Last Sunday was the annual holiday party and awards banquet for T.A.P.P.A. (Tampa Area Professional Photographers Association). We meet every month at The Doubletree Hotel to hold images competition, network and watch a presentation from a fellow photographer. You never know what you will get, sometimes it’s a portrait photographer, other times it events or weddings… we once had an entire program on photographing pets which was great! No matter what kind of photography you enjoy, there’s always something to take away from the meetings and of course you become friends with lots of awesome people (like me!).

This year I was awarded “Event Photographer of the Year” for the second year. The award is given to the person who wins the most ribbons in a specific category in competition each month. (There’s also a “Portrait Photographer of the Year,” “Commercial Photographer of the Year” etc..)

Tampa Wedding Photographer of the year


I came in third for “Photographer of the Year.” The winner, Randy van Duinen is a good friend and a fantastic architectural photographer. His images were amazing this year. He won “Commercial” and “Unclassified’ so he was a shoe-in.

I was also elected to the Board of Directors this year. My plan is to get in an argument with someone at my very first meeting of the board, then yell, “I SAID GOOD-DAY SIR!!” :)

It’s a great organization. There are chapters all over the country and we are the local arm of the PPA Professional Photographers Association. We have chapters all over Florida and this year i was invited to speak in Ocala, Sarasota, Lakeland, Miami, West Palm and Jacksonville. (I have a program about wedding photography.) Tampa is the largest chapter in the state and the 8th largest chapter in the country. A statistic that we like to rub people’s faces in as often as possible. :)

The coolest thing that happened this year was competing in the International Print Competition. There are several levels of print competition (local, state, regional and national). The International Print Competition is the national event. This year there were 1268 registrants and over 5000 images in the competition. Each photographer can enter 4 images. The goal is to receive a “merit” for your image. I recieved 4 merits this year which was only achieved by 224 photographers out of the 1268 who entered. If you think I love myself now, you should have seen me the day I got that news!

To top it all off, my friend Gary Hughes in Orlando just told me that he saw a rough draft of a video that PPA is putting together to encourage people to enter competition. He said two of my images are in the video. :)

So, that’s my year-end round up where I write about how awesome I am. Believe it or not, I actually hate writing this stuff but in business you have to “toot you own horn” because no one else will do it for you. Should I also mention that I’m incredibly sexy and funny, too?

Nah… I’ll save that for next year. :)