“Wilderness Forever” Photo Competition Accepting Entries for Smithsonian Exhibition

Raising Awareness of Wilderness Lands To Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Wilderness Act
May 7, 2013
News Release
stones in a lake next to a mountain

The “Wilderness Forever” public photography competition is now accepting entries of images illustrating the majesty, diversity and value of the nation’s wilderness areas. This professionally juried contest is conducted by the 50th Anniversary National Wilderness Planning Team (Wilderness50), Nature’s Best Photography and the Smithsonian Institution and will run through Sept. 3. Approximately 50 winning contest entries will be chosen for display as large-format prints in the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History for a 2014 exhibition celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act.

“Photography delivers immediate and long-lasting impact,” said Steve Freligh, Nature’s Best Photography editor-in-chief and “Wilderness Forever” photo competition judge. “What better way to celebrate the beauty of our natural heritage than through the eyes of the public and their shared experiences in our wilderness areas.”

“We’re very excited to share the public’s own visions of America’s beautiful wilderness lands and to educate visitors about the importance of preserving our natural heritage through this remarkable photography exhibition,” said Charles Chen of the National Museum of Natural History.

The exhibition, which will be seen by millions of visitors, is the centerpiece of nationwide celebrations commemorating the establishment of the wilderness system and bringing together the visions of ordinary Americans depicting the beauty and importance of these special places.

Professional, amateur and student photographers are encouraged to submit their photographs accompanied by personal stories and memories about the scenes depicted. Contest guidelines and entry instructions are found online at http://www.naturesbestphotography.com/wilderness.

Entry categories are:

  • Scenic Landscape: Dramatic scenes and unusual perspectives of protected wilderness land, providing expansive views, including plant life: flowers, trees and other flora in natural habitat. Close-ups, wide-open spaces, storms, sunsets and other natural views.
  • Wildlife: Wild animals (mammals, reptiles, amphibians, birds, insects, etc.) photographed within the boundaries of wilderness areas. Animal portraits, behavior, predation, adults with young. (Note: No captive animals allowed in this category.)
  • People in Wilderness: People enjoying wilderness lands: Adventurers, backpackers, hikers, canoers and other activities; groups, families and individuals in natural settings. Action, artistic perspectives and artistic compositions (silhouettes, motion shots, creative lighting, portrayals of solitude and primitive recreation, etc.).
  • Most Inspirational Moment: Images of wilderness locations that have a very special story and personal meaning to entrants.

About Wilderness50

Wilderness50 is a coalition of more than 25 non-profit organizations, academic institutions and government agencies that is planning and implementing local, regional and national events and projects. This coalition is charged with raising public awareness of wilderness and engaging youth during 2014, the 50th anniversary year. The nation’s wilderness system, now encompassing more than 109 million acres, was established in 1964 for the use and enjoyment of the American people. The 757 wilderness areas that exist today are managed by all four federal land-managing agencies, the Bureau of Land Management, Fish and Wildlife Service, Forest Service and National Park Service.

More information about the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act and Wilderness50 is available at http://www.wilderness50th.org, Facebook and Twitter.

National Museum of Natural History

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, located on 10th Street and Constitution Avenue N.W. in Washington, D.C., welcomes more than 6 million visitors annually. The museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Admission is free. For more information about the museum, visit it at www.mnh.si.edu and on Facebook, Twitter (hash tag #nmnh), YouTube and Flickr or call (202) 633-1000.

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