1. That there are amazing mentors that you get to interact with here. Jeremy Cowart’s  presentation on Making a Difference with your Photography was amazing and inspirational. The stories he shared about the people he worked with in Haiti and Africa put tears in my eyes and made me really feel the power that our images can have. His stories reminded me of the work Joe McNally has done over the 10 years since 9/11 and the exhibit he has up in New York. They reminded me of a story  Moose Peterson shared about working with endangered (in some cases now extinct) species, and the countless other projects that the other people at this conference work on through out the year to make our little blue marble a better place. There is a lot of power in photography and I love how there are courses and people willing to share there heart and soul in their photography. We can all remember that our art is not just about pixels, f/stops and easy importing.
  2. Russell Brown is as funny as ever and while all his actions and panels work on most any machine with CS5 he did remind us that if you use a Mac and a PC in your workflow it is ok to swing both ways. That is sort of how things happen in Vegas.
  3. The people who work in the information booths for NAPP have way more smiles and information than anyone should.
  4. Good friends that you meet along the way are worth their weight in gold. They save you seats, share info about course you wish you could have attended, show you great photos they have created, and they remind you that being part of a community of photographers is really important to keeping you motivated
  5. When people are photographing models, you have to remember to introduce yourself, talk to them about what you want them to do, and say thank you. The number of cameras that shot the Westcott shooting location on the Expo floor had to be exhausting for the models. They really seemed to like it when you talked to them and learned their name.
  6. The people from NAPP are really creative and funny. While I doubt that anyone except maybe Jay Maisel is getting an Emmy nomination for Project Photoshop, I can  only imagine that their “passion for fashion” is something that we will never forget. Such a fun and great way to introduce the conference.
  7. Not only did Matt matt Kloskowski write the book on Photoshop compositing, but his class was a great way to see just how fast and easy it can be once you get a handle on the tools and techniques. He is also totally willing to sign his book as long as your one of the first 100 people to buy it at the show. (That is all the copies they shipped down. Only Matt could make it seem like a special offer to sign the first 100 copies sold).
  8. It is great to see someone learn something new. The look on their face as their eyes light up is priceless. One of the best things about the people who attend the conference is their willingness to share anything and everything they know. You can always be learning and sharing.
  9. No matter how much you try there will always be a class that you wished you had taken after you talk to someone who attended the class you didn’t.
  10. Being around lots of passionate photographers and designers is highly contagious. They are like the ebola of the art world.