Fincon 2019 was AMAZING

First, what the heck is Fincon?

Fincon is a conference for financial content creators such as bloggers, podcasters, and YouTubers who cover all varieties of financial topics, self-referred to as money nerds. Last year was in Orlando and this year was in D.C which btw is a breathtaking city. We all get together and help each other improve their talents/brand/business/money. It’s the only place in America where talking about personal finance is not taboo!

Fincon2018 was my first and I absolutely loved it. I brought my camera to it because I bring my camera everywhere I travel and I made a photoblog post about it last year and told some stories about people which I have done before but only for individuals. Doing a story like this was new, fun, challenging, and people seemed to like it. 

Here is last years post

What is this photoblog?

I have no idea, it’s just something I stumbled into. I like photography and I like blogging.

This year I wanted to do another Fincon story and I wanted to make it a little bigger than last year, but I’ll be honest it was not easy. This was the most difficult photography project I’ve done so far but I still think it came out neat. 

Why do this and not just let the photographer do their job? Because I’m not taking pictures of strangers, I’m taking pictures of people I make friends with, and when I take someone’s picture then I get to tell a little story about them. For many of my relationships, it’s more than a photo, it’s my way of showing you some of my genuine human connections (which is something I happen to love). 

Also be warned that this thing is long but hopefully, you’ll find my personal Fincon experience interesting. If you enjoy this and want to be a bigger part of it next year I am happy to include you! Let’s be best friends.  

Enjoy, and thank you!

My gear

I shot the entire weekend with a Canon Eos R, which is basically a 5d mk4 but in a mirrorless body. It’s a pretty incredible piece of engineering I must say. 

I’m shooting with a Sigma 27-70 2.8 Art which is fantastic glass and it’s quite versatile but a sometimes bit uninspiring. Prime lenses really are the way to go. 

If you don’t know anything about cameras that’s ok, this isn’t about photos this is about people. 

Canon Eos R & Sigma Art 24-70 2.8
Packing all my stuff!

DAY ONE

Fincon could not have possibly started better.

I arrive at the hotel and before I can even find my room my very good friend Mindy (@MindyatBP) ran up to me, gave me a kiss on the cheek, and handed me a bottle of Tequila.

WELCOME!
Get swag yo!

Someone at Fincon described it to me as “drinking with friends you only get to see once a year to talk about something you both share an interest in…sometimes it’s called networking.

Fair enough. 

Before I got to my room I saw Pete (@doyoueveblog) from Do You Even Blog making a very Pete sorta face. 

Pete helped me launch my blog from the start, he helped me launch my podcast, I’ve been on his very famous podcast before, he won the Plutus award for Best Entrepreneurship/Side Hustle Blog at Fincon this year, and he’s a grade A fantastic human being.

For these things and more he deserves a better picture than this but…..he didn’t get one. 

Quick hair check? Yep, it's FLY! Let's go to Fincon Central
Live videocasting!

Sup Liz Eischen!

She runs Kitchen Table Finances and other than the fact that she can’t whistle, she’s perfect. She’s extremely nice and usually nice people are annoyed by me but she seems un-phased by me so I cling to this rare opportunity.  

She volunteered to help people find their way at Fincon because that’s what perfect people do. Liz is one of the highlights of my Fincon both times.

Could you believe there is someone in the world with more hype, more style, and more general loudness than me? 

Well you shouldn’t because there is not. 

But Bethany Bayless would be my toughest competitor. She didn’t give me a second of time this year,  and I’ll never forgive her for it, but I got some great pics of her and I hope that makes her feel guilty. 

Check her out at BethanyBayless.org

Look at these knuckleheads

I met both of them last year at Fincon and I’m thankful for them both.

The muscle-bound hulk on the left is David Pere from Military to Millionaire and he was my roommate this year. Great dude, great Marine. 

The soulless ginger on the right is Dan Mackin from Millenial Real Estate Investor Podcast. I was on his show once, and it’s by far their best episode. 

I was on Dave’s podcast as well, but I didn’t say anything because I didn’t want to brag. #humble #blessed 

 

FINCON: Where money & Media meet

…..perhaps I should have started with this.

I have a giant camera and people react differently when they look up and see it. This is a pretty good representation showing the scope of reactions I get. 

Lee Huffman is one of my closest friends. He taught me real estate, he got me to start this blog, and he got me to go to Fincon. I’ll never be able to repay him, and I’m not going to try. 

He also taught me how to fly the world for damn near free! If you want to travel the world for free using miles and points, check out his site WeTravelThere

The real estate group last year was like 8 of us, this year it was like 80. #winning

My buddy Mike Glaspie looking particularly confused right here. He was telling jokes cuz he’s a total jokester 😉 

My friend Shelby

I really wanted to take this space to bust her chops and trust me that she really deserves it, but I won’t, because I’m such a good person. 

We have become kinda good friends and if you didn’t get to meet her at Fincon you should fix that next time. 

Doesn’t it seem like she’s looking at some savory piece of meat across the room….

Hair check....super fly!

The picture above includes two of my favorite people ever:

MINDY AND MYSELF

 

Shelby and Mike are in it too 

THE MINDY JENSEN

This fantastic lady and I have been friends for ~5 years now and I am thankful, to say the least. We met on a real estate website that I spend a an irresponsible amount of time on called www.biggerpockets.com

In the last ~2 years she has passed onto me quite a few opportunities of which some of which I barely deserved, and she does it for no reason other than she genuinely seems to like my personality, which I assure you surprises me just as much as it surprises you. 

I’m going to come out and say something that’s known to be in my textbook style, unnecessarily brash but incontrovertibly true:

If you don’t like Mindy Jensen then you’re a fucking idiot. 

Mindy is the best there ever is, the best there ever was, and the best there ever will be.

Again you would think I would repay her with better pictures???

I’m lucky to know such a hotshot as Cody Berman. This guy is incredible, and he was on my podcast too! 

Also, he’s like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Sober he’s this sweet young dude. Drunk he turns into an insane frat boy! I actually think this is why I like him so much.

Hey look, my first new friend at Fincon 2019. 

Well then, just kidding…

Actually don’t worry, this is how most of my friendships start. 

I met Sunitha at the real estate booth day 1 and we became fast friends. You know how sometimes you make friends you instantly know are going to be life long term friends? With Suni I knew right away!!!

 

She didn’t know at all, but that’s ok. 

Ok this was 30% funny and 70% rude. 

That’s my business card that I had given to a person who was interested in doing business in my market, she asked me and this other fella for our business cards. He didn’t have one, so he thought it would be funny to write his info on my business card. I caught the shot over his shoulder. 

Not a big deal, we are buds and we were laughing about it at the time, but it’s a really good opportunity to remind everyone you MUST bring business cards.

I know they are annoying and outdated, but they WORK when you need them and when you don’t have them they work against you because when you don’t have them it’s a representation of your unpreparedness and unprofessionalism, rookie. 

We went down the street to grab an uber and saw this almost-celebrity rush to in his limo/Honda so as not to get spotted by the paparazzi. Look everyone it’s Paul David Thompson! 

 

Whoever that is? 

National Museum of the American Indian

So the event for the first night was at the National Museum of the American Indian and it was DOPE.

I rode in the car with these 2 people who where strangers to me but they were super nice so I tried to get a nice shot of them. 

They run Waffles on Wednesday!

Chris Gables from Refined by Fire and I hung out a bunch. This shot came out dopr I think.

Hair check......perfect baby!

Mindy will appear throughout this adventure, but this will be the best picture you see of her. Sorry boo! 

I met this handsome guy on the left last year at Fincon and we spent the whole weekend together. Chris Williford and I would have spent most of this weekend together too but his wife kept stealing all his attention. So selfish!  

Chris is a great dude, he just smiles 24/7 and it’s so contagious. We made a pinky promise to talk more throughout this year and I’m looking forward to it.

This is a lot of nerds.
Yes, that is a wall of donuts. I'm telling you bro, Fincon!
Everyone is rocking the Cupid Shuffle except one drunk lady. Whoops!
70mm - f/22 - 5sec

THIS IS WHY I BRING MY CAMERA  EVERYWHERE

Photography is a tricky hobby because you have to be prepared for constantly changing environments and you want to bring as little equipment as possible but you also want to have everything with you for flexibility. I didn’t have my tripod with me but I was able to set the camera on a ledge and take a long exposure. It’s not perfect, but it’s close. 

Lots of people had their cell phones out for this shot but no phone can get near this. Sorry ro, get on my level.

This was my best shot of the trip by far and even though I felt like an idiot carrying my bulky camera around at a party, being able to have this shot was easily worth it for me.

Day Two

I met my friend Dustin Heiner of Master Passive Income at Fincon last year. He’s a fellow real estate guy and we don’t agree on anything ever. Not style, not philosophy, not strategy, not marketing, not anything.

Yet somehow are still friends?????

Guy must have a high tolerance for people! 

Some friends from Fayetteville. Jessica is from South Africa and I’ve always been enamored with SA culture so anytime I see her I bug her about her home town. 

I hung out with Mark Lancia from Money For Meaning a bunch this year and a bunch last year. Super nice guy and I’m kinda sad I didn’t get to talk to him more because he seems to be quite a bit smarter than I am. 

Lunch with new friends! 

From right to left

Me in super blur

Sunitha

Rich from Rich on Money 

Mark Lancia

One of Bens’ friends that I only met briefly (sorry!)

My buddy Dan Mackin from Millenial Real Estate Investor

A new friend Chris Sheppard who I hung out with a bunch this year

and another new friend Ben Lapidus

Ben runs, among his own investments, the Best Ever Conference in Denver which I will be attending in February. Ben gave me a lot of his time and advice on how to put together my next syndication and I’m sorry that I cut his face off on this shot.

So I’m a pretty picky eater, I hate it, but I live with it. 

Sunitha invited me to Thai food and I’ve never had Thai food, and I DID NOT want to go but I didn’t want to be a sissy, so I said yes to opportunity.

and let me tell you friends, WHO KNEW IT COULD BE SO TASTY!?!?! WHY DIDN’T ANYONE TELL ME BEFORE NOW?!!

I ended up going again the next day LOL

If you wear pink shorts you're cool with me forever. 

James Lowery from Rethink the Rat Race 

You know what REALLY creepy, when you constantly see someone on your Facebook recommended friends list for months but you don’t know who they are and then you meet them in real life. Weird, but awesome dude! 

Steve Stewart of Steve Stewart podcast productions is a LEGEND. 

If you want to start a podcast THIS IS THE GUY. 

I don’t use Steve for my podcast and that’s why mine sucks.

The Ally booth at Fincon Central has a trend of making faces in to food

Paul David Thompson is very successful real estate investor who I met last year. He was generous to have me on his personal podcast and then his group podcast “What’s up Next?” which won the Best New Personal Finance Podcast at Plutus awards this year and to be honest I’m not sure they could have done it without my guest appearance. You’re welcome Paul 

I believe Lucas Hall is trying to be intimidating….

Lucas started a business called cozy.co and another business called landlordology.com and he crushed it at both and he didn’t become and an arrogant jerk……I would have!

ok I guess he’s not that intimidating…

Pete and the infamous Doc G

You know what they were making at that Ally booth?

They had a 3d printer that would put your face on a little dessert. Last year it was pancakes. 

I think we can all agree that I look delicious <3 

David Pere live video podcasting

Liz and I now have a little tradition where I take a picture of her holding someone who drew her face. Last year it was on a pancake!

I had to go to the hotel bar to pick up my credit card from the night before because…alcohol. 

Chris and I got that card back and opened a new tab immediately and then I didn’t get any more pics for the rest of the day. 

DAY THREE

I guarantee I'm not the only one who woke up like this

By the way the Washington Hilton is INCREDIBLE. 

I haven’t been to DC since I was kid but the building, the location, the city, and the weather all made for a perfect weekend. 

Big thank you to the Fincon people for putting this together. This was a  fantastic experience they put together. 

This is how you get through the weekend, 2 coffees at once! 

Alicia and Nathan from Ticket to FI. 

We we all just standing around chatting when we made somehow made friends with the actual paid photographer at the event who is pretty damn good….I really didn’t need to do all this. 

Hey Lee if travel hacking means having to wear that awful shirt then I’ll pay for the plane ticket thanks. Love ya

We went to a bar down the street and we made some drunk friends.

I hope she is not mad I posted this! 

Everywhere I walked in DC I came across something awesome.
Lovebirds <3
Next we went to an inappropriately named bar

Doc G  and Emily

Thanks to the What’s Up Next Podcast for hosting food and booze! 

The bar was playing Return of the Jedi! 

I couldn’t hear it so I left

We came back to the hotel, grabbed a bite, and headed to bed.

I don’t have any practice taking pictures of food but I had a burger and I had my camera so I gave it a shot. Looks delicious right?

DAY FOUR

The lobby outside Fincon Central
Steve Stewart working his ass off as usual

The always photogenic Bathany Bayless

Last year Bethany and her husband were in Las Vegas and they came out to have dinner. 

P.T. Money came out to Vegas and we went hiking together as well. 

Point is, If you come to Las Vegas, Let’s hang out! I’m FUN yo! 

We went to another bar
David and his local friend Jin

Craig Curelop is a house hacking MONSTER and just wrote his first book about it! KILLER! 

I got an advanced copy of this book and he’s going to be on my podcast in the near future. I’m glad I got this neat shot of him shamelessly plugging his book. I met Craig last year but we bonded tight during this trip and I’m grateful for that. relationships compound yo! 

Adam “Dobby” Dobbins was doing his first year at Fincon and he was a fascinated guy but I didn’t get any info from him! Frustrating. I didn’t finanything on google so if you know him please tell me how I can reach him.

He’s a retired navy seal, just completed a triathlon and dresses with mad style. I love this shot of him too. 

Another second year friend and Biggerpockets employee Conner Anderson. 

Awesome guy!

ME: 

I want to be taken seriously as a real estate investor

ALSO ME:

I wish didn’t edit this photo on the right with so much blue, but it’s done and it’s too late to go back because this post is already taking up so much of my time. Sorry Dustin

Any serious finconner knows that real business happens on the floor. No joke!
the Plutus awards printed photos of those who've been nominated and past winners. Pretty neat.

Everyone knows the bitches right?

Easily the most zany people at Fincon. 

This dude was actaully cool as hell! 

Brandon Neth and his wife were so fun and their life is JEALOUSY INDUCING. 

Ridiculous haircut aside this guy was living his best life and I was happy for every moment I got to spend near him.

Oh look, a perfect sunset that I can use as a back light while my good friend Shannyn Allen stands in front of it and I can create this stunning portrait. 

I don’t want to spend too much time telling you how cool she is, just trust me. I didn’t get to see her until Friday but we spent all day Saturday exploring DC and it was dope. We took a few pics together but I guarantee I won’t be able to do justice to how awesome she is and it’s a shortcoming I’m not happy about. 

Is there alcohol in that?

PLUTUS AWARDS

The Plutus Awards are given to industry leaders at Fincon. The purpose is to generate grant money to create opportunities for financial media to create, develop, and administer community-based programs that enhance financial literacy, education, and empowerment. It’s also a damn good time and they always put on a fantastic show. 

Pete won an award and he deserved every bit of it!!!! 

I didn’t get many pictures of Plutus awards because they had quite a few photographers there and I was far in the back and I sat in one place so every shot is basically this one. 

Lets move on to something else.

 

Finally broke my flash out.

Here’s a picture of Dan looking sophisticated.

I met Jessica Moorhouse!!!

I stalked Jessica’s website for a while and I’m going to steal quite a bit of her style and apply it to this website, to include her YouTube thumbnails. It’s not stealing if you call it “inspiration”.

I love this shot

DID ANYONE ELSE SEE THAT IDRIS ELBA WAS AT THE EVENT?!?!?

This picture doesn’t do him justice but don’t worry, I told him he was great in Pacific Rim. 

Partying with my camera might be lame but these headshots came out great!

Josh Eldridge was cool as hell and I regret not spending more time with him. So many people that I owe. 

 

BTW Fincon is a nice event, so I wore my nice shoes

Did we talk about this sassy broad yet? 

When most people see my camera they usually hide at least a little. Making them feel comfortable and confident to get a great shot of them is part of the fun for me, it’s a nice little challenge and bonding moment. 

Every time I went to take a picture of Anna though she would get excited and do a pose and make a cocky comment. 

It took all the fun out of it for me

But I can’t be mad because she’s so damn photogenic. 

#wellplayed

Hair check at 11am drunk ---- #FLAWLESS

Suni, Elizabeth Cosgrove and I all getting a picture before we wrap the night. 

Washington DC

The Washington Hilton
WWII Memorial
Washington momument outside of the Jefferson Memorial
Lincoln Memorial
PERFECT DAY!
Shannyn looking fly in DC
We went to a rooftop bar! I love DC!
I try to make people look super fly! #success

Our little excursion into DC was great, but I had dinner plans so let’s go back to the hotel.

Another epic portrait of THE Mindy Jensen

For my last night in DC I went to get Nepalese food for my first time ever. Now, this was a big deal for me because for anyone who follows my Facebook feed (WHICH YOU SHOULD) you’ll know about my #asianworkwife, who is one of my favorite people in the world and she is of Nepali/Tibetan descent. So we went to dinner and I couldn’t stop texting her! 

Himalayan Heritage, delicious!
Chicken and Lamb MoMo
Chicken Tikka

I have been talking to this guy online for a few years and I’m really glad I got to meet him. He didn’t come to Fincon but we did meet up for dinner. 

Russell Brazil is one of the top realtors in D.C. He’s smart, ambitious, and he never stops giving me a hard time which I love <3 

I didn’t take my camera to the closing party and I left at 4am so that’s the last of my Fincon pics. So it’s time to go home! 

Goodbye DC, hello Las Vegas!

Hair check: greasy and sad 🙁
Already bought my tickets for Fincon2020!!!!!

I COULDN’T HAVE DONE IT WITHOUT YOU BABY!

I’ve been doing photography for ~5 years now and I’m definitely not great at it, but I have my moments. I love this hobby and I just enjoy trying to get better at taking proficient shots and using it to engage with people better. 

Thank you for reading all the way through! 

I would love to know what people think of this, so any comments/critique are very welcome. All feedback is helpful because I really want to do this again and better but I want people to find it interesting too. 

My email address is: [email protected]

My Facebook

My Instagram (which is pictures of books, cars, and the gym)

I know it’s too long, I know it’s way too long, but I wanted to include everyone and to be fair the event was 4 days long! Gimme a break yo! 

See everyone next year <3 

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn
Share on pinterest
Pinterest
Alex Felice

Alex Felice

My name is Alex, I live in Las Vegas and I’m a very high energy, loud, and eccentric guy. I like to talk about things that are high concept and important, no small talk! I like controversy, I speak with conviction, and I’m not a fan of rules. Oh, and I'm super into real estate investment.

9 Responses

  1. It is always awesome seeing you! You make me excessively uncomfortable in the best way possible. Not sure what’s bigger, the lens or the hair. Hahahah! thanks for making me look good. 😉

    Love your Fincon recaps friend…your photos turned out fantastic….esp of THE Mindy Jensen

  2. Wow, awesome post! I’m so scared about photographing people at FinCon due to the anonymous nature of so many in the community. That makes post like these that much more awesome to SEE what’s going on!

    I shoot with a Fuji XT-1, often with a 23mm prime or a 18-135 zoom, so seeing your setup is really cool! Keep thinking about switching to Sony or Canon for full frame but can’t justify it right now 😅 Maybe down the line.

    I’m kind of hijacking your awesome FinCon post with this question, but if you were starting today would you stick with Canon? Or switch to another system?

    Also: can confirm Mindy is awesome (source: endless margaritas).

    1. Adam I had zero idea that so many people are anonymous at Fincon. I did have someone request to be taken off this blog and I honored that request but it was only one. Part of our job as photographers is to make people feel confident and comfortable, so I try to be really personal with people as I take their pictures and I think that goes a long way to making them feel ok. There are some people that want to by anonymous no matter what but to be honest, those people aren’t going to be big fans of mine anyway because I’m VERY transparent online. So I think it’s no love lost, this blog was highly organic, and everyone included has been happy to be a part of it save that one. I would try harder at the next conference, it gets easier with practice!

      What’s your 23mm prime? Prime is a far superior way to shoot but a pain to swap lenses 😉

      If I had to start over I would probably tell you it doesn’t matter what ecosystem you jump into. Sony is great right now and they will continue to get better, while Canon seems a bit slow on the curve for mirrorless I believe they will eventually end up comfortably on top because their glass is so dominant. That said, the market share is big enough for both and they will be close competitors. Whichever you prefer will work out great for you, you can’t make a wrong decision between these two.

      Let’s make sure to meet next year!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Be less broke.

Subscribe to our newsletter!

Bunch o' legal stuff

Privacy policies, disclosures, cookie management and all that fun stuff...

Let's Chat

Want to video chat? I sort of hate talking on the phone with strangers, so impersonal, video is way better. We can share some knowledge and motivation and it's fun to meet people over the internet right?

My Brain Fuel

My growing library of knowledge and inspiration. Fuel your success!

In a hurry?

Don't know where to go, but know you want to talk with me? Email me! alex(at)brokeisachoice.com

Website powered by RapidWebLaunch