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  • Greater Rochester Professional Photographers

    Welcome to the Greater Rochester Professional Photographers official website! We are an organization of like minded professionals dedicated to the advancement of the photographic arts in Upstate New York. We are one of eleven sections of Professional Photographers Society of New York State and we are an affiliate of Professional Photographers of America.

    On this website you will find articles and links designed to help you find professional photographers for all your photographic needs. Whether you are getting married, looking for portrait work or just looking for some great pieces of visual artwork, you will find it here.

    If you are a professional photographer who is interested in networking with other professionals, please join us every 2nd Wednesday of the month at the Flower City Arts Center, 713 Monroe Ave, Rochester, NY 14607. Be sure to visit our Facebook Page for more information about our monthly meetings.

    Our meetings begin with a social hour from 6 - 7 pm followed by the main program from 7 - 9 pm. Your first meeting is complimentary - so come check us out!

March Combined Meeting: Seeing the Light

PPSCNY, GRPP and Fingerlakes sections will meet together to host PPSNYS President, Paul Bernstein, M. Photog., Cr. Photog., CPP.

The meeting will be held on March 16th at:
Abigails Restaurant – (Click for map)
1978 Route 5 & 20
Waterloo, NY 13165

Social hour begins at 4:30 pm, Dinner at 5:00 and the Program at 7:00. 


Seeing the Light
By Paul Bernstein
M. Photog., Cr., CPP

Every artist works in a preferred medium. As photographers, our medium is light. For us, the use of light and shadow creates the illusion of depth in two dimensional images. Light has several variables that we also must take into consideration and control when making images: direction, intensity, color temperature and quality. What defines a true professional is the ability to see the light, determine if it is perfect for the task at hand and then have the capability to modify or substitute the source if it is not.
My program is designed to raise your ability to see the light, select the correct photographic tools, plus utilize the proper lighting techniques in order to create three dimensional portraits and candids every time you hit the shutter. It’s all about being able to consistently control your illumination to suit every situation and subject.


About Paul Bernstein:

Paul Bernstein, M. Photog., Cr., CPP

Paul has been a professional photographer for over 38 years, during which time he has photographed 2500 social events and countless portrait sessions. He is a master of lighting and posing, as well as candid photography. He is certified by the Professional Photographers of America and holds both Master of Photography and Photographic Craftsman degrees from PPA. He is the president of the Professional Photographers Society of New York State, former president of the Professional Photographers of Greater New York, a council member of the Professional Photographers of America, as well as a member of both the American Society of Photographers and Wedding and Portrait Professionals International.
Paul and his wife Caryn Benjamin have lectured and presented their innovative ideas to groups of professional photographers around the country. In 20o4, 2008 and 2010 they were honored by Professional Photographers of America among the “Photographers of the Year”.

March Meeting: Networking & Shootout at Genesee Center for the Arts

GRPP’s March Meeting will be held at the Genesee Center for the Arts & Education on March 9, 2016.


The Genesee Center for the Arts & Education Photography program would like talk about hosting GRPP events, lectures, demos, and workshops in addition to making GRPP members aware of the facilities and teaching opportunities we have to offer. We aim to begin a conversation about how we can better serve photographers as well as invite you to the community here that has been thriving for more than 40 years.

6:00 Meet at Starbucks: 680 Monroe Ave. for social time and networking
7:00 We’ll move to the Genesee Center for the Arts & Education, across the street for a brief presentation and Q&A. (713 Monroe Ave)
7:30 til 9ish Interactive shooting with models. This will be hands on, so bring your gear.

About the Center

Established in 1970, The Genesee Center for the Arts & Education is located in an historic firehouse, built in 1895-1905 (Try to find evidence of the fire poles next time you’re here!). We are the only community visual arts center conveniently located within the City of Rochester. In 1973, the Arts Center incorporated as a 501(c)3 not-for-profit educational institution.

The Genesee Center for the Arts & Education offers programs in three visual arts areas: Book Arts, Ceramics, and Photography. We produce youth programs, classes and workshops, provide facilities to our studio artists, and exhibit work in our galleries. We collaborate with community groups for the benefit of all. Our photography, ceramics and book arts programs are available to community members of all ages, income and background.

The Genesee Center for the Arts & Education is an Institutional Member of the National Guild for Community Arts Education.

Visit Genesee Center for the Arts & Education’s Website here


February 2016 Recap

If you missed our February meeting, you really missed a great night!  Our own Pat Luke of Luke Photography shared some lighting information in our newly established Tips & Tricks segment.  Pat spoke about Short Lighting vs Broad Lighting, the differences, and the how and why you do it.  For some, the information may not have been new, but Pat has such a clear and concise way of presenting topics that it was a great reminder to us of well-known techniques.  For the newbies, it was really important info to add to our knowledge base.  Thanks Pat!

2016Feb10_015                                      2016Feb10_012



Our guest speaker, Dresden Engle of Dresden Public Relations spoke to us about storytelling and self-promotion.  Her insight into the various social media platforms and her discussion of creating emotional connections, authenticity and believibility were truly valuable touchpoints.  It was encouraging to hear that “Images are winning!” (what people want to see as well as helping with SEO) especially since we are image makers!  From websites to blogs, Facebook to Instagram, Dresden covered a lot of ground just breaking the surface of this ever-changing and, at times, over-whelming marketing world we work in.  Her information, sense of humor and ability to connect with our membership made for a terrific evening!  Thank you Dresden!!!




Photography taken by Adrian DeJesus Photography

Member Spotlight: Ron Stochl

This month We are reviving our Member Spotlight series. Our first candidate for 2016 is Ron Stochl. Ron owns and operates Stochl Imaging and has been a GRPP member for several years. You can visit his website at Get to know a little more about him below!

Stochl Imaging

How did you get into photography? I started working with photography back when I was a teenager. After leaving it for a while I got back into it when, as a teacher, I ran a school yearbook at Rush Henrietta. I did most of the schools’ photo capturing, developing, printing and placement of prints on to yearbook story boards. I was eventually asked to run a “gifted” program for students interested in darkroom work. The school had converted a science store room into a darkroom for this purpose. I continued this for a number of years to follow.

Do you have any formal education? I did not receive any formal training in photography other than a few area workshops. I did most of my research and studying via photography books and internet photography instructional sites. I spent several years doing this before truly getting into the business. I still follow this same “recipe” today. Photography is one of those fields where the learning process never ends.

What has been your greatest achievement? With regards to photography, I am not really sure that I can pin it down to a single achievement. What makes me feel very satisfied is that I have been able to bring myself to the point where I feel confident in photographing weddings, high school seniors, events, etc. We have also developed quite a following selling scenic photos via area craft shows, including Lilac Festival, Corn Hill, Park Ave & new to us this year, Clothesline.

How do you stay fresh and creative? I am frequently engaging in online photography workshops such as those sponsored by the Creative Live people. I also follow a lot of seminars run by widely acclaimed professional photographers such as Mark Wallace and Joe Brady to name a few. Of course attending as many GRRP seminars as I can has definitely helped me in honing or adding to my skill set.

What is the best piece of gear in your camera bag? I have several pieces of equipment that are very important to me. I am an avid user of full frame cameras, in this case from Canon, along with a wide array of lenses, studio strobes, speedlites, etc. There is one piece however, for my studio – the Canon 6d, which is great as I can “wifi” the captured photos immediately to a tablet so that the client can see the results as we progress.

What do you wish you knew when you began? How to successfully operate a business. I had absolutely no idea what area to best concentrate on with regards to marketing. I was also clueless as to how to price my work. Another area of weakness for me was regarding photography contracts. My wife has a business background which did help. Also it was in talking to other professional photographers, researching online and attending a few business oriented workshops that it finally began to make sense for me.

Worst day on the job and what you learned? Early on in my business, I had the parent of a high school senior “claim” that she believed I was to include high resolution photos into the package when I did not state that. I thought I had made myself clear while talking to her on the phone. I did not use written contracts back then. I DO NOW !

Best day on the job and what you learned? I cannot narrow it down to just one day. I can say that my present “days on the job” are so much more rewarding now that I have learned a lot more about operating a business. I have gained much more of an understanding of photography concepts and its related equipment. I feel now that I can relax a bit more and really enjoy the projects that I am working on.

3 favorite non-photography hobbies? I was an avid golfer and skier until about 10 years ago but no longer indulge in those activities. Perhaps my favorite one is music. I was a lead guitarist in several area old rock bands (many years ago – I had hair then) although I no longer do that. I still enjoy however, picking up the guitar and, in private, playing “guitar licks” with a song from the internet. On a final note, with regards to this topic, my wife and I (now retired from our former careers) love to travel the USA. There are some folks that talk to us about Europe, Mexico and such, but there is so much beauty in this country that we have not been able to see yet. That is a goal we are actively pursuing.

Best piece of software? For me, it is a tie between Lightroom and Photoshop. I use both of these. I start my work in Lightroom and then bring it over into Photoshop for final tweaking and printing.

What’s the best business tip you’ve been given? In all seriousness, I can honestly say it was joining GRRP. It was 4 or 5 years ago, while working my photography tent at a craft show, that someone recommended I consider joining GRRP. I didn’t even know what GRRP was at the time. Later on, I met Bob Steere and he filled me in on some of the great things GRRP was doing. Since joining GRRP (January of 2013 I believe) I have learned so much regarding both photography and conducting it as a business, that my business has progressed to a point where I feel quite satisfied and very comfortable at what I do. Lord knows I have much more to learn, but that is the fun and rewarding part.

Telling Your Story: In the News and On-line

February’s GRPP program will focus on storytelling and self-promotion. Public relations is now a full integration of traditional media and online platforms, and yet it all comes down to good storytelling — whether you are telling your story in a news article or in your own blog. Before you pitch the press, you must take a gauge of your online persona and see how your story is currently being told. Seasoned PR professional Dresden Engle, who managed the PR and storytelling for George Eastman Museum for 15 years, will share story-mining and news-pitching tips to help get your message heard.


Social Time: 6-6:45pm Nox, 302 Goodman St. N, Rochester (Village Gate)
Meeting Time: 7-9pm, 100 College Ave. Rochester (behind the MAG in the Gay Alliance of Genesee Valley office space)

Dresden’s background: Dresden Engle, Director, Dresden Public Relations,
Dresden steers the branding and public relations/social media strategy for Dresden Public Relations. She is a nationally award-winning communications professional with 27 years experience in journalism, public relations, and social media. She has earned awards in writing, news releases, blogging, PR, and Facebook/Twitter campaigns. Dresden has worked extensively with local and national media, securing lead features in major publications and on national newscasts, from The New York Times and Forbes, to ABC World News and CBS News Sunday Morning. Professional honors she has received include 40 Under 40, Athena Award finalist, and Up & Coming Businesswoman Award in 2013 from the Rochester Women’s Network.

Dresden has been instrumental in the creation and orchestration of large events at George Eastman House, where she headed PR efforts for 15 years, and also for numerous clients at venues such as Rochester Music Hall of Fame ceremony at Eastman Theatre, the Lilac Festival at Highland Park, and the Go Green Expo at RMSC and High Falls as well as press events in New York City; Hollywood; Toronto; London, England; and Cologne, Germany. Dresden holds a master’s degree in communication and a bachelor’s degree in journalism and theater. She has served as chairwoman of Visit Rochester’s Visitor Industry Council and was a founding board member of the High Falls Film Festival. Dresden is a popular emcee and guest speaker at numerous events and conferences and also teaches the upper-level PR courses at SUNY Brockport.

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