This is the place to submit and vote on photos to be featured on the the main site. This contest should showcase your best quality work, demonstrating at least moderate skill with a camera and a general understanding of the artistic aspects of photography. Remember, the selected photo will be displayed on our main site header for a week. Submit something that you and the members of our site will want to look at and admire for seven days! This contest is for the community to choose what they LIKE (not what they dislike), so downvotes aren't allowed — see below for more.

Contest Format

Starting in December 2012, this contest follows a new perpetual format with continuously-rolling voting. Submit and vote on photos whenever you like. Every Monday (give or take; it's done by hand when site moderators have a spare moment), the top-voted image will be selected as the winner, and:

Then, the contest will continue with the remaining photos in the thread.

(Note that the themed photo contest will work on a different scheme.)

Voting Rules

  • Vote up as many images as you like.

  • Make sure to look at the "active" tab for this question to see new submissions.

  • Up votes only! Do NOT vote down your competitors! If you don't like an image, don't vote. (If you notice a downvote on an entry, make a note in a comment, and that will be taken into account when the weekly winner is selected.)

  • When you vote, consider the small size primarily, even if a larger image is linked. This contest's primary function is to select a header image, and we need the winners to be successful at that size.

Submitter Rules

  • Showcase your best work in any genre of photography by providing your image inline in an answer.

  • You may enter one photo per week. This is on the honor system, but abuse will eventually earn a strong talking-to.

  • Don't re-enter the same photo. Since the contest is continual, there's no need. You may withdraw an image from the contest at any time by deleting the answer.

  • You may edit your entry to fix problems or to add missing information, but don't switch the photo itself for a different one, or make gratuitous edits simply to "bump" the entry.

  • Images must be 210 px high and up to 375 px wide. This is the requirement for the header. Please feel free to provide a link to a larger version, but as explained above, the primary focus is on the header image.

  • For the same reason, images must be in landscape orientation.

  • Images must not contain any artificially added borders, watermarks, or decorations of any kind.

  • Do not use this as a forum for photo critique. Use chat instead, or ask a specific question about your image on the main site.

  • The submitted image must conform to this site's content license, cc-wiki with attribution required. If you're not comfortable with that, this isn't the contest for you.

Submitter notes

Be patient! This contest is relatively obscure, and it takes a while for images to accumulate votes. It's normal for really excellent images to have only one or two upvotes even after a time. The format of the contest should let them rise to the top eventually.

Feel free to include a concise description that explains the image, the emotions behind it, and so on, and perhaps some explanation of gear and exposure settings. This site is a collaboration for teaching and learning, so it's great to know those things — but it's not required for the contest.

When we get up and running with featuring these photos on the blog, this will provide the opportunity to go into more depth and to engage in conversation about your work.

  • 26
    As with all past contests, I'd like to stress the up-vote only policy. Let's keep our contest cordial. This is not a place for critique or a forum within which to express dislike, choose what you like, have fun, and let the contest roll! – jrista Dec 4 '12 at 22:22
  • 2
  • 1
    Please use this thread for discussion of what we should do about the PotW contest threads going forward. I agree that there are issues involved with a single everlasting thread, and we should be open to suggestions. – jrista Apr 8 '14 at 0:16
  • I suspect very few people are digging down to the bottom - based on dates and my past upvotes on other pictures and where they are in the heap now. A link to the entry page may help (or may exist and I've missed it). Something like ENTRIES START AT BOTTOM OF THIS PAGE - HAVE A LOOK – Russell McMahon Oct 9 '14 at 13:27
  • 4
    @RussellMcMahon It does say Make sure to look at the "active" tab for this question to see new submissions. which is like that but better. :) – mattdm Oct 9 '14 at 13:33
  • 1
    I suspect that the "active" link needs to be much much much ... better highlighted. Using it may even get Jakub to look again. Without usin it it's a slow job finding the end. – Russell McMahon Nov 10 '14 at 7:49
  • 2
    Can the "active" 'button' be replicated on the main front page? It would be MUCH more noticeable being there. If you can make it garishly objectionable (eg flashing alternately lime green and magenta :-) ) it may work even better. Odds are there are many users who do not really notice the path leading into the woods .... – Russell McMahon Nov 16 '15 at 11:07

454 Answers 454



Frost glints in the morning sunlight

Frost glints in the morning sunlight. Taken in a garden in England.

Nikon D80
Sigma Macro 50mm F2.8 EX DG
1/320 sec

Sunset at Moorea (2011-03-16)

Sunset at Moorea

Panasonic DMC-FX01, 1/60s, 8.1mm, ISO 80 (The scenery became even more "firey" a few minutes later, but lacking use of a tripod those pictures are not usable for a competition)

  • Note that this entry has an illegal downvote, which should not be counted for contest purposes, because downvoting is against the rules. – mattdm Sep 8 '18 at 15:31

Dragonfly in full flight

Dragonfly in full flight. Large size is here

  • You wouldn't happen to have one taken with a faster shutter speed? It might be kinda cool to see one with the wings "frozen" – SailorCire Jun 10 '15 at 21:45
  • Unfortunately.. no. I wish I had done that. – bbh Jun 11 '15 at 1:01
  • I so often try to "catch" them in-flight, but they're just too fast for me (and no fun for autofocus) – Hagen von Eitzen Sep 27 '15 at 22:01
  • Note that this entry has an illegal downvote, which should not be counted for contest purposes, because downvoting is against the rules. – mattdm Sep 8 '18 at 15:33

enter image description here

A Western Jackdaw photographed in October 2015 at a marketplace in Helsinki.

Nikon D5100, 55mm, 1/200s, f5.6, ISO 180
Cropped and converted to B&W with Gimp

Rope and block

Rope and block

Rope and block on a ship in the harbour in Västerås.

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
Lens: Sigma 50-500 mm f/4-6.3 APO DG
Focal length: 191 mm
Aperture: 7.1
Shutter time: 1/320 s
ISO: 100

Larger image

  • Note that this entry has an illegal downvote, which should not be counted for contest purposes, because downvoting is against the rules. – mattdm Sep 8 '18 at 15:31

The world in the eye of Beau

enter image description here

  • 4
    This needs to be exactly 210 pixels tall. – mattdm Jun 1 '16 at 22:48
  • I'll upvote it when it meets the size requirements. – Octopus Jun 23 '16 at 21:28
  • Is size thát important? The photo isn´t too big, is it? – descheleschilder Jun 27 '16 at 0:41
  • Size is important. Everybody else seems to have read the rules, you have various submissions and only your latest one is sized properly. You still have the opportunity the resize the other submissions. Thank you. – Octopus Jun 27 '16 at 16:34
  • no more than 210 high or 375 wide so it fits in our header without resizing – MikeW Jun 27 '16 at 18:49
  • I`m gonna make them all 210 high! – descheleschilder Jun 27 '16 at 19:00
  • @Octopus You own me an upvote! – descheleschilder Jun 29 '16 at 20:42

enter image description here

Nikon D3200

Focal length: 260mm
Aperture: f/5.6
Shutter: 1/640s
ISO: 400


enter image description here

Shot on a Samsung NX1000 with 20-50 stock lens

f4.5, 1/250 @ ISO 200

Taken in the Shropshire hills just as a heavy bank of cloud was blowing in


enter image description here


Hamburger Bahnhof - Berlin

enter image description here

An Enfuse composite of three photos. Bigger version

  • Why is there a 'Hamburg station' in Berlin though? – Abhranil Das Feb 7 '13 at 11:20
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    It's a former train station of the Berlin-Hamburg railway line. Hence the "Hamburg station" I guess. Now it's a contemporary art museum. – Saaru Lindestøkke Feb 7 '13 at 16:05
  • Note that this entry has an illegal downvote, which should not be counted for contest purposes, because downvoting is against the rules. – mattdm Sep 8 '18 at 15:32

Portrait of a Barred Owl

Portrait of a Barred Owl

See the rest of the set here

  • Note that this entry has an illegal downvote, which should not be counted for contest purposes, because downvoting is against the rules. – mattdm Sep 8 '18 at 15:32

Dusk at the beach

Larger image - Dusk at beach

CameraNIKON D5100

Focal Length18mm

Shutter Speed1/3 s



  • Hi, please see the rules of the contest with respect to the size of your image. – Saaru Lindestøkke Jun 2 '14 at 8:31

Here is my photo for Dubai Marina, the most amazing thing is that I captured this photo using my Samsung Note 5 smart phone, that's what I really like about it.

You can find the better resolution for the photo here.

enter image description here

  • FYI - The link to your higher resolution image says the image is private (I do not have permissions to view it). No big deal, that doesn't affect the contest at all. Just thought I'd let you know. =) – scottbb Apr 13 '18 at 21:46
  • 1
    @scottbb thank you very much :) I didn't notice that :D now the link is fixed – Muhammed Refaat Apr 15 '18 at 5:36

enter image description here

Taken with my first DSLR, a Nikon D3200.

Shot at Lake George, NY.

ISO 100 @ 1/400
  • Hi pobourgeois, please read the rules in regards to size. Your image must be 210px in height (As a requirement for the site header on the main site. – damned truths Jul 3 '13 at 2:08
  • 1
    I did my checkout dives for my scuba diving on Lake George. Always forget that it is actually someplace people visit. – AJ Henderson Jul 3 '13 at 15:34
  • Yes ! We are from Quebec, Canada and I went there with my family. Awesome landscapes and great city with all the outlets and little shops/store around the lake. We really enjoyed our trip ! – Pierre-Olivier Jul 3 '13 at 22:29
  • Note that this entry has an illegal downvote, which should not be counted for contest purposes, because downvoting is against the rules. – mattdm Sep 8 '18 at 15:32

Monochrome sparrow

Tree sparrow on log

Full size on Flickr

The subject is a tree sparrow (Passer montanus). Taken in the Delta del Ebro national park in Spain. The thing which I love about this is how a one-colour palette1 can still allow so much beauty.

1 If I convert to HSL, change the hue for every pixel to be the average of the whole image, and convert back, only someone who knows their sparrows would spot that something was wrong without doing a side-by-side comparison. If I ask the GIMP to reduce to an optimal palette of 9 colours (the minimum to allow the cap to be a different hue to the background), it really does take a side-by-side comparison.

  • Excellent photo, excellent write-up. Bravo! – scottbb Nov 17 '17 at 20:32
  • That is an excellent photo, and kudos for using GIMP, it really is a very capable piece of software. – Alex Dec 22 '17 at 13:54

enter image description here

Shot with Sony A7R and adapted Carl Zeiss 25mm Distagon (for C/Y mount), ISO 100, f/8, bracketed around 1/500s (3 exposures combined in Photomatix with final adjustments in Lightroom)


enter image description here

I was sitting near a wooden hut and saw this little kid playing and had to take a photo of this kid with such a background in the alps.

Full-sized picture can be found here

  • 1
    lol. I couldn't tell that the kid was swinging just by looking at the small picture. I thought maybe he was climbing a 5.15 or 6.0 pitch like a world class rock star. Nice picture! – scottbb Jun 11 '18 at 19:51
  • @scottbb haha thanks! – watchme Jun 12 '18 at 8:12

enter image description here

Larger Version

I have taken pictures that are much more technically demanding, but I like this one because it makes the most of a drab setting: a small Phoenix, AZ backyard in winter.

  • Canon 6D with 24-105mm L
  • Edited with Lightroom and Exposure 5
  • 1
    I love it!! very cute!! – Bala Mar 6 '14 at 6:15

Willow in a foggy autumn morning...

Taken handheld with Canon 700D and 70-300mm lens.

Settings: 70mm, 1/8 sec, f/16, ISO 200

enter image description here

  • 2
    See item 4 in the "Submitter Rules above - It says: "Images must be 210 pix high and up to 375 pix wide. This is the requirement for the header. Please feel free to provide a link to a larger version, but as explained above, the primary focus is on the header image." - you'll need to downsize this tomeet this requirement. – Russell McMahon Dec 7 '15 at 5:12
  • @RussellMcMahon done, thank you for the notice – Zlatomir Dec 7 '15 at 15:25


Taken while hiking through Bymarka in Trondheim, Norway.

enter image description here

  • The link had died... – user56599 Apr 17 '17 at 23:51
  • @FighterJet Thanks for the heads-up. Unfortunately I do not have a Flickr account anymore, so I a afraid the link will stay dead for a while. – Saaru Lindestøkke Apr 20 '17 at 19:39
  • That's fine; I was thinking it would make a great desktop background, which is why I wanted the big version. – user56599 Apr 20 '17 at 22:59
  • @FighterJet I've posted the link on Imgur and updated the link my original post. Hope you enjoy it as a desktop background! – Saaru Lindestøkke Apr 21 '17 at 1:08

A colorful mosaïc on a bench somewhere in Amsterdam


Let the day begin! / 500px


I wish good luck to all!


Hermit crab

Camera: Nikon D90 + 18-200
Focal distance: 200mm (like 300mm on 35mm-film)
ISO: 200
Aperture: f/8
Shutter speed: 1/160s
Mode: full auto :-b

I still had not learnt the manual/priority modes, but I'm proud of this photo. Extracted from raw with manual adjustment of chromatic aberration, curves, saturation... Maybe I boosted the contrast too much...

  • not that I'm a very good photographer but I'm finding it difficult to concentrate on the main subject. – Sandeep Singh Rawat Jun 19 '13 at 6:43
  • Thanks for the advice, @SandeepSinghRawat. Maybe I will try a different crop. – comocomocomocomo Jun 20 '13 at 5:56
  • I think the cropping and subject content is OK. Depending on the original I MIGHT have moved the frame right slightly - but maybe not. A link to a larger version and what is outside the cropping would be useful. | One problem with the small image size PLUS the 1.78:1 crop demanded by the format here (if you want a max allowed size image), is that it significantly affects the content and cropping choice. Crop for best appearance and the image often loses "punch" as a header. Crop for max punch and you lose content. – Russell McMahon Nov 26 '13 at 7:32
  • ... In this case, if you crop to increase subject content you either decrease width or start losing legs at bottom and or shell at top. I think what you've done is a reasonable choice. [This is all my opinion only - others may have quite different ideas. But, I've anguished over best-mix on a number of occasions and so far have had several that made their way to the top, so I guess that at least some agree with me.] – Russell McMahon Nov 26 '13 at 7:34

enter image description here

Camera        Canon EOS 5D
Exposure      0.02 sec (1/50)
Aperture      f/2.8
Focal Length  50 mm
ISO Speed     1600

Original in portrait, available at flickr


Ready for a long journey

Nikon D60, Sigma 17-55mm

  • 1
    I would vote this up, BUT It is too tall by 7 pixels, as per the rules it must be 210px tall, and up-to but not necessarily 375px wide. – damned truths Jun 21 '13 at 6:41
  • 1
    Thanks @damnedtruths: I resized the image to 210px tall. – Aditya Jul 9 '13 at 23:16

Taken with Fujifilm Finepix AX280 (which is a poor, compact camera)



enter image description here

  • 4
    Hi there, please resize the image according to the rules above: Images must be 210 px high and up to 375 px wide – John Cavan Dec 5 '13 at 17:58
  • just resized thx! – Cin Sb Sangpi Dec 7 '13 at 10:46
  • No, still it not resized, height must be 210px. set the height to 210px. – Bala Dec 7 '13 at 11:18
  • +1, great!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! – Bala Dec 7 '13 at 13:15

Riddles and runes

enter image description here


Low Key, Single Light II

Guen, with hair static

Tech details:

  • Pentax K-5II, ISO 100, and at the ¹⁄₁₈₀th second flash sync speed.
  • Pentax SMC DA 70mm Limited @ f/5.6
  • Cheetah Light V850 in Westcott Rapid Box at ¹⁄₁₆th power immediately out of frame to the left.

see larger (and in portrait orientation, as shot)

  • 2
    I love this, Matt -- I just wish I could vote it up as an image in its own right rather than as a header for the site. It's too "her" and not enough "pretty, high-quality, but ultimately generic photograph". As a people/product shooter, I get the unfairness of that; I'm utterly uninterested in taking pictures of anything that would make a good site header. In any other sort of competition, though... – user2719 Mar 24 '14 at 7:05
  • @StanRogers Thanks, I appreciate that very much. I think site header photography really isn't for me either. :) – mattdm Mar 24 '14 at 11:51

The Last City

This was taken recently in Andong South Korea. Its one of the last (if not last) traditional towns in korea. While there a few korean towns, this is the only one that people still live in the traditional houses.

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