Usually, the Audubon Photography Awards go on tour every year. Gallery-sized prints of bird photographs travel the country, on display at Audubon centers and chapters, allowing bird and photography fans to enjoy the stunning captures in person and up close. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we took the virtual tour – and now anyone can browse an exhibit of the 2021 Audubon Photography Prize winners online.
The judges selected the winners from over 9,000 entries submitted by more than 2,400 photographers and videographers. In addition to a grand prize, an amateur prize, a professional prize and a youth prize, the judges awarded several special mentions. The Fisher Prize, named after alumni Audubon Creative Director Kevin Fisher, is conferred with the Image which takes the most creative approach to photographing birds. The Plants for Birds Award recognizes the best photograph illustrating the relationship between native plants and birds. This year, we have expanded the competition with two new prizes: a Video Award, for a new video category (see the top 10 videos here), and a Female Bird Prize, awarded to the best photograph of a female bird in all of the divisions.
The resulting collection depicts birds in their most powerful, artistic, nourishing and wild form. So go ahead, take a stroll through the gallery below, you will have it all. Click on “Start the guided tour” (recommended) to be perfectly placed in front of each image; click on the “information” button at the top right to read the interpretive signs of the exhibition and press “pause” to spend as much time as you want in front of each image. Alternatively, click on “Enter the exhibition” to walk around the room using the arrow keys or the arrows at the bottom left. Maybe even put on some music while you explore.
Once you’re done, be sure to check out this year’s Top 100 Awards Images. And if you have a fondness for bird photography or want to get your feet wet, read tips from past contest winners on how to become a better bird photographer. You never know, next year you might see your image in the Audubon Photography Awards exhibit, maybe even in person.