The third International Garden Photographer of the Year competition opens for entries on 1st March 2009. The closing date for entries is 30th November 2009.
The competition provides a treasure trove of ideas and inspiration for both aspiring and expert photographers who are encouraged, no matter what their level of experience, to enter this year's competition. Exciting prizes include a top cash award of £5,000. Every entrant will benefit just from taking part as they will have access to a series of workshops and talks, online critiques of entrants’ photographs, plus ‘top tips’ available as downloads from the website. The competition culminates in a fabulous outdoor exhibition at Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Organiser, Philip Smith, said: "The competition provides huge opportunities to improve your photography and enjoy yourselves even if you don't win the big prize. There are 'early-bird' competitions running throughout the spring and summer with great prizes and chances to learn and improve your work."
Taking part, he explained, will encourage anyone who loves gardens or enjoys the natural world to observe and appreciate it even more fully.
Henrique Souto, a geography teacher from Portugal, won first prize in the competition's portfolio section in 2008 with his series of exceptional images of single leaves. "The prize has made an enormous impact on my photographic life," he said. "Anyone who likes floral and garden photography must try this contest. All of us have something to learn from each other."
Photographers can enter any number of single photographs, or themed portfolios of six, into the competition's seven categories. They are: Wildlife in the Garden, Plant Portraits, Garden Views, People in the Garden, The Edible Garden, Trees and World Botanic Gardens.
Budding photographers less than 16 years old can compete for the Young Garden Photographer of the Year Award.