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Last month’s photo challenge theme was “A Season for Family.” Since there was a monthly winner in September and a grand prize winner in October, both got to pick the winners this month. Read on below to see what they each had to say about the images they picked … ** First Place goes to MissMegan for “Daddy’s Gentle Touch” ** Second Place goes to Horne House for “It’s Snow Fun” ** Third Place goes to Dave Stelmach for “Three Generations of Laughter” ** Honorable Mention goes to jele for “Autumn Race” Cameron Karsten was the grand prize winner in October — here is what he had to say about his choice for first place: FIRST PLACE — DADDY’S GENTLE TOUCH A Season for Family “I found ‘Daddy’s Gentle Touch,’ by MissMegan, to be the standout image.  The soft tones reflect a deep emotion behind the moment.  The father’s thumb, remarkably massive compared to the fragile structure of the child’s foot, helps highlight the degree of emotion and the frailty of life itself.  Rough skin on the father, hands having sown the life lived; and the silk of the baby, flesh appearing white like an angel. “The only issue I have with the photograph is the right foreground, whether it’s the hip or a part of the father’s body.  By its presence, the right-hand side distracts from the innocence of the subject and how the large paternal hand cups the fresh life of the newborn child.  However, what finalizes my decision is the clarity and the exposure of the subject, sucking out the details that enable the viewer to reach through and touch what it feels like to bring a child into this world.” Jim Emery was the first place winner in September’s challenge.  Here are his thoughts on his choice for the second place winner: SECOND PLACE — SNOW FUN “To me, ‘Snow Fun’ by HorneHouse is my favorite.  Unlike most of the photos submitted, which just feature the people, this one provides a vivid context.  I love the snow-covered fir tree.  You know that kid is going to shake the tree and get showered in snow!  The photo is sharp and crisp, just like the winter air.  I can feel the cold and see my breath while looking at the photo.  The photo has great depth of field and I love the low light.” THIRD PLACE – THREE GENERATIONS OF LAUGHTER I choose Dave Stelmach’s photo “Three Generations of Laughter” because of how well I feel it illustrates the theme “A Season for Family.” I am truly drawn in with the exuberant joy of this captured moment; the laughter is palpable — nearly audible. There is definitely a story behind this shot.  I find myself curious to know what it is, to share in their laughter and camaraderie. Technically speaking, it’s also a nice composition.  There is no wasted space, yet the crop is not too tight as to be cutting into anyone. HONORABLE MENTION – AUTUMN RACE I really like this shot “Autumn Race,” by jele, and feel like it warrants an honorable mention. Not only is it thought out and shot with intention, it’s moody, artistic and interesting. The composition and perspective are both excellent, the cool cyan color cast (the color of shade and wintry overcast days) actually adds to the feeling of the cool autumn air. Notice in this shot how the perspective — down low to the ground near the leaves — not only seems to make us more aware of the leaves and the season, but almost seems to increase a sense of depth and motion.  This perspective works extremely well with the slow shutter speed and blurring of the kids.  I can almost hear the crunch of the leaves as they run toward us. ENTER TO WIN! Remember, this month’s theme is “Traditions.” Submit your photos by 8:00 a.m. EST, Monday, December 31st. If you’re a first-time user, you’ll need to register first on the “register” link on the right side bar. Once you have a username and password, click “Enter to Win” to upload your photo. Only one photo per applicant will be considered. [Editor’s Note: Learn more about how you can turn your pictures into cash in our free online newsletter The Right Way to Travel.  Sign up here today and we’ll send you a new report, Selling Photos for Cash: A Quick-Start Guide, completely FREE.]

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