July Winners: Wet 'N Wild

Here’s your weekly photo dispatch with a list of last month’s Photo Challenge winners.

Don’t forget -- this month and next month are your last chances to enter the Challenge before everyone votes for the $2,000 Grand Prize photo in October. You’ll find details on entering below.

-- Lori

Lori Allen
Director, Great Escape Publishing

August 5, 2009
The Right Way to Travel, Weekly Photo Tip

By Shelly Perry in Portland, OR

Last month’s photo challenge theme was “Wet ‘N Wild.” If it was as hot where you are as it has been here in Portland (it got up to 105 degrees), you were no doubt ready to jump into this theme with both feet.

** First Place goes to LAGuzda for “Summer Splash”

** Second Place goes to Jonathan Conx for “Ready to Be Wet”

** Third Place goes to kingaa for “Wet Wedding Wildness!”

** Honorable Mention goes to tammra4 for “Little Left!”

June’s winner, Alicia, acted as our guest judge this month and provided her input into choosing the first-place winner. This is what Alicia had to say about her first place pick…


Wet 'N Wild

“I love this shot from an artistic standpoint. This is definitely life in the moment. It’s an excellent capture of the child’s expression through the water splash, which gives the image some depth and dimension. It’s fun! The only picky thing I wish were different in this shot is the slight turn of the child's head. If it were turned toward the right of the image, it would be a better angle. However, I would not toss out the image on that point alone, especially in this type of situational shooting. I think it nails the theme very well.”

This month’s winner, LAGuzda, has been submitting photos to the Challenge religiously for some time now. We’ve seen some other good shots from LAGuzda, but to me, this is definitely one of the best.


This is an art shot. It tells a story, so it would be good for an article, and with a little editing (for logos), it could be sold as stock. The group of three in the front are a bit centered, but the one person straggling in the back balances out the image.

I understand why the photographer composed the shot this way, and I would have made the same choice.

I love the many lines of the water, the texture of the water and the texture of the sand. If I could change just one thing about this shot, I’d maybe add a little more water to the left or to the bottom of the frame. But having said that, who knows where the photographer shot this from and what the limitations were. Overall, I think it is a beautiful shot.


This is also a really fun shot, and definitely a possible stock shot.

The people are smack in the middle, which we generally try to discourage. Does it work in this shot? Maybe. It would probably be a stronger image as a square, with the people over to the right corner.

I would also like to see more splash under them, especially to nail the “Wet ‘N Wild” theme. The horizon is a bit distorted -- perhaps from a wide angle lens. The action is dynamic, which I love, as well as the deep blue colors. The shot would have even more pop with some processing.


June’s winner, Alicia, had positive things to say about many of July’s entries. Here’s what she said about this shot:

"I love this one! I believe it sets a mood of quiet expectation, awe and curiosity -- the power and mystery of the ocean, the beams of light coming through the clouds, as if God were trying to show the way, and the young boy looking out over it all, speaks of all humanity’s quest for answers about the unknown and the fact that we have just begun that journey.  The composition is also good as the subject is on the right Thirds line and the beach, ocean, and sky are also on the thirds lines." (More about Rule of Thirds, here.)

I like this shot a lot, too -- its quite touching. I love the placement of the child, with the sun reflection running right next to him/her. The overall picture appears a bit underexposed, which could be addressed in post-processing. A little processing could also make some colors pop out of what is at the moment a bit "muddy." And I am bothered just a little that the horizon is not straight.  But again, that’s something you can easily fix in a photo-editing program like Adobe Lightroom or Photoshop.

Congratulations to each of our winners!!

All of this month’s winners, as well as the honorable mention, will all be entered in the running for the $2,000 Grand Prize this October.


Remember, this month's theme is "Who’s Your Baby?" Submit your photos by 8:00 a.m. EST, Monday, August 24. If you're a first-time user, you'll need to register first on the "register" link on the right side bar. Once you have a username and password, click "Enter to Win" to upload your photo. Only one photo per applicant will be considered.

[Editor’s Note: Learn more about how you can turn your pictures into cash in our free online newsletter The Right Way to Travel.  Sign up here today and we’ll send you a new report, Selling Photos for Cash: A Quick-Start Guide, completely FREE.]