FOCUS 2016 » A business conference for serious photographers

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Location Information

The Conference

Our conference host for our conference is the Mansion on O Street, an eclectic and funky location catering specifically to artists of all kinds.  Its motto “everything is possible” could not be a better fit for this year’s conference.

“The O” as it’s known locally, is located in a series of five interconnected town houses that includes over 100 rooms and over 70 secret doors (be sure to sign up for the Treasure Hunt on the 19th to explore more of the venue!). Designed in 1892 by Edward Clark, architect for the US Capitol two centuries ago, the buildings were interconnected and served as a home for himself, his brother James “Champ” Clark, Speaker of the House (during Teddy Roosevelt’s presidency), and a third brother, known as “the artist.”

Today, the property consists of more than 100 rooms of varying architectural, artistic and design periods, from the Victorian age to art deco/avant garde. Highlights include hand painted ceilings, original Tiffany stained glass windows, a two-story log cabin and the secluded art-deco penthouse with private elevator.


Washington DC offers any number of lodging options for your stay, including rooms in The O.  You may wish to connect with local conference participants on our Facebook Page for those offering a space to crash. AirBnB is a popular option as well.

The Fairfax Embassy Row and The Hotel Palomar, are boutique hotels ($125+) within walking distance of The O. The Hotel Madera, Washington Marriott and Dupont Circle Hotel all have rooms in the $100 range.


The Mad Hatter – Lively tavern known for beer & pub fare channels Alice’s Wonderland with an upside down room & more

Krammer Books and Afterword Cafe – Landmark indie bookstore & cafe with a menu of upscale American fare, wine & draft beer. Open late.

The Shake Shack – Hip, counter-serve chain for gourmet takes on fast-food classics like burgers & frozen custard.

Ezme  – Authentic Turkish menu at this laid-back, lounge-like room lined with wine racks.

Firefly – Restaurant built around a large indoor tree, serving seasonal, local New American comfort food.

The Front Page – Voted best happy hour in DC. Pub food and power lunches.

Chipotle – Fast-food chain offering Mexican fare, including design-your-own burritos, tacos & bowls.

Baron Hotel pub – Broad range of brews, casual eats & weekly events in a dark brick interior.



iStock_000020023715_SmallWashington DC, the nation’s capitol, and popular destination for grade school field trips. If you haven’t been to DC since grade school, you have a lot of catching up to do.  Visit the official tourism page for more tourist ideas.  Take advantage of the outdoors as well while you’re here. The conference is timed to fall after the major Cherry Blossom Festival in DC to make lodging and travel easier for all.  There should still be some fantastic color in the trees since cherry, dogwood and tulip poplars all begin blooming at this time.

For photo opportunities, take in the Botanical Gardens or any of the Smithsonian Museums (and Zoo).  Join one of the optional Live Sessions on April 19th to experience more of the city along side some of the locals who live and work in the area.

Baltimore, Maryland is located further along the I-95, accessible by metro or rental car, also known as “Charm City” and is the largest independent city in the United States.   Founded in 1729, Baltimore is a city with a rich history and is currently the second largest seaport in the Mid-Atlantic.  Baltimore’s harbor was once the second leading port of entry for immigrants to the United States due to the city’s location as a major rail hub and seaport.

The depth of the city’s artistic talent is impressive. Writers Edgar Allan Poe and H.L. Mencken, jazz musician James “Eubie” Blake and singer Billie Holiday, writer Francis Scott Key (author of “The Star-Spangled Banner“)  have all contributed to the city’s historical importance.

The city has plenty to see and do and dinning options are numerous (be sure to check out our famous Maryland Crab Cakes).

For those traveling with your family, or extending your stay to make a vacation, this location is ideal for adventures in Washington DC, Annapolis MD (capitol of Maryland) and Baltimore MD (largest city in Maryland) tourism.  The National AquariumBaltimore Inner Harbor, Port Discovery Children’s Museum, Maryland Live! Casino and the B&O Railroad Museum are all less than ten miles from the hotel.

Some attractions that are of particular interest for photographers:

Baltimore Harbor Cruise

Baltimore Museum of Art

Lego Castle Adventures Exhibit

Phillips Baltimore Crab Deck

Fells Point Haunted Pub Walk


Washington, DC monuments on the Potomac River.

Washington, DC monuments on the Potomac River.

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