Judging thisyear’s photo contest entries, we realized one thing: Hunting and fishing mustbe good for the eyes. The quality of images exceeded even our highestexpectations. That said, it made it tough to pick a winner.
The photos werejudged in six categories: camp life, live game, humor, hunting hero shot,fishing hero shot and nature. Each of the category winners then became eligiblefor the grand prize of $500.
Although thecontest has officially ended, don’t stop sending in your photographs. We wantto run more reader pictures in future issues. So keep shooting.
You can also finda lot more reader photographs online. Visit outdoorlife.com and browse thephoto galleries.
WINNER, GRANDPRIZE/LIVE GAME: MONTE LOOMIS, WEST WINFIELD, NY
As he wasphotographing wild turkeys, Monte saw three gobblers get into a fight. With hiscamera at the ready, he snapped this incredible action shot. The power of theimage comes from the moment in time it captures. Of course, it doesn’t hurtthat the other elements of a great photo (focus, framing and detail) wereexecuted so well. Congratulations to our grand prize winner!
WINNER, HERO SHOT,HUNTING: DAMON PEARY, BOZEMAN, MT
In a perfect herohunting photo, the hunter is framed by the game, with an exotic location as thebackdrop. As you can see, all four pictures fit the bill, but the vibrantcolors in Damon Peary’s mule deer shot really pop.
WINNER, HERO SHOT,FISHING: JEREMY MARTIN, JOHNSON, VT
Composing a goodfishing grip-and-grin photo can be tough. Often, the size of the fish is lostin proportion to the angler. But you can’t go wrong with a kid and a lunker.The combination makes a good hero shot every time. The two happy anglers inthis image were fishing on a lake in Vermont, and were clearly using the rightlures.
WINNER, NATURE:STEVE WATSON, JACKSONVILLE, TX
If you’ve got aproblem with heights, this bird’s-eye view from the top of the world might giveyou vertigo. Assuming your head isn’t spinning, enjoy the palette of colors,the depth of the landscape and the subject’s place in it. The specific locationwasn’t mentioned on the application form, but that doesn’t detract from thebeautiful vista, which goes on for hundreds of miles.
Framing and focusare essential when shooting a landscape. The photographer did a great job ofbalancing the various elements, including the valley floor, mountains andsky.
WINNER, HUMOR:JEFF ANDERSON MONEE, IL
Tough break forthis young dog, as the bird he flushed decides to make a run for it. Lucky forus, a nearby hunter had a camera and the skills needed to snap this hilariousaction shot. If only it were a video, we could see how that pheasant fared onfoot.
WINNER, CAMP LIFE:DAMON PEARY, BOZEMAN, MT
This exceptionalcamp life postcard shot put everyone who judged it in the mood to venture outWest and chase trophy mule deer. The setting is bucolic, the canoe is classicand the trophies are impressive. “Wish you were here.”
Digicams for the Outdoorsman
Most cameras, especially digital ones, fall to piecesfrom the kind of abuse hunters and anglers give them. Not these three. They’retough but still deliver a great picture.
Olympus Stylus 720SW
The 720SW is perfect for outdoor use. It’s waterproofto 10 feet, shockproof to 5 feet, less than an inch thick and comes without abulky casing. The 7.1-megapixel camera includes a video feature and settingsfor shooting underwater. ($400; olympus.com)
Canon PowerShot S3IS
Zoom is the word with this latest offering from Canon.The camera comes equipped with a 12X optical zoom lens and features increasedmovie functions (shooting 30 frames per second) and a variable-angle LCD.($500; canon.com)
Nikon Coolpix S5 With Field Jacket FJ-CPI
This 6.0-megapixel camera is tricked out with a2.5-inch LCD that provides a 170-degree angle of view, perfect for natureshots. The separate casing makes the camera waterproof down to 10 feet, whichis great for fishing shots. ($350; nikon.com)