I just spent four head-spinning days at my first WEVA Expo in 13 years, delivering what turned out to be a very well-received presentation on marketing and learning about new tools and techniques that I cannot wait to put to use.
I was invited a couple of months ago to give this seminar to videographers from around the world at WEVA (Wedding & Event Videographers Association) Expo 2009 at the new Orlando Hilton. Having never spoken in public before, I was fairly nervous heading into my Tuesday time slot. The room was packed, and despite a few glitches early, I could sense that the content was resonating with the audience, which gave me the energy to keep going. It was such a relief to see them laughing, participating, taking notes throughout – as far as I could tell, no one was checking e-mails or zoning out.
A nice-sized crowd came up to me afterwards (20 or so compared to the usual 5-10 at the other seminars), some of whom stayed around to chat for another half-hour, and a lot of people stopped me throughout the day to ask questions or give wonderful feedback. (One frequent Expo attendee even wrote “best WEVA seminar ever” on her Facebook wall – blush!) It was clear that they were hungry for information that they could use right away to help their businesses in these tricky times, and I’m so glad that my objective of packing the presentation with as much of it as possible paid off for them.
In addition, I attended many other presentations that reinvigorated me creatively, and I played with a lot of “toys” in the trade show that I will be making room for in my budget. So I overcame a lifelong fear, gained some cool ideas, hopefully helped a lot of people, and made many new friends in the process. What a rush! Needless to say, I’ll be back for WEVA Expo 2010…

My fourth out-of-town wedding in a month brought me to beautiful Valparaiso for Ashley & James’ wedding at Calvary Church and reception at Sand Creek Country Club. The ceremony was a nice testament to the couple’s faith. After some fun photos on the way with the photographers of Kindle & Foster, we headed to the club, which was magnificently decorated by Jeffery Walter and later magnificently rocked out by The Connexion Band. The surprise groom’s cake was a highlight of the evening, as was James’ showstopping turn on the drums. Special thanks to Valpo Mayor Jon Costas & his gifted wife Sharon (who played beautiful cocktail & dinner music on the keys, and whose daughter Ashley’s wedding I shot in May) for referring their wonderful neighbors to me!

Photo by Jamie Carlson Photography

The sign says “You’ll Like Linton,” and I did, as I traveled south to capture Kim & Darren’s wedding at First Baptist Church and reception at the Elks Lodge. The day started with some fun golf coverage, continued with preparations at the hotel, then culminated in a beautiful ceremony at the church. The reception rocked, with Ty from Grapevine Entertainment presiding over some great music as well as a few surprises, and the consultants of Black Tie Events kept the weekend’s many details steering in the right direction.

Great news – IndyVisual has been voted Indy’s Best Videographer on the WTRV/IndyChannel.com’s A-List! Now, I’m as big a critic as anyone else about the idea of a poll that measures quality by how many people one can recruit to vote. I avoided the common practice of soliciting votes through blogging, tweets, Facebook status updates and mass e-mails to family and friends outside the industry. Only clients and wedding professionals, people who could truly gauge our worthiness, knew of our nomination – not even my wife knew or voted. So the fact that so many clients and fellow professionals showed their support and wrote such wonderful comments means more to me than any title. A big THANK YOU to all those who voted, and congrats as well to my many talented friends who won or finished in the Top 5, four of whom are right here in my building!

Stephanie & Josh became man and wife at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church before celebrating at the Omni Severin downtown, who referred them to us. Working alongside photographer Laszlo Kiss, Videographer Rich Johnson captured all the details, including the radiant makeup by Kiralee, beautiful decor by The Painted Daisy and awesome tunes by the Wendy Reed Band. I especially loved the father’s moving speech, which included several keepsakes from Stephanie’s childhood.

Maggie & Chris tied the knot at North United Methodist Church before celebrating downtown at the Columbia Club, with a quick stop on the Circle for photos in between with photographer Morgan Matters. Flowers were clearly a top priority, as evidenced by the abundant bright rainbow of colors at both locations provided my McNamara Florist. Maggie & Chris met in a church rock band, but left the evening’s music to DJ Jason Fritz of Pro-Sound Entertainment. I loved the couple’s carefree spirit and had a blast covering my second wedding for the Kleinhenn family.

(Lots more great photos on Morgan’s blog!)

Jennifer & Michael were married under a splendid chuppah at Congregation Beth-El Zedeck (which was just for show of course, since they had already signed the ketubah) before celebrating at the Renaissance Hotel. Coby Palmer‘s floral design was exceptional as usual, and veteran band Double Exposure rocked, leading the crowd through an epic ten-minute hora. Special thanks to photographer Sue Huffer for the last-minute referral!

I am honored and excited to have been invited to be a speaker at WEVA Expo 2009, the world’s largest annual event videography conference, this September in Orlando. I first joined WEVA (Wedding & Event Videography Association) during the early years of my business, then called On the Spot Productions. My membership, as well as my experience at the conferences I attended, played a significant role in the early growth of this studio, culminating in my appearance on the cover of the official WEVA trade publication in 1996. All these years later, I am looking forward to giving a little back to the creative community that has given so much to me. Coming off the heels of being invited to be the official videographer of ABC’s (Association of Bridal Consultants) annual conference later this year, I’m feeling truly blessed indeed!

Michelle & Kyle enjoyed a fantastic wedding weekend with a ceremony at St. Mary Catholic Church and a rockin’ reception with amazing Jimmy Buffett-themed decor at the Columbia Club. They brought a heavy dose of Margaritaville to the rehearsal dinner at Bella Vita as well. It was a pleasure as always to work with photographer and friend Jessica Strickland and my fellow We Do! neighbors Zanna-Doo and Indy Photo Booth.

(See more great images from this wedding at Jessica Strickland’s blog!)

One day after covering a wedding in Lexington, Kentucky, I drove to Columbus, Ohio to cover Chelsea & Tommy’s fun-filled wedding & reception at the Westin Great Southern. It was great to be reunited with Chelsea’s family a few years after shooting her sister Kristin’s wedding. It was also fun to meet and work with some Columbus vendors, especially the photographers of Lotz Studios and DJ Chris Snodgrass of Capitol City Sound. Check out Tommy’s creative garter toss – maybe the Kansas City Chiefs (his current NFL team) should try him out at quarterback.