Picture This Photo Contest: January 2010

– Posted in: Garden Photography

ALD_090119-18[1]A new year, let alone a new decade, is officially here!  With the debut of 2010, Picture This Photo Contest has officially returned and is raring to go! Your comments helped us in making the decision to continue with the contest after a month hiatus. You made it clear that having your entries judged by professional photographers is of the utmost importance.  Consequently, we have  a roster of highly talented judges.  We’re sure that they will stimulate, engage and teach you.

So, without further ado,  I’m delighted to introduce  our first judge for the new year, Alan Detrick. Alan and his wife Linda, the principals of Alan and Linda Detrick Photography, specialize in garden and horticulture photography. Their work has appeared in a wide range of publications: they also offer services to landscape architects and garden designers. Alan teaches Garden Photography Workshops throughout the country.  He is the author of the book, Macro Photography for Gardeners and Nature Lovers.

ALD_090110-7[1].jpg-hydrangeaAlan has chosen WINTER’S BEAUTY as the theme for this month.

“The winter season is a time when our gardens are resting. Days are short on sunlight and long on cold. Cabin fever and the doldrums can set in. Still there are unexpected garden gifts. A glance at a snow covered garden on a sunny day, last season’s blossom peeking out from a blanket of white, or the appearance of an ephemeral winter pattern add a smile to the day. Show me your images that bring on a smile. Don’t overlook the sparkle of ice or an early blossom caught by a late winter storm.

After taking exposure, focus and composition into consideration, here are a few non-technical ideas that I put to use in photographing winter images.

ALD_070320_005[1].jpg-aconite 1. I find a bit of sunlight can replace the cold ‘stay by the fire’ with a ‘grab your coat and go for a walk’ response. Tip: look for some lighting that adds warmth to your winter pictures.

2. After the spring, summer and fall seasons of bountiful garden color, we are left with a mostly monocromatic winter wonderland. Tip: any tiny bit of color has a dramatic impact on a winter image.

3. Ice and frost patterns can be interesting subjects by themselves. Tip: look for frost or ice to be a major component or add interest to an otherwise flat or boring subject.

4. Be careful of trying to include too much in one picture. Sometimes too much becomes too busy and overwhelms the viewer. Make sure the viewer knows what caught your attention by including only those elements necessary to achieve your vision. Tip: keep it simple.

The most important tip is to have fun! No matter what I or any other judge says, keep in mind that photography is 70% subjective. First and foremost, your photo should please you!”

Alan’s subject is timely and a great one with which to experiment. Why not take advantage of this opportunity and send in one of your favorite photos? For those of you who have never participated in Picture This, it’s simple. All you have to do is select one photograph, post it on your blog, and leave us a link with your comment. We will only accept entries sent from blogs.


****PLEASE NOTE: Because these rules were added in after this month’s post went up, they won’t be enforced for this month except for receiving photos by midnight on January 21st and having them linked from your website.

1. We love that you send us a link to your story that includes the photo. But send another link directly to the photo. It will save us alot of time when we are uploading the photos for the judges to view them.

2. All photos should be as close to 500 pixels on the long side. If using Microsoft Office Picture Manager to resize,  there is a size for Large Web photos which comes in at: 640×480. That would work just fine.

3. All photos must have the capability of being saved in word documents or Microsoft Picture Manager.

4. Your photo must be able to be copied from your site.

As you know, we are trying to cut down on the time spent managing and judging this contest. All 4 of the requests above will need to be adhered to in order for your photo to be judged. The deadline is 11:59 pm Eastern time on Thursday, January 21. Good luck to all, enjoy and get your entries in as soon as possible!

Check out the Picture This page to find the past winners’ photographs.

Fran Sorin

Fran is the author of the highly-acclaimed book, Digging Deep: Unearthing Your Creative Roots Through Gardening, which Andrew Weil, M.D., recommends as "a profound and inspiring book."  

A graduate of the University of Chicago with Honors in Psychology, she is also a gardening and creativity expert, coach, inspirational speaker, CBS radio news gardening correspondent, and Huffington Post Contributor.

Learn more about Fran and get free resources that will help you improve your life at www.fransorin.com.

Google+ | LinkedIn | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest  

Fran Sorin
95 comments… add one

Leave a Comment

joco January 1, 2010, 8:48 am

Happy New Year.
Thanks Fran, for making us get our brain back into gear after a lazy time.
Hope my post raises a smile.
My Snowball fight is HERE

Janet January 1, 2010, 10:35 am

Good to see a new theme! Time to gather my photos and see what will be a good fit.

Cameron(Defining Your Home Garden) January 2, 2010, 9:19 am


My story is “Winter Is Not Always Snow and Ice” and the photo is a landscape scene that I took during a walk on a sunny winter day in January 2009 at Sarah P. Duke Gardens in Durham, North Carolina.


Mr. McGregor's Daughter January 2, 2010, 12:52 pm

I’m so glad Picture This has returned for January. I could try, but I don’t think I could come up with a better photo than the one I used for the first image in this post: http://mcgregorsdaughter.blogspot.com/2009/12/frigid-friday.html
I don’t think I’d want to try, as it was taken when the temperature was below 0F.

Melissa Clark January 2, 2010, 2:01 pm

I discovered Picture This a couple of weeks ago. I’m new to the blogging world and am trying my hand at writing about photographing and designing gardens. My entry can be seen at http://melissaclarkphotography.wordpress.com/other-images/.

Melody January 3, 2010, 3:22 am

I’m glad that you all decided to continue Picture This through the winter! 🙂

Here is my entry:

Lona January 3, 2010, 1:42 pm

What fantastic pictures so far. Good luck to all of the entries.
I would like to include my entry into Winter’s Beauty.


Marjorie Smith January 3, 2010, 2:20 pm

I am so glad I found your blog, this is my first time to enter and my entry is at http://mollyscountrycolorshomeplace.blogspot.com/2010/01/gardening-gone-wild-picture-contest.html
Thanks for this opportunity to show our pictures….

ESP. January 3, 2010, 5:41 pm

Happy New Year GGW.

Hi Fran, so happy that the competition is back again. Here is my entry, we do not get much snow here in Central Texas, but we have had a few good frosts this year…


Desiree January 3, 2010, 8:16 pm

Your website has been a daily read since I began my blog in November…thank you. Here’s a cheery pic of our winter in CA.


gina January 3, 2010, 8:46 pm

Some really beautiful pictures. This inspired me to get outside with my camera for the first time in a long while. So, thank you for that.


healingmagichands January 4, 2010, 12:02 pm

Some wonderful pictures up already. I’ve been obsessing about the frost, ice and snow, so this contest was right up my alley.


Ellen Spector Platt January 4, 2010, 7:39 pm

Frigid and gray today in New York City making this sight at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden even more startling. My official entry is the lead photo of my post. esp

Jen January 4, 2010, 8:03 pm

This is a shot from our most favorite discovery, Crescent Park, near our home. After living here for over 15 years we finally discovered this gem.

It was a cold, frosty morning and as we walked the forest paths, the frozen raindrops fell onto our hair. A magical moment.


Ramble on Rose January 4, 2010, 9:37 pm

I love the timely theme, especially since we have to look for beauty in winter here or else go crazy! Here’s my post:

Christine January 4, 2010, 9:56 pm

Well I guess those with an actual winter will have a leg up on me, but I happily snapped a few frosty photos in our unprecedented cold spell a few weeks ago.


Frances January 5, 2010, 9:35 am

A good topic for January. My entry is the one at the top of the page, labeled January 2010-Winter’s Beauty. Thanks for deciding to continue the contests.


Meredith January 5, 2010, 10:45 am

Not that long ago I was lamenting that we Southerners have a kind of disconnect with our real, actual winter landscape, which is beautiful in its own right, because the dominant culture focuses on snow and ice as the sign of the true season. Of course, snow and ice *are* lovely, and I enjoyed looking at all these lovely photos of the frozen landscape to the north. But I’m learning to appreciate the beauty of what is actually in front of me.

This, to me, is winter beauty.


forest January 5, 2010, 7:48 pm

Wow, some beautiful photos have already been submitted!

Well, here’s my offering.

Tia Patron January 5, 2010, 8:43 pm

I was blessed with the chance of Knoxville getting snow a month ago exactly. I was in the midst of my photography class so I was in photo mode.

Here is the picture I’m submitting. I wouldn’t mind any comments too!

I have lived in Knoxville for 5 years and I have never seen this much snow while living here. I was so excited when I saw the snow, I had to rush to get my camera then drag my boyfriend out into the snow so I didn’t go alone. I was freezing (I underestimated the temperature) but I enjoyed every moment.

Snow is expected for this Thursday.. I hope it happens =]


Layanee January 6, 2010, 8:06 am

Another fun assignment. Here is my entry at the Jan. 6th post: http://ledgeandgardens.typepad.com/

Liz (aka Nutty Gnome) January 6, 2010, 9:58 am

I love the snow, so I was inspired to enter the contest. there are some wonderful photos, but here’s mine!
It’s the first photo on this post.


the inadvertent farmer January 6, 2010, 10:43 am

Hey guys…I’m so glad that you are doing this again for the new year! Here is mine, it is the first picture in the post…excuse the weirdness of the rest, it is just my life is a little odd, lol! Kim


leavesnbloom in Scotland January 6, 2010, 1:12 pm

I have decided that the following photo best describes “Winter Beauty” for me in my garden considering that most in my garden is black, brown or greenish black and covered in snow. This is a real jewel in the garden – such an insignifigant flower on its own (normally amongst a cluster of others) but when covered in ice it brings life and vitality back into a flower that is gracefully ageing to death. The individual flower is from a cluster from my Hydrangea Paniculata Limelight. Its the last photo on the article with the title “Winter beauty” on the photo


Thankyou for viewing

Amy January 6, 2010, 8:59 pm

Hello, here is my “frosty” entry in Picture this Photo Contest. http://goawayimgardening.blogspot.com/
We don’t get much snow but we have had frosty mornings. Thanks, Amy

Nicole January 7, 2010, 2:29 pm

Well this is fun for all those in cold climes who thought the garden blogging fun was over but it was a real challenge for me with 74 degree weather! Here’s my post

Melody January 7, 2010, 5:14 pm

Can we change our entry picture once we post it here?

Sorry Melody. Once you enter a photo, that’s it for the month. Fran

Jack Holloway January 8, 2010, 1:23 am

Hi – as I live in the Southern Hemisphere, my wintery pic is rather different from the current version of this view! The third picture, (3 Ode to Winter) is my entry at http://sequoiagardens.wordpress.com/2010/01/02/winter-in-africa/
Thanks for the competition, GGW! Jack

Andrea Rosenthal January 8, 2010, 10:42 am

I’m submitting the top image, “Holly berries in snow,” because I think it expresses the mystery and beauty of nature, where life and color can be found even in dark, cold, snowy winters.

My blog is a new one, but I’m enjoying making images every day of the natural world and hope to continue it, showing the changes that take place over the course of a year.

Amy January 8, 2010, 11:42 am

Here is my post: http://goawayimgardening.blogspot.com/2010/01/winters-beauty-photo.html

This goes right to the correct post. 🙂

Andrea Rosenthal January 8, 2010, 3:41 pm

To link to my blog, click on my name in my comment, which is #30 above.

Lois J. de Vries January 8, 2010, 3:53 pm

Oh boy, Frannie. It looks as if I may have to set aside an entire day to look at everyone’s entries. As it happens, I had a great “frost on the pumpkin” opportunity just before Christmas.

Here’s my entry: http://loisdevries.blogspot.com/2009/12/frost-on-pumpkin.html

BloominRs January 9, 2010, 1:35 pm

I’ve enjoyed looking at all of the entries.
My blog post can be found at
and the picture only is here
Winter’s Beauty

Heather's Garden January 9, 2010, 8:43 pm

I’m so glad you’re doing the contest again. I do hope you eliminate the entries of those who didn’t follow your very straightforward rules with their submissions. You’re not asking a lot to make your life easier and I love the contest and want to make sure you keep doing it!

My full post can be found here: http://heathersgarden.typepad.com/heathers_garden/2010/01/picture-this-photo-contest-entry.html

And the photo only can be found here: http://heathersgarden.typepad.com/files/snowy-hydrangea-1.jpg

Nicole January 9, 2010, 9:16 pm
Les January 10, 2010, 7:30 am

My entry is not very garden-y, but it is very wintry. Thanks for hosting and continuing the contest.

Here is the entire post:
Safe Inside Our Shells

Here is the picture only:
Shellfish On Ice 2

healingmagichands January 10, 2010, 11:30 am

I also just noticed the new rules, so here is the link to the photo only: http://healingmagichands.files.wordpress.com/2010/01/dscf7191.jpg

As far as rule 3 goes, I have no idea what you are talking about and so I certainly hope my photo fits the bill.

Janet January 10, 2010, 11:52 am
Janet January 10, 2010, 11:56 am
Janet January 10, 2010, 11:57 am

http://www.flickr.com/photos/28240723@N08/4263072922/ the first one didn’t have a hyperlink…??

Pam/Digging January 10, 2010, 3:56 pm

My entry is “Agave on Ice.” The link to the post is http://www.penick.net/digging/?p=5804

The link to the picture alone is http://www.penick.net/digging/images/2010_01_10/Agave_leaf_in_ice.JPG

I’ve enjoyed looking at all the entries so far. Each month your contest just gets bigger and better, GGW.

Cindy January 10, 2010, 6:11 pm

Dipped in frosty morning.

The link to my photo is:

Original posting here: http://weareroses.blogspot.com/2009/12/saturdays-frosty-photos.html

I am enjoying this part of winter.

forest January 10, 2010, 10:55 pm

Let’s try this again, resized.
The sparkling snow melting on a boulder made a miniature landscape. Seeing it makes me smile.


Chookie January 11, 2010, 5:36 am

My entry is at http://chookiesbackyard.blogspot.com/2010/01/picture-this-winters-beauty.html and the photo is at http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_SuOvmrLJEes/S0rzN7iISbI/AAAAAAAAAeY/31PpRkipeXY/s1600-h/Correa2Jun08.jpg. I would have preferred to have something in winter sunlight, but couldn’t find anything suitable. In about six months…

joco January 11, 2010, 10:47 am

I am totally confused.

Does this mean the format can NOT be an .html file with the picture in it?

Does it HAVE to be a .doc file?

Mr. McGregor's Daughter January 11, 2010, 10:48 am
Ben Brown January 11, 2010, 11:35 am

My entry is somply called “Robin”

Darla January 12, 2010, 7:15 am

We live in North Florida where you don’t get ice and snow. When the temperature drops to freezing for several hours, my husband makes icicles for me with the sprinkler. I have posted a photo of ice on grass blades in our yard.

Diana Lee Photography January 12, 2010, 2:59 pm

I am delighted to enter my photo in your January 2010 contest for “winter beauty”. Here is my image. It is called “Striking”, taken in Rye, New York at the Rye New York Golf Course:

marmee January 13, 2010, 1:14 am

so glad to be able to do this again…here’s my entry.

the best to all who have entered.

Amy January 13, 2010, 9:41 am

Fran – I received your message. After I posted a comment I realized that I didn’t link to the photo. On comment #31 , I linked it to the photo. Did I link it the right way? Thanks, Amy

Amy January 13, 2010, 9:54 am

Here is a link to just the photo:

Sorry for the confusion…. Amy
Go Away, I’m Gardening

Meredith January 13, 2010, 12:21 pm

I apologize, Fran. I did not realize I needed to link back to the site and state explicitly that the single photograph in the article was my entry. I have now corrected my error and it may be viewed at:


Thank you for alerting me to my mistake!

Linda Steider January 13, 2010, 12:34 pm

So many wonderful entries! Here’s mine on my blog: http://anartistsgarden.wordpress.com/2010/01/13/winters-beauty-entry-for-ggws-picture-this/ and the photo alone: http://anartistsgarden.files.wordpress.com/2010/01/ggw-winters-beauty.jpg

I don’t use microsoft, so don’t know if my photo can be saved in word. It was resized using photoshop, saved & posted as a jpg…will that work or can anyone advise me differently? Sorry to be so technically challenged!!

darlene Ruda January 13, 2010, 3:45 pm

Here is a link to my photo for the contest http://rusticranch.blogspot.com/2010/01/blog-post.html

darlene Ruda January 13, 2010, 3:50 pm

don’t know if that worked but Nan also gave me this to try: direct link to entry

Carolyn Parker January 13, 2010, 7:21 pm

Here’s my entry for the January contest. Thank you.

Gail January 13, 2010, 7:38 pm

Here is a link to my photo:

There are three photos on this post…the middle photo is what I’d like to submit…The wordless wednesday post went up before the thought to use it here! 🙂

Desiree January 13, 2010, 8:04 pm
Kareen January 14, 2010, 8:06 pm

My sister told me about your blog and your contest. Here is a link to poem and photo of an old apple tree one winter morning when everything was outlined in frost and snow. http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_ju_ZvAu69pw/SSbVvFLVNrI/AAAAAAAAADE/pmuGy2fC2Pw/s1600-h/2477568587_96f36c2980.jpg

Kareen January 14, 2010, 8:21 pm

Looking over some of the other entries, I think my first pass was not quite right, so I have created a post at my gardening blog with this photo. Sorry about that. http://gardeninginthezone.blogspot.com/2010/01/my-photo-entry.html

Garden Lily January 16, 2010, 3:03 am

My photo is of the heart-shaped leaves of an epimedium edged in frost. The posting is here.

The photo only is here: Epimedium edged in frost

villager January 16, 2010, 10:19 am

I’d like to submit a post I did about frost http://ourhappyacres.com/2009/12/frosty-morning/

The photo itself is here:


Helen at Toronto Gardens January 16, 2010, 12:33 pm

Thanks for continuing Picture This through the winter. We really appreciate how much work that must be. My entry for January is here:


And here’s a link just to the photo (hope it behaves itself – the file I uploaded was the right size, but I’m not sure what Blogger does when it posts the image):


Happy winter, everyone!

Amanda January 17, 2010, 12:12 pm
Kris at t.m. January 17, 2010, 6:52 pm

I’ve actually posted the picture I’d like to submit twice now… The post is here: http://trenchmanicure.wordpress.com/2010/01/17/picture-this-january/
and the picture alone is here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/underwaterer/4242884320/ and here: http://trenchmanicure.files.wordpress.com/2010/01/img_9305.jpg. Thanks!

Jan (ThanksFor2Day) January 17, 2010, 9:24 pm
Anna Wand January 18, 2010, 10:36 am
Nancy Bond January 18, 2010, 10:47 am

My submission for this month’s photo contest is here: http://wp.me/p2bM3-1aY

A link to the photo only:

Jean at Dig, Grow, Compost, Blog January 18, 2010, 12:40 pm

Glad to see the contest is back. I hope I got the photo size right (re: new rules). Here’s a link to the post:

Here’s a link to the photo only: http://tinyurl.com/yj2n4n6

Jim Groble January 18, 2010, 1:28 pm

My entry for the January photo contest is at
Monday, January 18, 2010. i hope I did this right.
Thank you

Marlene January 18, 2010, 3:17 pm
Jan (ThanksFor2Day) January 18, 2010, 11:21 pm
Marsanne & Melody January 20, 2010, 1:09 pm

Here’s the direct link to our picture.
The origianl entry was #26. Thanks:)

hannah January 20, 2010, 6:12 pm

Hello again,

Direct link to my entry for “Winter’s Beauty” is:

and link to the post is:

Thank you.

Salix January 20, 2010, 10:46 pm

My first time participating in your contest.
Here’s the link to my post “Winter’s Beauty”:
And here is the photo:


huni January 21, 2010, 1:58 am

Here is my entry for this month’s contest (photo only): http://hobbygradina.ro/wp-content/gallery/gradina-inghetata/asleep_resize.jpg

And for those who are interested, here is the link to my post and some more winter photos: http://hobbygradina.ro/2010/01/18/gradina-inghe%C8%9Bata/


VP January 21, 2010, 4:14 am

I’m delighted to be a Picture This newbie and I see this month’s theme has brought out the best from everyone 🙂

You can see my post here:


And here’s the link to my entry:


Good luck everyone!

Rothschild Orchid January 21, 2010, 5:53 am

This is my favourite winter picture so far this season. It is of a somewhat weather worn viburnum flower against a grey December sky. Even though this little flower has been kissed by Jack Frost it still manages to sing its pretty song in the bleakness of winter, that is why I love it so!

RO :o)


Rothschild Orchid January 21, 2010, 7:47 am

I’m confused as to wether my entry has been added, I can’t see the post?

I forgot the direct link to a smaller sized photo, here it is http://i572.photobucket.com/albums/ss164/Cherry_Blossom_1978/Flowers/DPP_0094.jpg

and my blog post link again… http://talesfromtumbledownfarm.blogspot.com/2009/12/winter-kiss.html

RO :o)

You’re covered. Your photo is fine and has been entered into the contest. Fran

Leslie January 21, 2010, 12:09 pm
Desiree January 21, 2010, 3:09 pm

Well, I’ll get the hang of this eventually. Here is a direct link to my photo, resized to the required 500 px max. Thanks again!



Beth January 21, 2010, 4:30 pm

Just found out about this, sounds like fun!

Link to Post:


Link to Photo:


Melissa January 21, 2010, 8:33 pm
Laura January 21, 2010, 8:46 pm
John January 21, 2010, 9:44 pm

Well here I am, at the last moment as usual. I’ve added a post on Winter’s Beauty at http://macgardens.org/?p=1336 and the particular submitted image is at http://wp.macfusion.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/Magnolia-stellata-bud.jpg
Thanks again for hosting this contest which always produces some beautiful and stimulating pictures.

Melody January 22, 2010, 6:43 pm

Do you know when the results will be posted?

As of now, on the 27th. Fran

Melody January 23, 2010, 3:58 pm

Ok, thanks Fran. 🙂

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