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Honoring Trees

Deadline for submissions: Apr 24, 2017
Juror: Laura Valenti
Prints due: May 26, 2017
Exhibition: June 7 - July 8, 2017

Prints of most of these images are available for purchase. Please inquire.
All photographs are the copyright of the individual artists and may not be reproduced without their permission.

Juror's Statement

In his book The Practice of the Wild, poet and essayist Gary Snyder points out that “wild” is most often defined by what it is not. So, it is undomesticated, untamed, uninhabited, uncultivated, uncivilized. What if, he writes, we instead define it by what it is? Through this lens, “wild” becomes: self-propagating, flourishing, pristine, exuberant, original, self-reliant, ecstatic, free. Seen in this more positive light, nature has agency and power – a sense of dynamism that reminds us to take note, to honor the wild places we’re still lucky enough to have.

The images selected for this exhibition are poetic, evocative, and deeply interpretive. They masterfully capture some of the spirit of their subjects, rather than simply telling us what things look like. This attention to mood and emotion brings the scenes alive and inspires us to care. I hope the exhibit serves as an invitation to celebrate the wild beauty of trees and to contemplate what we stand to lose in the relentless drive for environmental dominion. As Edward Abbey so poignantly reminds us, “Love of wilderness expression of loyalty to the earth, the earth which bore us and sustains us, the only paradise we shall ever know, the only paradise we ever need, if only we had the eyes to see.” 

- Laura Valenti

About the Juror

Laura Valenti is a photographer, curator, educator, and arts director. She works as Outreach Director at Photolucida, a nonprofit that works to build connections between photographers and the gallery and publishing worlds. She also worked for many years as Program Director and co-Curator at Newspace Center for Photography. She teaches online courses that focus on helping photographers identify sources of inspiration and reach photographic goals. She also lectures about photography and the creative practice. Laura enjoys working with emerging photographers to develop their skills as well as their creative voice.

Laura also curates photography exhibitions around the country and internationally, including recent exhibits at the Center for Fine-Art Photography, Photographic Resource Center, and RayKo Photo Center. She recently curated "Place: Framing the Oregon Landscape," a major northwest landscape photography exhibition for the Oregon Historical Society. A documentary portraiture exhibition Laura curated was shown at the last Lishui International Photography Festival (China).

Laura frequently serves as a juror for photography competitions in the U.S. and abroad including for Center's Director's Choice Awards, Photo District News, The Oregonian, Critical Mass, Rangefinder Magazine, LightBox Photographic, and more. She has also served as a reviewer at various portfolio review events, such as Houston FotoFest, Review Santa Fe, and Photolucida, as well as a number of international reviews. 

In addition to her photography work, Laura is also a longtime student of Zen. She has a deep interest in the intersection of mindfulness, spirituality, and the creative practice. She lived in Asia for fifteen years and now calls beautiful, rainy Oregon home. Her degree is from Reed College.

Learn more about Laura's photography, teaching philosophy, and online creativity programs on the Huffington Post, or visit her website

Call for Entries

This is a call for images that celebrate trees in all their forms, all their locations, and all their seasons. All methods of capture and processing are welcome.

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