Editor’s note: To steal a bromide: There is no such thing as a bad dog photo. We should know, as we have spent the last month-plus making our way through almost 500 submissions to our Fifth Annual Mountain Dog Photo Context. As usual, we wanted to print every single one of those photos, but, of course, the laws of physics intervened; we could only get a small fraction of the submissions into print, though, as in previous years, we will soon be moving all of the dog photos that came our way to our website.
The selection process consisted of our usual hyper-organized, well-oiled editorial machine firing on all cylinders. That would be: yours truly culling the mound of submissions into something approximating a manageable pile, then passing the final-determination baton to art director Keith Svihovec. (If you take umbrage with our choices, I’ll be happy to send you Keith’s home address.) We each tossed in some ideas regarding categories, which we invented pretty much on the run.
A significant component of the selection process was a concerted effort to achieve stylistic and compositional diversity. Ergo, we wanted to make sure we had photos covering as many gamuts as possible, from action shots to portraiture, summer and winter, funny poses to homages to perros recently passed away. Though many of our mountain dog photo submissions came from professional and serious amateur photographers, we also bent over backwards to make certain that we included work from people who, like me, point their camera in the general direction of what they hope to capture and hope for the best.
What that all amounts to is: There were a lot of great dog photos we couldn’t get in print for reasons that had nothing to do with their quality. Like I said, there is no such thing as a bad dog photo.
A big shout out to Granite Gear (once again), The Barnyard of Frisco, Colorado, and Katie’s Bumpers for signing on as sponsors for our Fifth Annual Mountain Dog Photo Contest and for supplying the prizes we have awarded to our various category winners, which, like I said, Keith and I pretty much pulled out of our posteriors.
We hope you enjoy eyeballing these photos as much as we did.