Export Exchange Conference in Minneapolis – Day 3

With 500 attendees from over 50 countries, The Export Exchange is an international conference held in Minneapolis, that provides overseas attendees the opportunity to build relationships with U.S. suppliers of distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS), corn, sorghum, barley and other commodities. The speaker line-up for this year’s conference was a “who’s who” array of experts in the industry, with a variety of programs to educate and build awareness of environmental sustainability, weather patterns, the world political climate, historical data trends, and the benefits of U.S. products. Event sponsors from all over the country were also there, displaying products, answering questions, and building relationships with buyers.

In addition to hosting the conference, The U.S. Grains Council sponsored the attendance of international trade teams from more than 30 countries that will see the U.S. grain supply chain firsthand before and after the conference.

Day 3 of the conference capitalized on all the informative presentations and relationship-building from the previous two days! There were many more powerful presentations, as well as panel discussions for everyone to attend. Plus there were many new connections established during the networking breaks. The day culminated in a fun group shot of all the amazing people on the US Grains Council team that made this whole conference possible! It was an absolute pleasure photographing this year’s Export Exchange!!!

Export Exchange Conference in Minneapolis – Day 2

With 500 attendees from over 50 countries, The Export Exchange is an international conference held in Minneapolis, that provides overseas attendees the opportunity to build relationships with U.S. suppliers of distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS), corn, sorghum, barley and other commodities. The speaker line-up for this year’s conference was a “who’s who” array of experts in the industry, with a variety of programs to educate and build awareness of environmental sustainability, weather patterns, the world political climate, historical data trends, and the benefits of U.S. products. Event sponsors from all over the country were also there, displaying products, answering questions, and building relationships with buyers.

In addition to hosting the conference, The U.S. Grains Council sponsored the attendance of international trade teams from more than 30 countries that will see the U.S. grain supply chain firsthand before and after the conference.

Day 2 of the conference was all about the keynote speakers in the main ballroom! There were lots of networking breaks as well. At the end of the day, once everyone’s brains were filled to capacity with new knowledge, a nice reception was held at the Minneapolis Orchestra Hall. (Stay tuned for Day 3.) It was an absolute pleasure photographing this year’s Export Exchange!

Export Exchange Conference in Minneapolis – Day 1

With over 500 attendees from over 50 countries, The Export Exchange is an international conference held in Minneapolis, that provides overseas attendees the opportunity to build relationships with U.S. suppliers of distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS), corn, sorghum, barley and other commodities. The speaker line-up for this year’s conference was a “who’s who” array of experts in the industry, with a variety of programs to educate and build awareness of environmental sustainability, weather patterns, the world political climate, historical data trends, and the benefits of U.S. products. Event sponsors from all over the country were also there, displaying products, answering questions, and building relationships with buyers.

In addition to hosting the conference, The U.S. Grains Council sponsored the attendance of international trade teams from more than 30 countries that will get a chance to meet farmers and see the U.S. grain supply chain firsthand before and after the conference.

Day 1 of the conference I was busy photographing candids of everyone arriving and registering, team photos of the various delegations, as well as the welcome reception.  (Stay tuned for days 2 and 3.)  It was an absolute pleasure photographing this year’s Export Exchange!

US Grains Council Conference in Sacramento – Day 3

The US Grains Council’s 62nd Annual Board of Delegates Meeting at the Hyatt Regency Sacramento is in the books! It was another fantastic event. I am humbled and honored to be the official photographer for this amazing group.  Their destination conferences are always so informative and inspirational!!! Here are a few shots from the final Day 3…

US Grains Council Conference in Sacramento – Day 2

The US Grains Council’s 62nd Annual Board of Delegates Meeting at the Hyatt Regency Sacramento is in the books! It was another fantastic event. I am humbled and honored to be the official photographer for this amazing group.  Their destination conferences are always so informative and inspirational!!! Here are a few shots from Day 2…

US Grains Council Conference in Sacramento – Day 1

The US Grains Council’s 62nd Annual Board of Delegates Meeting at the Hyatt Regency Sacramento is in the books! It was another fantastic event. I am humbled and honored to be the official photographer for this amazing group.  Their destination conferences are always so informative and inspirational!!! Here are a few shots from Day 1…

New Orleans Greenscreen Event

We live in interesting times!!!

Photography certainly has evolved over the 40 years since I first got “hooked” with my Dad’s Pentax K1000. I photographed all through high-school as the senior yearbook photographer with that camera and a Rikoh KR-5, switching to the Pentax Program Plus and ME Super in college. I upgraded to medium format Mamiya 645 when I turned pro after college. When auto-focus technology arrived, I converted to Nikon N8008, N90, and F100. Things got really interesting when digital hit the scene. I was an early adopter with the D100, progressing to the D2x, D3, D4, D5, and many other variations in between. Most recently, the big change has been switching to mirrorless. I’m currently working with the Z9 and loving it!

But what’s really cool is how cameras and computers have become so integrated! Last week I had a fantastic time photographing a greenscreen event in New Orleans for one of our favorite clients, the US Grains Council! Similar to how the weatherman shows you the maps on TV, I used a green background that the computer would later drop out and replace with a digital background.  With my D5 tethered to one laptop, Lightroom would instantly import the image. Then a special program from the awesome team at Photo Party Upload would watch that “hot folder” and pop the image up in an intuitive kiosk app.  If the first laptop was still being used by the previous guest in the booth, I had a second laptop set up with the same kiosk app running on it for the next person to use.  After getting their picture made, guests would go to one of the kiosks to choose which background image they wanted, and use the touchscreen to pinch and zoom their photo, placing themselves in the “scene” wherever they wanted. Finally, they could instantly share the final image on social media, or simply email it to themselves.

It was so much fun watching everyone get creative and have fun with the system! 40 years ago, if you had told me I’d be doing this king of “magic” with today’s technology, I would have told you you were crazy!!! 🙂

Commodity Classic in New Orleans

The Commodity Classic is America’s largest farmer-led, farmer-focused agricultural & educational experience! It’s a massive 3-day event where farmers gather every year to find the answers, solutions, and information they need to gain greater clarity and vision for their farm’s success.

This weekend, I had the pleasure of photographing the 2022 conference and trade-show for the US Grains Council.  They are an amazing organization, focused on developing markets for American corn, barley, and sorghum…enabling trade…and improving lives. The 3-day program was held at the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. With over 7,000 attendees, it was a huge success!!!

(All images captured with Nikon Z9, Nikkor 24-70 f2.8 S, and Lexar XQD cards.)

US Grains Council 19th International Marketing Conference – Day 3

The 3rd and final day of the 19th International Marketing Conference and 62nd Annual Membership Meeting at the Hyatt Regency in Greenville was a time to celebrate!

All the Advisory Team Leaders shared the progress reports and final results from their intense break-out meetings. Recognition Awards for exemplary service were handed out to deserving recipients. And final words of inspiration were shared before the conference was finally adjourned.

It was an absolute pleasure being back in person, photographing another fabulous event for the US Grains Council!

US Grains Council 19th International Marketing Conference – Day 2

Day 2 of the 19th International Marketing Conference and 62nd Annual Membership Meeting at the Hyatt Regency in Greenville begin with some fantastic presentations. But the majority of the day was spent in break-out meetings, focusing on different sectors of the market.

That night, everyone got to blow off some steam during an off-site reception at the famous BBQ at Zen!

US Grains Council 19th International Marketing Conference – Day 1

Day 1 of the 19th International Marketing Conference and 62nd Annual Membership Meeting at the Hyatt Regency in Greenville started off with a bang!

A very full schedule included highlight appearances from Mayor Pro Tem of Greenville, Lillian Flemming…Ryan LeGrand, President and CEO of the USGC…Ambassador Katherine Tai…Jason Hafemeister, Acting Deputy Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs…Sharon Yuan, President of The Asia Group…and many more!

A casual Welcome Reception Welcome Reception was held in Noma Square that evening so everyone could de-compress from the days events.