2011 Category Winner – Katy Warner, North Carolina DOT

To give you an idea of what to photograph, and what might be good to submit, we’re letting you in on the thoughts of some our past award winners and what made a particular photo worth submitting.

This week features Katy Warner, the At Work category winner from the 2011 contest. Katy is the photographer for the North Carolina Department of Transportation.

Photography is a passion for me, not just a job. I am extremely grateful to be in a profession that is so rewarding. I’m Katy Warner, photographer for the North Carolina Department of Transportation, and I have been working here for almost eight years.

I travel across our beautiful state, from the coast to the mountains, photographing projects, employees and events.

Louis Sandoval, North Carolina DOT
NCDOT maintenance worker Louis Sandoval.

I shot the photo of an NCDOT maintenance worker, Louis Sandoval, that won the “At Work” category. Louie was competing in a test of skill as part of the department’s annual “Road-eo” competition, which honors the most talented maintenance crew in Winston-Salem. I am so pleased to have won with this photo because I feel it really captures not only the essence of Louie, but also the spirit of all of my fellow DOT workers. We are a friendly bunch!

This photo is technically a bit more complicated than it looks. It was somewhat challenging to capture a proper exposure due to the reflective vest: you have to remember not to use a flash! I exposed the image with a meter reading of his face instead of the overall scene. If you do not have access to a digital SLR like the Nikon D700 that I use here at the NCDOT, search your camera for the spot meter setting, and target what you would like accurately exposed.

I may photograph many images of construction sites and other representative images for the NCDOT, but my favorite photos to take are of diverse folks that work all over the state.

Good luck to all with your submissions. I look forward to being inspired again by this year’s group of images.

2 Replies to “2011 Category Winner – Katy Warner, North Carolina DOT”

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