I've recovered a bit from a long and packed conference weekend at the hive - time to show you some more insights. It was a weekend with highs and lows and it took me a bit of thinking what I wanted to concentrate on for a post...
My personal highlight was the styling workshop with Dietlind Wolf who is not only a famous and successful propstylist, photographer, designer and illustrator but also - as it turned out - a wonderful person who was happy to share her knowledge, experience and thoughts with us in a very generous and honest way.
She came equipped with lots of props, all belonging to the same "light/summer/coral" - color scheme, inspired by a white coral, to give us a feeling of summer on a rainy and grey day (many many more than the ones you see in the pictures), as well as different backdrops and undergounds and part of her photography equipment. The room was a little too small to give all of us the opportunity to play around with it, so we decided that she should do a spontanious "live styling session" for us to give us an example of her work process.
If you want to see the result please hop over to Dietlind's website and blog where you can not only see the picture she is taking up there but also more of her work.
Besides Dietlind Wolf's workshop there were many more keynotes and workshops - I didn't get to see all of them but I want to highlight Tina Fussell from Flying House by traveling mama who talked about "blogging for the fun of it" and, even though I didn't see it but heard so many good things about it and got to know her as a lovely person during the weekend, Kat Conte from Zero The One who gave a workshop about video blogging.
All in all the most valuable keynotes and workshops were given by bloggers themselves who knew what their audience expected and needed.
Unfortunately, there were also some speakers coming from companies who seemed to have underestimated their audience's ability to tell the difference between a workshop and a product presentation, as well as some speakers who didn't bother to address the target group they were talking to and saw it simply as a chance to add another speaking engagement to their CV. Let's hope they saw the angry tweets and posts later and rethink their strategy when reaching out to bloggers. And maybe it's also time for bloggers to analyze why some companies and self-proclaimed experts see them as bunch of amateurs who will do and believe anything in exchange for money, products or their soul.
BUT: Last but not least the weekend was all about meeting old and new blogging friends. Normally you know the blogs and not the person behind it - after a weekend like that it's just the opposite: Lots of new faces, the blogs behind them I will have to explore step by step...