Photographers who are 18 years old or older-except for individuals affiliated with the Smithsonian Institution are invited to participate.
What to enter:
Five contest categories are drawn from subjects of special interest to Smithsonian.com:
The American Experience—Events, objects or activities connecting the American people to their history or their cultural heritage; photographs that tell us what it means to be an American and provide a sense of what it is like to live in this country.
The Natural World—Animals, plants and landscapes; geological or climatological features; and scientific processes and endeavors.
People—Individuals from all walks of life.
Altered Images—Photographs manipulated for artistic purposes by applying digital and/or traditional special effects (i.e. colorizing, toning, collage, photo composites, HDR, etc.).
Travel—Locales, peoples or activities in the United States and abroad that convey a sense of place.
A sixth category is for images taken with a mobile device (phone or tablet). The Smithsonian will award a prize to the best photograph submitted in any of the five categories that was taken with a mobile device. You must affirmatively check the provided box to submit your annual contest entry to the mobile competition.
Photographs must have been shot by the entrant since January 1, 2011.
Cropped photos are eligible in all categories. Not accept: digitally or otherwise enhanced or altered photos, except for those entered in the Altered Images category. Minor adjustments, including spotting, dodging and burning, sharpening, contrast and slight color adjustment or the digital equivalents, are acceptable for all five categories. If the judges determine that a photographer has altered his or her photo, they reserve the right to move the photo to Altered Images or to disqualify it.
Prizes: The Smithsonian will award eight prizes, as follows:
Grand Prize: $2,500
The winners of each of the five categories will receive $500.
The winner of the online Readers’ Choice award will receive $500.
The best photo in any of the five categories that was taken with a mobile device will receive $500.
One cash prize per person; winners may receive additional noncash prizes. Winners must sign a release and license, declaration of eligibility, and will be responsible for paying any taxes they may owe on a prize.
The contest is open until November 29, 2013 at 2:00 PM EST.
Finalists will be announced on March 3, 2014. Good luck to you all!