2017 High School Photo Contest

Hold your horses! The 2018 High School Photo Contest begins December 1st! (Scroll down for details.)

In the meantime, read about last year's contest... 

Congratulations to Zach Bohannon of Louisville, KY, the GRAND PRIZE WINNER of our 2017 High School Photo Contest!

What began with a trickle of submissions on December 1, 2016 ended with a flood of submissions on February 28, 2017. Just check out these numbers:

Individuals who entered the contest = 3,428
Total number of submissions made = 5,747
Total number of images submitted = 52,812

Thank you to everyone who entered this contest! We are SO impressed by your work. Keep sharing your own unique vision with the world. You all have so much potential and so much talent!

2017 Category Winners

1st Place: People

Zach Bohannon, KY

Words from David Talley – This image is my top choice for the "people" category. The story-telling devices used in this image to convey a sense of dichotomy sync together beautifully. The delicate, mysterious, and beautiful butterfly held from reach of the subject by a thin gossamer. A perfect allusion to a struggle that many people deal with – the difficulty to push through simple, but weighty facets of life, to see beauty – and it captures just how easy it would be to pull those simple things away.
1st Place: Action

Andrew Junge, CO

Words from Forest Woodward – The dynamic motion of this image and the intensity of the moment make it for me. The sense of speed and intensity, the flag blown back perfectly over his shoulder, and the repetition of the riders and horses in the background all come together in a very pleasing composition. The color pallet of the image – blues and reds and golds and whites – enhances the mood as well.
1st Place: Nature

Quinn Hiaasen, FL

Words from Chris Burkard – The most magical thing about the natural environment is it's unpredictability. It's such an engaging subject to photograph because it enables you to catch a split second in time that you may never be able to see for the rest of your life, which is how I feel when I see photos such as this one. There are few natural phenomenon that fascinate me more than the occurrence of lightning.
2nd Place: People

Leah Paire, MD

Words from David Talley – Choice number two reminds me of a Chet Faker music video. I can feel the explosion of light and dark within the subject just by looking at this image. Mostly, it reminds me of the song "Talk is Cheap," and makes me think of that unifying desire we all have as humans for more substance, reality, and depth.
2nd Place: Action

Taicheng Jin, MA

Words from Forest Woodward – Action is about more than just the pass or the tackle or the end-zone celebration. Often times it is the in-between moments that are most honest, most unexpected, and most relatable to a wider audience of spectators. I love the candid moment captured here. I am left to make up my own story regarding the action – and sometimes shots like this tell us more and make us feel more than we might guess at first glance. It takes a keen eye to find these in-between moments, but when they are done right, they are worth more than a dozen shots of tackles and touch downs. 
2nd Place: Nature

Olivia Crutchfield, MN

Words from Chris Burkard – Before I ever picked up a digital camera, I was immersed in the process of shooting and developing film. If anything, the time I spent shooting film photographs are what allowed me to slow down, think methodically, and shoot strategically. Although this image was shot on a digital camera, it is capturing the experience of looking through the viewfinder of a film camera, which conveys a very nostalgic feeling.
3rd Place: People

Sydney Ibach, GA

Words from David Talley – My third and final choice – this image reminds me of why I fell in love with photography. The depth of the scene lends mystery to the frame – a hot summer’s day, a pool side respite. I started photography because I love the beauty of the mystery of every day, seemingly normal things, like a pool dip mid-summer. This picture captures that part of my childhood perfectly. 
3rd Place: Action

Eakin Howard, NC

Words from Forest Woodward – I love the moment captured here – a wonderful example of a "high action" shot that truly sings. The symmetry of the image – with the leaping runner framed on either side by two other runners still on the ground – tells a wonderful story. The use of shallow depth of field, the repetition of shapes, and the intensity of the lead hurdler’s expression all come together to create a beautiful and inspiring image.
3rd Place: Nature

Kevin Huang, CA

Words from Chris Burkard – Simplicity is the key to creating a captivating landscape photograph. In other words, the less "busy" a photograph can be the more viewers are drawn to the few key subjects in the image. The reason I'm drawn to this shot is because of its simplicity; the blurred water movement creates great contrast between the jagged rock in the background, the birds are an awesome touch and help give the scene a sense of scale.
Are you heading to the University of Montana after you graduate from high school? By completing our Summer Intensive course, you can now earn six college credits (in just six weeks!) BEFORE you even begin college. Click here to learn more!

Contest Rules

  1. The RMSP High School Photo Contest begins on December 1, 2017 and ends at midnight on February 28, 2018. Our system will not allow you to upload any images outside of these times. No submissions will be accepted before or after these times.
  2. All submissions must be made through this website (www.rmsp.com). Submissions will not be accepted via email, link sharing, file transfer service, or other similar methods.
  3. Uploading images for someone else (i.e., a friend or classmate) while logged into your own account, is not allowed. Each submitter must submit through their own account.
  4. By submitting one or more images to the Photo Contest, you (or your parent or guardian if you are under 18 years of age) are agreeing to the Terms and Conditions, as detailed under the Submit button below. Please read these Terms and Conditions carefully and contact RMSP if you have any questions or concerns. 
  5. Composite images are allowed, but you must be the legal copyright holder of each source image.
  6. There is no limit on the number of images you may submit.
  7. By submitting images to our contest, you agree to receive ongoing communications from us and our contest sponsors.
  8. By submitting images to our contest, you consent to RMSP and/or our contest sponsors using your images for promotion of the contest.
  9. Prizes are subject to change.
  10. Judges are subject to change.





Nature Category:
Just because you are entering a photo contest sponsored by a photography school in Montana (the most beautiful state ever, anywhere), your nature images don't necessarily have to be of towering mountains, crystal clear lakes, or bald eagles. This category is where you will want to submit all of your amazing images that were taken outside. But keep in mind "nature" or "outside" doesn't necessarily mean rural areas, off-the-beaten path locations, or have to depict national-park-style beauty. 
If you captured amazing light on a corn field in Nebraska, submit it here. Got a great photo of a bird perched on a stop sign in New York City? Submit it here. Have an epic photo of an octopus riding a shark that is jumping out of the water ... to catch a flying fish ... in front of a rainbow ... with lightning in the distance? Absolutely submit that gem here!

People Category:
People are everywhere! (especially in the parking lot when I am trying to find a spot close to the door ... s
heesh!). This category is where you should submit all of your amazing studio portraits, tender moments between your grandpa and his dog, or the overly expressive fan at a football game. Male or female, young or old, silhouetted or well lit ... if the main subject of your frame is a person or group of people, submit it in this category.

Miscellaneous Category:
Whether it's a cityscape, a photo of your cat, a pair of shoes, or a fancy product shot, this is the category to encompass all of it.

If you are unsure about whether your image fits in this category, ask yourself what the main subject of your photo is. Is the runner a tiny speck in a beautiful landscape? If so, your image might be better entered into the nature category. Is the runner pausing to pose for a portrait? That image might be better suited for the people category.


Prizes will be announced by the start of the contest!