Anne Marie Chavez, Texas mom of two, is the winner of the holidays photo challenge.
Since taking the Photosanity Workshop, Anne Marie has become an active member of the Photosanity peer-to-peer Facebook group and has seen a transformation in her photography.
To help share her Photosanity story, Anne Marie shared a photo from Christmas 2011, before she took the online workshop course.
In this photo, which Anne Marie does consider "emotionally good," she notes that "it has a lot to be desired technically."
Prior to Photosanity, she counts her biggest struggle as being stuck in auto and having to use flash in low-light situations, "leaving my pictures with the harsh lighting of the flash and those red eyes."
In the before photo, Anne Marie recognizes that "despite the flash, the picture here looks dark and doesn't portray the light and joy of Christmas morning."
Her Christmas morning photos this year certainly do show light and joy, particularly in her winning photo, taken of her daughter, in front of the tree.
Anne Marie shared how she captured her Christmas morning moments and her new approach to photography that is emotionally and technically good.
What are your favorite editing tools for photos?
What is your favorite type of moment to capture with photography?
I love capturing the big milestones like birthdays; but I get the most joy out of photos doing routine things where I capture a genuine expression that I look back on and say, 'That is soooo Annabelle.'
How often would you say you use your DSLR as opposed to your iPhone or other mobile device?
I try to use my DSLR as often as I can, which in reality ends up being once or twice a week.
Not the winning photo but too cute not to share!
If you could give any advice to a parent who is new to photography, what would it be?
My advice to a parent new to photography would be to try to use natural light whenever possible, invest in a prime lens (like to 50mm f1.8), and get out of auto.
Are you working on any photography projects right now?
I haven't started yet, but would love to get in a photo with my two kids each month for the next year, even if they are just selfies on my iPhone! I have so many photos of my children, but I am in so few of them.
About the winning photo...
Why is this photo special to you?
I love this photo because it captures the magic and joy of Christmas morning as experienced by my daughter as a toddler. Although we are at a stage of frequent tantrums, she is also very sweet and tender. And love that she is wearing her "Super Annabelle" cape.
What tools did you use to edit the winning photo?
I used Lightroom to adjust white balance, add some contrast, and reduce noise.
Do you plan to do something special with this photo?
I would love to make a photo album of this year's Christmas photos, this one included.
How Anne Marie captured the moment...
After she opened her presents, I just sat with my camera while she played with her new toys in front of the tree and I shot away.
Lens: 85mm 1.8 lens
About the photo challenge
The Photosanity PADF (Photo-a-Day Friday) Challenge takes place weekly in the Photosanity Peer-to-Peer Facebook Group. Each Friday a photo theme is set and photos are due the following week. Detailed feedback is given on three selected photos and a winner is chosen.
Membership in the Photosanity Peer-to-Peer Facebook group is free to anyone who purchases or has purchased a Photosanity workshop or service. It's a great way to connect with other like-minded photo-obsessed parents at all levels - it's an amazing community.
If you have made a purchase and would like to join, fill out this form and you will be admitted once your eligibility has been confirmed.