Digital Photography Contest Winners

The Fourth Annual Digital Photography Awards Celebration of the Pagosa Springs Photography Club was held on October 13 at the PLPOA Clubhouse, and by Zoom. This year 17 photographers submitted images in four categories: Landscape, Creative, People, and Nature. Images in each category were judged by a professional photographer on the bases of composition, impact, and technical quality. In addition, Club members voted to determine “People’s Choice” winners for each of the four categories. 

In the Landscape category, Dave Anderson won first place for his image Great Sand Dunes Sunset. Second place went to Andy Butler, for Ancient Twilight, and Chris Roebuck received third place for Death Valley 2021. Dave Minkel’s photo Firehole River was awarded Honorable mention in the category. In the People’s Choice voting , Anderson’s Great Sand Dunes Sunset was 1st, Bill Milner received 2nd for Utah Toadstools -1 and John Farley was awarded 3rd for Approaching Snow Squall. (Click the thumbnails to see larger versions of the images).

The winning image in the Creative category was Coyote Maddy by Bill Milner. Milner also received 2nd in this group for his image Tin Cup Cemetery. Third place went to Dave Minkel for Engine, and Linda Pampinella received Honorable Mention for Oasis. For the Creative category, the People’s Choice winner was Buckskin Gulch by Andy Butler, 2nd place went to Linda Pampinella for Oasis, and 3rd place was a tie between Black Light, by June Russell and Globe Mallow Soft by Steve Merchant. 

Among images in the People category, Andy Butler’s In the Hall of the Mountain King was judged 1st. Angel, by Barbara Jetley received 2nd place. Scott Galabota’s Creede Hotel received 3rd and Linda Pampinella received Honorable Mention for Faces. In the People’s Choice voting for this category, Galabota received 1st for Creede Hotel, Pampinella’s Faces was 2nd, and Jetley’s Angel received 3rd. 

The winning image in the Nature category was Ernestine by Chris Roebuck. Second place went to Andy Butler’s Here’s Looking at you and Darry Saffer received 3rd for Meals on Wings. This was a very competitive category, and three images received Honorable Mention. These are Owls by Dave Minkel, Poppy by Natalie Duran, and Flower Power, by Steve Merchant. In the People’s Choice voting, Diane Cirksena won for her image Rain, you want Rain. Minkel’s Owls received 2nd, while there was a tie for 3rd between Combat Zone by Darryl Saffer and Butler’s Here’s Looking at you

Congratulations to all the winners! Thanks to everyone who entered, and all those who voted for the People’s choice, and those who helped with the logistics of the contest and Awards Celebration, including Scott Galabota, John Farley, Susanne Russell, and our judges, Mark Langford, Gary Musgrave, and Jeff Laydon. 

Fourth Annual Digital Photography Contest

The Pagosa Springs Photography Club (PSPC) is pleased to announce our Fourth Annual Digital Photo Contest. The contest is open to all current members of the Club. New members may join at the time they enter the contest.

Our goal with this contest is not only to recognize members for their talent, but also to encourage everyone to share their best work with the rest of the group. So pick your images and send them in!

There will again be four categories: Landscape, People, Creative, and Nature. Each member may submit two images per category (up to six total). Images may be submitted as digital files. This year, there is no entry fee. Submissions are due no later than September 11, 2020. Awards will be presented to the top 3 images in each category at the October PSPC meeting, which will be held on October 13, 6:30 PM. All entries will be displayed at the awards gathering.

For contest guidelines, and instruction on entering your images, go to: .

To download an entry form, click: . The guidelines and entry form have instructions on how and where to submit your files.

If you are not currently a 2021 Photography Club member, you may join the Club or renew at the time you submit your images. A membership form can be downloaded here:

Focus Stacking and Image Sharpness

Focus-stacked orchid, © Dave Anderson

The June meeting of the Pagosa Springs Photography Club will be held on June 9 at 6:30 PM (Mountain Daylight Time), via Zoom video conference. Our speaker will be Dave Anderson, who will discuss Focus Stacking and Image Sharpness.

In Dave’s presentation, he will discuss the use of focus stacking to maximize sharpness and depth of field in both macro and landscape photography. Focus stacking is the process of taking serial images of an object or scene, with the plane of focus moving through the subject, combined to give an increased depth of field. Discussion will include several factors important for perceived image sharpness such as depth of field, diffraction, lens quality, and visual acuity.  A number of software options for focus stacking will be presented, and the process of stacking in Photoshop will be described. Dave will provide examples of stacked images that succeeded and failed, stacking with unintended consequences, and tips for successful focus stacking.

Club members will receive an email with the Zoom link. Others who are interested in taking part may contact Andy Butler at  for the link. Club members may submit up to five images to share and discuss following the presentation. 

The Pagosa Springs Photography Club promotes educational, social and fun interactions between all who enjoy making and viewing great photography.  The club sponsors educational programs and outings to help photographers hone their skills. Membership is just $25/calendar year for individuals and $35 for families. Non-members are invited to attend a meeting to learn more about the club. For membership information visit our website at .

Filters in the Digital Age

The Pagosa Springs Photography Club will meet on Feb 10, 2021, at 6:30 pm, via Zoom videoconference. Our topic this month is “Lens Filters in the Digital Age”. 

Like wearing sunglasses, putting filters on your camera’s lens can be crucial for taking landscape photos under challenging light conditions. Filters can enhance colors and reduce distracting reflections. They can also protect your lens. For some photographers and videographers, filters may be an essential accessory. For others, they may be of little use, with many of their functions subsumed by the digital darkroom. For many stalwart landscape photographers, using filters to get the best possible image in the field is part of the process and enjoyment of photography. For others, filters may be more of a complication. 

So just why would you use lens filters? And when? Which filters are important to have, and which might you skip? How do you choose a good filter? At the February Photography Club meeting, we will address these questions in the presentation “Lens Filters in the Digital Age”. 

Club members are encouraged to submit up to five images to share and discuss following the program. 

The Photography Club sponsors monthly programs on photographic topics, and field trips to various areas of photographic interest.  Longtime photographers and those just starting out are welcome in the Club. Non-members are invited to attend a meeting, and may receive the Zoom link by email to For information on joining the Club, visit our website at .

2020 Digital Photo Winners

The Pagosa Springs Photography Club held its Third Annual Digital Photography Awards presentation on October 14, by videoconference. Winners of the competition were announced during the presentation. The contest received entries from 21 Photography Club members in four categories: Landscape, People, Creative, and Nature. In total, 112 photos were entered. The images in each category were judged by two professional photographers on the basis of composition, impact and technical quality. In addition, this year the images were also voted on by Club members to determine “People’s Choice” images. 

In the Nature category, winners were Chris Roebuck, for his photo “Cougar”.  Dave Anderson received 2nd place for “Migration”, and Andy Butler’s photo “Sphinx Moth” was third. With many outstanding photos in this category, there were a number of Honorable Mention’s; images that scored very close to the top three. These included Lion, by Dean Dussell; Alpha Pair, by Doug Coombs, Full House, and Grasshopper, by Kathie Disner; The Stalker, by Linda Pampinella; Lewis Woodpecker, by Liz Jamison; Colorado Columbine and Size Matters, by Darryl Saffer; and Bittern Showing of His Socks and Hummingbird’s Break Time, by Diane Cirksena. People’s Choice awards for the Nature category were Dave Anderson, 1st for Migration, Darryl Saffer, 2nd for “Colorado Columbine”, and 3rd to Linda Pampinella for “the Stalker”. 

The winning image in the People category was Fred Guthrie’s “Working Cowboy.” Guthrie also received 2nd place for “Native Portrait”. Third place was awarded to Lorie Butts, for “Gym Brat”. Honorable Mention went to Dean Dussell for Masai #1 and to Linda Pampinella for Shades of Peterhoff. Guthrie’s two images tied for first in the People’s Choice voting as well. The third place People’s Choice image was Dean Dussell’s “Masai #1”.

Among the images in the Creative category, the judges’ selections were “Medusa on the Ridge”, by Andy Butler, in 1st place, “Stonehead” by Fred Guthrie, 2nd, and “Spring”, by Dean Dussell in third. Honorable Mention was awarded to Dave Anderson, “Aspen Grove”; Doug Coombs, “Grand Prismatic”, and Gregg Heid, “Bavaria”. This category’s People’s Choice awards went to Bill Milner, 1st for “Crater Lake”, Fred Guthrie, 2nd for “Stonehead” and Dave Anderson, 3rd for “Cold Dinner”.


In the Landscape category, the number one image was Doug Coombs’ “Horseshoe Bend.” Second place went to Fred Guthrie for “Escape from Alcatraz” and 3rd place was “Tombstone Sunset” by Lorie Butts. The top People’s Choice vote also went to “Horseshoe Bend”, with Dave Anderson in 2nd place for “Photographing the Milky Way”. Honorable Mention images were “Silent Roar of the Ocean”, Linda Pampinella; “Photographing the Milky Way”, Dave Anderson; “Sunset at Morel Hoodoos” and “Red Rock Twilight”, Andy Butler. The People’s Choice voting resulted in a three way tie for 3rd place, between Dave Minkel for “Fire River”, Dean Dussell for “Thermal Pools” and Andy Butler for “Sunset at Morel Hoodoos”. Congratulations to all the winners, and thanks to everyone who took part in this year’s contest!

Planning Landscape Photos

Sunrise, North Window
Sunrise, North Window, © Andy Butler

The Pagosa Springs Photography Club will meet virtually, via Zoom videoconferencing, on September 9 at 6:15 PM, Mountain Daylight Time. This month’s presentation will be by Andy Butler, and the topic will be “Using Digital Apps to plan and visualize landscape photos”. 

In landscape photography, the photographer often wants to create an image of a photogenic subject under dramatic light, such as sunrise or sunset; moonrise or moonset. While there are many websites and programs that can provide the times and compass bearing for sunrises and sunsets, there are a few that go beyond this in ways that are very helpful to photographers when planning.  In this presentation, three apps will be discussed and demonstrated: The Photographer’s Ephemeris, PhotoPills, and Sun Surveyor. 

These apps are useful in multiple ways. At home, you can place a pin on a map anywhere in the world, on any desired date, to view how the sun, moon and Milky Way will move throughout the day. You can search for specific events, such as when during the year the sun will rise over Square Top, as observed from a specific point.  In the field, the apps have Augmented Reality features, which allow you to visualize the path of the sun, moon and Milky Way as they move through the sky, against an image of the landscape through your smart phone’s camera.  

Following the program, we will have our usual image share. Club members may submit up to five photos to share. Please email your images for sharing, by September 8, to . For Zooming, a larger image size is desirable, 2000 tall by 3000 pixels wide or more. 

Club members will receive the link for joining the Zoom session by email. If you are new to Zoom and have not yet downloaded it to your computer/tablet/phone, visit the Zoom download page, , to do so. It’s really easy to use. For most of you, all you will need to do is click the “Link to join Zoom meeting”. 

Update:  A video of this presentation, recorded from the Zoom meeting, is available for viewing at: .

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