a teeny tiny part of the expo.

We managed to find ourselves at a practice/warmup for one of the boxers (Alfredo Angulo), who had a match at the MGM Grand the Saturday after we left.

We knew we wanted to see a Cirque du Soleil show, and Michael Jackson – ONE it was. We got our seats upgraded for free (because who goes to a 7pm, Monday show?) It was pretty fantastic. Who am I kidding. It was FANTASTIC. (We couldn’t take photos during the show or that would be a blog post of its own)

Our last night we went to the New York, New York casino and had pasta for dinner. (Before I had to go squeeze back in my dress… not my smartest move, but it was delicious!)

We had purchased an Ice Light at the expo and wanted to play with it. It looks exactly like a light saber (or “Jedi Sword” as Jana calls it). We got our new photographer friend, Dana (from Wilmington woohoo!), to come shoot with us. (PS thanks for letting us steal your elevator photo Dana!)

Imagine seeing a “bride” (every one was SUPER confused when I told them my husband was in North Carolina) carrying a working light saber around a casino. It’s not the strangest thing you see in Vegas, but it’s close.

I spent more time posing with strangers and Jana and Dana spent more time taking photos with their cell phones than we did shooting. It was so much fun, that I’m considering just wearing my wedding dress around the entire time we’re there next year. Seriously.

We’ll post a link to view all the bridal portraits from Red Rock Canyon and the last night in Vegas soon!

Bye Vegas! We flew in to Salt Lake City on our way home and the mountains were beautiful!

Our welcome back to North Carolina!


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