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Deadline for ‘Ding’ Days photo contest ends mid-September

By Staff | Aug 31, 2013

Last year’s honorable mention winner, "Reddish Egret," by Tom Korbutt. PHOTO PROVIDED.

The deadline for the 26th Annual “Ding” Darling Days Amateur Nature Photography Contest is Sept. 15.

The contest, sponsored by the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge (DDWS), is held in conjunction with “Ding” Darling Days, Oct. 20-26, 2013 (www.dingdarlingdays.com).

Complete contest rules are listed below. Winners will be announced and awarded prizes at Conservation Art Day on Saturday, Oct. 26, during “Ding” Darling Days. Entries may be delivered in person to J.N. “Ding” Darling NWR or by mail to “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society (DDWS), One Wildlife Dr., Sanibel, FL 33957 (Attention: Gary Ogden).

– There is a $25 per person entry fee that provides you with a membership to the Society and is used to defray the cost of the contest. ONE $25 FEE COVERS TWO ENTRIES PER PERSON.

– Only AMATEUR (all ages) photographers are eligible to enter (may not possess a professional photographer tax identification number for the sale of photographs).

– Photos must be taken at J.N. “Ding” Darling NWR and have been taken within two years of entry date.

– Photos must be 8″ x 10″ (or full frame 8″ x 12″) with an 11″ x 14″ mat. This will facilitate display in the Visitor Center. (Please, no hangers on the backs of photographs.) Frames are not permitted. Please submit a digital copy on a CD/DVD/Flash Drive. Each photo must be at least 2MB. The two photo entries can be copied onto the same CD/DVD/Flash Drive.

– Each person may enter up to two photos but is eligible to win only one award. ONE $25 FEE COVERS TWO ENTRIES PER PERSON.

– Photos that have won awards in previous “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society photo contests may not be resubmitted.

– Judging will be anonymous. Please do not put your name or anything that will identify you on your photograph.

– Judging criteria: Technical excellence (sharpness, lighting, composition, exposure), originality/creativity, interest and ability to be reproduced for publication.

– On digital photos, only limited image modifications are permitted. Minor manipulation should be used only to produce a more natural looking photograph. Cropping is allowed but adding any elements not existing in the original scene will not be allowed. Judges, at their discretion, will disqualify any photos that appear to be manipulated beyond these guidelines.

– All photos will become the property of DDWS and will not be returned. There is no need to include a return envelope or postage. Photos may be used by DDWS in any way with appropriate credit.

– First, second, and third place winners and honorable mentions will be formally announced during the “Ding” Darling Day’s weeklong celebration held in October. Cash prizes will be awarded.

– The refuge and Wildlife Society cannot be held responsible for loss or damage of photos.

– There are three judges: A refuge staff person, a professional photographer, and a member of the Sanibel community.

For an entry form and other contest information, visit www.dingdarlingsociety.org/photo-contests. Or contact DDWS at dingdarlingoffice@yahoo.com or 472-1100, ext. 233.