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Nature's Best Photography
The Nature's Best Photography concept began with simple yet dynamic goals: to celebrate the beauty and diversity of nature through the art of photography, and to use this far-reaching medium as a creative tool for encouraging greater public interest in outdoor enjoyment and conservation stewardship. The annual Windland Smith Rice International Awards program evolved from this ambitious mission to become one of the most highly-respected and visually compelling nature photography competitions in the world. Approximately 25,000 entries are received and judged each year in the Awards competition.

Windland Smith Rice
International Awards Com
The competition opens each January and the images are judged by a panel of experts in the fields of photography, science, and conservation. Photographers whose images move into the second round of judging are emailed and we request high-resolution images, RAW files, and detailed captions. The winning images are published in the Special Collectors Editions of Nature's Best Photography. In addition, the top Winners are displayed as large-format prints in the annual exhibition at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History in Washington, DC. Each photograph is judged on technical quality, originality, and artistic merit. Enter up to 20 images for one entry fee ($25 US dollars--no foreign checks). Email: Awards@naturesbestphotography.com

Celebrate our 20-Year Anniversary!

Best of the Best Exhibition

Windland Smith Rice International Awards

National Museum of Natural History, 2nd Floor 

Open Oct. 24, 2015 - Aug. 2016

NBP presents the "Best of the Best" exhibition, a collection of 113 large-format prints with the stories behind the shots, an HD video, vintage cameras, and a brief history of nature photography. Winning images from the past to the present will take you on the journey from the wild to the walls of the Smithsonian.

In partnership with the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History, the Winners of each photographic category and a selection of the Highly Honored images from the Windland Smith Rice International Awards are displayed FREE to millions of visitors. The print exhibition is accompanied by HD video on a large-screen TV. View some of the awards videos from past exhibitions (at right--click to view the video on Youtube).


Go to the "Enter Photos" section to start a user account and enter contests. GET READY! The next Windland Smith Rice Awards will be open for entries on January 1, 2016

Awards Special Publications

The complete collection of finalists from each year's Windland Smith Rice International Awards is published in the Fall/Winter Special Collectors' EditionsGo to thePublications section of this website to learn more about our magazines. Subscribe to get the semi-annual delivered to your home or get the past winners in single and back issues. 


2013 Awards Video




2012 Awards Video
2011 Awards Video
2010 Awards Video

2009 Awards Video
2008 Awards Video

2007 Awards Video