Photo Contest

Rules of VWMC Photo Contest

The Virginia Water Monitoring Council (VWMC) photo contest begins on May 16, 2022, and it ends on June 30, 2022, at 11:59 p.m. By submitting an entry, each contestant agrees to the rules of the contest. Click HERE to enter the contest!

Who May Enter

Participants submitting photographs for the contest must be at least 18 years old. Participants must own all legal rights to submitted photos.

The judges and employees of the Virginia Water Resources Research Center (VWRRC) and their immediate family members are not eligible to participate.

What to Submit

Entries must be the original work. All photos must be taken in Virginia. Submit photos in one of three categories:

    • Water Monitoring (e.g., a monitoring activity in a field or laboratory setting)
    • Water in Nature (e.g., rain, snow, stream, pond, bay) or
    • Water Treatment (e.g., treatment plant, stormwater best management practice)

Photos must be submitted as .jpeg or .jpg files (Note: Some Apple products use .heic files by default; such files need to be converted to .jpeg or .jpg).  Photos need to be less than 10 MB. Photos should be titled with the photographer’s last name and a brief description (for example: Jones_SmithMountainLake.jpg).

On the entry form, photographers need to provide a short description of the photo (1-3 sentences) that includes the location and approximate date the photo was taken.

Individuals may submit up to three photographs. Each submitted photograph requires a separate entry form.

All photographs should accurately reflect the subject matter and the scene as it appeared. Standard optimization (cropping, reasonable adjustments to exposure, color, and contrast, etc.) is acceptable. Significantly altered images may not be judged at the discretion of the judging panel.

For photos in which a person is recognizable, the participant must provide a model release from the subject or, in the case of a minor, the subject’s parent or guardian. Complete this VWMC Model Release Form for each recognizable person in the photo.  The model release should be submitted with the photo on contest entry form. The participant is solely responsible for obtaining any necessary releases from any individuals depicted. If the participant is not able to provide the required releases, the VWMC reserves the right to disqualify the submission. Participants must not submit images that infringe on the rights of any other photographer or person.

Entries may not depict the following: alcohol, drugs, or any kind of illegal or inappropriate behavior. Entries deemed by the judging panel to contain any inappropriate material will be disqualified.


Entries will be judged by a panel of VWMC Steering Committee members. Entries will be judged on the ability of photo to advocate for water quality in Virginia. All decisions of the judges are final. The contest organizers reserve the right to disqualify entries that do not conform to the stated contest rules and criteria.

Awards and Recognition

First-place winners will be selected in each category. The VWMC will waive the 2022 VWMC Conference registration fee for each first-place winner.  Photographers of the top selected photographs will be notified by email by July 14, 2022 (Note: contest winners who have already registered for the conference will be reimbursed). Participants whose photographs were not selected will not be notified.

Winners will be announced to the VWMC membership and on the VWMC website. Photos may be displayed on the VWMC website, the VWMC display and other VWMC promotional materials.  Selected photos may be used in future VWMC website pages and publications.

Participants’ Rights

Participants will retain all rights to any photograph submitted — including ownership, if applicable — other than those rights licensed in the next sentence. By entering the contest, participants hereby grant to VWMC, VWRRC, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech), and the Commonwealth of Virginia: (1) a nonexclusive, worldwide, irrevocable, royalty-free license to reproduce, distribute, and publicly display the photographs submitted to VWMC, and (2) the right to use the participant’s name in promotions and other publications.

Legal Conditions

By entering this contest, participants agree to certain legal conditions.

How to Enter

Entries must be submitted using the online entry form by June 30, 2022, at 11:59 p.m. Click HERE to enter contest!

Contact Jane Walker with any questions. Good luck!