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September Photo Challenge: Water

To kids, water is nothing short of magical. You can drink it, swim in it, even walk on it if it gets cold enough. Shine a light through it at just the right angle and you’ll see a rainbow. Perhaps most amazing of all, the stuff might fall from the sky at any moment.


“Water” by Damien Weidner (Flickr)

This versatility also makes water a great source of inspiration for photographers. It can flow through a scene in a dreamy haze or freeze mid-splash so each drop gleams like a little jewel. It clings to webs, turns distant mountains white, and provides a beautiful resting spot for a setting sun. Catch it at the right angle and it’ll even reflect our own world back at us.

For this month’s Photo Challenge, grab a shot in which water (or ice) is a central element. In addition to standard subjects like waterfalls, streams, and ocean waves, there are lots of ways to get creative with this theme: a trip to the aquarium or a sprinkler on a warm day, for example.

For some practical advice on shooting different types of water scenes—such as water drops, waterfalls, and reflections—take a look at these tips from the ProudPhotography blog. If you’re searching for inspiration, the PictureCorrect website offers a list of water-themed shots to try out. And finally, if you’re looking to capture flowing water but aren’t sure how to start, take a look at Derrick Story’s article, “Take Control of Motion,” from the May/June 2011 issue for tips.

To participate in the September Photo Challenge, simply upload your image to either the PET Subscriber Gallery or the Elements Village Gallery between September 1st and October 1st. Remember that photos should be taken within the challenge month.

Please be sure to place the phrase “Photo-Challenge” exactly as shown (without the quotes) in the Keywords field if uploading to the Elements Village Gallery, or in the Caption field if uploading to the PET Gallery. This is how we identify images intended for the challenge. If you’re having trouble figuring out the process, check out our Contests page, which offers more detailed instructions, as well as screenshots.

Happy Shooting!