Take Your Camera to Work Day
Well, not really. But June 15 is officially the tenth annual Nature Photography Day sponsored by the North American Nature Photography Association (NANPA), and it does fall on a Monday this year.
For those not familiar with NANPA, the organization, officially incorporated in 1994, has a mission to "promote the art and science of nature photography as a medium of communication, nature appreciation, and environmental protection." Anyone can join, but most members are nature photographers, either amateur or professional. The most prominent face of the NANPA is their major "Summit and Trade Shows," or conferences, with seminars, presentations, vendor exhibits and, of course, photographic opportunities. The most recent Summit was held from February 19-22, 2015 in San Diego, CA. The next one will be on the opposite coast in Jacksonville, FL in 2017. If you've never been to a NANPA Summit, it can be a great experience.
But NANPA does much more than hold Summits. They provide ongoing advocacy on behalf of their membership and serve as a public face for the nature photography community at large. NANPA promotes environmental protection, ethical standards and the protection of intellectual property rights for photographers. The NANPA Foundation, a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit foundation that is part of the broader NANPA umbrella, raises funds for high school scholarships and many of NANPA's other educational activities.
Okay, enough of the NANPA sales pitch. Hopefully many of you already know about them, but if I've done my bit to spread the word to those who don't and perhaps tempted some who do to join, then the above background will have served its purpose.
As for Nature Photography Day, the inaugural festivities took place back in 2006 and the occasion has been marked annually since in ways both large and small. This year's Day is this coming Monday, June 15 and NANPA is hosting two different online events to celebrate. Go ahead: take some great pictures that day and share them.
First, there's a Facebook page set up for the event where you can post your results — one photo per person, please. The image you choose to post should be taken on June 15, and the timeframe to upload to Facebook is from then through June 21. You must "attend" the Nature Photography Day Event page on Facebook to participate. This isn't a contest and it doesn't cost anything to post, but it is a great way to recognize the diversity and possibilities a single day can offer. This could have been any day of course, and that's perhaps part of the point. Great images are possible on any day, wherever that day may take you.
There's also a North American Nature Photography Association (NANPA) Group Page on Facebook. Here you will find a thread that is a contest. Sponsored by Tamron, Red River Paper, Hunt's and NANPA, prizes include a Tamron SP 70-300mm lens valued at $449, a $100 gift certificate from Red River Paper plus a starter kit, gift certificates valued at $100 and $50 from Hunt's Photo & Video, and a NANPA 1-year general membership (or membership extension) valued at $100. Submissions must be posted to the thread on the NANPA Facebook Group Page to be considered for the contest (remember that this is a different than the event page for Nature Photography Day). For the contest thread, you can submit up to two images. Any photos posted must have been taken on Monday, June 15.
You don't need to be a NANPA member to participate in either online event. More details on both events can be found on the NANPA site at www.nanpa.org/nature_photography_day.php
Oh, and according to the announcement for Nature Photography Day, the year 2015 is also the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta. Kind of interesting, but the connection to NANPA and Nature Photography Day is a bit tenuous. Regardless, Monday June 15 could just serve as a great excuse to get out and take some pictures. Hopefully that sounds even more interesting.
Find out what the day has in store for you and your camera.