Photo Contest

American Cetacean Society 16th International Conference

Whales 2018: Whales & Us: The Next Generation

Newport Beach, CA • November 2nd - 4th


Photo Contest Eligibility & Judging Criteria 


Contestants must be amateur photographers only. For eligibility purposes, an amateur is defined as someone who derives less than 25% of his/her income from the sale of photography.

Contestants must also be 2018 Conference Attendees.

Entry fee is $20 per image. Contestant may enter as many categories as he/she chooses. There is no limit to the number of images submitted per category or per contestant.

Registration must be done online. Deadline for submission of entries and payment of fees is October 19. 

All entries must be mounted, matted and/or framed for display on easels. 

Print out a copy of the Photo Contest Entry Form for each entry to be submitted. And attach to the back of each image.

 Photographs should not be digitally altered or enhanced, other than cropping and normal color balance and contrast adjustments.

All photographs should be of wild (i.e. non-captive) and unrestrained animals in their natural habitat.

Photos that have been entered in previous ACS conference photo contests are not eligible. 

Contestants must own the copyright of all photos entered. If there are recognizable people in the photo, entrant must have written permission from the person(s) to enter in the contest. Contestant must present signed copy of permission with drop off of entries. ACS reserves the right to use all winning entries (first, second and third place winners, as well as honorable mentions, if any are awarded) in ACS publications, materials, social media, and on the ACS website.

In addition to hardcopy display of images, ACS will digitally display all entries during the Conference, where contestant has also submitted a digital file. Such files should be between 2 and 5 MB. Digital submission of files is optional and can be emailed to [email protected] by October 19.


Categories of Entrees: 

Mysticetes - Includes all species of baleen whales.

Odontocetes - All species of toothed whales, including dolphins and porpoises.

Other Marine Vertebrates - Includes other marine mammals such as pinnipeds, polar bears, otters and sirenians; sea turtles, sea birds, fishes, etc. (Sea birds in the context of this contest are birds that spend most of their time in or over salt water, such as penguins, tubenoses, alcids, some gulls and others).


Entries will be judged on 1) Relevance of photo to category, 2) Composition, 3) Creativity, 4) Technical quality, and 5) Overall impression.

Awards Ceremony will take place Sunday morning tba. First, second and third place winners in each category will receive a cash award plus ribbon. Honorable Mentions, if awarded, will receive a ribbon. 

Drop off of Entrees: Entries can be dropped off Friday at the registration table. Entries must be dropped off no later than 9:00am Saturday morning. 

Entry Pickup: Entries can be picked up after noon (12pm) on Sunday.