Meet The Judges

max-300x195Max Waugh is judge for “The Wonders of Yellowstone”
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For the last decade-and-a-half, Max has been photographing wildlife, travel and sports subjects professionally. He was honored with the most images awarded Top 100 status in the Nature’s Best 2015 Yellowstone Forever photo contest, and has been a multiple finalist in the prestigious BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. Max’s work has appeared in such publications as Africa Geographic and ESPN the Magazine. He counts Yellowstone and Costa Rica among his favorite haunts, and enjoys photographing wildlife in far-flung destinations such as Africa and South America. Max also leads photography workshops and classes near his home in the Seattle area. To see more of Max’s work, visit
2015-05-05_14-17-07Brenda Tharp is judge for Our The Great American Landscape
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After earning a degree in computer science, Brenda worked in the corporate world until 1985, when she thought she would wither away inside and decided to focus her energy and creativity in the direction of photography – specifically outdoor and travel photography.To be sure, to survive the start-up of her new career, she initially photographed ‘everything and anything’ for clients, but her main focus was getting editorial assignments from travel and outdoor magazines, and licensing her photographs for stock usage.Now, many years later, Brenda has run the gamut of doing editorial and advertising assignments, producing images for calendars, books, brochures, greeting cards and posters. A short list of clients includes British Gas, Canon USA, The Natural Museum of Chicago, Sierra Club, Audubon, Nature Conservancy, Outdoor Photography, Travel-Holiday Magazine, several inflight magazines, ATT, United Way and Red Cross.
40 Mike Moats is judge for Our World Up Close: Macro Photography
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Mike Moats is a pro macro photographer from Michigan. His articles and images have been published in, Outdoor Photographer, Natures Best, Nature Photographer, Photolife, PC Photo, NANPA’s Expressions Books, and many more. He has written several how-to macro and photo business eBooks. Mike’s images have won local and international awards. A member of Tamron’s Master Image Makers, and was a member of the Fuji Pro Talent Team. Mike offers three day Macro Boot Camps all across the USA.
kemperLewis Kemper is the judge for Winter Wonderland.
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Lewis has been photographing the natural beauty of North America, and its parklands for over 30 years. During his extensive travels, he has been to 47 states from Alaska to Florida. His work has been exhibited and published in magazines, books, and calendars worldwide. Lewis teaches photography for many organizations including Palm Beach Photographic Centre, Santa Fe Workshops, Light Photographic Workshops, Aspen Workshops and He is the author of “The Yosemite Photographer’s Handbook”,  and “The Yellowstone Photographer’s Handbook.” He was the photographer for, “Ancient Ancestors of the Southwest”, published by Graphic Arts Center Publishing. His monograph, “Capturing the Light” won the People’s Choice Awards in Fine Art in the 2009 Photography.Book.Now competition. His latest publication “Photographing Yosemite Digital Field Guide” was voted in the top 20 field guides. And he produces the acclaimed training DVD’s “The Photographer’s Toolbox for Photoshop®” and “The Photographer’s Toolbox for Lightroom®”.
Guy Tal is the judge for our contest RED.
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I am a professional artist, author, photographer, educator and public speaker. I believe that the practice of creative pursuits manifests not only in the making of art, but also has the ability to transform and enrich life, facilitate meaningful and rewarding experiences, and foster contentment and satisfaction through life-long discovery and learning.
jay goodrich Jay Goodrich is the judge for AUTUMN
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Jay Goodrich is a Jackson, Wyoming based adventure photographer and journalist specializing in stock mountain biking, skiing, and nature subjects. Jay is an internationally published and celebrated photographer and writer. His clients have included fortune five hundred companies, trade publications, national and international magazines and books, graphic designers, architects, builders, commercial printers, and many others. You can see Jay’s photography and workshops at:
crabbe Gary Crabbe is the judge for MYSTICAL AND MOODY
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Gary currently resides in Pleasant Hill, California, just outside San Francisco. His interest in photography began to grow after taking an elective class in Black & White, but he soon found his passion was the pursuit of color and form in nature. After graduation, a twist of fate led Gary to the studio of World-Famous photographer Galen Rowell, where he managed the Stock Department of Mountain Light Photography for nine years. Known for his industry expertise and unwavering professionalism, Gary has worked with many of the world’s best-known advertising agencies, magazines, and publishers. He has been happy to offer his knowledge and opinions consulting with other photographers, and has been quoted several times in Photo District News, Wired Magazine, Mother Jones, and numerous other trade publications.
excell Laurie Excell is the judge for OUR 4 LEGGED FRIENDS
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Laurie Excell is a wildlife photographer based in Oregon. As a self-proclaimed ‘lifelong photographer,’ Laurie’s career has really taken off. She is now the author of several books, a popular speaker, workshop leader, and contributing editor. Her love affair with the camera began at the age of ten when her father handed her an old, beat up Pentax Spotmatic to occupy her attention and keep her out of trouble at a camera club outing in Southern Utah. Laurie is the author of several books and a popular workshop leader.