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  • Approved for CNN

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    Posted December 4, 2011 by
    Winnipeg, Manitoba
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Photo essays: Your stories in pictures

    More from TaraMillerMB

    Legally Blind Professional Commercial Photographer


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     Believe it or not, TaraMillerMB is the third legally blind photographer to be featured on CNN! Check out the others: Kurt Weston creates art photography mostly about his vision loss, and Craig Royal uses autofocus and slow shutter speeds to create his works.
    - rachel8, CNN iReport producer

    Professional Legally Blind Photographer Wins National Photography Competition
    Tara Miller, from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada has done what most people might think would be an impossible challenge. Tara has won the Grand Prize in the 2011 CNIB Eye Remember National Photography Competition.
    CNIB put the call out to all Canadian residents to share their story with their most cherished images to help raise awareness about Glaucoma.
    Miller’s stunning image of a lightning strike over a sunflower field at sunset was captured in Southern Manitoba in the summer of 2010. Tara’s memory that she shared about this image was “I have struggled with my vision loss due to Glaucoma and found my "inner peace" when I took up photography again with the advantages of the digital age. I want to let others know not give up what you are passionate about. I will never forget how my 12year old son was there to help me capture this image. We share the excitement of finding a great location and share family time together!”
    The five finalists were selected by three celebrity judges, and then voting was opened to the general public world wide. It wasn’t until Miller made the final five that CNIB realized that Tara has being a CNIB client since early childhood.
    After Miller’s story ran in a few local newspaper’s it caught the attention of the producers at Coast To Coast AM. The producers of the program ran a link to Tara’s story on their web page and her story went viral. The result was over whelming for Tara, in just 4 days there where over 4000 people sharing her story over various social media networks around the world.
    Tara said she entered the contest hoping to win the Grand Prize weekend vacation to one of Canada’s top 4 vacation spot’s and at the same time she wanted to raise awareness about Glaucoma, something that has being slowly robbing her peripheral vision since she was 17.
    Tara said “When my mother was pregnant with me she was in contact with someone who had German Measles and was not vaccinated against it herself. Congenital rubella syndrome is what I was fortunate enough to get. To my understanding the fetus can contract problems with eyes, heart or brain. I look at it this way. I had the least devastating one.”
    Tara with her husband Jeff are professional commercial photographers specializing in food and agriculture photography and their portfolio can be viewed at www.100acrewoodsphotography.com
    When Tara is shooting still life and food photography for clients she tethers her Nikon D300s camera to her 27 inch Imac computer where she can zoom in to 200% to check the clarity of the image.
    Tara has less then 10% vision but doesn’t let that stand in the way of her passion.
    Tara says in her biography; “I have finally started to be taken seriously for my ability and not my disability. Because I don't look legally blind some people have laughed at me when I tell them that I am a legally blind professional photographer. I have struggled with my vision loss due to Glaucoma and found my “inner peace” when I took up photography again with the advantages of the digital age. I want to let others know to not give up what you are passionate about in life”.
    What Tara didn’t realize was the response that she would receive when she shared her story. After Coast To Coast AM posted Miller’s link on their web page Tara received over 500 emails from all over the world. People pouring their hearts out to a complete stranger all because they were so inspired how Tara didn’t let her visual limitations stand in the way of her passion.
    Tara has spent numerous hours on the phone with various organizations requesting her to come and be a motivational speaker to others.
    Tara likes to leave people with a personal inspiration true from her heart;
    " When you have a passion in life limitations are merely an obstacle in the road, when you over come those limitations the reward is success. With out a passion in life there is no success".

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