Take The Right Shot


Julian Guerrero

          Pictures capture moments that can never be recreated. Some have the power to change the course of history, others can provoke a grieving heart, and some can display the true beauty of nature; However, all photos have one thing in common, they are windows into the past. The annual photo contest at the Colorado River Fair enables photographers to share some of their own moments from the past. Contestants who want to enter their own pictures can enter them from late February through early March. Before entering their photos, contestants must turn in an entry form to the Fair Office at any time from Monday, January 9, 2023, to this Friday, February 17, 2023 at 3pm. Exhibits are going to be accepted two days leading up to the fair. The days are Tuesday, February 28, and Wednesday, March 1 from 9 am to 6 pm. The Exhibits will be released back to the contestants on Monday, March 20, 2023, from 9 am to 6 pm. 

          Though the thought of entering your own creative photos into a contest seems pretty open, there are quite a few rules. Some of these rules are that the photographs entered must be the work of the contestant entering them. They cannot be taken by another person. However, processing the photo, developing the photo, and matting it can all be done by a professional. The photograph must also be taken within the past two years in order for it to be qualified for entry. If there is not enough space for all photos in the exhibit room, then the screening jury will decide then which photos will stay and which photos will not be able to be put on display. The screening jury’s decision is final and cannot be objected to or changed. The photos cannot be placed on construction paper or picture frames. Plain clear tape also cannot be used to attach the photos to the border/background material. This is because the adhesive integrity of the tape isn’t reliable and may cause the photo to separate from the board and fall off during viewing. The photo must be attached using rubber cement or something similar to that. Not only the photo but the mounting will be judged by the judges. The size of the photograph is also required to be within a certain range. The photo may not exceed 16” x 20” in size and cannot be smaller than 5” by 7” in size.

          The judging criteria are as follows:


                    Quality of Technique                  35%

                    Originality                                    30%

                    Design                                           30%

                    Mounting                                      5%


          In order to run in the contest, the contestant must enter two exhibits per class that is offered.


    The classes offered by the fair are listed here:

  1. People at Work/Play – What are they doing? Tell the judge about these people with the picture.
  2. Children/Families – The photo should make a visual statement. More than 1 person must be in the picture.
  3. Landscape – Pictures of the sky, mountains, trees, valleys, meadows, canyons, streams, lakes, rocks, etc. and how they relate to each other. The picture may include animals, but they shouldn’t be the subject of the picture.
  4. Seascape – Photos of the sea, not the fish.
  5. Architecture – Buildings or structures.
  6. Animals / Pets or Livestock – The animals should be the subject of the picture.
  7. Animals / Wildlife – The wildlife should be the subject of the picture.
  8. The Colorado River – This could be anything to do with the River or the River itself.
  9. Insects – Insect should be the focal point.
  10. Flowers and floral – Any kind of flower.
  11. Action – Photos of something that is in motion.
  12. Sunrise/Sunset – The valley has great ones, utilize them.
  13. Portrait of Adult – Posed picture of the person/people, their face should be the main focus.
  14. Portrait of Child – Posed picture of child/children.
  15. Birds – Birds should be the subject of the picture.
  16. Still Life – Inanimate subject matter such as food, flowers, rocks, books, coins, etc.
  17. Any other than the above (be specific) – Entry must not fit into any of the above classes.

          All of these criteria should be met in order to participate. It sounds like a lot to follow, but hard work pays off. Be sure to submit your entry form before 3pm on Friday if you’re interested in participating!