California Coastal Commission

Galleries of Past Winners:

2016     |    2015     |    2014

2013     |    2012     |    2011

2010     |    2009     |    2008

2007     |    2006     |    2005

2004     |    2003     |    2002

2001     |    1999     |    1998

Right Column

The 2017 contest will launch on World Oceans Day, June 8th

2016 Judges' First Place Winner, Gary O'Neill:

Photo of a wave in black and white, by Gary O'Neill

See the rest of the 2016 photo awards

This contest is a partnership with the Thank You Ocean Campaign.

Watch the Thank You Ocean Report about the 2015 Contest:

Advice for Taking Pictures

"Here's a central and obvious principle about photography that is sometimes overlooked even by some veteran photographers — that it's about light. Light makes the image. All cameras, whether film-based or digital are wonders of technology but they don't have a clue about subject; they're designed to transmit and register light and a range of its qualities.

It's true that the history of photography is filled with examples in which the subject and not the light is what the viewer's attention is drawn to and many of those images are powerful and memorable. In photojournalism, for example, when the urgency of an event takes precedence over art, the photographer may not have the time or the interest in waiting for the right light. But amongst the most memorable of those images, the ones that put a lump in your throat are those in which the light was a significant and descriptive player. So think about the subject but shoot the light."
  - Malcolm Lubliner, Photographer

Photo contest entries may be used in Coastal Commission web pages, publications, and products. Past contest photos have been used to produce a set of greeting cards; a free screensaver (see below); and coastal access guides for southern California, central California, the San Francisco Bay and Monterey Bay regions, and California’s north coast.

The Screensaver!

It is free and contains images from our 2001 contest. The file to download  is 3.3 MB.  Right click on this link and select save target as or save as to save it to the directory of your choice before installation. (Remember, screen savers use energy. To conserve energy, turn the monitor off when computer is not in use.)