A new year begins.
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I just returned from Mexico City yesterday . I worked on yet another exciting UltimaMedia conference; Automotive Logistics Mexico. This was the second time this event was presented and attendance and interest on the part of  both locals and international visitors was high.

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Double Defense
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I had the pleasure to photograph two former Secretaries of Defense; Mr. Leon Panetta and  Mr. Robert Gates last November in Chicago for TMA Midwest.

The annual event and dinner is handled with great expertise by Glatz Management Group.  Sue Fischer, Christine Glatz and their staff , have managed to make this intensive  evening proceed with smoothness and enjoyment for all the attendees of the TMA Midwest each year.TMA-6303 copy

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2015 in review
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Another busy year has just passed by me and I can look back with some sense of accomplishment. It was a difficult year in terms of the loss of several clients due to budget concerns and logistics.

And at the same time I acquired more clients to replace them.

I spent, as usual,  a good portion of my time traveling. I went from California to New York City and went it seemed to most of the major cities from New Orleans to Washington DC to Minneapolis and Long Beach. I had a number of Chicago jobs this year as well.

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My trusted associates,  Warren Perlstein , Jeff Callen and Erchel Raymond were covering events and processing images for me as well; going to Boston and Toronto as well as St. Louis and San Diego. Between the three of us we kept it all going and met the deadlines

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I did yet another stop in Paris covering two conferences there for ICJR and the European division of DIA as well as covered the Annual FFI conference in London and another addition of the Mexico Upstream conference in Mexico City for the CWC Group.

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I rounded out the end of the year in Rome for CWC Group’s World LNG Awards conference and exposition.

This year promises to be equally busy and with more travel for myself and my two associates, I’ll be back in Mexico City in a few weeks for the now Annual Ultimamedia Group’s Mexico Automotive Logistics conference and back to Italy in Sorento this time for the annual ICRS  medical Congress.

Another highlight that is confirmed is another trip to the offices of UNESCO in Paris for the HVP conference featuring some of the brightest minds in genetic research internationally.

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A new year
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Although the year started well with an interesting assignment for a Dutch company that was holding a green business event here in Chicago, I unfortunately lost out on a large trade show and conference for a long time client because of a snowstorm. It occurred all throughout the Midwest and East Coast and grounded many flights; almost shutting down air traffic at Midway and O’Hare for three days.

Fortunately,  my client was understanding and they had their staff cover the event in my place. This rarely happens but it was very frustrating and we are already looking forward to next year’s event, provided there are no more major storms to keep me from traveling to my destination. I had also expected to leave for Mexico at the beginning of March but my client had to postpone their energy conference to May. I am already covering their event in Austin that month but neither myself nor any of my associates can cover the Mexican event since all of us are booked for assignments. More frustration.

The weather did cooperate finally a week after the storm and I found myself working in Anaheim for this year’s Medical Design and Manufacturing Show. It was well attended and once again featuring  many diverse suppliers and and a variety of industry experts and attendees from all over the USA and international locations brought together to find out the latest technologies in the ever-changing medical device industry .

 

 

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2014 recollections
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As 2014 comes to a close I can look back on a very busy and productive year .

In particular, from the period of May through July,  I was on the road traveling from location to location and never got back home to Chicago the entire time. Strange indeed !

I went from Chicago to Denver for my long time client; ACNM and then to Paris for the 4th HVP conference at Unesco and then to Portland for The American Society of Civil Engineers’ Water Management conferenceAWMA14-Day1_0051

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 AWMA 2014 conference. Long Beach, California.

I was in New York and made two stops in California afterwards.  My two associate photographers were also busy . Jeff Callen covered several events as did Erchel Raymond. All in all it was a productive year.

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BioMed 2014 Show.  San Jose California

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EASL 2014 Conference. London , England.

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NASPA 2014 conference.  San Antonio, Texas.

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TMA Midwest 2014 Executive Speakers Forum. Chicago, Illinois.

 

We travelled everywhere from Detroit and Portland to San Jose and Ft. Worth Texas.Next year promises to be more of the same, with conferences throughout North America and Europe and…?

 

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A New Year
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This marks my 24th year in business as a freelancer. I never feel comfortable however,  that I have arrived at some point where I don’t have to worry about business. I always think one should be skeptical about good fortune since business, like life,  will always change and adaption is always necessary.

And yet for the first time I am more than satisfied at the state of my business. I have a excellent set of regular clients, I have acquired many new ones and my year is almost completely booked. One of my new clients has selected me to cover several of their trade shows across the country and it will be the start of new partnership for us both. Here are a few images from just one of the many shows they produce in the USA.

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Last assignment of 2013
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From my last event of 2013. Sports anchorman Mike Adamle of NBC Chicago doing an interview with The Indiana Society of Chicago’s Guest honoree, Bobby Knight, the renowned basketball coach of, most notably ; The Indiana Hoosiers.Bobby Knight

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Year end review 2013
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Blog 2013

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Regrettably, I am writing this, my only blog entry for 2013 , as simply a singular year end review.

I had hoped to provide more of a consistent series of writings on my events this year but it turns out that my schedule did not permit me much of a chance to do such entries as I had expected to do. This was a busy year with a lot of time spent on the road. Next year promises to be the same. I went many different places throughout 2013 from Orlando in March to Munich in August. I worked in such cities as Amsterdam and Detroit, Las Vegas, New Orleans,  Toronto, Houston, Newport Beach, San Jose, Denver and Cincinnati.

I worked on numerous conferences and meetings in Chicago as well. I covered medical events such as the EASL in April in Europe and The Illinois Association Of School Boards just a two weeks ago in Chicago.

I covered airport industry events and technology conferences as well as medical and academic events. I learned about LED lighting and fire prevention techniques as well as European environmental history and current practices for water quality safeguarding of municipal facilities. I learned  about B2B advertising best practices and USA-Canadian border security relations. It was a fascinating year of meetings and I met people from all over the world.

I am grateful to all my clients both new and old for their continued use of my services. I have never expected or claimed to be something other than what I am ; a practitioner of a quality “boutique ” based service for the meetings industry. I offer personalized and quality conscious images for small and medium (15’000 or so) conference and trade show industry events. That is more than enough for me.

I now have two to three associates working for me that process and maintain my image production because I have often have no time to process and edit the images I produce while on assignment. One of these associates also photographs my assignments when I am double-booked for dates throughout the year ; he now understands my aesthetics and my approach to producing the best images for my client’s marketing and archival needs.

I still have difficulties maintaining and organizing my office since my office manager is only able to come sporadically to help. Still, the expansion of my business has meant more opportunities in many instances. I am also going to start working once again with video in a limited capacity. I was training to be a filmmaker in my college days but eventually gave that work up because I was losing interest in the industry as a profession . These days videography is a part of social media and I find that with  current camera technology there are certain circumstances that will allow me to work independently with much greater fluidity than a filmmaker was able to obtain in the past. Further developments and samples will be presented in my blog next year.

Perhaps the best way to end my blog at this time is to provide a wonderful quote.

And like all sayings, these are doorways into the mind’s eye, where each of us must find ourselves…  hoping for the best but being willing to accept something far less in the course of our daily lives.

Every moment and every event of every man’s life on earth plants something in his soul.

Thomas Merton

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Year end perspective.
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As the last of 2012 comes closer I often find myself in the morning, sometimes early, taking some time to clear my thoughts and reflect on the year just past and the time ahead. It’s all too easy to get overwhelmed it seems, worrying over money or work and the day to day tasks that are always surrounding us. I find it worthwhile, especially at this time of year to get outdoors; breathing the cold Midwestern air and walking to clear my head. Because I live close to a forest preserve in Chicago I usually go there. This is where I meditate in silence on the world before me without having to be analytically control my thoughts. I try to let the natural world serve as a foundation for bringing me a sense of  peace and perspective on life. It is something I deeply value.

I wish all of my clients a restful conclusion to this year and perhaps a chance to reflect on all that makes our lives worth living.

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End of the year review.
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The Boston chapter of The Annual National CREW conference poses for their team picture at The Hilton Chicago Hotel.

As I look back at my last blog entry in August (!) I was set to start a busy Fall season of work. As it turned out it was almost too busy to handle. I had to say goodbye to my long time office manger and find a replacement. As any employer will tell you, finding the right support staff is critical and difficult. I will attest to that ! I did find someone to help with managing my office but it was ” late in the game” as the saying goes.  Paperwork in general had piled up and I knew I was lucky to finally find someone I could trust.

In September , October and throughout the rest of this year’s schedule, I had a number of different events and went everywhere from Brussels to Houston to Detroit as well as handled many assignments here in Chicago. I worked on such diverse assignments as The National CREW conference here in Chicago to the Annual Global Auto Logistics Show in Detroit for UltimaMedia Group in the UK.

I had a number of repeat clients including The Chicago Midwest TMA  for their Annual Winter Meeting and FFI’s Annual Global meeting in Belgium.  Newer clients like The Laser Institute of America and The Global Food Protection Institute were interesting change of pace events for me.  I was set to finish off the year with a trip to India for another regular client but due to some logistical problems it fell through at the last minute. The meeting is rescheduled for next December.

Here are just a few highlights from the events this last half of the year:

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J Michael Yaeger
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BHP Billiton Petroleum contemplates an audience question at The 2012 Shale Oil Gas conference in Houston, Texas.

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Keith Whyte , Executive Director of The National Council On Problem Gambling and attendees of the National Conference enjoy a visit to the Harley Davidson Museum in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

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Part of the exhibit floor from this year’s Laser Institute Of America Annual conference at The Schaumburg Convention Center in Schaumburg, Illinois.

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Anthony A. Romeo, MD, head of the Shoulder & Elbow Surgery section at Rush University Medical Center. A portrait created for Slack, Inc. Medical Communications company based in New Jersey.

 

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