National Geographic Announces Student Expedition Photo Contest Winners

National Geographic has announced the winners of their second annual Student Expedition Photo Contest, selecting the best images from more than 2,500 entries submitted by high school students from across the country. Those amateur photographers were asked to share their photos that best convey a sense of adventure and exploration, along with a short descriptive caption explaining the image. The entries were then examined by a board of Nat Geo photographers and photo editors who judged them on the overall quality of the photography, the quality of the included caption and the extent to which the image captured the heart of student expedition.

The winner of this year’s contest was 17-year-old Lijah Hanley, whose beautiful image entitled “No Boundaries” can be seen below. He snapped the photo while on a family drive to Dallas, OR, where they were planning a picnic under the stars. Lijah, who finished second in last year’s contest, has earned himself an all expense paid trip to attend a 12-day photography workshop to be held in London later this year.

The second place photo, entitled “Anticipation,” was taken by 16-year-old Julianna Brown and can be seen above. That image earned her a $250 gift card for the Nat Geo store. Third place went to Emily Watson, 18, who received a $100 gift card.

All of the winners, along with the other finalists, can be viewed by clicking here. Judging by the images that are on display there, I’d say there are some very talented photographers in this group.

National Park Foundation Launches 2012 Photo Contest

The National Park Foundation has launched its 2012 photo contest giving aspiring photographers an opportunity to show off their skills while helping the organization spotlight America’s spectacular public lands. The competition, which is now in its 12th year, draws more than 14,000 entries on an annual basis.

The contest is open to amateur photographers 13 years of age or older. All images submitted for consideration must have been taken on U.S. public lands, such as national parks and forests, between January 1, 2010 and December 31, 2012. Submissions are being accepted through the end of this year at

The winner of the competition will be awarded a $15,000 cash prize, an annual Federal Recreation Lands Pass and have their photograph featured on that same pass in 2014. More than 500,000 of the passes are sold each year, which means that a large audience will have exposure to the winning image. Second and third place winners will receive $10,000 and $2500 and an annual pass respectively, while honorable mention winners will receive a two-night stay at a variety of hotels across the country. For more information about the prizes, click here.

If you’re a fan of the national parks and have taken some great photos over the past couple of years, you can enter your images here. If you don’t have any images to submit you still have plenty of time to visit a national park before the deadline.

Vote for your favorite travel photo in Smithsonian Magazine’s 9th annual photo contest

More than 14,000 photographers from 109 countries entered Smithsonian Magazine’s photo contest this year and now the magazine is asking readers to cast their vote for the Readers’ Choice favorite. From now until March 31, readers can log on to Smithsonian Magazine and choose the best photographs from five categories: Altered Images, Americana, The Natural World, People, and Travel.

We here at Gadling are loving the diversity of photos in the travel category. They range from pastoral images of fishing boats and young monks in Myanmar to colorful urban sprawl in India, weathered calm in Ethiopia to a moment of whimsy in South Africa. The striking photo pictured above shows Segways on tour in Valencia, Spain.

In all, there are 10 photos to vote on each of the five categories. Readers may vote once per day until the deadline on March 31, 2012. The winners will be published in a summer 2012 issue of Smithsonian Magazine.

Your travel photo didn’t get selected as a finalist in the Smithsonian Magazine contest? Why not submit it to the Gadling Flickr pool? Your photo may just be our Photo of the Day.

Image by Marcel van Balken/Smithsonian Magazine

Travel photo value way more than 1000 words

Surely, a picture is worth a lot and a good travel photo can tell a story of our travels. Gadling’s Photo of the Day alone takes us around the world often. Now, a new photo contest promises winners what could be an amazing adventure, just for sharing their shots.

In Abercrombie & Kent’s Facebook photo contest, travelers are encouraged to submit their most inspiring and powerful travel photos on a special contest tab on Abercrombie & Kent’s Facebook page by January 29, 2012. That earns a chance to win a once-in-a-lifetime adventure cruise to Antarctica for two, all expenses paid, under the guidance of expert photographer, Richard Harker.

“Facebook is a natural platform for inspiring travel,” says Scott Wiseman, president of Abercrombie & Kent USA. “Our followers love sharing pictures from their recent travels, so we wanted to encourage them and reward them for making the effort.”
On the 14-day adventure cruise, the winner and a guest will explore shorelines teeming with penguin and seal alongside leading naturalists and go behind the scenes at an environmental research station and chat with on-board experts nightly about the day’s discoveries.

Described as “the one to beat for high-quality, hands-on exploration” by Conde Nast Traveler, this would be a huge win for anyone. Sailing with veteran photographer Richard Harker makes it a dream-come-true for photo fans as Harker will be providing hands-on guidance to help make every shot count on the adventure.

This Antarctic journey includes twin-share accommodation on MV ‘Le Boreal,’ the only all-balcony expedition ship in the region, meals, all transfers, ground transport, internal air, fully-guided sightseeing, including shore excursions, and has a total value of $26,600. The trip takes place December 7 – 20, 2012.

For complete details, to enter the contest or just browse the photos submitted Abercrombie and Kent’s Facebook page.

Photo: Abercrombie and Kent

The 2011 National Historic Landmark Photo contest winners

The National Park Service has announced the winners of their 2011 National Historic Landmark photo contest, honoring 13 amazing images from some of the most iconic historical locations in the U.S.

The winning image was shot by Eric Vondy of Phoenix, Arizona who took his photo at the Pecos National Historic Park in New Mexico. The photo, which is shown here, captures the Pecos Mission Church, which dates back to 17th century Spanish colonies that were established throughout the region. The photograph also serves as a great reminder that America’s history extends back to well before the country was officially founded. Twelve other images were awarded “Honorable Mention” status for capturing such important places as Valley Forge, the Missouri Botanical Gardens, and Abraham Lincoln’s Home.

National Historic Landmarks are sites across the United States that have been designated as being particularly important to the history of the country. Roughly 2500 sites, including buildings, objects, structures, or locations, have been given this special distinction by the Secretary of the Interior for their importance on a local, state, or national level. Chances are, no matter where you are in the U.S., you’ll find one of these landmarks is not far away.

To review all of the finalists in this year’s photo contest, check out the National Park Service‘s official Flickr page. You’ll not only find some great photos, but some amazing destinations to visit yourself.

[Photo credit: Eric Vondy]