We want to extend a huge thanks to our community and to our judges for making our #PlatypodContest a fun and fabulous one with hundreds of entries across Instagram, Facebook and Twitter! Our theme was summer time and we asked our followers and fans to submit up to 3 images taken this summer that really reflected summertime photography. We are looking forward to future contests and hope you'll get to be part of them!
Thank You, Judges! Thank You, Fans!
Our judges for this contest included our very own bloggers: Gilmar Smith, Dave Williams & Deb Sandidge! Gilmar Smith is an Orlando-based photographer that really takes creativity to the next level through her vibrant, colorful and thought-provoking photography. Dave Williams is a UK-based travel and landscape photographer that has been traveling all around the world to fulfill his dream of photography. Today, you can find him editing KelbyOne's Layers Magazine or blogging for famed photography author Scott Kelby. You can also find him ... anywhere on the map! Deb Sandidge is a Nikon USA Ambassador, travel writer for Shutterbug and author whose focus on natural scenery always leaves us wanting for more. We had our three judges select their favorite entries, and here are the #PlatypodContest results in no particular order:
(Matthew Cissell - Instagram)
Multiple judges selected this Santorini Sunset pic as a finalist, so it was a definite shoe-in! "Santorini sunsets are the most beautiful sunsets I've ever seen," Gilmar said of this Instagram shot. "That beautiful island holds a big spot in my heart, and this picture portrays its beauty perfectly." Dave agreed with that sentiment, adding: "The dynamic range captured here is fantastic, and it leaves many elements of a fantastic composition to be explored. And then, on top of that, the windmill building appears to be adoring the setting sun, which is such a beautiful thing for a piece where most eyes will end up in the golden spiral going on here."
"Starry, Starry Night"
(Samantha Kennedy - Instagram)
This image, taken at the landmark Fire Island Lighthouse in NY, captured the eye of two of our judges, who selected the shot as a favorite. "This is the perfect example of a summer night after a day filled with fun when you walk outside just to chill and look at the sky," Gilmar said. Deb also picked this shot as her #1 choice, making it an easy top contender.
(Joel Lauterbach - Instagram)
"There are some places that require more persistence to capture. The Wave inside Coyote Buttes North is definitely one of them," Joel Lauterbach wrote on his Instagram post featuring this Platypod Contest entry. "I had been trying to win the lottery for some of the 10 daily permits issued online. I even tried the in-person lottery in the dead of winter for one of the 10 issued the day before. No luck in over two years! So, when Southwest Secrets offered a photography workshop that included a permit they won, I jumped at it! ... As for the lottery, I finally won four permits in September and am excited to return. If at first you don't succeed, try, try again!"
"Toy Story Land Has Arrived!"
(Lisa Harrison - Instagram)
We love how vibrant this picture is, but beyond its fun-filled imagery, this picture wins our Social Media spot for having 1,378 likes, tons of comments and just tons of engagement! Lisa's page is filled with so many eye-catching, bright and fun Walt Disney World pictures, that it's easy to get lost for days on her Instagram page! Thanks for the awesome submission, Lisa!
Thanks again to everyone who entered our first Platypod Contest! We think it might be time to plan another contest, so stay tuned. Congrats again to our winners, who will each receive their choice of one of the following: