This was my first year attending the Silver Conference and I will surly go back next year. I think a lot of people that may have attended last year were turned off about going because a lot of people were thinking most the talk would be about marketing/galleries/publishing, and not everyone is interested in that.
The first night was a very inform critique for the select few that were not students and random people wandering in looking for a free critique. Personally, I did not see to much work that excited me much, but that is not to say that there was not some fantastic work. I was showing a small portfolio of random images as well. I had hope to take both my older work, Iceland portfolios and my new work...but my portfolio boxes which were being custom made did not arrive in time for me to take all my work.
Ken Rosenthal gave a presentation on his life work. Mary Virginia Swanson gave an intense lecture on marketing that I'm still trying to sort out in my head because she packs so much information into her talks. A lady from BLURB gave a talk about their book publishing company to try to get more sales from those would be foolish enough to send them their photographs. John Sexton gave an amazing lecture on his life work, the work of Ruth Bernhard, and of course Ansel Adams. John was an amazing speaker and I highly suggest if you ever get the chance to attend one of his lectures...do so.
The second night was an even more informal critique with EVERYONE, including students from the school. I was there for awhile, but it was a complete madhouse of people running around trying to show their photographs and see others photographs. I left that night to head home, missing the final day.
Thank you to everyone that took the time to view my work and thank you everyone that brought beautiful work to share as well!
Its kind of spooky that nothing has been said about it, outside of this thread.
Yeah...maybe it was held in the Outer Limits...
I guess it bombed, so perhaps Calumet et al would rather not bring attention to that..
I didn't see any ads for it anywhere this year. I didn't even know it was going to happen this year. Freestyle didn't post anything and Calumet didn't have anything up that i saw. The calumet email flyer they send me quite often didn't mention it either. The flyer is usally all digital anyway. If they didn't make a significant profit then i'd be suprised if they are a part of it next year.
I take that back, they did mention it at the bottom of the flyer.
They could have hyped it WAAAAYY more. It'd be more of a risk - but if they could have made more potential ticket sales - and broken down the tickets a la carte - they could have paid more speakers to be there - which would, in turn, bring more visitors, etc. etc... It just sounds like they were being a LITTLE BIT too non-commital about it. Why just go part-way???
Having gone last year, which I enjoyed, I can say it does not actually offer much bang for the buck per se. You listen to a lot of speakers/ presentations and the portfolio showings/contestant stuff.
There were apparently less presenters than last year and mostly the same ones, minus...
I considered it (last year) as entertainment and not so much educational.
The benefit was to "feel" that silver based photography would be around for some time.
I think lack of advertising hurt it severely, than again, I'm not sure what it is they were selling. Maybe they weren't either..
Hopefully someone who presented or represented will chime in eventually.
I talked to Robert Hall last night in the chat room and he indicated he thought about 200 people came to this years version. I went last year but not this year.
I just got back from Silver yesterday,
I have mixed feelings about the event. We brought down samplings of our work and met a lot of people both nights at our tables.
John Sexton is an amazing speaker and he definately was the highlight of the days event. The other speakers were interesting but I feel they fell short compared to John. The tech talk was limited to only 1hour and I think Ilford being a sponsor and present should have more time to talk about their vision of the future of silver. This was in my opinion one of the most critical areas of the conference and the time limit was very dissapointing.
A lot of time was spent on marketing ones work and simply was very dated and boring and if one followed all the advise you would no longer be a photographer , but an ad agency.
I was really dissapointed not to meet Tim Rudman as he and others were not brought in and I was not aware of that before I left Toronto for the Conference.
The event was not well attended as others have pointed out.
I think that this conference and some others should be combined with a major Photofest in a local that is sponsoring such a city wide photography festival.
I am thankful to the organizers to host such an undertaking, as I well know the problems that can and do occur from my experience with the first APUG Conference and our very vocal photocommunity should look at these events and be more supportive by attending and sharing.
Without attendence these events will definately go away which would be a shame.
I have met in person at Silver and APUG1 many , many wonderful people and I feel enriched by this one on one experience.
This trip I met Ralph Baker, Steve Simmons, Aggie, Robert Hall, John Upton, Another one of the owners of Ilford and many other photographers and printers , and it was a pleasure putting a face to some ot the names.
This is only possible by attending and supporting our communities efforts.
My main dissapointment is not with the Silver Conference but with the lack of attendees, plain and simple