FOR Wendy Kennely, winning the Newcastle Herald Summer Photo Competition was like ‘‘winning a million bucks’’.
Mrs Kennely’s shot of her daughter, River, in shallow water on a summer’s day at Birubi beach was last week named the top pick out of more than 200 entries in the competition.
Yesterday, she received a Canon digital camera and Tamron lens packages from Domayne Kotara as first prize for her photo. The mum and full-time barber said she had been ‘‘on a high’’ since winning the award and had seen a spike in interest in her part-time photography business, Strawberry Fields Photography.
‘‘I’ve had such a great response, especially on Facebook,’’ she said.
‘‘It’s just a weekend hobby for me at the moment. But a lot of people have seen it and approached me to do more photography work.’’
The photo had been Mrs Kennely’s first in a photography competition and had appealed because of the ‘‘peaceful’’ nature of the shot, she said.
Mrs Kennely nominated Melissa Evans’s Bloomin Beautiful and Karynne Lawler’s Flippin Beaut Summer, which placed second and third respectively in the readers’ choice awards, as her favourites among the other entries in the summer-long contest.