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Just in case you missed the message we sent out to members last week, I wanted to be sure to share some exciting news! PMA has a new home.
We have partnered with an award-winning professional association management firm, called Coulter, to collaborate with the PMA Board of Directors and CEO Georgia McCabe to strategically reinvigorate PMA as well as manage overall operations. PMA’s headquarters are now located at Coulter’s offices, just outside of Washington, D.C. This is our new contact information:
7918 Jones Branch Drive, Suite 300, McLean, VA, 22102
Toll free: 800-762-9287
I am so excited to be a part of Coulter. We believe Coulter is the perfect choice to advance PMA and every segment of our organization, benefiting our members across the entire, ever-expanding spectrum of the photo imaging field. The Coulter team is allowing Georgia and PMA President Gaby Mullinax the freedom to lead our efforts where they are needed most: on revitalizing PMA by creating valuable resources, growth strategies and partnership opportunities for our current and future members.
Thank you for your continuing support of PMA!
A couple of years ago, smart phone manufacturers jumped on photography as the latest “must have.” As a result, droves of mass market consumers shelved their point and shoot cameras in favor of connected devices. To be sure, connected photography was hot…for at least a year. Of course, now device manufacturers are on to the next thing.
But photography is a much bigger part of the human experience than that. Photography remembers what the mind forgets or never even experienced. Those first moments on the wharf at Ellis Island… the new child’s first steps… the first day of school.
To some, photography is an avocation or a hobby, but to all, pictures are a big part of what separates us from the rest of the species on this planet. Pictures provide the collective memory of what came before us. It started with cryptic cave drawings, progressed to charcoal sketches, to oils on canvas, to latent images on glass plates, to flexible film – and, now to ethereal digital image files that are at once everywhere and nowhere as they float between the phone and the cloud.
Google VP and one of the inventors of the internet, has recently received a lot of press with his thoughts about what he calls bit rot. “When you think about the quantity of documentation from our daily lives that is captured in digital form, like our interactions by email, people’s tweets, and all of the World Wide Web, it’s clear that we stand to lose an awful lot of our history,” he said at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in San Jose, California.
I don’t know about your tweets, but your child’s first steps are pretty important. Basically, photography was always too important to be left to the chemists, and now, it can’t be left with software developers, either. We have forgotten about the mass market – people who just want a few pictures to record their family moments, and really don’t care about the details.
As an industry, we have come a long way, but we have suffered some heavy losses as well. Many PMA members have been unable to keep up with the constant evolution in imaging, and have gone out of business. We have seen historical market makers like Kodak, Agfa and Fuji struggling or failing where they had once been leading. The photography industry needs that guiding force. It needs a steward who can foster and encourage discussion and cooperation between vendors, retailers and software developers alike. We need someone to continually keep photography relevant in the lives of consumers in a much bigger way than as a tool to show others what they had for lunch, or to remember where they parked their car. In short, this industry needs PMAI to get its foot on the gas pedal and start steering this industry that it has served for almost a century.
Our problem isn’t that the consumer lacks a sense of history or has incorrectly placed values. Largely, our problem is that the consumer doesn’t understand the reality of “bit rot.” Vint Cerf sounded the alarm; it is now up to us to lead the charge.
With tools that includes desktop applications and plugins, mobile apps, and licensed technology for photofinishers, Athentech Imaging certainly has a wide range of photography software. But in addition to its photo-correction tools, Athentech also develops image enhancement technology for the medical and energy production industries.
In this episode of the PMA Podcast, president and cofounder Brad Malcolm tells us how this surplus of software sprang from one man’s personal solution to a photography problem, and how today new technology continues to improve our imaging experience in a broad field of applications.
Or you can tune in now with the player below.
Heino Hilbig of Mayflower Concepts presented a very compelling look at the real reasons behind declining camera sales — and how the industry should respond — at the PMA 2015 Conferences in January. If you missed it, you can join thousands of others and watch it on Youtube. Also, be sure to listen to an interview with Heino about selling cameras on the PMA Podcast.
Photographer Kevin Gilbert has worked at the White House, The Washington Times, The Discovery Channel, and on TV productions such as “The Apprentice.”
He’s now the memory evangelist for Bellevue, Washington-based software start-up Mylio, where they are working on ways to protect, organize, and access your photos. The Mylio software runs on Windows and Macintosh computers, and iOS phones and tablets (Android is in development). You can import all your photos from your computers, mobile devices, and services such as Facebook and Flickr. From there, changes made to your library are reflected throughout your network instantly, the company says. New photos captured on your phone automatically show up on your PC; photos copied from your camera to your computer are instantly viewable on your phone. Edits on individual images on one device show up on every device right away.
In this episode of the PMA Podcast, Gilbert talks about the importance of photography to memory, his own photography service Blue Pixel, and the work Mylio is doing to ensure you never lose a photo again.
You can download the episode or subscribe to the podcast here.
Or you can tune in now with the player below.
Several hundred members of the Professional Picture Framers Association (PPFA) returned from the annual PPFA Convention, held Jan. 25-28, 2015, at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel & Casino, with new framing techniques and design ideas, marketing and business advice, connections with long-time friends and many new contacts from the worldwide framing community of retailers and suppliers.
For the fourth consecutive year, the PPFA Convention was hosted by the West Coast Art & Frame Expo/The National Conference, the largest annual show in the custom picture framing industry.
The PPFA Convention offered introductory to high-level educational sessions, with emphasis on framing techniques and designs to attract more customers. Networking events included the annual Welcome Reception & Vendor Showcase, a sneak peek of products offered at the trade expo.
Frame historian Suzanne Smeaton delivered a sparkling luncheon keynote address, as well as an education session; and was joined in the PPFA educator line up by several industry experts.
A major highlight of the event was the International OPEN and PRINT framing competition, with entries displayed on a gallery wall near the PPFA booth. Winners received checks and ribbons during the PPFA Member Meeting, an event that also included the Chapter Volunteer, Service, Leadership and Lifetime Achievement awards; introduction of the 2015-16 PPFA International Board of Directors; and recognition of many volunteer committee and task force members as well as outgoing board members.
Exams and courses for the Certified Picture Framer (CPF) and Master Certified Picture Framer (MCPF) designations were offered, along with a Recertification Course; and a course was held for those interested in becoming PPFA competition judges.
In addition, PPFA Chapter Leaders from chapters in the U.S., Canada and Australia/New Zealand enjoyed a half-day conference of their own.
Members also relaxed with social activities, including breakfast meetings, a Chinese dinner, and an evening of bowling.
“We’ve had wonderful feedback from our members, who agree this was our best Convention to date,” said PPFA President Robin Gentry, MCPF. “Our keynote speaker, Suzanne Smeaton, was excellent, our education sessions were top-notch, the competition entries were beautiful, and the always popular Welcome Reception & Vendor Showcase was another huge networking success. We all went home inspired, reconnected with our framing community and looking forward to a successful year ahead for our members.”
Plans for another outstanding PPFA Convention in 2016 are under way. PPFA also holds regional events throughout the year.
The Professional Picture Framers Association (PPFA) honored the following members during the PPFA Member Meeting, held January 25 at the PPFA 2015 Annual Conference in Las Vegas, Nev.
PPFA President Robin Gentry, MCPF, presented the winners with their respective awards:
PPFA Lifetime Achievement Award: John Ranes II, CPF, GCF, The Frame Workshop of Appleton, Inc., Appleton, Wis.
A Certified Picture Framer and Guild Certified Framer, John Ranes owns The Frame Workshop of Appleton, Inc. in Appleton, Wis., with his wife, Sarah. Their shop has won over 90 framing competition awards, and has long claimed the title of “The most award winning frame shop.” The shop is an excellent example of Ranes’ expertise on marketing, promotion and diversifying into gift and accessory sales; and Ranes was an early pioneer in the framing industry to focus on marketing on-line.
A PPFA member for 36 years, Ranes has served as Vice President of the Upper Midwest Chapter in Minnesota and served three terms as a board member of the Wisconsin Chapter where he was an originating member. He served three years on the PPFA National Board of Directors and has served on the PPFA Education committee, the Long- Range planning committee, and the Advisory committee. Ranes has presented mat cutting classes and seminars in over 15 different countries, and is a global ambassador making tremendous efforts in bridging the gap between the US and European/International framing communities.
He has been one of the top educators and consultants for PPFA, the West Coast Art & Frame show, Décor Magazine and Expos, Fletcher-Terry, Tru-Vue, and Picture Framing Magazine and has assisted distributors around the country with educating customers at Open Houses events/
Ranes travels and visits other frame shops, seeking out ideas and sharing his own insights. This past year, he chronicled several shops and shared their stories in social media.
PPFA Paul Frederick Distinction for Leadership Award: Cliff Wilson, MCPF, Framed In Tatnuck, Worcester, Mass.
After 25 years in the computer industry, including years as the Director of Color Management for Eastman Kodak and Vice President of Engineering for a couple of companies, Cliff Wilson started Framed In Tatnuck in 2002 and has been building and improving the Best Frame shop in Worcester, Mass., ever since.
A long time PPFA member, he has been an active member of the New England Chapter, served as president, and held other offices. He has been an active participant in starting programs that he eventually put into place during his service on the National Board. His involvement at the national level has included the Nominating committee, Consumer Awareness committee, and Membership committee. He was instrumental in the development of the PPFA Member Advantage Program that he started in his New England chapter and brought to an international membership package.
A Master Certified Picture Framer, and an instructor at the national and chapter level, Wilson is known for his generosity and sincere regard for sharing information, ideas and techniques. He is a member of the Framers Corner Moderator team and contributes to questions and topics on the Forum, offering valuable information and insight.
PPFA Service Award: Greg Norris, CPF, Huntington Hall of Frames, Huntington, WV
Owner of Huntington Hall of Frames for two decades, during his past 10 years with PPFA, Greg Norris has been active in his Tri-State Chapter, including service as president. A Certified Picture Framer, he currently serves as a Director on the PPFA Board. He has been an integral part of the Membership Committee, leading to the new PPFA Member Advantage program of discounts from PPFA suppliers for members. An active member of the Chapter Relations Committee, he has worked tirelessly on the Chapter reorganization. He is a moderator and Board liaison on the Framers Corner forum, one of the most valuable member resources.
PPFA Chapter Volunteer of the Year Award: Cathy Coggins, Needle Craft World, Kissimmee, Fla.
An active member and board member of the Southeast Chapter, Cathy Coggins was instrumental in organizing and coordinating last Fall’s Framefest in Florida, a huge success that required many hours of preparation. She worked tirelessly to include all framers from across the industry, and to provide a welcoming environment for vendors to display products and meet new and current clients. A member of the PPFA Membership Committee and Chapter Relations Committee, she has worked tirelessly on behalf of PPFA and her Chapter.
Awards were also presented to outgoing PPFA Board of Directors members: Immediate Past President John Pruitt, CPF; Treasurer Mike Drury, MCPF; and Director David Lantrip, MCPF, GCF; and former PPFA Executive Elaine Truman received an award.
“Congratulations to all of our PPFA Award winners,” says PPFA President Robin Gentry, MCPF. “PPFA is made up of many caring individuals who give freely of their time and expertise to grow the picture framing profession. A big thanks to these very deserving award winners for all they do for our association and our profession.”
The Awards and Recognition Committee is chaired by Linda Wassell, MCPF; with Adela Davis, MCPF; Harry Gaston, CPF; Meghan MacMillan, MCPF; and Anthony Tremonto, and PPFA Board liaison Carol Graham.
Robert Gulf, owner of Knollwood Art Frames in Bloomfield Hills, Mich., framed the awards. Larson Juhl donated the frames and Museum Glass.
In December, the PMA Board of Directors hired long-time industry leader Georgia McCabe as the organization’s new CEO and Executive Director. In this episode of the PMA Podcast, Georgia tells the story of her extensive career in the imaging world, the unique marketing resources she can offer to members, and how she and new PMA President Gaby Mullinax will revitalize PMA by bringing long-time industry members together with new players in the imaging space — to the benefit of all.