CCCC Photo Contest
CCCC’s annual Photo Contest is a fun contest for both amateur and professional photographers and is geared toward photos of Yampa Valley and Rocky Mountain Sandhill Cranes. The contest runs from Sept – August every year; entries are due in mid-August. Get your camera ready!
2023 CCCC Photo Contest Rules
To see the rules in a PDF, click here.
The contest is open to all photographers. Greater Sandhill Crane photos can be submitted in 4 categories:
- Yampa Valley Greater Sandhill Cranes (Routt & Moffat Counties) – Amateur Division
- Yampa Valley Greater Sandhill Cranes (Routt & Moffat Counties)– Professional Division
- Rocky Mountain Greater Sandhill Cranes- Locations outside the Yampa Valley (open to both Amateur and Professional photographers)
- Altered Reality Images of Rocky Mountain Greater Sandhill Cranes – locations both within and outside the Yampa Valley.
All photos submitted in any category must be taken between September 1, 2022 and August 15, 2023. Entrants must not infringe on the rights of any other photographer or person, or submit images that involve willful harassment of wildlife or damage to the environment by the photographer. No trespassing on private property to take photos.
Photo contest rules:
Categories 1, 2 & 3 Eligible Photographs
Normal processing of the original file is acceptable. That includes:
- 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 moderate reduction of image noise.
Photographs that have been digitally or otherwise altered beyond standard optimization can be entered in the Altered Reality category 4.
Category 4 Eligible Photographs
- images that display a change in natural color, form, shape or any combination of these that deny the photographic process.
- images that have been enhanced, reduced, or transformed beyond the way the subjects appear in nature
- HDR frame stacking
- stitched panoramas
- 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
- added borders or filter applications
- 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 the image by obscuring or eliminating information in the picture
You may be required to provide CCCC with original image files (RAW, jpg, etc.) in the timeframe provided upon request (generally within 7 days). Judges will determine whether changes to an image are significant enough to change an entry to the Altered Reality category. Failure to provide original files may result in the disqualification of the Photograph at CCCC’s sole discretion.
Categories 1 and 2: Greater Sandhill Cranes and/or Sandhill Crane habitat in the Yampa Valley (Routt and Moffat Counties).
Category 3: Greater Sandhill Cranes found outside the Yampa Valley; specifically the states included in the Rocky Mountain Population of Greater Sandhill Cranes – Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, Montana, Idaho, Arizona, New Mexico. Category 3 is open to both Amateur and Professional photographers.
Category 4: Altered Reality Images of Greater Sandhill Cranes found within and outside the Yampa Valley; specifically the states included in the Rocky Mountain Population of Greater Sandhill Cranes – Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, Montana, Idaho, Arizona, New Mexico. Category 4 is open to both Amateur and Professional photographers.
Photos of cranes may include other birds and wildlife that share crane habitat.
Winners will be announced and prizes awarded at the Yampa Valley Crane Festival in four categories:
Yampa Valley Cranes, Amateur:
Gift certificates to PhotoGraphicsArt in Steamboat Springs, CO
- 1st place – $150 gift certificate
- 2nd place – $100 gift certificate
- 2 Honorable Mentions – $25 gift certificate each
Yampa Valley Cranes, Professional:
- 1st place – $200 cash
- 2nd place – $125 cash
- 2 Honorable Mentions – $50 cash each
Rocky Mountain Greater Sandhill Cranes outside the Yampa Valley – Amateur and Professional:
- 1st place – $200 cash
Altered Reality Images of Rocky Mountain Greater Sandhill Cranes within and outside the Yampa Valley – Amateur and Professional:
- 1st place – $200 cash
All winning photos will be featured on the Yampa Valley Crane Festival website and CCCC social media.
To Submit Photos:
To submit photos, please email email@example.com with the following information: photographer’s name, phone number, location of photo, date it was taken, and a title for the image for each photo, and attach each photo in jpeg format. Submissions must be received no later than August 15, 2022. Two submissions per person are allowed in each of the applicable categories. Entrants are eligible to win one prize per category.
Photo Use and Rights:
By submitting photos to the contest, you are agreeing to allow the Colorado Crane Conservation Coalition, sponsor of the Yampa Valley Crane Festival, to use your photo with appropriate photo credits on promotional materials and as part of the festival. Winning photographs, with credit, may be featured in national promotion of the Yampa Valley Crane Festival.
Thank you to PhotoGraphicArts for providing prizes for Category 1.