ISSLR Photo Competition

The International Society for Salt Lake Research (ISSLR) ahead of the 15th International Conference on Salt Lake Research (15th ICSLR, 4-8 November 2024, Antalya, Turkey) announces an exciting opportunity for photographers around the world to showcase their talent and creativity through our open photo competition. This competition aims to celebrate the beauty and uniqueness of salt lakes, highlighting their ecological significance, economic and cultural importance. Whether you are a professional photographer, an amateur enthusiast or research scientist, we invite you to submit your best photographs capturing the essence of salt lakes and surrounding habitats in all their splendor. Join us in this inspiring journey to raise awareness and appreciation for these remarkable natural wonders.

To take part in the competition please submit the application form along with your photo entry(ies) to Secretary/Treasurer of the ISSLR Prof. Wayne Wurstbaugh [Send Email] by the September 30, 2024 or fill it online before the same deadline.

Competition categories

The participation rules

The entrance criteria

The judging process

The winners

Competition is open in three categories:


This category focuses on capturing vast and breathtaking views of salt lakes and surrounding environments. Whether it is a panoramic vista or a close-up detail that conveys the essence of a salt lake landscape, submissions in this category should evoke a sense of wonder and appreciation for these remarkable natural environments.

Mother nature’s creatures

This category focuses on capturing the diverse and fascinating wildlife that inhabit salt lakes and surrounding habitats. Photographers are encouraged to showcase the unique species that call salt lakes home, including birds, fish, invertebrates, and other creatures that have adapted to thrive in these saline environments. Whether it is a close-up portrait of a bird feeding in the shallows, a mesmerizing dance of flamingos on the water’s surface, or a macro shot of a tiny invertebrate, submissions in this category should celebrate the wonders of Mother Nature’s creatures in salt lake habitats.

Human interconnectedness and change

This category focuses on capturing the relationship between humans and saline lake ecosystems. Photographers are encouraged to showcase how people interact with and impact these unique environments, whether through traditional activities like fishing, salt harvesting, or tourism, or through more modern influences such as pollution, development, scientific research, conservation efforts and lake dewatering. Whether it is a portrait of an angler casting a net in the shimmering waters, or human impacts such as pollution, urbanization, and climate change, submissions in this category should tell a compelling story of human interconnectedness with salt lake ecosystems in the face of ongoing changes.

The participation rules

  1. Each participant can submit only one photo per category.
  2. The photo must be original and taken by the participant. Plagiarism is strictly prohibited.
  3. Photos should be high-resolution and in a digital format suitable for printing and display purposes.
  4. Participants must provide a caption for each photo. A brief description explaining the context, location, and significance of the image is optional.
  5. The submitted photos should align with the theme of the competition and the specific category they are entered in.
  6. By submitting a photo, participants agree to grant the ISSLR permission to use their images for promotional and educational purposes related to the competition and activities of the ISSLR.
  7. The competition organizers reserve the right to disqualify any entry that does not meet the specified criteria or violates the rules and regulations of the competition.
  8. Participants are encouraged to adhere to ethical photography practices, respecting the environment, wildlife, and local communities while capturing images in salt lake ecosystems.

By following these rules and guidelines, participants can ensure a fair and engaging photo competition that celebrates the beauty and importance of salt lake environments around the world.

The entrance criteria

  1. ISSLR members in good standing can participate in the photo competition at no additional cost. This benefit encourages active participation from members who are already dedicated to the goals and mission of the society.
  2. Participants who have paid the registration fee to attend the 15th ICSLR can also enter the photo competition without any extra charges. This incentive rewards conference attendees and promotes engagement with those already involved in the society’s activities.
  3. Senior individuals who wish to enter the competition but non-members of the ISSLR and not conference participants will be required to pay a fee of $45 USD. This fee structure acknowledges the contributions and experience of senior professionals while also providing financial support for the competition.
  4. Young professionals under the age of 35 (non-members of the ISSLR and not conference participants) can enter the competition at a discounted rate of $15 USD. This special pricing aims to encourage participation from emerging talents.

By offering different entrance criteria based on membership status, conference attendance, age, and professional experience, the society ensures inclusivity, accessibility, and support for photographers at various stages of their careers.

The judging process

The judging process for the ISSLR Photo Competition will involve a panel of judges representing the board of directors of the ISSLR. The judging criteria will include such factors as composition, creativity, technical skill, and relevance to the theme of the competition. Each photo will be evaluated based on these criteria to determine the winners of the competition.


The winners of the ISSLR Photo Competition will be announced during the opening ceremony of the 15th ICSLR. The announcement will be a highlight of the event, showcasing the talent and creativity of the winning photographers.

The winner in each category will receive a prize of 250 USD in recognition for their outstanding work. This prize not only serves as a token of appreciation but also as an encouragement for further exploration and contribution to the field of salt lake research through photography.

The winners will have the opportunity to be recognized by their peers and colleagues at the prestigious event, further highlighting the importance of their artistic vision and dedication to capturing the beauty and significance of salt lakes around the world.