The contest opens bright and early in January. Selections are made in February and final winners notified. Juried by the executive staff of the Colorado National Monument Association, 12 large photos, representative of Colorado National Monument each month and season, are chosen headliners to grace a full page. Multiple grid picture selections round out the design. Once judges have completed final decisions, thousands of calendars are ordered from the printer. No spotlight, no matting, no mounting of the photos is necessary. The calendars arrive shrink-wrapped for protection.
And then, the show goes on tour; to every imaginable state and country, ferried in the suitcases of happy visitors. Yes, the photographs of local amateur and professional photographers are on display around the world. Where else can you find an entire gallery of superb photos in a 9.5” X 13.5” space; thin enough to fit in a carry-on and fit to wrap and place under the Christmas tree? When the tour year has ended, many photos will make an extended tour into frames or albums; magnificent memories of time spent exploring the National Parks of the United States.
The 2013 Colorado National Monument Calendar is on tour now and will be on display around the globe throughout 2013. At the Monument Visitor Center, the 2013 show will close sometime in May or June when the 2013 show is sold out and new calendars have arrived to anticipate 2014.
The best place to view this chronological and stapled photo series is, of course, the Colorado National Monument Visitor Center which is open seven days a week. Once you have taken in the view, you will be better able to judge for yourself the authenticity or rarity of photographs featured in the calendar. You might even have a new appreciation for photographers who are somehow able to get the clouds, the rain and even the desert bighorn sheep to pose in the best possible light.