Virtual Winter Conference

Due to the pandemic, the 2021 Winter Conference will be virtual this year but a lot of what you’ve come to expect with an ATPI Winter Conference will still take place. From a virtual set of hands-on workshops to multiple contests, there is something for everyone. The conference will utilize Whova, a web-based and mobile platform for conferences. Schools that register will receive information on how to access the site. A day of live events will take place in Whova on Friday, February 26 and our keynote and awards will be Saturday, February 27.

Registration is $18 per person, but we have discounts for groups. Register five students and one teacher is free. Register 10 people for $160, 20 people for $320 and 30 people for $480. Everyone that registers by the early bird registration deadline (February 5, 2021) will receive a commemorative Winter Conference pin.


These workshops will be available on-demand in Whova beginning on Monday, February 8, 2021 through Sunday, February 28. Each class is about 40 minutes in length and includes an assignment/contest at the end. These assignments are due in the ATPI contest system by 6 p.m. Central on February 23.
No pre-registration is required and there is no limit to the number of classes you can watch. Complete assignments for any of the classes you view. The expectation is that social distancing guidelines, wearing of masks and all other COVID-19 safety protocols are followed while working on these assignments.

Portraits and Posing
This class will involve students working with an instructor to learn how to pose a model for a photoshoot. The instructor will teach students how to properly use light and positioning to get the best overall image and will show students how to pose with one model and multiple models. Skill Level: Intermediate Materials: camera, model

Students will learn about the different qualities of light and how to produce those differing types of lighting using reflectors, locations and flash.
Track One – Learn to use different types of available light and modifiers to properly expose a photograph. Skill level: Beginning Materials: DSLR or cell phone camera, reflector/white foam core (optional)
Track Two – Learn to use an external flash on and off camera by exploring different flash modes and settings. Skill level: Advanced Materials: DSLR camera, external flash, Pocket Wizard or similar flash remote (optional)

Advertising/Product Photography
Students will learn simple tabletop setups utilizing lighting and staging techniques to produce quality commercial images suitable for advertising applications. Some post production techniques will be discussed. Skill Level: Intermediate Materials: lights, DSLR camera, image editing software

Photoshop Composites
Students will explore the artistic potential of Photoshop while learning to create composites focusing on the skills of selection, masking, layer blending, text, and effects. Skill level: Intermediate-Advanced Materials: Computer with Adobe PhotoShop, image files provided (download them here)

Students will learn how to properly use composition in their photographs such as filling the frame, rule of thirds, don’t cut off the models limbs, make the most of your leading lines, use framing when available, watch out for what is in your background, etc. Skill level: Beginning Materials: camera, tripod

The instructor will teach about aperture, shutter speed and ISO. They will then use these to take a properly exposed image. This class will be for beginners or for any student who would like to refresh their skills on using the camera in manual to get the correct exposure. Skill level: Beginning Materials: camera, tripod

Depth of Field
Students will learn how to properly use their aperture on their cameras to learn what depth of field is and how it works to make stronger images. This class will cover basics of aperture along with focal length and distance to subject. Skill level: Beginning Materials: digital camera

Students will learn how to import, rank, filter, and edit a group of images. The class will cover the tools and adjustments in the Develop Module as well as presets, exporting, and renaming files. Skill level: Intermediate Materials: camera, computer with Adobe Lightroom

Environmental Portraits
Environmental portraits take the subject out of the studio and put them into a setting that says something about them. Learn how to create these types of photographs. Skill level: Beginning Materials: camera

Cell Phone Photography / Editing
Learn how to use some of the cool apps for smartphones to capture unique images. Skill level: Beginning Materials: a smartphone with any of the following apps: Hipstamatic, Instagram, ProHDR, SnapSeed

Students will learn how to create videos for various audiences including social media, news outlets and entertainment. Skill level: Beginning
Track One – News/Multimedia: Create journalistic videos for social media and broadcast style reporting.
Track Two – Story telling: Create short films or other short form type videos.
Materials: video recording device, computer with editing software


Pete Souza Panel

Up to 15 students will have the opportunity to listen to Souza talk about some of his favorite photographs and his career as a photojournalist and then engage in a discussion with Souza. This group of students will serve as a proxy for everyone else registered for the Winter Conference.

The panel will give the students an opportunity to discuss Souza’s work, including Obama: An Intimate Portrait and Shade, as well as the recently released documentary The Way I See It.

Students who are interested in participating in the panel should apply by 5 p.m. Feb. 6 at In the application, students will discuss their past experience and future participation in photography, what question they would ask Souza if given a chance, and upload a recommendation letter from their teacher. Applicants must be registered to attend the Winter Conference and their instructor must be an ATPI member. Only one student per school will be selected.

ATPI will notify the selected students no later than Feb. 10. The panel will take place Feb 16 at 4 p.m. CST in a recorded Zoom session. Students who are selected are asked to keep their cameras on to help facilitate discussion. The selected students’ instructors will also be invited to attend the panel, though they will not have the opportunity to ask questions.

Souza’s presentation, including the Q&A session, will be shared during the Winter Conference keynote and awards on Feb. 27 at 1 p.m.

For questions regarding the application, email

Get our official conference app

For feature details, visit Whova

All times Central

Friday, February 5, 2021

Early Bird Registration deadline
Pete Souza application deadline

Monday, February 8, 2021

Whova opens for hands-on workshop classes

Friday, February 12, 2021

Contest categories announced on Twitter

Friday, February 19, 2021

Final Registration deadline

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

6 p.m.

    • Deadline to upload workshop class contest entries, Picture Package, School Portfolio, Environmental Self-Portrait, Beginning and Advanced Portfolios, video entries and Cropped first-round entries

ATPI Online Contest site

Friday, February 26, 2021

9 a.m.

  • Beginning / Advanced Portfolio Reviews
  • Breakout Sessions

10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

  • Beginning / Advanced Portfolio Reviews
  • Breakout Sessions
  • Hands-on Workshop Critiques
  • Cropped contest

Saturday, February 27, 2021

1 – 3 p.m.

ATPI Keynote Speakers

Feb 1998 – Julie Newton
Feb 1999 – Dennis Darling
Feb 2000 – Judy Walgren
Feb 2001 – Keith Carter
Feb 2002 – Danny Turner
Feb 2003 – Dirck Halstead
Feb 2004 – Susan Kae Grant
Feb 2005 – Chris Rainier, sponsored by Canon
Feb 2006 – Robb Kendrick
Feb 2007 – David Hume Kennerly, sponsored by Canon
Feb 2008 – Bill Fortney, sponsored by Nikon
Feb 2009 – Jay Kinghorn, sponsored by Olympus
Feb 2010 – Gregory Heisler, sponsored by Canon
Feb 2011 – Robb Kendrick

Feb 2012 – Sam Abell, sponsored by Canon
Feb 2013 – Elizabeth Kreutz
Feb 2014 – Kirk Tuck, sponsored by Precision Camera and Video
Feb 2015 – John Isaac
Feb 2016 – Stan Godwin
Feb 2017 – Dixie Dixon, sponsored by Nikon
Feb 2018 – James Balog, sponsored by Nikon
Feb 2019 – Brandon Thibodeaux
Feb 2020 – Donna DeCesare
Feb 2021 – Pete Souza

Sponsors Have Included