Coffee and donuts at 9:30am, presentation begins promptly at 10am
This will be a PPA continuing education program. PPA members will be eligible to receive a merit for a full days attendance. Please be on time.
Bert and Cindy Behnke have spent their entire careers in the photography business. Cindy began her career in high school working for a local studio as a receptionist/retoucher before moving into the camera room and running her own studio. Bert literally grew up in the business, the son of a photographer and salesperson in the family studio. In 1985, Bert purchased the family studio near Chicago while Cindy opened her own studio in southern Illinois in 1987. Fate intervened in 1990 when they joined forces as co-owners of their studio in Frankfort, Illinois, near Chicago. Ten years later they built their dream home/studio and continued to strive to create the perfect portrait for their clients.
Today, they have created a business that stresses extreme quality in both product and service. They like to call it the "Behnke Experience". In the current climate of fast and cheap, the Behnkes have chosen to go with quality and client satisfaction, to take the high road so to speak. They have elected to never sacrifice what they do for their clients for a lesser product. They have chosen to guarantee the "perfect portrait" to their family clients. Now, don't confuse the "perfect portrait" with the one that scores 100 in competition or sells for $50,000. Rather, Bert and Cindy strive to create and experience that is "perfect" for each of their clients.
This program, In Search of the Perfect Portrait, is about how they have created a legacy studio, one that serves their clients at the important times in their lives. Whether a family portrait, a maternity portrait or the wedding day, they want to be "the" family photographer for their clients. They want to be a part of their clients life and family history. For those of you new to photography, they will stress what an important role you play in the families you photograph, from their newborn photography to their senior portraits and beyond.
The program, specially designed for VPPA, will start with how they have set up their business to best work for their clientele. It continues with Bert discussing and demonstrating his style of family portraiture, next Cindy demonstrates the all-important sales session and finally, Bert gives a few ideas on bringing in new business while Cindy goes into a live photo session doing her special style of maternity portraiture, one of the newest lines at the studio . It's all part of the "Behnke Experience". If you're not reaching your sales potential or creative level, this is a must see program. Bert and Cindy will cover posing, lighting, a little marketing and scheduling in this program. And bring your questions, their decades of experience will all be available to you, take advantage of it.
Bert Behnke owns Behnke Fine Portraiture, a studio established in 1956 by Bert’s parents, along with his wife Cindy. He has won numerous awards in salon print competitions as well as serving his professional associations. Bert has taught or lectured on photography all across the USA and North America as well as in Europe, South America and Asia.
Bert is a past president of the Professional Photographers of America (PPA), the Associated Professional Photographers of Illinois (APPI), the Frankfort (IL) Chamber of Commerce, as well as a Past President of the World Council of Professional Photographers (WCPP). He was also the founder of PPA Charities and is currently its Executive Director.
Awards & Honors
Bert has been awarded the Master of Photography, Photographic Craftsman and Honorary Master of Photography degrees from PPA. He has also been awarded the National Award from his state affiliate, the International Award from PPA, the PPA Charities Legacy Award and over 500 PPA merits. In 2000, he was honored as Portrait Photographer of the Year from the International Photographic Council, a non-profit branch of the United Nations. He is a PPA Affiliated Judge and an Honorary Fellow of APP of Illinois.
Most recently, Bert has been one of the 35 mentors for the popular AfterDark series of hands on training conferences held throughout the United States as well as Sandy Puc's Hands-On Tours.