of the snowy Grand Tetons in Wyoming.
A reflective view of the snowy Grand Tetons in Wyoming. © Andrew Underwood/2017 TNC Wyoming Student Photo Contest Submission

The Nature Conservancy in Wyoming

"I Believe in Conservation" Photo Contest

Thanks to all who participated in the 2019 Wyoming student photo contest.

And the winning photographs are...

We were delighted to receive more than 500 entrants in our 2019 Wyoming student photo contest. We had a wonderful time going through these amazing photos and seeing each and every one of your unique perspectives on Wyoming Lands, Wyoming Waters, Wyoming Wildlife, or Wyoming People & Nature. 

Categories and place winners are organized by category below. 

Wyoming Lands

First Place
Kinley Bollinger, Cody High School

This photo shows the radiance of nature.  Just as the sun reflected off of the bacterial mats, I reflected on the beauty of our planet while taking this picture.  Moments like these make me determined to protect our wild and free home.


Grand Prismatic Hot Spring in Yellowstone
Grand Prismatic Hot Spring Grand Prismatic Hot Spring in Yellowstone © © Kinley Bollinger

Second Place
Carlice Cutright, Natrona County High School

This picture  was taken west of Casper, Wyoming on a local ranch.

A crisp and cold winter morning  in Casper, Wyoming.
Cold Winter Morning A crisp and cold winter morning in Casper, Wyoming. © © Carlice Cutright

Third Place
Kaaden Anderson, Natrona County High School

This photo was taken at a farming ranch in Kaycee, Wyoming. I took the photo right after a rain storm over the summer and it turned out amazing because the sky looked outstanding.

After a rainstorm at a farming ranch in Kaycee, Wyoming.
Daydream Cowboy After a rainstorm at a farming ranch in Kaycee, Wyoming. © © Kaaden Anderson

Wyoming Waters 

First Place
Larissa Benson, Natrona County High School

This photo is of the river was taken by Castle Park Caper, WY in early January.  It is perfect for looking at things with a different point of view. You can look at things that are plain that everyone sees the same, but then you can find a new way that is more interesting.

River perspective in Castle park, Wyoming.
Through the Looking Glass River perspective in Castle park, Wyoming. © © Larissa Benson

Second Place
Rikki Redman, Sheridan High School

In Banner, I have the privilege of driving by this lake every winter and the sight never disappoints. With the help of a slightly foggy window, I was able to really capture the essence of Wyoming winters when they want to be calm rather than ravenous. Geographical features like these make for great skating too, nature's gift to figure skaters.

Winter sunset over a lake in Banner, Wyoming.
A Peek at Wyoming's Winter Winter sunset over a lake in Banner, Wyoming. © © Rikki Redman

Third Place
Lucia Mauri, Natrona County High School

This is a picture of a section the Yellowstone River. I took it in October in Yellowstone National Park during a trip with my family. It was the first time that I had been to the park, and I was amazed for its beauty. I've always loved water and when I saw this perfect curve made by the river I knew I had to take a picture of it.

Yellowstone River in Yellowstone National Park
Calm Yellowstone River in Yellowstone National Park © © Lucia Mauri

Wyoming Wildlife

First Place
Gage Graus, Jackson Hole High School

This photo was taken on the National Elk Refuge in Jackson, Wyoming. I discovered a lone ram off in the distance and decided to sneak up so I could photograph its beauty. Living in Jackson gives me a unique experience of being able to go out in my "backyard" and discover what Jackson has to offer.

Bighorn sheep in winter.
Solitude on the Refuge Bighorn sheep in winter. © © Gage Graus

Second Place
Nicholas Hokanson, Cheyenne High School

This image was taken at a roadside photo/trail stop in Grand Teton National Park. The sun happened to be setting at the time, and I quickly snapped a pic of the butterfly resting upon the flowers before the sun sunk beneath the Teton Range.

Butterfly on roadside flowers in Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming.
Bloom Butterfly on roadside flowers in Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming. © © Nicholas Hokanson

Third Place
David Gordon, Journeys School (Teton Science Schools)

I went out early morning one Wednesday to get some pictures of wildlife, and saw this moose crossing a road.

A lone moose crossing the road in Wyoming.
Moose's Meadow A lone moose crossing the road in Wyoming. © © David Gordon

Wyoming People and Nature

First Place
Skyler Woodruff, Lander Valley High School

This photo was taken last August on a llama trip. The llama's name is Jupiter. This image represents conservation because by protecting our national forests individuals can experience it for themselves untouched by man. This is a beautiful place so we as conservationists need to speak for the forests and protect them so humans and animals can enjoy it.

Llama and handler under a cloudy sky in Wyoming.
Llama in the Cirque Llama and handler under a cloudy sky in Wyoming. © © Skyler Woodruff

Second Place
Trinity Burke, Cheyenne South High School

This is a picture I took when we were pushing mares and colts to a different pasture.

Mares and colts driven to pasture.
Pushing Broncs Mares and colts driven to pasture. © © Trinity Burke

Third Place
Tevyn Smith, Natrona County High School

This image shows the depth on Casper Mountain during a spring time blizzard, a man admires the beauty of every single inch in nature.

A man walks through the snow on Casper Mountain.
Spring Time Adventure A man walks through the snow on Casper Mountain. © © Tevyn Smith

Wild and Working Honorable Mention

Honorable Mention
Virginia Wing, Natrona County High School

This was taken when we went out to feed the cows. It was in March when we had that big snow storm.

Cows during a March blizzard.
Blizzard Cows during a March blizzard. © © Virginia Wing


All entries must specify one of the following categories for The Nature Conservancy in Wyoming’s 2019 “I Believe in Conservation” Photo Contest.

First, second, and third prizes will be awarded in each of the following categories:

  • Wyoming Lands
  • Wyoming Waters
  • Wyoming Wildlife
  • Wyoming Nature & People


All winners will receive recognition on this Wyoming photo contest site and our Facebook page, as well as in press releases. An exhibit of the winning photos will tour the state and be shown at a variety of public venues. For each category, a cash prize will be awarded for first, second and third place winners.

  • First place: $250
  • Second place: $100
  • Third place: $50

The Nature Conservancy in Wyoming invites student photographers to enter its 2019 “I Believe in Conservation” photography competition (the “Contest”). Please read the following rules, terms and conditions before submitting any photos.

This contest is open to photographers between 14 and 19 years of age who attend high school in Wyoming. Employees, Board Members and Trustees of The Nature Conservancy, their immediate families (spouse, parents, siblings and children) and household members of those Employees, Board Members and Trustees are not eligible to participate. The contest is open to all participants regardless of residence or citizenship.

Your Rights

You will retain all rights to any photograph you submit—including ownership, if applicable—other than those rights licensed in the next sentence. By entering the contest, you hereby grant to The Nature Conservancy (i) a nonexclusive, worldwide, irrevocable, royalty-free license to reproduce, distribute and publicly display the photographs you submit to The Nature Conservancy, and (ii) the right to use your name, city, state and country of residence in promotions and other publications.

The Nature Conservancy and its related entities will endeavor to attribute all photographs with the credit “Person’s Name” when the full name is available.

What to Enter

The Conservancy is looking for striking digital images of nature, highlighting the photographer’s connection to conservation of land, water and wildlife in Wyoming. This can include whatever conservation means to you (e.g., hiking, hunting, landscapes, ranching, farming, wilderness, plant life, wildlife, etc.). Your images can be taken anywhere in the state of Wyoming.

You may submit a maximum of four (4) images total.

This year, we will be asking students to submit images in four Categories:

  • Wyoming Lands: examples: mountains, wilderness, wildlife habitat, ranches, farming, open space, grasslands, native plants and flowers, etc.
  • Wyoming Waters: examples: rivers, creeks, streams, wetlands, lakes, ponds, waterfalls, etc.
  • Wyoming Wildlife: examples: mammals, birds, insects, or fish in the wild, etc.
  • Wyoming People in Nature: Working and enjoying the outdoors, examples: ranchers, river guides, hiking, camping, backpacking, rock climbing, fishing, rafting, trail-building, tree-planting, horse packing, outdoor education, etc.

Images will be judged on creativity, technical quality, composition and relevance. To ensure functionality on our submission platform, please submit files no larger than 4032 x 4032 pixels and no more than 4 MB at the time of entry. Higher resolution files will be requested should an entry be preselected to be awarded a prize.

All photographs should accurately reflect the subject matter and the scene as it appeared. Photos that have been digitally altered beyond standard optimization (cropping, spotting for dust, reasonable adjustments to exposure, color and contrast, etc.) will be disqualified.

Entries may originate in any format—including but not limited to digital files, digital prints, color prints or black and white prints—so long as they are submitted electronically in a .jpg, .jpeg, .png, or .gif format. HDR images are acceptable. If possible, please embed the photographer name and caption information in the photo’s metadata.

Entrants will be asked to provide the following information in the contest entry process:

  • Full name and age
  • Entry category (Wyoming Lands, Wyoming Waters, Wyoming Wildlife, or Wyoming People in Nature)
  • Contact information (mailing address, phone number and email)
  • Photo caption that includes subject of image and location
  • Two-to-three sentence paragraph along with the image sharing more information about the photo and why it represents his/her connection to nature and conservation.
  • Name of high school of attendance

Previously published material for which non-exclusive rights were granted may be entered if you still maintain the right to grant us a license (see “Your Rights” above). You must be able to disclose when and where the photo appeared previously to The Nature Conservancy upon request.

If you choose to include people in your submission, you are responsible for obtaining the necessary releases from the individuals depicted and must be able to provide copies of those releases to The Nature Conservancy upon request.

The following submissions are ineligible:

  • Images of captive animals photographed in zoos and commercial game farms.
  • Photos that violate or infringe upon another person’s rights, including but not limited to copyright and photographs of persons without the necessary consent required by law in your jurisdiction. The Nature Conservancy reserves the right to require entrants to submit evidence of the subject’s legal consent to be photographed for the submitted photograph, which may include a signed waiver from the subject. NOTE: The entrant is responsible for obtaining a legally enforceable waiver from any photographed subject.
  • Photos that contain sexually explicit, nude, obscene, violent or other objectionable or inappropriate content.
  • Images that involve the willful harassment of wildlife, or damage to the environment by the photographer.
  • Images that involve putting any individual or animal in danger.
  • The Nature Conservancy shall determine entry eligibility in its sole and absolute discretion.

Submissions may be watermarked if desired, but the watermark should be inconspicuous enough to not interfere with the judging of the photo. A watermarked photo might not be honored by the competition (at the judges’ sole discretion) if the photographer is unable or unavailable to provide a pristine, watermark-free version of the image when asked.

How to Enter

All images must be submitted though our photo submission website. The entry forms contain required fields for information about the photo, category to be entered, and contact information for the entrant, including an email address.

You can select an image directly from your computer or your mobile device’s photo library. Digital images that are sent via mail or email will not be accepted.

You may enter up to four photos, but you may not use an agency or automated system to enter. The Nature Conservancy reserves the right to reject any additional entries or entries that do not comply with these Official Rules. By entering, you indicate your unconditional agreement to, and acceptance of, these Official Rules and Sponsor’s decisions, which are final and binding. You cannot win a prize unless you comply with all requirements in these Official Rules.

Entrants may be asked to supplement their submission with more explanation about the photo or to provide a higher resolution version of the photo anytime during the contest period.

Judging will be conducted by a panel of judges to be selected by TNC at its sole discretion (the “Panel”).

Photos will be judged on originality, technical excellence, composition, and relevance.


The Nature Conservancy “I Believe in Conservation Photo Contest” is sponsored by The Nature Conservancy, 258 E Main St, Lander, WY 82520. (“Sponsor”).

Entry Period

The Photo Contest begins at 12:00am on April 1, 2019, and ends at 11:59pm on May 15, 2019, Mountain Daylight Time (the “Entry Period”). Entries submitted before or after the Entry Period will not be eligible. Sponsor’s computer is the official time-keeping device for the Photo Contest.


  • Images within each category will be judged on originality, technical excellence, composition, and relevance.
  • Late entries will not be accepted.
  • A panel of up to five judges with expertise and/or interest in wildlife, photography or conservation will select the finalists and winners.
  • Results of the judging are final and will be announced on nature.org/wyoming and to the students on or before June 21, 2019. The Nature Conservancy reserves the right to adjust any judging deadline(s) as the result of causes beyond its immediate control.
  • Finalists’ and winners’ images will be displayed after the contest on nature.org/wyoming and publicly at locations to be announced.
  • There will be first, second and third place winners in the Wyoming Lands, Wyoming Waters, Wyoming People in Nature and Wyoming Wildlife categories. If a minimum number of images is not received, entries may be consolidated, and prizes will be given on an overall, rather than individual category, basis. Prizes will be awarded as follows:
    • First place: $250
    • Second place: $100
    • Third place: $50

All judging decisions are final. Please do not contact us about the status of entries or judging.

The Conservancy will notify the winner via the contact information provided at the time of entry.

Potential Winner Requirements

Except where prohibited, a potential winner may be required to complete and return an affidavit of eligibility, including proof of age, and liability/publicity release within 10 calendar days of announcement of the winners. If a potential winner fails to return these documents on time, an alternate potential winner may be selected in his/her place.


The Conservancy will award the following prizes.

All award winners will receive mention on The Conservancy’s digital presences.

Up to four (4) Awards in each of the categories will receive:

Wyoming Lands

  • First Prize: $250
  • Second Prize: $100
  • Third Prize: $50

Wyoming Waters

  • First Prize: $250
  • Second Prize: $100
  • Third Prize: $50

Wyoming Wildlife

  • First Prize: $250
  • Second Prize: $100
  • Third Prize: $50

Wyoming People in Nature

  • First Prize: $250
  • Second Prize: $100
  • Third Prize: $50

To the maximum extent permissible by law, all winners are responsible for paying any taxes and any and all other costs and expenses associated with claiming the awards, including but not limited to customs fees, taxes, and any other administrative costs, if applicable.

General Conditions

In the event that the operation, security, or administration of the Photo Contest is impaired in any way, Sponsor may, in its sole discretion, either: (a) suspend the Photo Contest to address the impairment and then resume the Photo Contest; or (b) award the prize(s) from among the eligible entries received up to the time of the impairment. Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to disqualify and seek damages from any individual who tampers with the operation of the Photo Contest, violates these Official Rules, or acts in a disruptive or unsportsmanlike manner. Sponsor’s failure to enforce any term of these Official Rules shall not constitute a waiver of that provision. Proof of sending any communication to Sponsor by mail shall not be deemed proof of receipt of that communication by Sponsor. In the event of a dispute as to the owner of an online entry, the authorized account holder of the e-mail address used to enter will be deemed to be the owner. The Photo Contest is subject to federal, state, and local laws and regulations and is void where prohibited.

Release and Limitations of Liability

By entering, you agree to release and hold harmless Sponsor, their respective parent, subsidiaries, affiliates, and each of their respective officers, directors, employees, and agents (the “Released Parties”) from and against any claim or cause of action arising out of participation in the Photo Contest or receipt or use of any prize, including, but not limited to: (a) unauthorized human intervention in the Photo Contest; (b) technical errors; (c) printing errors; (d) late or undelivered mail; (e) errors in the administration of the Photo Contest; or (f) injury or damage to persons or property. You waive the right to claim any attorneys’ fees and any damages whatsoever, including, but not limited to, punitive, consequential, direct, or indirect damages.

Privacy and Publicity

Any information you submit as part of the Photo Contest will be used in accordance with Sponsor’s Privacy Policy. The information you provide when you enter is provided to Sponsor. Except where prohibited, you consent to Sponsor’s use of your name in any list of winners (if applicable) and/or for promotional purposes in any media without further payment or consideration.


You agree that any and all disputes, claims and causes of action arising out of, or connected with, the Photo Contest or any prize awarded shall be resolved individually, without resort to any form of class action, and exclusively by the appropriate court located in Wyoming. All issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Official Rules, your rights and obligations, or the rights and obligations of Sponsor in connection with the Photo Contest, shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with, the laws of Wyoming.


Winners will be announced on nature.org/wyoming by 11:59pm Mountain Daylight Time June 21, 2019.

To request a list of winners by mail, send a self-addressed, stamped envelope with your request to The Nature Conservancy, “I Believe in Conservation” Photo Contest, 258 E Main St, Lander, WY 82520. Requests must be received by July 1, 2019.


Questions and inquiries about contest rules can be directed to:

Nikki Melanson