Deadline: 30 November 2023
- The following six contest categories are drawn from subjects of special interest to Smithsonian magazine:
- Natural World: Animals, plants and landscapes; geological or climatological features; and scientific processes and endeavors.
- Travel: Locales, peoples or activities in the United States and abroad that convey a sense of place.
- People: Portraits and photos of groups or individuals.
- 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.
- Artistic Images: Visuals that use photography as a creative and imaginative platform to express an idea or concept. These images can be manipulated in any method, either through photo editing software or other techniques.
- Drone/Aerial: Any photograph captured using an unmanned aerial vehicle, commonly known as a drone. Images shot from planes/helicopters are also accepted.
- Eight prizes will be awarded, as follows:
- Grand Prize: $2,500.
- Category Winners: The winners of each of the six categories will receive $500.
- Readers’ Choice: The winner of the online Readers’ Choice award will receive $500.
- One cash prize per person; winners may receive additional non-cash prizes. Winners must sign a release and license, as well as a declaration of eligibility, and will be responsible for paying any fees or taxes associated with the prize.
- All prizes are awarded “as is” and non-transferable. In case applicable law prohibits the Smithsonian from awarding a photographer the cash prize and/or any non-cash prize, the Smithsonian may award the prize in name only.
- The Grand Prize, Readers’ Choice prize, Natural World, Travel, People, The American Experience, Artistic Images and Drone/Aerial category prizes are open to photographers who are 18 years old or older.
- Individuals affiliated with the Smithsonian Institution, including employees, emeriti, Regents, trustees, interns, volunteers, fellows, research associates and their immediate families (children, parents, siblings and spouses) and others living in their households are not eligible for any prize.
- To be eligible for any category, a photograph must have been shot by the entrant since January 1, 2020.
- The contestant certifies that he/she is the sole creator and copyright owner of the submitted photograph.
- Cropped photos are eligible in all categories.
- Minor adjustments, including the removal of sensor dust or scratches on scans of negatives, dodging and burning, sharpening, contrast, toning, slight color adjustment and conversion to grayscale are acceptable for all categories.
- The addition and subtraction of objects is not permitted except in the Artistic Images category.
- Image composites including HDR and stitched panoramas will be judged as Artistic Images. Images generated using Artificial Intelligence (AI) is not permitted.
- Photos must be taken in accordance with federal, state and local laws.
- Photos that violate or infringe upon another person’s rights, including but not limited to copyright, are not eligible.
- Photos that contain sexually explicit, nude, obscene, violent or other objectionable or inappropriate content, as determined by the Smithsonian in its sole discretion, are ineligible for all categories of this contest.
For more information, visit Smithsonian Magazine.