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After Dark…A Game Changer

…or more like a life changer.

I’ve been largely MIA for the last week because I’ve been at the After Dark photography conference in Tucson, Arizona. What a beautiful place Tucson is! The clouds were incredible, the mountains were amazing, and I saw so many cacti that I couldn’t believe my eyes. It was like a desert right out of a movie! The conference was held at a nice hotel/resort at the base of a mountain – lots of shooting opportunities!

While I was there I got to teach 7 different seminars on photography, everything from levitation to underwater to editing to inspiration. The people attending After Dark were some of the most incredible I have ever met. I’ll warn you, this blog post will have a lot of gushing in it, but that is the sort of thing that might happen when you have an experience like this! After Dark is unlike most photo conventions because it starts late in the afternoon, has countless sessions on every type of photography imaginable that you can attend, and everyone goes on shooting until the early morning hours with various equipment setups, mentors, models at everyone’s disposal, hair and makeup artists…incredible.

My underwater picture taken at After Dark. Model Ariann Foley from After Dark

To be honest I didn’t know how I would fit in. I was the lone fine art photographer, the only one not shooting anything commercially and that scared me a little bit. I didn’t know how I would be received, I didn’t know if anyone would come to my sessions…I just didn’t know. But as it turns out, I couldn’t have found a more accepting family of people. Not only was I not turned away because I was different, I was accepted because of it. I had people from all types of photography backgrounds: senior portraits, baby sessions, family portraits, etc…come to my classes. That is an amazing feeling, to be able to teach to people who have a very different mindset.

The picture from my levitation demo. I ended up posing because I had to reshoot when the light was better.

I made so many new friends I can’t even list them here for the list would be too long. I got to spend the conference with my good friend Lindsay Adler who I really love, and who I believe is my perfect counterpart. I even got to shoot her! She and I also got to teach together: a class called “Fashion Fantasy” where she set up a fashion image and I showed how to take it to fine art.

One of my pictures from the class I taught with Lindsay where I turned a fashion image into something more conceptual.

I think that because of teaching at After Dark I will have a lot more speaking opportunities. I never thought I would enjoy speaking. If you knew me 10 years ago you would have thought the same. I was deathly shy and had little to say to a crowd of people.  But now I enjoy it immensely, I don’t get too nervous for it, and I do the only thing I know how to do: speak from my heart. I can’t wait to go back to After Dark. In fact, I wish I was back already.

Group shot for a video that was made during the conference! Click photo to see the video :)

I spent the whole time laughing :)

Also! For today and tomorrow only (Nov 10&11) After Dark will have a $125 off special for ANY AD you want to sign up for next year. I definitely recommend it. You are getting the most incredible experience and learning from so many people…ahh, love it. You can sign up here 

As far as travel goes, I am off to NYC early tomorrow morning. On Tuesday I get to attend the film premiere for the Project Imagin8ion contest that I was involved in. I’ll be meeting Ron Howard then…can you believe it?! I can’t…I’m still pinching myself.

I’m off to try and get things sorted around here so I can leave. Only one day home in between trips so there is a lot to do: prints, gallery show, lots of driving, and hopefully lots of sushi. I’ll definitely be checking in about meeting Ron and Bryce Dallas Howard, the film premiere, my NYC workshop, and all of the shooting I’ll be doing. Thanks for reading!!

{ 4 } Comments

  1. Nicole Harlow | November 10, 2011 at 9:09 am | Permalink

    So awesome, Brooke. Looks like you had a ton of fun!

  2. Karla Collegeman | November 10, 2011 at 9:22 am | Permalink

    I haven’t stopped raving about you! Thank you for being so amazing and inspiring! Big hugs from VA and good luck with Ron Howard… I’m still pinching myself for you ha ha ;)

  3. sandi miller | November 11, 2011 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

    i’m in awe of your worlds; so grateful to have learned from you at After Dark Tucson. you’ve inspired me. much love!

  4. Kelly | November 27, 2011 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    Brooke I was so excited to see you on the list of mentors! It was great getting the opportunity to learn from you again and hopefully I will get more opportunities in the future. You do speak from the heart and are very open about sharing. Loved the underwater shooting!!

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