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Best of 2018: Goals Set, Goals Conquered

CPP Goals - Lindsay Syme

Can you believe it’s 2019? I am officially back in the office this week after taking some time off to celebrate the holidays and spend time with my family. I love this time of year because there is so much that lies ahead; so much to look forward to; so many goals to plan and execute! I also love to reflect on the things I did in the previous year. What a great 2018!

Earning my CPP

My biggest and most exciting accomplishment of 2018 was becoming a Certified Professional Photographer (CPP) with the Professional Photographers of America. This credential is achieved in two phases. The first, is an exam based on several technical aspects of the photographic craft. The second, is to submit images based on specific criteria that displays knowledge of photographic technique and skill. The goal is to equip photographers with expert skills and technical proficiency that holds them to a higher standard.

Several years ago, I only dreamed of earning my CPP. It was a mere thought in my head. However, I always had an urge to push for it. I wanted to take myself and my skills to the next level. I declared my candidacy at the end of 2016 and took the exam in January of 2017 with a passing score.

After the exam, I moved onto the second phase of submitting 15 images. I managed to procrastinate the second phase for about a year and a half. Yikes! Doubt and fear are not my best qualities! However, I passed the submission on the first try! It felt so good to finally accomplish this big goal I had set for myself.

You Can Hit Your Goals Too!

What a journey! Earning the CPP is not just about passing an exam and an image submission. It’s about all of the steps it takes to get to the standard you want to hold yourself to. It’s about dedication, hard work, and making yourself move forward even when you want to stand still. I am so glad I kept moving forward. It doesn’t matter how long it takes to achieve your goals, as long as you put one foot in front of the other.

I am so excited for this new year! Cheers to 2019! I can’t wait to continue on this journey and work toward my next set of goals. May you push forward and achieve the goals you have set for yourself and never lose sight of the things you want most!

CPP Goals - Exam at Imaging USA 2017
Certified Professional Photographer Goals Achieved

The Professional Photographers of America are updating their requirements for the Certified Professional Photographer image submission in 2019. Visit the PPA site by CLICKING THIS LINK to learn more!

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0 In For Photographers/ Inspire

What an Amazing 2017! Let’s Do This 2018!

Dream Studio Giveaway 2017

What an Amazing 2017!  It’s so hard to believe it’s over!  From the moment the year began, it was a wild ride!  My husband and I attended our first Imaging USA conference in San Antonio, Texas in January.  IUSA is an annual event put on by the Professional Photographers of America.  It had been a goal of mine to attend for quite some time.  Kicking off the year with like-minded individuals in my field was the perfect way to start the year.  Little did I know, it would change my life in unbelievable ways!


If you are a believer in the law of attraction or have considered the possibilities of the law of attraction, I am here to say if you believe it, you can definitely receive it!  My only proof is a special little sticky note I wrote after hearing the amazing Mel Robbins speak.  She was the keynote speaker at the conference.  She was awesome!  I loved learning about her story and her drive to conquer her struggles.  If you want to kick off 2018 with a boost, check out her book, The 5 Second Rule.  You will discover why she is a powerhouse and learn to push yourself for daily success.


Shortly after hearing Mel Robbins speak, I felt like everything was at my fingertips.  I felt completely motivated and inspired.  I was completely ready to crush my fears and take on the new year with fresh perspective.


You might be wondering where the sticky note came into play?  Many photographers write down their “why” for attending the conference.  It’s nothing fancy.  It’s simply writing your personal reasons for attending the conference on a sticky note.  I will never forget writing my “why.”  I wrote, “Because it’s MY turn!  Right here, right now!”  I felt like it was my turn to crush my fears.  It was my turn to be more.  It was my turn to grab onto opportunity and make my dreams come true.  I truly felt like it was MY year!  I stuck my little sticky note to a large board filled with several others that were written from fellow photographers.  Little did I know, I was about to experience the gift of a lifetime!

An amazing charity, affectionately known as PPA Charities, held many events throughout the conference.  PPA Charities raises money to make a difference in the lives of others.  They raise money for disaster relief, Operation Smile, Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep, and other partner charities.  One of the big ways they raise money is to provide a “Dream Studio Giveaway” to one lucky photographer each year.  Numerous vendors donate amazing equipment, gear, software, and products to change the business of a photographer.  I was beyond lucky to win this amazing prize!  It was shocking, unexpected, and a gift I can never express enough gratitude for.


I began 2017 with opportunity and possibility.  I hit the ground running and thanks to many people, we now operate out of a studio space we love.  I am forever grateful to all of the individuals and vendors who made this happen.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart.


What an amazing 2017!  As we prepare to go to Imaging USA 2018  in a couple of weeks, I am reminded of the year I affectionately leave behind and look forward to a bright future in 2018.  Believe in yourself in 2018.  Believe in possibility and conquer your fears.


Happy New Year!


A HUGE SHOUTOUT to the generous vendors!

Dream Studio Giveaway 2017


See a Facebook video of the big win HERE.

See a Facebook video of the big studio reveal HERE.

Attend Imaging USA!  Click HERE to learn more!

Donate to PPA Charities by clicking HERE!

BE MORE Photographer Friends!  Join PPA HERE!