Retrospect

Hear more about Mystic Seminars

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Tim Chin

I used to describe Mystic as if it were something akin to summer camp for photographers. You go, spend 3-4 days together in close quarters and you learn so much about each other, and a lot about yourself. In many ways, it is exactly that. But in today’s industry landscape there are many places just like that. Mystic is somehow something intangibly much much more. Mystic has a soul. 

Every time I've gone, I've been met with a collective desire to learn, to soak in, to encourage and develop our industry. The character of this conference is a kind of realignment of the photographic heart. It is this conference where I learned that passion for the craft is rooted in belief. Ostensibly, we talk a lot about the power of photography, the value of images, and the importance of the job we do as image makers. The result is nothing short of existential: It shows you that you can be a better photographer than you thought, in ways that you had never considered. Walter and Angela have consistently curated a collection of speakers and attracted a collection of attendees who are wholly committed to believing in the work that they do, and that spirit is infectious.

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Makayla Jade

You know that feeling when you’ve heard so much about a place and you’re so excited to go but you’re also super nervous because you don’t know anyone and you have no clue what to expect?  That was me the moment before I walked through the doors of the Benson Hotel for Mystic 2018.  Within 3 footsteps of entering the lobby, I was greeted by a group of people asking “Hey are you here for Mystic?  Pull up a chair, grab a drink with us”.  I’ve never felt more welcomed in my life.   That openness, acceptance, and sincerity continued throughout the day, and over the course of the entire week. In that short span, my world spun upside down in the best way possible. Not only did I walk away with a completely different outlook on my purpose, inspiration driving my work, and an insane amount of value to bring back to my business, I also met people that now months later have become some of my closest friends, my confidants, the people I call when I have everything to say or nothing at all.  Meticulously planned and executed, Angela and Walter pull off an unbelievable production that leaves you feeling like you’ve attended a world class event from the comfort of your favorite hang out spot.  Mystic is not just a seminar, it's a life-changing experience.   If you think you’ll find any other workshop like this out there, you’re kidding yourself.   Thank you, Walter, Angela, and the entire Mystic community for being so much more than I ever expected.  I’m so thankful I didn’t let my fear of the unknown stop me from embracing this kick-ass community. 

 

Monica Muñoz

“Mystics is like a gang, it seems like people go year after year like if they follow a festival of music like Lollapaloza, people go for the energy that is in there, It`s that kind of Seminar that you go because you know is going to be good, that`s for sure!... This year it was my turn, Mister Pete Souza opened and I closed the Seminar, what a difficult mission! but I did my best there! Crazy days we had with old and new friends ... Thanks a lot to Walter and Angela for thinking of me for such an important mission as closing the festival.”

Marlies Hartmann

“Mystic Seminars 2017 was the first photography conference I had ever attended, taking the leap to attend before I had even photographed my first wedding season. Mystic’s 2017 conference helped me to not only lay the foundation for my craft but, also inspired me to look at photography in a different way and taught me how to stand apart from my oversaturated Los Angeles market. It also facilitated new friendships with some of the most talented artists in this industry.

Mystic 2018 gave me the opportunity to reaffirm those friendships, rekindling my motivation to not only push myself to be a better photographer, but also a better human being and creative.

This profession can often feel super isolating, and Mystic gives you a space to connect, share ideas, and “geek out” with other photographers. It’s the kind of conference where you speak each other’s language (or your entirely own language!) without judgment or hierarchy, where you can share a beer with industry leaders or newbies alike, and casually chat about everything from photography gear and editing tricks, to international travel and overall life goals.

Mystic is the mecca for unpretentious networking, ass-kicking inspiration, and incredibly relevant photography education.”

Lanny Mann

“Mystic is community! Every time I attend, I get to forge new friendships, reconnect with old buds, and light a fire up under my photography’s ass.”

Eirik Halvorsen

“I have attended several conferences in Europe and USA and I have never made so many awesome contacts as I have at Mystic. Many I today can call my friends. As a Norwegian from the cold North I have always looked at America for inspiration, and being at Mystic has given me that inspiration, tangible business insight and an expanded network throughout the world.

I had such a good time my first year that I had to bring my wife with me the second year so we could share the experience together. I want to quote her because she said it so perfectly:
”I always say the participants of a seminar reflect the producer and organizer; and I think it is safe to say that Walter and Angela attract amazing, creative, kind, beautiful souls to their event!”

At Mystic you always have friends in the room. Even if you haven’t met them just yet.”

Dave Paek

“Every Mystic Seminars feels like a family reunion and there’s no shortage of hugs and high fives. It’s a special community made up of people who share the same passion for the craft and people who have the ability to make deep and powerful connections with others. So it comes as no surprise that every Mystic event is brimming with emotion, camaraderie, and inspiration (lots of it). The first Mystic I attended was back in 2014. From the onset, I knew there was something unique and special about the Mystic community - it was not just a learning experience for me but an opportunity to make strong connections with those who would later become my mentors and friends in the industry. It was an indelible and life changing experience that set me on a path of exploring my own creativity without being afraid of taking chances. I would’ve never imagined that four years later I would be a speaker at Mystic - sharing my life and some of my work with those who have inspired me and also with those who were much like me four years ago. A very special ‘Thank You’ to my friends Walter and Angela - they have been tireless in their dedication and commitment in not only providing fresh and exciting content but also in creating a special community every year for the past thirteen years. We certainly hope that the Mystic tradition and community will continue to flourish for many more years to come.”

Víctor Lax

“Mystic Seminars is more than a conference, it´s an amazing wedding photography community. I had the pleasure to be part of the 2018 line up for the incredibly fun and inspirational Mystic Seminars.

Before going to Mystic I asked a few wedding photographers about it and all of them told me the same; “Ohh wow, Mystic Seminars!, you are going to the most powerful and inspirational wedding conference!!”

Mystic is an experience that every photographer must have at least once in their career.”

Beth Olson

“The people I’ve met at Mystic and the opportunities I’ve had to create connections and friendships over the past 3 years has utterly changed the trajectory of my business and honestly, my life. Being introduced to a lot of different concepts and ways of doing business propelled me to try new things that has ultimately led to a year of prosperity and travel and all the good things you imagine you’ll be able to do when you first decide you want to work for yourself. I owe the majority of where I am now (and where I’m headed) to the speakers and attendees of Mystic. I’m sure it’s rarely easy, but I deeply appreciate your hard work in making this happen, year after year.”

Jonas Peterson

“I had been talking about speaking at Mystic for quite a few years, but I was always too busy to make it work. In 2017, I finally got the chance and it was such a joy to hang out with everyone in Portland. One of the main things for a great conference is the community. Walter understands that and that is one of the reasons people keep coming back year after year; not to just listen to schmucks like me, but because they feel they belong. And that’s what it’s all about, community.”

Adam Kennedy

“2017 was my 5th Mystic seminar and it still managed to be my favorite one to date. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve loved all the Mystics I’ve attended - clearly I keep coming back for more- but I can now say with impunity that Mystic is hands down one of the best seminars/conferences I’ve had the pleasure of being a part of. This year I was almost unable to attend due to a financially rough 2016 but was able to buy my ticket the 3 days before it started and I’m grateful I did. It was everything I needed and more after the stresses of last year. There’s many a great conference out there but pound for pound, dollar for dollar there is none that can compare to the greatness that is Mystic. The friends and relationships and countless fresh ideas for my business that have formed over the years has been invaluable to me. Walter and Angela have worked tirelessly to make Mystic great year after year and it shows every time I attend. I love that they’re always striving to push and improve Mystic further than the previous year and their passion to better the photographer community is evident in everything that Mystic is and Walter and Angela are as humans. Thank you and I love you guys!”

Jill H

“I have attended wedding workshops, newborn workshops and business workshops in the past and it was nothing close to this experience at Mystic. I love how intimate the environment of Mystic is and how much you can learn in one week alongside such amazing inspirational photographers. It is a week you can dig deep into your heart and your business and came away with new found inspiration and goals. I felt renewed energy for myself and and a sense of community from photographers around the world. There are many times during the year as a photographer you question the craziness we go through working in the wedding industry. I however felt a new drive to strive towards my goals, learn more and push myself for the next year to accomplish goals for myself and my clients. It is a great way to start out your year. Thank you, Angela and Walter for creating such a great experience at Mystic.”

Daniel Aguilar

“I always had the very high goal of speaking at Mystic one day and this past January the dream came true.

Mystic is really one of the most lovable and amazing wedding photo communities out there and It really has this very unique and rare combination of merging the best of education in photography and the most amazing times and fun in beautiful Portland. Walter has put together something very special that I hope it lasts for year and years to come. Thanks always for giving me this opportunity Walter!”

Verity & Chris Sansom

“Last year we were attendees at our first ever Mystic Seminars. Travelling all the way from the UK we weren’t quite sure what to expect but from the day Mystic started we were made to feel right at home by everyone. We made so many friends throughout our time at Mystic and what we loved most was the genuine sense of community Walter and Angela have fostered. At Mystic it’s not about what your business is called, or how many awards you have won, it’s about honest friendships and pushing everyone up together.

We were both incredibly honored to return this year as speakers and it was an experience neither of us will ever forget. Going around the world to speak at a conference full of fantastic photographers was something we could only have dreamed about when we first began our business but to do it at Mystic really is something special. Walter has put so much of his own passion into Mystic that it shows in every aspect of the conference, from the amazing food to bowling nights, an epic closing party and friendly exhibitors. Angela and Walter have created an environment where lifelong friendships are made and for that we cannot thank them enough.

Each year we came away completely refreshed and energized, in fact it totally changed our outlook on the whole wedding industry. It’s safe to say there really is something magic about Mystic Seminars!”

Amy Gawlick

“Mystic Seminars is truly an experience all its own. A retreat for photographers who are not only passionate about their craft but open to growing and learning in a way they see fit. Created with the community in mind this experience will change and evolve you into someone you aspire to be. You truly get what you need from Mystic Seminars and apply it how you will to help you grow. Words truly cannot describe the memories you will take away from this experience. It is something you have to feel and see to believe. As an attendee and speaker, there was no difference, besides being on stage. The creatives Mystic brings and the relationships it builds is priceless. Mystic makes my heart full and makes me not only humble to do what I do but pushes me to be a better person and photographer. Thank you, Walter and Angela, for the passion, hard work, and determination to create such a community. You have truly touched so many.”

Jenn Nauss

“Mystic has truly left me feeling happier. For meeting so many new friends that I know I’ll have in my life forever. For overcoming my fear of public speaking, thanks to so much encouragement. It’s been life changing. For indulging in some of the best food, coffee and drinks that Portland has to offer (and too many donuts to count.)

To connect with so many people on a deeper level, and to have grown so much personally and professionally, in less than one short week, is something special and noteworthy. Walter has truly created an atmosphere where you feel connected to so many people. Even with the number of attendees, it feels so small and intimate, which is the perfect space for sharing ideas and inspiring each other. Every time I leave Mystic I have a new insane drive to do better, learn more, and accomplish my goals. The level of inspiration is through the roof.

The week is full of so many laughs, tears, and not near enough sleep. But it’s all part of the Mystical adventure. Everyone is on the same level playing field … No matter what your experience as a photographer is. The main goal is to just help each other out and have fun. I already know I’m coming back next year … I wouldn’t miss it.”

Abby + Dave

“Mystic is pure magic.

We’ve been attending and speaking at conferences for a few years now, but Mystic is something entirely different. Up in the frozen North of Canada we kept hearing about this event, and everyone talking about how it is a totally different game and they were not wrong. Everyone is one big family, sharing, laughing and learning together. The vibe of inclusivity and awesomeness is something that you had to be there to truly witness. The speakers come straight from their hearts and share things that are intensely important to them. We truly appreciate everything they leave out on that stage. It isn’t about fame or fortune, it is about raising up an entire community. Walter and Angela have really created something special with Mystic. It is consistently one of the greatest weeks of our lives. ”

Cherie and Hedley of Boudoir Cafe

“We had the pleasure to be part of the 2016 fabulous lineup for the incredibly fun and inspirational Mystic Seminars!!!

I could go on way to ling but what I will say is Mystic is now my favorite seminar....It was so personnal, sweet, fun and educational all wrapped up with the nicest people that Angela and Walter attract because that is how they sre!! The set up easy and comfortable, the food great, Portland sweet and picturesque !! Thanks Walter for inviting us into your Mystic World ❌⭕️”

Angela Watts

“All day I’ve been trying to find the right words to describe what I experienced this week. Words like transformative, mind-blowing, invigorating, life-giving, ridiculously inspiring, heart-awakening, spirit-resonating really only start to come close to the euphoria I feel and the memories I made. My hopes, expectations and even my unconscious deep heart longings for community and connection were met and unquantifiably exceeded by a group of photographers I had never met before. Even though it’s called seminars, or a conference or a convention, it was a different thing entirely. All though there was business talk and strategies and plans and ideas and networking, yes, that was just the foam on the top of the latte. Under that was the rich warm awakening of connecting deeply with people that live the same life as you, who chase the same dream and have fallen and struggled and ached in the same way you have. All mixed in with the soft fluffy goodness of laughter and goofiness and uninhibited joy pulled out of one another by the exponential effect of passions colliding and art calling to art and a love for the creativity of a completely flawed yet fascinatingly beautiful humanity.”

Sergio and Kelly

“You know how it feels when your cool cousins that live far away and you don’t see often enough invite you for a staycation? I have 47 cousins and 1 of them is very cool so I totally know how it feels. Like this: they welcome you into their home, they make sure you have a great place to sleep, they feed you well, they drink with you, laugh with you and make it so you don’t wanna leave. That’s how we feel when we come to Mystic, Walter + Angela are those cousins and Mystic is a great pad to crash. I have spoken at Mystic and Kelly has crashed the pad 3 times and every time is more welcoming, comfortable, delicious and hilarious than the last. If you are invited to speak at Mystic or crash the pad as attendee, say yes and tell them their cousin sent you. They will show you a good time.”

Parker J Pfister

“Not all photographic “conventions” are created equal. I hesitate on the word convention. Mystic Seminars feel more like a reunion of like-minded people you don’t know yet. Some you do, but most you don’t and all you will. Walter & Angela make them with connection and community in mind. It just feels good. Go and you will feel it too. You will leave with direction. I wish I could go every year but it always falls on my sons birthday…when he gets old enough it will be his present.”

Dalisa and John Michael Cooper

“Mystic Seminars is an experience that every photographer must have at least once in their career. The collaboration with others, the technique shared by the speakers and the shared commonality broadens your knowledge and allows you to take in photography in a whole new light - whether for the first time or as a refresher on a longtime career.”

Daylene Willson

“Mystic Seminars was the photography conference I’d always hoped existed. It’s a place where you learn from your favorite rock star photographers and then you sit near them and listen to the next rock star together! Instead of the attendees going out for a good time after, everyone goes out and it becomes a shared experience. There is no separation, it’s an all inclusive place to grow together. The final party was no different, I had a blast dancing the night away and thanks to Stan of Renaissance I had these cool shades to do it with”

Ben & Erin Chrisman

“My first mentor in this industry, Mike Cody, told me about his friend Walter and his gathering of photographers in Mystic, Connecticut several years ago. Since that point, Mystic Seminars has been one of the anchors in my career as a wedding photographer. It was the first presentation I ever gave to larger audience. It was where I got to learn from so many of my idols I now get to call friends. It is place where I know everyone arrives welcomed and leaves more motivated than ever to be better photographers and people. Not many conferences encourage so many people in such short of a time to get beyond their egos to form friendships that last lifetimes. Mystic is one of those magical places.”

Fer Juaristi

“Mystic Seminars is a community of photographers, not only a convention.

You can talk with anyone & have a great time, names don’t matter here, big smiles everywhere you go. A place to grow, create & enjoy what photography is suppose to be.”

Heather & Jamie Schneider

“Attending and speaking at Mystic Seminars was a one of a kind experience for us. Being surrounded by so many like minded and passionate creatives made for one of the best weekends of our lives. It isn’t like any other conference we’ve ever been to! All of the attendees and speakers joined together and there was such a feeling of comradery. We honestly think that “banding together, charging head” couldn’t be any more appropriate for this special gathering of photographers. On the flight home we couldn’t stop talking about the amount of inspiration and ideas that we left with. The connections and friendships alone that were built are invaluable. We’ll be back again and again for sure!!And as we spent our time at Mystic Seminars, we couldn’t help but feel the sense of community that it involved. Everyone hanging out with everyone. Events for everyone to go to. We met so many fantastic, welcoming people and made some life long friends on those late nights where we stayed up just talking. There was just this willingness to share. No egos. No pride. Just people in love with the same art, trying to make the whole industry a better place. We had always heard that Mystic was the conference to go to. That you will always walk away feeling like it changed you in some way. After being a part of it, we can honestly say that this is true and we will be back every year to be part of such a great community.”

Sarah Dickenson

“Mystic Seminars was the first photography conference I had ever attended. I went into it having no expectations, no prior ideas of what a conference should or should not be and all I wanted to do was learn a few new things in an amazing city. I knew that when I left I would feel reinvigorated, but what I didn’t realize was how much I’d be affected by the friendships I made and conversations I was privileged to have sitting on lobby steps at 3 am. I didn’t know what it was, but I cried for a solid two days after Mystic and then I realized it was because I felt as if I had found my place. To often in this industry we feel as if we have to go it alone, but that isn’t the case. If there is anything this year has taught me it is the importance of commun

Michael Greenberg

“I’ll preface what I say about my experiences at Mystic Seminars by beginning with Walter. I don’t know where he gets it, but this guy has an endless source of energy hidden somewhere: he travels the nation to attend virtually every photographic conference out there, listening to speakers (and often on several separate occasions) to find ones who are the best fit for Mystic. Walter had listened to me speak on two occasions before inviting me to my first Mystic a few years ago. I’ve been fortunate to have the honor to return three times since, and every time - without exception - has been amazing. Mystic Seminars take place as a shared experience with all the attendees listening together as speakers take the main stage of the auditorium so there is never the sense that you might be missing anything. Also, speakers have a more limited stage time, which is great because it focuses their messages effectively down to the point by being concise. You always come away learning something new - no matter your level of knowledge - especially because, as I mentioned, Walter goes to great effort to select quality speakers. This shared learning experience also fosters an atmosphere where everyone is close to each other and close to the talks in a way that you really get to know your fellow attendees. I find this especially conducive to learning because photographers from all different shooting styles end up coming together and a cross-pollination of ideas occurs that wouldn’t otherwise happen outside this special environment. Here everyone is one family and learning together and I love Mystic for that. Not to mention that the never ending stream of unbelievably high quality food and beverage Walter serves up at these seminars is worth the cost of admission alone - it’s almost as if this were a food conference too!”

Ryan Brenizer

“Mystic Seminars was the first wedding photography conference I attended and even back in the day, when it was a fraction of its current self, it changed my business forever. After meeting dedicated and talented photographers like Ben Chrisman, I threw myself even harder into the wedding world, changing business models to do more of the stuff I loved and less of the stuff that made my soul cringe. I was happy to speak at Mystic in its last conference on the East Coast, and we miss them over here! First the west coasters take our good weather, now this … make sure to enjoy what you have!”

Todd Laffler

“I’ve been going to Mystic Seminars, and will continue to go to, for years!!! It is not only an incredibly education seminar where you will learn tons upon tons of useful and practical information, be inspired to improve your craft, but it’s also an amazing place to connect with fellow photographers and build lifelong relationships! Walter and Angela take incredible care in everything they do with this Seminar, you will not be disappointed! PLUS, it’s just a kick butt of a time! Don’t think...just GO!!!”

Citlalli Rico

“I’ve been fortunate to meet Walter and Angela and experience Mystic Seminars in 2014. It is definitely one of the best learning opportunities out there, the people, the content and the vibe are simply wonderful. I can’t wait to be part of it again. If you are not sure yet, just ask anyone who has attended already, we all LOVE it.
I will always be a proud Mystic Seminars girl.”

Sarah Goss

“I went blindly into Mystic Seminars because some of my friends from Austin were going. I have ALWAYS loved the Pacific Northwest, and the landscape combined with the prospect of being surrounded by people who breathed photography was more than a little bit appealing to me. From the minute I arrived I felt super welcome, people were not shy introducing themselves and I got to know a lot of new people really fast. The environment was so much more personal and social than I expected, and the speakers tried to talk to everyone who had questions and be available to the conference attendees, which I thought was really awesome. I guess if I had to sum up what Mystic meant to me was that I walked away feeling full, with new friendships, new insights, and a terrible longing to move to Portland. As soon as the next conference was announced, I booked my seat. If you’re laid back, want to learn, make new friends and be part of a community - Mystic is for you.”

 

JOS + TREE Woodsmith

“This was our 3rd time attending Mystic Seminars and every year seriously proves to be better and better. The hunger for learning, transparency in sharing, and positive non-ego vibe makes this community one of the finest learning experiences we’ve ever seen over the past 13 years. We’ve met influential people who have made us better people, photographers, and business people. Mystic is life changing. And this year, being invited to speak challenged us to think about priorities, skills, and insights in ways that have opened us up to radical new ways of operating. There is nothing like real, honest, and encouraging peers giving you feedback about how to grow and thrive in this ever changing industry. I think it goes without saying, “two is one, one is none” and when you multiply that by an entire community you have a strength that goes beyond anything you could ever do alone. If you do one thing, attend Mystic Seminars and give it everything you’ve got, what you get in return will blow your mind!”

Dave Brosha

“Mystic Seminars was a profound experience for me as a speaker. When you speak at events you can choose to have one of two attitudes: concentrate wholly on your message, say your piece, and then move on....or give your message your all and also soak in the message of those around you, including other speakers and participants. What set Mystic apart from other events that I’ve been to, I found, as that pretty much everyone involved was of the second mentality. You not only gave what you had to offer, but you soaked up inspiration from everyone else over the course of the weekend. There was no “you” and “them”, but truly a community of participants and speakers that genuinely wanted to grow together. People supported each other. People learned from each other. And people walked away on a high excited to transform how they shoot, how they told stories with their cameras, and how they approached their overall business.”

David Anthony Williams

“Gooday Everybody, What a GREAT Mystic Seminar series! Such enormous energy all in an intimate package. If you don’t know everyone by day two - you’ve been spending too much time outside with the smokers! Walter and Angela always make the supreme maximum effort to make everyone feel welcome and personally appreciated.. There’s no other Seminar series like it.”

Allison Callaway

“A love letter (of sorts) to my dear Walter and Angela...

Mystic Seminars is a sort of therapy for me. I’m always so inspired by all of the talented speakers, many of whom I greatly admire. But even more than this, it’s a time be surrounded by friends, new and old, who support and love me as a friend, as well as offer understanding as fellow photographers.

I am so grateful to you for bringing us into the Mystic family. I am so grateful that you have brought this community of people together who can support each other. Mystic is more than a place to learn. Mystic is a place to lean on people who “get it”, who love you and support you, free of judgement. It’s a place to let go and be yourself. For this, I am eternally grateful.”

Dirk Weber

“To be honest, Mystic was the best experience I ever had around wedding photography - demanding but very inspiring.”

Jeremy Rich

“Having attended the previous five Mystic Seminars, I’ve found the experience to be a deeply rewarding gathering of global talent. Mystic has grown exponentially over the years, each proving more awesome than the last!

One of the unique aspects of Mystic is the accessibility of the speakers. Walter + Angela have done an amazing job fostering an environment which sparks deep and meaningful conversations between all — during the presentations, after-hours events, and epic closing party.

There’s a deep gratification in connecting with people whose knowledge and experiences stretch far beyond my own. For those seeking to learn and grow in a loving and supportive environment, Mystic is the place to be!

You’ll leave with many new friends, and the feeling of growth and inspiration. It’s always a delight to attend and I look forward to growing alongside Mystic.”

Caitlin Cleveland

“This past year I attended Mystic Seminars for the first time. I love hands on workshops and wasn’t sure if I would like the seminar format. I loved it. I left Mystic inspired to create, with new tools and techniques. But in addition to the technical skills, I appreciated the opportunity for great networking with industry leaders, peers and vendors. I loved the variety of speakers and the accessibility to ask top notch photographers questions was perfect! I can’t wait for Mystic 2016!”

Tj Tindale

“I took a leap of faith flying across the continent to go to Mystic Seminars and I am so glad that I did. Being able to sit and learn with others and then have a couple beers with them later really creates a sense of community that I don’t think you will find anywhere else. I defiantly left inspired but what was most amazing to me was how many friends I left with. See you next year… and the year after… and the year after… ”

Jeannine Pohl

“Mystic Seminars is a collaboration of minds, experiences, art and business. January 2015 was my first time attending Mystic on a recommendation from a photographer friend who joined me for her second or third time. The days were packed with presenters sharing their methods and knowledge in a more intimate setting then the large photography conferences I have gone to in the past. Guests and speakers were incredibly supportive. I left Mystic feeling newly inspired with a giant list of ideas to implement in my business but even more I gained a community of talented people who truly care.”

Gabe McClintock

“I attended my very first Mystic Seminars in January and was blown away by the sense of community I experienced. It is a gathering of incredible artists from all over the world who are all there for the exact same reason: to learn, grow and inspire each other. I can’t wait to head back again next year.”

Camille Fortin-Bensler

“Having photographed weddings for 15 years, I feel like I need to find ways keep fresh as an individual photographer and as part of the studio team with my husband. Mystic Seminars provides an intimate learning experience every year, and whether we come as speakers or attendees, we know we’ll always come away with new ideas, and strengthened friendships. Walter and Angela bring love and enthusiasm to every aspect of the seminar- and people can really feel that good energy. Mystic is really great time, and Portland is an amazing location!”

Charleton Churchill

“I can only attend and invest in so many photography workshops in the year. And after attending Mystic Seminars in January for my first time, not just as a speaker, but even more so as a guest, I will be making Mystic part of my “have-to-attend” events in my year. I left inspired, equipped, and challenged to be a better artist. More importantly, the rich community of artists you’re surrounded by have the same creative hunger, which as a result, allows you to connect with many talented people. I’m grateful for my new friends. I’m grateful for voodoo donuts and the cheap sushi. I’m grateful for the hard work and vision of Walter and Angela. If you’ve never been to Mystic Seminars, try it once, and you’ll soon return for more.”

Amanda Hagood

“Mystic Seminars was my first photography seminar. I’ve been invited to many conferences over the years, and they always felt too big or too exclusive, like I might have to work very hard just to fit in and be invited to the “right” parties. I stumbled across Mystic by accident, and I signed up on a whim. I’m glad I did. From the moment I arrived, even the first night and the first person I met at dinner (hi, Sam!), everyone was welcoming. I didn’t have to know the right person, everybody was attending the same conference and hanging out TOGETHER at night. That was the biggie for me, the community of people that was created at Mystic. It turns out that 7 of my fellow Austin photographers attended, and we never segregated into our own familiar group. Everyone I met felt open and friendly; so ready to share everything they knew. I met people from other states and countries, and they’ve stayed with me over these past few months helping me better my business and myself as a photographer. I cannot believe how generous of spirit this crowd is. When I heard that we could almost immediately sign up for the following year, I didn’t even hesitate to commit. I couldn’t dream up a better place for creative people to get together than Mystic. It’s the talented and fun loving family I plan to visit every year!”

Chris Chong

“As someone that could never stay awake in school, I have found anything classroom-like is difficult to sit through during my professional life. Mystic Seminars is truly built for photographers at all levels and who have different learning styles. I can honestly say that because the entire weekend was filled with many great speakers. The timing was good and allowed for the attendees to absorb quick hits from successful working professional artists in the industry. Going back to my first point, it really helped that the schedule was spaced out and with breaks throughout each day. The nightly social events were also planned so well by Walter and Angela. Two people, by the way, that obviously cares about all of the attendees and are so passionate and caring. So many great folks to meet and the only thing that I’m disappointed about was not getting to chat with every single attendee. Guess I’ll just have to go to Mystic again in the future! PS - to my fellow photographers on this side of the border - go to Mystic Seminars - Portland. You shall not be disappointed.”

Erum Rizvi

“Mystic Seminars is an awesome multi-day workshop to learn from the best, network with an amazing group of people and build lasting relationships. I’ve been attending Mystic Seminars for past 3 years and I will continue to keep coming back. Not only have I grown professionally but I have also gained so many wonderful connections and experiences with amazing people I meet there.

Its intimate, fun and there’s lots of seminars to attend that will keep you inspired, and motivated for the year.

Thank you to Angela and Walter who make this happen every year! See you at the next one!”

Zofia Crosby

“I’ve always heard such great things about the first Mystic, just a few people sitting around a table with their laptops - or so the legend goes. I met some of my favorite friends at that first Mystic I attended, Mystic #2. Just genuinely loving and giving, like-minded friends. Mystic Seminars is such a positive event, with people openly sharing and watching each other grow. No one feels pressure to be cool or to buy products. Everyone who attends walks away happy, a little wiser, full of hugs, and looking forward to the next one. I helped Walter plan a few of the events over the years. Seeing how much work he puts into this, it’s commendable. It’s not easy. But he does it, and we’re all thankful. Walter is just a gem for putting this together year after year.”

Sebastien Bicard

“This was my first photo seminar. I’m from France, in the process of moving in the US, and I was looking for a way to get to know the market, but especially network with fantastic professionals while still feeling like I was part of a community: I have heard about seminar you can attend every year in the desert, and have nothing against the concept. But I wanted a smaller group in order to connect directly with talented speakers or maybe even grab a drink with some of them - something that was definitely easy to do at Mystic Seminars. What I didn’t expect was to be more inspired in a week than in all the years I have worked as a wedding photographer. At Mystic Seminars, you’ll find fellow photographers to work with, friends and inspired photographers who will push you to do more and to get more from our art. I’m looking forward to attending 2016! I would highly recommend to do it.”

Davina and Daniel Kudish

“Mystic Seminars holds a special place in our heart. It’s the first conference we attended. The first conference we spoke at. And it will be the first conference we officially sponsor as The Image Salon.

There’s a good reason why we keep coming back to Mystic, and that’s because it brings such an amazing group of people together. We have met some of our best friends at the conference, and made valuable contacts in our industry. But above all, some of our best ideas (photography or business) have come while sitting in the conference room as attendees, listening to the amazing speakers Walter brings in, year after year. There is just nothing like it, and we look forward to coming back for many years to come.”

Hiram Trillo

“Mystic Seminars is a more than just a convention. Mystic is a gathering of souls and minds that come together to learn, share, and grow. Photography is about capturing memories and Mystic is definitely a place to come and share and make new ones. Wether you are a speaker or an attendee you are one”

Lisa Stone

“Mystic Seminars was such a wonderful experience. When I started shooting weddings, I didn’t know any other wedding photographers. Having started out on my own, I always wondered what other photographers experiences were and if there were things that I could be doing that would improve my work and business.

Mystic Seminars provided the opportunity to learn from some of the best photographers in the industry. The speakers were inspiring and really helped me grow as a photographer. Being that it is a fairly small group, I was able to make real connections that have developed into long lasting friendships. Thanks Walter, for creating such an incredible experience!”

Mantas Kubilinskas

“Honestly. Mystic Seminars changed my photography business to next level. First time I attend seminars two years ago. And it was surprising. Why ? Because all attendees and speakers was very friendly and warm. No matter if that person was regular guy or speaker - it feels that everybody there for the same reason. To learn and share. I make so many good friends and learned a lot. New Photography techniques, business management, and many many more things. I recommend for everybody who want’s to change their business, learn something new, make new friends and change their vision of photography.”

Kevin & Nicole Berg

“Our first Mystic experience in 2015 was game changing. We loved every second of our experience and couldn’t believe how friendly and open everyone was. We left Mystic excited and invigorated to kick off our year in photography. We loved our experience so much that we immediately bought tickets for Mystic 2016.

We were excited the entire year looking forward to Mystic 2016. We told everyone we knew how amazing our experience was and how everyone should go in 2016. But, as Mystic 2016 started getting close, we were worried about being let down because our expectations were so high. How could we possibly have the same level of experience that we had before?! Well, we weren’t disappointed. In fact, we were beyond blown away by Mystic 2016. If last year was a game changer, then this year was a life changer. We are taking a whole different experience and perspective from Mystic 2016. The speakers hit us on such a personal level that it opened up our eyes to some of the things holding us back in our photography. Honestly, it was an emotional roller coaster at the exact time we needed it. We with out a doubt will be immediately buying our 2017 Mystic tickets in order to be ready to kick off our year the only way we know how...with Mystic Seminars!!”

Lisa Robinson

“Mystic Seminars is a special kind of place, unlike any other. The creative environment is nurtured at a personal level; something that I’ve never found replicated anywhere else. I remember my first Mystic like yesterday and I was flabbergasted that we got to actually hang out with the speakers. No veil of superiority that other conferences have. Not only were we learning in each block during the day, but we were learning 1 on 1 by night. Getting a quick portfolio review here, an unexpected nugget of encouragement of inspiration there. The experience was, and continues to be, not just invaluable but also unparalleled.”