From Photographer & Stay-at-Home Mom to Full-Time Web Developer

My Image Finder app pic

Before becoming a full-time programmer, Teddi Maull worked as a wedding and portrait photographer while taking care of her two young children. She attended a networking event for her photography business and began mingling with a former Galvanize Full Stack student. After hearing about his experience , she was so intrigued that she sat in her car after the event to research the program, where she found out that there was a full stack meetup that night in Boulder. Shortly after the meetup, Teddi decided that she was going to apply for the program.

During the course of the 6-month program, Galvanize Web Development students do capstone projects to demonstrate how they apply their technical skills to business problems, and present these projects at a final Capstone Showcase. In the past, students have presented projects on everything from the gray wolf population to music recommendations.

For her project, Teddi was able to combine her interest in photography with her new coding skills by building an awesome app that allows users to selectively target images.

My Image Finder

Teddi built something called My Image Finder, which allows users to upload a target image to find within a collection of images. Here’s a look at how it works:

When building her project, she researched several facial recognition APIs and decided to create something that professional photographers would find useful. In structuring this app, she used Node with Express, jQuery, and Bootstrap. The app also connects to the Cloudinary API for image hosting and the Microsoft Project Oxford API for facial recognition.

One of her biggest challenges was returning the final value that she needed in order to display the correct output. The API calls were happening asynchronously, and she needed to figure out a way to make the final return value happen at the appropriate time. Teddi solved the problem by using a promise library and returning the value using the return object.

According to Teddi, the app is more of a “proof of concept” since the technology is new and has strict parameters on how many images can be uploaded at once. But what’s really exciting is that this functionality will be widely available soon – and that Teddi isn’t the only developer interesting in working on it.

Landing a Web Developer Job

After completing the full stack program, Teddi set out for a career with her new skills. Utivity, a marketplace for people to list, discover, and book any service or activity under the sun, had employees in attendance at Hiring Day, where they watched Teddi present My Image Finder. They wanted to learn more about her, so they asked Teddi to come in for a formal interview. They were impressed with her technical skills and focus on quality code, and she’s now a full-time developer at their office in Denver, Colorado.

Regarding her success in the program, Teddi said, “People who have asked me what they should do to succeed at Galvanize Full Stack already know what my answer will be because I say it all the time. My answer is – CRUSH CODE. In other words, do the assignments, do projects, and find problems that you can answer. Exercising your problem solving muscle is never a bad thing.”

For a deeper look at technical challenges of this project, you can check out Teddi’s blog, Teddi Codes, where she talks about her journey in developing My Image Finder and her experience at Galvanize Full Stack.

Want to learn to code? Learn more about Galvanize Full Stack or sign up for one of our upcoming info sessions.