19th Annual Photo Contest by Smithsonian Magazine [Prize Worth Rs.1 L]: Submit by Nov 30: Expired

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IITB MSC Digital Society Programme

Smithsonian Magazine is inviting photographers to participate in their 19th Annual Photo Contest and get a chance to win exciting prize money.

About the Contest

Smithsonian magazine 19th Annual Photo Contest begins April 1, 2021, and ends November 30, 2021, at 5:00 PM Eastern Standard Time. By submitting an entry, each contestant agrees to the rules of the contest and states that he or she is 18 years old or older.


The following six contest categories are drawn from subjects of special interest to Smithsonian magazine:

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  • Natural World: Animals, plants and landscapes; geological or climatological features; and scientific processes and endeavours.
  • Travel: Locales, peoples or activities in the United States and abroad that convey a sense of place.
  • People: Portraits and photos of groups or individuals.
  • The American Experience: Events, objects or activities connecting the American people to their history or their cultural heritage; photographs that tell us what it means to be an American and provide a sense of what it is like to live in this country.
  • Altered Images: Photographs manipulated for artistic purposes by applying digital and/or traditional special effects.
  • Mobile: Any photograph taken with a mobile device (phone or tablet).


  • The Grand Prize, Readers’ Choice prize, Natural World, Travel, People, The American Experience, Altered Images and Mobile category prizes are open to photographers who are 18 years old or older.
  • Individuals affiliated with the Smithsonian Institution, including employees, emeriti, Regents, trustees, interns, volunteers, fellows, research associates and their immediate families (children, parents, siblings and spouses) and others living in their households are not eligible for any prize.
  • The Smithsonian will determine winners’ eligibility at its sole discretion.

Submission process

  • To be eligible for any category, a photograph must have been shot by the entrant since January 1, 2019. This date applies to all images in a composite.
  • The contestant certifies that he/she is the sole creator and copyright owner of the submitted photograph.
  • Cropped photos are eligible in all categories.
  • They do not accept digitally or otherwise enhanced or altered photos, except for those entered in the Altered Images category.
  • Minor adjustments, including the removal of sensor dust or scratches on scans of negatives, dodging and burning, sharpening, contrast, toning, slight color adjustment and conversion to grayscale are acceptable for all categories.
  • The addition and subtraction of objects is not permitted except in the Altered Images category. If the judges determine that a photographer has altered his or her photo, they reserve the right to move the photo to Altered Images or to disqualify it.
  • Image composites including HDR and stitched panoramas will be judged as Altered Images.


Eight prizes will be awarded, as follows:

  • Grand Prize: $2,500.
  • Category Winners: The winners of each of the six categories will receive $500.
  • Readers’ Choice: The winner of the online Readers’ Choice award will receive $500.
  • One cash prize per person; winners may receive additional non-cash prizes. Winners must sign a release and license, as well as a declaration of eligibility, and will be responsible for paying any fees or taxes associated with the prize.
  • All prizes are awarded “as is” and non-transferable.  In case applicable law prohibits the Smithsonian from awarding a photographer the cash prize and/or any non-cash prize, the Smithsonian may award the prize in name only.

Selection Process

  • Photo entries will be judged based on creativity, quality, originality, responsiveness to the prompt and overall impact.
  • The Smithsonian will select 10 finalists per category, a winner for each category, and a Grand Prize winner from the 60 finalists. The 60 finalists will be notified of their status and appear on our website in March 2022.
  • The Smithsonian will notify winners via the contact information provided at the time of entry; the Smithsonian may disqualify anyone who fails to respond to the notification within five business days.

How to Submit?

  • Submit photographs and requested information online through the website by clicking here.
  • You may submit up to 15 photographs per category for a contest total of 90 submissions. In order to be displayed in our online gallery without being stretched or distorted, photographs must be submitted in .jpeg, .jpg or .gif format, edited for web in sRGB color space, at least 2,000 pixels wide and no larger than 10 MB. You must complete a separate form for each photo submitted.


November 30, 2021

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