Masthead header

September 21 – Melonie Walker – Tweens, Seniors and Social Media

Tweens, Seniors and Social Media

Melonie will show creative concept ideas for Tweens and Senior Portrait Marketing and explain how she uses social media such as Instagram/Facebook and smart phone apps to engage potential clients. She will discuss her current Tween/Senior Representative Program and how it works as well as cover basic tips and tricks for success with Social Media Marketing.

About Melonie

Melonie Walker holds the Photograph Craftsman Degree and is a certified professional photographer who specializes in Senior Portrait Photography in the Thumb Area of Michigan. Melonie has developed her passion of photography into a distinctive craft through her discriminating eye and commitment to excellence. Her works have achieved both local and national recognitions, some of which include “Top seven photographer” from Professional Photographers of Michigan, and the 4 for 4 award from the Professional Photographers of America. Melonie is a member and serves on the board of the Professional Photographers of Michigan, and is a council representative for Professional Photographers of America.

April 20, 2015 – Fuzzy Duenkel – Heavy Light

This event is at the Comfort Inn in Comstock Park

All Day Program

Fuzzy will show you how to create custom senior portraits that transcend the ordinary. You won’t learn how to do more… you’ll learn how to do better!

For four to six hours, Fuzzy goes to each senior’s home and anywhere else to just have fun! The result is a powerful collection of images that reflect that senior’s lifestyle, interests and attitude. Fuzzy doesn’t try to make images that sell… and that is precisely why they sell!

Fuzzy is a master at outdoor and indoor lighting techniques similar to those used in the fashion/commercial industry, but scaled down for the photographer who chooses to work without an assistant. Fuzzy’s choices of equipment (to buy or build) are also keys to help rather than hinder creativity.

Fuzzy purposely photograph about thirty seniors per year in a small, middle income Wisconsin town. However, their average senior sale is very high as a result of the originality of the photography and a pricing system that makes dollars & sense!

As we all know, an image is worthless unless the client buys it. To that end, Fuzzy’s soft-sell sales techniques pay for his addiction (photography).

If senior portraits are already part of your business, this seminar is guaranteed to give you a fresh perspective. If you don’t do seniors, you may want to start… after you see how much fun it can be!

Fuzzy Foto Fantasy

As we photographers know, there’s nothing more fun than photographing an attractive subject. When Shirley and I are traveling, I especially enjoy photographing a high school senior, or similarly aged model, using the local scenery.

Any studio owner within driving distance of the speaking location may submit up to three images of one photogenic, approximately senior aged (17-?) subject. I will choose the winner, then photograph that model in that area’s natural settings during our visit.

Only the studio owner (and a parent, if necessary) will accompany the model and me on the shoot. The studio owner will learn firsthand how I work. The senior model gets to be photographed by one of the country’s top senior shooters (no ego here!) and will receive a CD of my favorite images from the session, as well as a DVD slide show. And I get to photograph an attractive senior in a different part of the United States! It’s a Win-Win-Win!


  • Non-members can submit images, but there is a $50 fee to do so. Please use the registration Paypal button above to include this fee.
  • Email me up to three images (jpgs up to 500 pixels in the largest dimension) of one prospective model and I will choose the winner.
  • We’ll start at the model’s house with make-up guidance, then Fuzzy will help the model select clothing for the session, then we’ll all travel to whatever location captures the flavor of that part of the country.

Other Notes:
I must receive the emailed images at least two weeks prior to our visit to choose the winner and contact them to make arrangements. After we return home, we will edit and artwork some of the model’s images, then send them to her/him on a CD.

Directions for submission will be provided upon receipt of registration


In 1975, Fuzzy and Shirley Duenkel of West Bend, Wisconsin started their “mom and pop” business, as many photographers do, when a friend asked Fuzzy to photograph her wedding. In 1996, the Duenkels dropped weddings to concentrate solely on portraits.

Fuzzy’s business evolved into mostly a specialty studio with under 100 total sessions per year. While they photograph babies, children, families, couples and glamour, high school seniors are his favorite. Seniors are his easiest subjects since they require little space (unlike families), hold still (unlike kids), do what they’re told (unlike babies), understand English (unlike pets), and will give him as much time as he needs (unlike weddings).

Fuzzy practically insists on working on location with each session. Fuzzy feels his specialty is his total comfort with creating portraits in clients’ homes, especially if he has never been there before. His goal is to make a variety of images that don’t necessarily look like they were done in the clients’ bedrooms, garages, or hallways… even though they were!


Fuzzy started entering prints in Wisconsin PPA competition in 1993. In that and subsequent competitions he’s entered, Fuzzy was awarded four Fuji Masterpiece Awards, earned top awards for the Wisconsin PPA senior folio competition twelve times; was Wisconsin’s Photographer of the Year twice; won Senior Photographer’s International folio competitions five times; Senior Portrait Artists’ Photographer of the Year, had 29 prints selected for National Traveling Loan Collection, two for Disney’s Epcot Center, one for Photokina in Germany, one for the International Hall of Fame and Museum in Oklahoma, in addition to numerous other awards and accolades.

November 16, 2015 – Eileen Cote – Wedding Program

Topics I plan to cover.

  • How important to the couple is their photography: on a scale 1 – 10?
  • Engagement sessions: Always offer a deal on engagement session: This is a great day for a lesson in posing.
  • What I charge: the breakdown.
  • Expectations: for the couple, parents and myself.
  • Always keep in contact throughout the year, giving them confidence on your service.
  • Timeline: Giving the couple and the wedding planner an idea of what a photographer needs to capture the day’s event and the time they deserve for your service. Confirming with the couple the importance of this time line to capture for their expectations at the end of the day.
  • Journalistic verses traditional: Important to do both (as we all know, for the most part, Journalistic is just nicely posed images)
  • Equipment: sometimes too much. Always be prepared.
  • Lighting: Outdoors, Profoto B1 vs off camera flash.
  • How I am prepared in my metered lighting.
  • Posing: Have in your pocket your top 20 poses. Freestyle from that point.
  • End of the day: Downloading/ rendering
  • The next day send out a thank note. When giving them their package, give a little something extra as a thank you.
  • In six months send the bride a gift certificate for a anniversary Boudoir session. ( or can be used for any other reason.)

About me.

Years ago I knew that capturing our family’s milestones were important. I have been capturing these moments for years starting back in High School. When I was in my early 30s my father passed away. Sadly to say, other than snap shots and his Marine Core portrait we didn’t have any professional portraits of him. He was a WWll veteran and had many hobbies like fishing, boating and hunting. Now all I think is that I wish I had some great creative images of him with his fishing or hunting gear that would tell a story about who he was. (My favorite type of photography)

A few years later my Mother passed away. She to loved photography. She was staying with me during her knee replacement surgery. Before she went in for surgery I took her to the professional photographer that photographed my children. So I did her hair and make up and bought her a nice outfit and had her portrait done. Sadly from complications of the knee surgery she passed away. I felt so blessed to have taken her to have her portrait taken. It’s the only one I have of her. Snap shots are nice, but a beautifully captured portrait is a true keepsake. Soon I joined a local photography group just for fun. From that point on I went from snapshots to images that have a purpose. Taking many photography programs along the way to learn for the best.

From the very first year I entered competitions, I gratefully walked away with awards. Every time I receive an award I think of my Mother and how proud she would be. I am now a Master Photographer with the Professional Photographers of America; I am now in 3 Loan Collection Books put out by the PPA and have been published in the PPA magazine recognized for my work. I also teach photography for PPA and for the local photographer.

You should always follow your passion, you may not know where it leads but the journey is exciting. I will never stop learning. I love the challenge of capturing something wonderful whether it’s a baby, family, senior a wedding day or any story telling image.

August 17, 2015 – Robert Provencher

Success in your own portrait and wedding business.

Programs and promotions that create long term results for your portrait studio

Mindtrash and the failure trap….What every photographer needs to know and implement to keep the success train rolling.
Can you still run a profitable photography business in today’s economic climate? Absolutely! Rob reveals in his no nonsense approach the unfiltered and uncomfortable truth about growing a business.

Rob runs a busy little portrait and wedding studio in a small city where most studios have failed and closed their doors. Marketing, marketing, marketing…..the key to success.

March 16, 2015 – Kelly Scaccia – Balancing Fear and Ability

Does photographing babies and kids make you mental at just the thought? It’s a profitable area of photography and shouldn’t be declined just because you think you can’t or you’re not good at it. Kelly will share tips and tricks to keep the kids focused on you while keeping the most ‘meant-well’ parents at bay so you can deliver portraits mom and dad can’t say no to. From the moment the phone rings to the moment you deliver your portraits to your client, you will learn the process Kelly and her clone (aka twin sister) follow to ensure profitable success. Pull up a chair and Kelly will get personal…she doesn’t believe in keeping secrets from this industry.

Kelly is a wife, mother of three perfect girls and an identical twin sister. She is addicted to chocolate and 80s big hair bands. Family comes first and she lives for her kids. Photography makes her happy.

March 16, 2015 - 3:07 am

Dan Terpstra - Looks interesting but not a member or hadn’t attended one before.

March 16, 2015 - 3:30 am

Shawn - Hey Dan! You’re welcome to join us for a meeting. There’s no cost for your first visit. Please join us at SpeakEZ at 5:30 for dinner if you like, or at 7pm for the meeting. The meeting location is on the home page. Hope to see you!