Creative Asia was a real eye-opener for me and I believe, also, many other from Malaysia and around the region. I’ve attended many conferences and workshops by now… not all of them relate or are about photography but yet, they are generally well attended. Most of the time, you do come out of them pretty much inspired to do things or with new ideas in your head.
This is no different with Creative Asia 2011. With plenty of international capable speakers and inspiring imagery, words and action, it’s almost impossible to not come out of the conference pumped out somehow. The conference schedule was as follows:
19 Jan (Wednesday)
9am-5pm Print Judging
7pm-730pm Opening Ceremony
730pm-9pm Opening Keynote by Joe McNally
20 Jan (Thursday)
8am-10am Visual Story Telling by Mike Langford
1030am-1230pm A Colourful World by Manny Librodo
2pm-4pm King of Wedding Filmmaking by Jason Magbanua
430pm-630pm Photoshop for show & Photoshop for dough by Daniel Capobianco
730pm-9pm The Showdown by various speakers
21 Jan (Friday)
8am-10am Standing out from the crowd by Dane Sanders
1030am-1230pm Reinventing group photography by Michael Greenberg
2pm-4pm Fast & Furious by Louis Pang
730pm-9pm Awards & Closing Ceremony
As you can see, it was a packed and more than a full day every day! I must give the Louis Pang Studio team a big hand (or several more hands) in organizing and delivering a world class conference right here in Malaysia.
The judging was the part I learned the most as it gives you tremendous insight into how world-class competitions are judged. It’s not cheating when you’re know what the judges are looking at but it will make you pay attention to details like placement or inclusion of elements (why are they there? If it’s included, it must have purpose) or things like color and flash.
Of all the other speakers, as usual, my favorite always will be Joe McNally. He never ceases to be able to capture my attention and I don’t think any other speaker will be able to do that for me. I also enjoyed the show-down as it really shows us how different styles and approaches can work for different types of photography and what kind of results it produced. The live demos were always welcome.
Finally, nothing is perfect and I do think that there are some improvements that can be made to the conference. One thing for sure is that at least the provision of coffee and tea at the registration/reception area in the morning. Almost every conference has that and I think it was a bit of a letdown. The creative participants of course rose to the challenge and you started seeing Starbucks cups everywhere — maybe Starbucks could be roped in to sponsor some free coffee! The conference hall was a bit large for the number of participants but perhaps the CA Crew were expecting more people. Content-wise, additional shoot-and-show kind of presentation would be nice.
To conclude, I met plenty of fun people and many familiar faces and CA 2012 will be on my calendar next year! I do hope to see more speakers and workshops (Syl Arena for us Canon users and speedliting!) and perhaps some sessions could have multiple tracks (i.e. a photoshop track, a fashion track, etc).
See you in 2012!