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This is the "strange" coincidence of the year for me.
As you know, for my Camera DVDs I try to find a pretty female model to help with some of the lessons. I had just returned from Haiti and Alabama and was trying to get the Canon 60D DVD production rolling again, so I needed someone and I didn't want to wait more than a day or two. I searched high and low on Maui, and it seemed that most of the models from my regular sources were either off island or unavailable. (Not many actually live on Maui, but Honolulu or on the mainland).
I was lucky enough to find one beautiful model on short notice who said she could help.
Danielle came out the next day and we had a great shoot. She is featured in the "Canon 60D Crash Course DVD". Keep in mind....the shoot took place after the contest deadline had closed.
It turns out, and I didnt find this out until all of the winners had been announced, that Danielle is also the photographer of the "Wet Cat with Blue Eyes". She told me she didn't want to mention to me that she had entered the contest when we did the Canon 60D shoot.
Danielle and her husband live on Maui full time which makes it really great if I need her for another shoot. She was the one who introduced me to Maui's Smug Mug group and has been extremely helpful with many little things.
Danielle has a HUGE passion for shooting animals.
I am really super shocked I even made the finalists, let alone won 5th place! I had only had my camera for one and a half months when I shot the image of the cat in the water. I told myself I would never shoot automatic, and have kept that promise to this day. Prior to that, the only camera I had was a camcorder that is 4 years old and takes fuzzy stills. Having traveled since the age of 18 and taking wonderful "fuzzy" pictures, my husband finally got me my dream gift, a REAL camera! Now, being a military wife, I get to go live in a new place every 2-3 years, and I can't wait to capture each place and all it's beauty, no matter where it may be. I am a real estate agent but my dream is to become a professional photographer, specializing in pet portraits. I've started giving this dream half a shot here www.queenbphotography.com
Congratulations D! Thank you for entering this year's contest and a HUGE thank you for your help with the Canon 60D DVD and for being my new friend here on Maui. :)