This isn’t a name dropping post.  At least, it is not meant to be!

On Friday, I not only listened to a keynote and attended a breakout session of Greg Johnson, Tornado Hunter but, he joined my table for lunch.

For those of you who do not know his name, you will soon.  CMT is airing their first show tonight.  He and his team are severe storm chasers from Saskatchewan.

When I heard he was speaking at our conference, I got very excited about learning some photography tips.  Many people came to that session hoping to see a million pictures of tornadoes.  They did see some, but what struck me is how little Greg focused on that type of brag worthy shot.

Instead, through his pictures, we met a man who has such a love for family and humans in general.  The main photography tip he had was to include the human story.  Even if there are no people in the photo, it should touch the emotions of viewers by relating to humans in some way.

Greg was obviously proud of the Tornado Hunter adventures, but no pictures made his eyes light up more than those of his children.  I guess seeing death and destruction puts life into perspective.  And that was a great lesson to take away.

I knew many of his tips for beginners, but the session was a reminder that I have been very lazy lately with my photography.  I need to look a bit deeper for the story that I want to tell.  Just because I am bored at home and snapping pictures to pass the time, doesn’t mean their aren’t many stories to be told through my shots.

Greg’s keynote had a couple major messages.

1)  If things aren’t working out, it is probably because better things are on the way.  Keep on living until you find your passion.  Don’t let failure get you down.

2) Make sure you love your job.

Number two made me feel a bit guilty.  I often crack jokes about quitting to be a travel writer.  And I am half…. ok, maybe more…serious.  But, I really do like my job a lot.  I enjoy myself every day.  I laugh every day.  I learn every day.  And I help shape children’s lives.  Cultural experiences are important to me and each day I enter  a community that is so different, but so amazing and inviting.

At lunch, Greg sat with us.  We might have been a bit star struck at first, but conversation centered around family and daily life in general.  Only a few comments actually focused on the crazy life of chasing deadly tornadoes.

It was a great convention.  I even ended up rejoining the executive and will be planning next year’s.

If you have any ideas for Keynote speakers, send them my way!

Be sure to tune into CMT tonight to watch the premier of Tornado Hunters.  Saskatchewan has some amazing talent and interesting people!  Be proud!

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