It’s been a remarkable journey at the Tennessee Professional Photographers Association‘s 72nd Annual Convention, and I’m thrilled to share it with you.

The TNPPA convention, held from September 22nd to 25th, was a true celebration of photographic excellence, camaraderie, and artistic achievement within the Tennessee photography community.


Awards and Accolades


At the TNPPA Convention, I had the privilege of achieving recognition that truly humbled me. Here are the awards that made this journey exceptional:

Tennessee Top Ten Award: I’m truly honored to have received this prestigious award, a recognition reserved for the top ten highest-scoring photographers in Tennessee. It’s a testament to my unwavering commitment to the artistry of photography.

Best of Show Portraits Award for “The Mane Attraction”: This one’s extra special. It signifies the pinnacle of achievement across all portrait categories, including female, male, child, high school seniors, groups, and pet portraits. The Mane Attraction featured Chief, a beautiful paint horse loved by Christy Salyards.

Distinguished Award in Pet Portraits Category for “Purple Haze”: Capturing the unique essence of pets is a passion of mine, and I’m thrilled to have this exceptional work recognized. The image Purple Haze featured Strider, a Vizsla in a purple flower field. Strider is loved by Anna Craig.

People’s Choice Award for “Fast Food”: There’s something truly heartwarming about fellow photographers appreciating my work. This award, voted on by convention attendees, is particularly meaningful to me. All attendees reviewed all images submitted for the competition and selected their favorite image. The winner was “Fast Food” featuring Isabelle Fan’e Welle of Black Dog Farm. Black Dog Farm is in Ider, AL.

Stan Baker First Timer Award: As a first-time entrant in the image competition, achieving the highest case score was both surprising and incredibly rewarding.

All of my award-winning images featured horses and dogs from our beloved Chattanooga, Tennessee area. My deep connection to this region and its equestrian and pet communities makes these awards even more meaningful.

Betsy Bird of Ride the Sky Equine Photography is standing with her photography awards.


Celebrating Excellence & Collaboration


The TNPPA Convention was an incredible celebration of photographic excellence, where photographers from all corners of Tennessee came together to celebrate our shared passion.

President’s Award: I was also a recipient of the President’s Award. This award is a testament to my commitment to supporting and collaborating with the current TNPPA President. It highlights the power of teamwork and dedication to service as we work to elevate the photography industry as a whole in the state of Tennessee.

In the meantime, if you want to know more about my journey at TNPPA’s 72nd Convention or just want to chat photography, drop me a message or visit Ride the Sky Equine Photography.


About TNPPA:


Established in 1951, the Tennessee Professional Photographers Association (TNPPA) boasts a rich history of photographic excellence. While the art and business of photography have evolved over the last seven decades, TNPPA’s mission and purpose have remained steadfast: to provide educational and networking resources for aspiring and professional photographers dedicated to their craft. TNPPA proudly serves as an official Community Network of the Professional Photographers of America (PPA).

Betsy Bird of Ride the Sky Equine Photography spends her days doing insane things to make horses look at her. Clearly, she’s desperate for attention. Outside of acting like a total weirdo, she invests time and energy into growing her business, hanging with her favorite dog, Nitro, dealing with her teenagers’ angst, mentoring photographers, public speaking, and planning her next big wheels-up adventure. Betsy is a Certified Professional Photographer (CPP) with the organization Professional Photographers of America (PPA). The CPP designation is held by fewer than 2,500 photographers nationwide and is a hallmark of consistency, technical skill, artistry, and professionalism. Betsy specializes in creating storytelling magic for horse girls of all ages. In other words, she enjoys working with fun-spirited clients who need horse portrait photography, equestrian senior photography, and equestrian brand photography. She even throws in some dogs for variety because what true horse girl doesn’t love a great pup too. Based in Chattanooga, TN, Ride the Sky Equine Photography works on location in Tennessee, North Georgia, and beyond.

These photos are copyrighted by their respective owners. All rights reserved. Unauthorized use prohibited.