2019 Audubon Winners - Professional Winner - Greater Sage-Grouse
2019 Audubon Winners - Grand Prize - Red-winged Blackbird
2019 Audubon Winners - Pro Hon - Bald Eagle
2019 Audubon Winners - Amateur Hon - Great Blue Herons

Images are a sampling of the 2019 – 2020 Audubon Traveling Awards Exhibit to be included in “Patient Nature”

CALL FOR ART - "Patient Nature" - Official Rules

Watermark art center announces the call for photography for their exhibit entitled “Patient Nature” in memory of area artist and photographer Joyce Kleven and featuring the 2019 – 2020 Audubon Traveling Awards Exhibit.  This exhibit is sponsored by our Business Partner – Paul Bunyan Communications.  The Audubon Traveling Awards Exhibit made possible by the Mississippi Headwaters Audubon Society. “Patient Nature” will be on display in the Kaul Gallery September 12th, 2020 through October 31st, 2020.

Paul Bunyan Communications
Mississippi Headwaters Audubon Society

How to Enter – Online Submissions Only
Submission to “Patient Nature” photography exhibit begins on August 1, 2020 12:00 p.m. (noon) and ends on Monday, August 31, 2020 at 12 p.m. (noon). Entry into this Contest constitutes your acceptance of these Official Rules.

All work must be original and produced by submitting artist.  Exhibit Jury and Award Judging criteria will be on technical quality, originality and artistic merit of the image.  Accepted works that differ in any way from juried images will be disqualified.  If accepted, work must be ready for installation and delivered to the art center any time between September 1st to September 8th.  Exhibit opens on Saturday Sept 12th as a part of the Mississippi Headwaters Audubon Society’s Monarch Festival in Bemidji!

Four Categories

Categories 1 – 3: Entry fees for the Professional, Amateur and Youth categories are $10 per image. Entry fees help support exhibit expenses and prize awards. Photographs must depict birdlife in any form (Professional, Amateur or Youth). Each of these categories requires a $10 fee per item and must be paid online with submission(s):

  1. Professional: You must be 18 years of age or older as of the date of Submission, and earned $5,000 or more in the 2019 calendar year producing or selling photographs.
  2. Amateur: You must be 18 years of age or older as of the date of Submission, and earned no more than $4,999.99 in the 2019 calendar year producing or selling photographs.
  3. Youth: You must be 13 to 17 years of age as of the date of Submission.

Category 4:  SPECIAL Birds Bees & Butterflies – Bemidji

BBBB: this category is open to all. You must be 13 years or older at the date of submission. Your photo must include  birds, bees or butterflies  interacting with plants. Pollinators and plants must be native to our region. Only one submission per person is permitted to this category. Any additional photographs submitted to this category by the same individual will not be entered into the completion or exhibit. There is no fee to submit to this category.  Photos submitted to categories 1 through 3 are NOT eligible for submission to the BBBB Category.

To use the submission form:

  • Follow the button link below for the submission form
  • You must confirm that you have read this page of Official Rules and our Privacy Statement
  • Fill in the required information and click the continue button;
  • For each item, you will be asked to confirm the category for which you meet all eligibility criteria;
  • Follow the instructions to upload your Photograph Submissions;
  • and complete the payment information and make the required payment.

Images submitted online for jury MUST meet the following requirements: a) Depict bird life (categories 1, 2, 3);  b) Color images only; c) Be optimized for digital viewing by the jury: close to 2000 pixels wide (for horizontal photographs) or 2000 pixels tall (for vertical photographs) at 72 dpi – 150 dpi; d) Be saved in RGB mode; and e) Be saved in the JPG (or jpeg) format.

You must also fill in all information boxes available on the application form, including where the Photograph was shot and any additional caption information, such as the name of native plants in photos submitted to the BBBB Category. Note that additional information you provide at entry, such as the camera, equipment, location of Photograph, subject of Photograph, and the story behind the shot, while interesting, will have no effect on a photograph’s score, but may be used for exhibit marketing and display purposes if selected for the exhibit.

For information on native plants and Birds, Bees & Butterflies in our region go the Mississippi Headwaters Audubon Society web page.

Additional information can also be found on the Audubon’s Plants for Birds program, supported by Coleman and Susan Burke, which provides resources for choosing and finding plants native to zip codes in the United States. Watermark Art Center supports the protocols stated by the Audubon with regards to ethical bird photography. You can find their guidelines here: Guide to Ethical Bird Photography.

Eligible Photographs
To be eligible for exhibit or win a prize, all submitted photographs must accurately reflect the subject matter as it appeared in the viewfinder. Normal processing of original file is acceptable. That includes:

  • final photo print should be no smaller than 5in x 7in, not including mat and frame
  • cropping, but it is strongly recommended that you not crop more than 50 percent of the original image
  • minor adjustments to color, white balance, tone, lighting levels and curves, shadows and highlights, saturation, contrast, sharpness
  • moderate dodging and burning
  • removal of dust spots and reduction of image noise

Photographs that have been digitally or otherwise altered beyond standard optimization will be disqualified. That includes:

  • HDR frame stacking
  • stitched panoramics
  • images that have been manipulated by the addition, removal, or alteration (painting over, cloning, or blurring) of anything in the original subject and scene that were photographed
  • borders, signatures, titles, copyrights or watermarks
  • changes in color so significant that the processed colors are widely different from the original colors
  • changes in density, contrast, color and/or saturation levels and dodging and burning that significantly alter content by obscuring or eliminating information in the picture

Exhibit requirements for accepted work
All work must be ready to hang when received at Watermark.  Work should be size as stated in original application (includes mat and frame).  We will not accept images that are printed onto canvas or any medium other than photographic paper (any finish).

Jury and Judging
Jury for exhibit will be conducted by a panel of photography and bird experts appointed by the WAC. Judges will score eligible Photographs using the following criteria:

  1. a) Technical Quality
  2. b) Originality
  3. c) Artistic Merit

Judging for prizes and awards – images that score highest in their category will be eligible for the following:

1) One prize to the highest scoring Photograph from the Professional Category;

2) One prize to the highest scoring Photograph from the Amateur Category;

3) One prize for the highest scoring Photograph from the Youth Category; and

4) One prize for the highest scoring Photograph from the BBBB Category.

5) One People’s Choice Award that will be announced at the close of the exhibit.

6) One Honorable Mention selection will be awarded for each Category.

No Entrant may win more than one prize. In the event of a tie for any prize, the Judges will use the Artistic Merit score of each tied Photograph to rank the Photographs. The Photograph with the highest Artistic Merit score will be the winner of that prize. If there continues to be a tie after the Artistic Merit scores are compared, the Judges will compare and rank the Technical Quality scores, and then the Originality scores, in that order. The decisions of the Judges will be final.  Winners will be announced at the opening of the exhibit.

Prizes
There are four cash prizes and five non-cash prizes available to be won: one cash prize in each of the four Categories, and one non-cash People’s Choice Award and 1 Honorable Mention each for categories 1 through 4.  Prizes will be awarded only to the person whose name is on the winning of the submission. Prizes will be awarded within 30 days of each winner being confirmed.

  1. Professional Prize: $300
  2. Amateur Prize: $150
  3. Youth Prize: $75
  4. BBBB Prize: $100
  5. People’s Choice Award (votes will be taken during the exhibit and winner will be announced at the close of the exhibit.)
  6. Honorable Mention for categories 1 through 4