New Mexico Wilderness

Call for Entries


In honor of the 50th Anniversary of the 1964 Wilderness Act, the theme of the 2014 Naturescapes Photo Salon is “New Mexico Wilderness.” There are 25 Wilderness Areas and 58 Wilderness Study Areas in New Mexico that are special lands designated for “preservation and protection in their natural condition,” and we seek your best photographs from these areas.

The Wilderness Act of 1964 established the American definition of wilderness:

A wilderness, in contrast with those areas where man and his own works dominate the landscape, is hereby recognized as an area where the earth and its community of life are untrammeled by man, where man himself is a visitor who does not remain.

Photographers at all levels of experience are invited to submit their work. Photographers do not have to be residents of New Mexico, but the photographs must be taken only in one of the 25 Wilderness Areas or 58 Wilderness Study Areas within the borders of the State of New Mexico. A list of Wilderness Areas can be found here.

Approximately 25 photographs will be selected for an exhibition at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science. The Naturescapes Photo Salon Competition winners are scheduled to be publicly announced and prizes are scheduled to be awarded during the exhibit opening on Friday, October 17th, 5-7pm, as part of the celebrations for the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act.

Cash awards will be presented for first prize and runner-up. The first-place entry becomes the property of the Museum. Previous winners may enter. There will be a $15 entry fee.

Entries will be judged on the following criteria:

  • Depiction of theme
  • Composition
  • Creativity
  • Overall quality


This competition is sponsored by the New Mexico Museum of Natural History Foundation (1801 Mountain Road NW, Albuquerque 87104).



First place          $150

Runners-up        $100

Three Honorable Mentions will receive a $25 Natureworks gift certificated, courtesy of the New Mexico Museum of Natural History Foundation.

There will be special recognition for Best B+W Photograph and Best Student Photograph (less than 18 years of age). Both are also eligible for Best in Show awards.

All entrants will receive a free pass to visit the Museum once during the exhibition.

The odds of winning depend on the overall number of entries received.

The Competition

There are two stages to the competition and certain requirements must be met for both.


Entries must be in digital form and will be the basis for judging. Judges will select approximately 25 photographs, including the winning entries for display at the Museum.

The photograph need not be taken with a digital camera: scans of negatives, transparencies, or photographic prints are acceptable. All digital files must be 5 megabytes of smaller, must be in JPEG or .jpg format, and must be at least 1600 pixels wide (if a horizontal image) or 1600 pixels high (if a vertical image).

The Museum Exhibition

Photographs selected by the judges to be included in the 2014 Naturescapes Photo Salon will be required to be delivered to the Museum as prints, matted, and ready for framing. The Museum will provided frames for the photographs. Photographs will be displayed from October 17, 2014 to January 8, 2015.  

Photographs selected to be in the exhibition must follow these standards:

  • Each photograph must be matted behind one 16-inch by 20-inch WHITE mat boards – no multiple mats or images. Attach your photograph to the back of the mat, with the image showing through the ‘hole’ in the mat. You are encouraged to put a thin support behind the photograph and mat. The Museum will frame all photographs selected for exhibition.
  • The visible image size (what shows through the “hole” in the mat) must not be smaller than 7 by 9 inches nor larger than 11 by 15 inches with the exception of panoramic images whose widths must not be less than 9 inches nor greater than 15 inches.
  • Rectangular or square “holes” only.

The prints may be hand delivered to the Museum or mailed to the address below. If you mail your print(s), you must include a self-addressed stamped envelope for the photos to be returned, or you must pick them up at the Museum after the exhibition.


  • Entries will be accepted between July 14 and August 22 2014 only.
  • Judging will take place between August 28 and September 5
  • Top photographs and winners announced on September 9
  • Top photos selected by judges for inclusion in the exhibit must be received by September 30, matted and ready for framing
  • Exhibit opens October 17.

To Enter

Entries can be made by email or by mailing to the address below. Entries will be accepted between July 14 and August 22 2014. Entries received before or after these dates will not be judged or included in the exhibition.

Complete entry forms

Download an entry from here. Using Adobe Reader (available free here), fill out the form and save to your computer. If you are entering by email, send the form as an attachment with your photograph. If you are entering by mail, print the form and mail with your digitial file or include the form on the disk with your photograph. You must complete one form per entry.

Pay entry fee

Entry fees can be paid by check mailed to the address below. Please make checks out to the NMMNH Foundation.  You can also make a payment through Brown Paper Tickets.

The entry charge is $15 for the first photograph, and $5 for each further photograph to a maximum of four photographs.

Submit photos

Email the photograph(s) and entry form(s) to Turn on JavaScript! or mail to the address below. If mailing, submit only digital files saved to disk.

If submitting entries and/or payment by mail, send to:

Ayesha Burdett

New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science

1801 Mountain Road NW

Albuquerque NM 87107


Mark on the outside of the envelope that this is a Naturescapes entry.


Contact us by email (Turn on JavaScript!) or phone 505-841-2887.