The one where I tell you about Me Ra Koh and how I got certfied to to teach for her.

by Amy Rhodes

I'm warning you right now, this is a long story.  But it's a good one.

About a year and a half ago I was at the WPPI convention here in Las Vegas.  For those of you who don't speak photogesse, WPPI is a convention for photographers.  It's huge.  And a little overwhelming.  

It was my first day there and I was walking around the convention floor and I heard this laugh.  It was one of those laughs where you had to find out for yourself what was so funny.  I walked a couple feet and came upon the Sony booth.  On their stage there was this cute lady, totally rocking a sparkly headband, and talking about taking pictures of babies.  She was so real.  So much so I didn't even think she was a famous photographer.  She was giving a talk on how to get authentic pictures of your kids.  I sat down and listened to her and was immediately impressed with what she was saying.  I checked out the Sony schedule and saw that she was going to be talking again in 45 minutes.  Even though I was done with the convention I wanted to hear her speak again so I walked around the convention floor for another 40 minutes pretending to know what I was doing and what I was looking at. 

Her second talk was just as good as the first.  She was teaching the simple way to use a flash.  She made it look so easy.  She finished up the presentation and I got up to leave.  I started to walk away from the stage when I got this feeling - you know the one where you know you need to do something.  I knew I needed to go over and introduce myself to her and tell her how much I enjoyed her presentation.  My first thought was, "no way, she doesn't have time to talk to me."  I then noticed some other ladies were talking to her so I decided I would.  Little did I know that decision to speak with her would alter the path that I would take with my photography career. 

After I introduced myself to her we got to talking and she asked me to tell her a little about myself.  During the conversation she invited me to a luncheon she was having the next day for some women.  I thanked her for the invite and went on my way.  

When I got home that night I googled her.  I had no idea who I was talking to.  Her website came up.  Links to television shows came up.  Names like Oprah and VH1 were dropped here and there along with Sony.  I discovered that night that this lady I was talking to, the one with the infectious laugh, was kind of a big deal. 

To shorten the story and answer a few questions...  Yes, I went to the luncheon.  Yes, it was fabulous.  I met other women who were in the middle of starting their photography career.  Yes, I was so glad I went. Heck Yes, I became one of her blog followers after that.  

After following her blog for a while I decided that I would sign up for her Confidence Workshop.  It was in March of 2012.  It was a great weekend.  It was full of learning and growing.  Her main focus in the workshops is to help you realize that you have what it takes to be a photographer.  Me Ra and her husband, Brian, did a great job filling in the technical pieces i was missing.  I had such a great time and met 19 other women who I consider good friends.  

On June 3, 2012 I opened my email to find an email from Me Ra.  She was going to be starting a new program.  She wasgoing to pick a handful of women to teach her classes.  Words can not express how excited I was to receive this email.  I had been teaching or tutoring women in my home for a few months at this point and I loved the idea of doing it for a company that I had a great deal of respect for.  Not many details were given.  She was asking us to apply and trust them that they would come up with a great program for us to teach.  

I knew this was something I wanted to do.  I spent hours typing out answers to essay questions we had to respond to.  I updated my website with my most recent work to be evaluated by her and her husband and worst of all...I had to make a video of myself.  Part of me wanted to throw in the towel when I saw that we had to make a video, but I figured anything worth while was going to be a little uncomfortable.

Photo by Tina Erdman

Photo by Tina Erdman

Because you're a smart cookie - I'm sure you have figured out by now that I was one of the 14 women picked.  I was - and still am - so excited. I spent 3 days with Me Ra, her husband, Brian, and 13 other women from all over the United States in mid- August.  She presented the program to us and we spent long hours training ourselves on the outstanding curriculum that they created for us to teach to you.

To find out more about the classes, you can read this.  To find out the most up to date information on the classes I will be teaching follow me on facebook.  I am so excited that I get to start teaching these wonderful classes geared towards moms who want to take better pictures of their kids.  If you have any kind of desire to learn about that big expensive camera you bought, sign up.  You won't regret it.  You will learn, you will gain confidence in your new talent and most importantly  - we will have a blast!