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Critters USA 2012 Photo Contest Announcement

Send photos of your small animal pet to enter the Critters USA Photo Contest for 2012.

The next Critters USA annual photo contest is here. Send in your photos today. Really, right now. Go! 

The first category is “Holiday Critters.” Show your critter celebrating a holiday, even its birthday!

The second category is “Superstar!” You know your pet is a superstar, now show the world why it’s so wonderful.

Critters in the photos are limited to the pet animals typically featured in Critters USA, which are small mammal exotics such as rabbits, ferret, guinea pigs, hamsters, chinchillas, hedgehogs, sugar gliders, gerbils, mice, rats, skunks, flying squirrels, pot-bellied pigs and short-tailed opossums. 

There will be first-, second- and third-place prizes awarded for each category. Each first-prize winner will receive $75, second will receive $50, and third will receive $25. Some entries may receive Honorable Mention status (no prize will be given).

Winning photographs will appear in the 2012 edition of Critters USA. All photo contest entries must be postmarked by April 15, 2011

Helpful Hints
Use these tips to increase your chances of winning a prize.
1. Get close to your pet, and position the subject in the center of your camera’s viewfinder. 
2. Use enough light to prevent shadows and keep all your critter’s whiskers, fur and ears in sharp focus.
3. Shoot at your pet’s level by getting on the ground or putting the animal on an elevated surface. You want the camera lens parallel to your pet’s face.
4. Ask someone to help direct your critter’s attention toward the camera and to prevent it from scurrying away.
5. Groom your pet before you start taking pictures. You want it to look clean and healthy.
6. Have fun!  

Contest Rules
1. Pick a category: Holiday Critters or Superstar! Judges reserve the right to recategorize entries. Only entries depicting pet animals will be considered; no wild animal photos should be sent (some species, such as prairie dogs, chipmunks, etc. are occasionally kept as pets; these may or may not be chosen to be included, depending on the situation depicted in the photos). 
2. Send a color print or digital image of your pet(s). Prints should be unmounted, unframed and no larger than 8 by 10 inches. Digital images must be taken using a camera with 5 or more megapixels set on its highest resolution (mail these entries to us on CD or DVD, or send them via e-mail to
critters@bowtieinc.com). A completed entry form must be included for each entry (photocopied forms are acceptable). Attach a completed form to the back of each photo, or include one with the CD or DVD for digital entries (be sure to mark which digital image goes with which entry). If sending via e-mail, include information in the body of the e-mail.
3. Send only unpublished photographs. Each person may submit as many as three entries per category, but only one prize per person will be awarded.
4. Any amateur photographer may submit photos, except employees of BowTie Inc. and their families. Photographs taken by professional photographers or photography studios will not be considered for the contest.
5. All entries become the property of Critters USA and cannot be returned. Any future use, such as in BowTie Inc. magazines or websites, is at the discretion of BowTie Inc. No payment, other than prize money for this photo contest if you are a winner, will be awarded. By submitting your photograph to this photo contest, you agree that if you win the contest, your contact information will be given to contest sponsors, who may use the information for marketing purposes. 
6. Entrants certify that they own the animals photographed or have the owner’s permission to enter the contest. The photographer whose name appears on the entry coupon will receive the prize money, and the address and phone number provided on the coupon should be the photographer’s.
7. In each category, the first-place winner receives $75, the second-place winner receives $50, and the third-place winner receives $25. The judges also may choose to award Honorable Mention status to various entries (no prizes given for Honorable Mentions).
8. Winners will be chosen by judges selected by the Critters USA staff. Entries will be judged on suitability to contest category, technical merit (clarity, composition and lighting) and subject matter. All decisions are final. 
9. Mail entries to Critters USA 2012 Photo Contest, Attn: Editorial, P. O. Box 6050, Mission Viejo, CA 92690. All entries must be postmarked no later than April 1, 2011. Winners are not notified in advance. Prize money (in the form of a check) is mailed following the magazine’s publication date (usually early fall).

Critters USA 2012 Photo Contest Entry Form
Please print legibly! Critters USA is not responsible for misinterpreted information.

Choose a category: Holiday Critters   or    Superstar!

Name of animal(s) ___________________________________________________
Species of animal(s) _________________________________________________
Photographer’s name ________________________________________________
Phone number (needed to call for SSN if photo wins) _______________________
Address ___________________________________________________________
City ______________________________________________________________ 
State _____________________________________________________________ 
Zip _______________________________________________________________

Deadline: April 15, 2011 Send to: Critters USA Photo Contest, Attn: Editorial, P. O. Box 6050, Mission Viejo, CA 92690
(Digital images on CD or DVD taken by a camera with 5 megapixels or higher, at highest resolution, are acceptable. Mail in or E-mail:
critters@bowtieinc.com)

See the cover and table of contents for the 2011 issue of Critters USA, on sale now!>>


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