Now that I’ve shared with you International Food Blogger Conference (IFBC) tips for attending a conference, here are “The Three P’s of Conferences: People, Place and Program” because at a conference, it’s all about “The Three P’s,” isn’t it?
Between meeting bloggers in person who I had never met before – but knew from Tweeting about – and seeing friends who I hadn’t seen since the last conference, it was a great time to connect and re-connect. So happy to see Kate from Art of the Pie and Kristy from The Wicked Noodle, both of whom were at other conferences I’ve attended. Heidi who is Chef Heidi Fink and Lori from Fake Food Free were most enjoyable to meet and I felt immediate connections with both of them.
Thoroughly enjoyable in person, and the key note speaker of the conference, was the lovely Dorie Greenspan. She was so gracious and easy to listen to when she talked of her accomplishments. She didn’t call them accomplishments, by the way, but I am. She shared stories about what careers she had during her life, working with Julia Child, and finishing yet another cookbook. She’s not a professionally trained chef which I find inspiring – since I’m not either. Sometimes the act of doing something enough times makes you a “professional” without the official certificate.
Andrew Scrivani, photographer and food stylist, who works for The New York Times, was so pleasant and easy going. His photographs are so beautiful and he shared all of his tricks with us. (Well, he probably kept a couple of tricks hidden up his sleeve! – don’t we all? ) I kind of tricked him into saying that food props should always include gingham during his presentation because so many of his photographs are styled with gingham fabric or towels. He was wearing a gingham shirt the first day of the conference so I know he’s a “gingham” guy.
Seattle is a food lovers’ city and the food we ate was amazing. Local restaurants and vendors were out in force to share their dishes with the attendees. The city itself is easy to get around on foot or by bus. I took the train to the conference and the bus to the hotel, but walked from the conference to the train station.
Yes, it rained but there was also glorious sunshine.
So many good sessions! Conferences are hard for me because I want to take it all in and there are times when sessions should happen twice – but not on the same day and not at the same time as another session I want to go to! Waaahhh! I want it all!
Food photography and work flow, covered by Andrew Scrivani, was very helpful. His methods don’t apply to just taking pictures and editing them but also to other projects as well. ‘Sometimes just knowing where to begin’ and ‘Inside tips for working with future clients’ were other helpful parts to his presentation.
The session titled, “7-part story structure” was great because the writing sessions are always good for me. This session was more about telling the story that can make events more interesting. It also wasn’t a sit down and write session. We were up moving around, getting in circles, and getting out of our comfort zones.
Probably the most head-scratching, but very good, session was from Ian Lurie of Portent Marketing. His talk was about Google, Google Plus, and my head is still spinning with everything he had to say. His presentation was excellent and fast moving. He should probably install a “blogger hotline” into his office.
There was good balance to the socializing and sessions. I would imagine this would be tricky goal to hit but the conference gave us breaks when we needed them and plenty of opportunities to meet and interact – and trade business cards.
The sessions themselves were longer than other conferences I’ve attended but I really appreciated the length. Sometimes you want more of a topic and then the session ends.
Thank you to my sponsors…
A big thank you to Earthbound Farm Organic and Copper River Salmon for sponsoring me to attend IFBC. These companies are treating the earth well and making available healthy, real food for us to cook, feed ourselves, and feed our families.
What’s your favorite “P” when attending a conference? People? Place? Program?
Go Gingham related links:
BlogHer in my backyard – a fun blogger event I hosted
BlogHer food and too much fun – recap from 2012
BlogHer food in Austin, TX recap from 2013
Free tools for your blog or website – really, free!
WordPress resource books – you can find these at your library