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2017 Photography contest winners

Thank you to those who participated in Alabama Living’s very first reader photo contest! In the March issue, we asked you to submit photos that capture the essence of Alabama to our website.

We received more than 125 photos that reflect the diverse geography and beauty of Alabama, taken in every part of the state – from the mountains in the north to the beaches and Mobile Bay in the south.

The judges were Mark Stephenson, creative director at Alabama Living, and Michael Cornelison, former art director for the magazine, both of whom have taken multiple cover photos over the years; and Phil Scarsbrook, a professional photographer with more than 40 years experience who also takes photos for our annual Montgomery Youth Tour. We have plans to make next year’s contest bigger and better, so be sure to keep an eye out in Alabama Living early next year for details on the 2018 contest! We’ll also post other honorable mention photos on the magazine’s Facebook page over the next few months.

Forgotten ways: This was taken in Cleburne County near an abandoned farm. It signifies our past as a mostly agricultural society, raised on family farms, and how that has been largely abandoned and forgotten. Tony Coley, Oxford

Storm’s-a-comin’: Our barn, built in the late 1800s, has seen many storms through the years. The impending storm depicts the constant change in Alabama weather and changes in our lives. Melissa Welch, Wetumpka

End of the line: The rust on the boxcars at the Heart of Dixie Railroad Museum in Calera, and how they trail off around the corner, just seems to tell a story of trips from the past. Richard Brown, Prattville

Geese and windmill: These geese fly from a cove on Lake Catoma to a field next to our house every day. We are so fortunate to live in a community that is blessed with an abundance of wildlife and nature. Cathyrine Weaver, Cullman

Geese and windmill: These geese fly from a cove on Lake Catoma to a field next to our house every day. We are so fortunate to live in a community that is blessed with an abundance of wildlife and nature. Cathyrine Weaver, Cullman

Cotton field sunset: I live near Grace Farms in the Boldo community in Walker County and love passing their fields and seeing the various seasons of planting. This photo is special because it is timeless. Gina Scruggs, Jasper

SECOND PLACE Good eatin’: This photo, taken on the square in Ozark, captures the flavor and culture of a longtime tradition of our town. I found this vendor especially colorful and the man making the purchase especially brave! Carol Luckfield, Ozark

Roundup with Daddy: As my daughter, Mylee, stepped ahead to drive cows and calves through the gate on our family’s farm, I thought the scenery was so beautiful that I snapped a picture to remember the moment. Joey Furgerson, Fort Payne

Perched on a post: The bright blue plumage of the male Eastern bluebird makes it a favorite of bird-watchers. Diane Deshler, Oxford

THIRD PLACE Autumn sunbeams: I took this photo in the fall at Green Mountain in Huntsville. It was the first time I had taken a photo out on a trail in about a year after I broke my leg. It was great to get back out into nature. Alaina Brown, Madison

Peaceful morning fog: A cold misty fog blanketed the Fairhope Municipal Pier in the early morning in December 2011. I was quite taken with this view, as it was both mysterious and serene. Tracie Clarke, Bremen

Cahaba lilies: From early May to late June, as the Cahaba Lilies bloom, Alabama enjoys a flower show available in only a few places in the U.S. – and in fact ours is the most spectacular of all. Ty Dodge, Birmingham

Easley Covered Bridge: I live very close to this bridge and visit it daily. I can actually see it from my house, so it’s very special to me. It is the oldest and shortest covered bridge left in Blount County. Susan Johnson, Oneonta

Creek colors: I took this while trail running at Black Creek Trails in Gadsden. I’m always looking for a nice creek or waterfall picture, so I had to stop and take this one. Matt Brown, Boaz

September sunrise: We left our home early in the morning and saw this gorgeous sunrise in Trinity. The fog was laying just over the field and the cows. This was a perfect start to our day. Leah Grissman, Trinity

Editors’ note: The contest was open only to amateur photographers. First place prize is $100, second place is $50 and third place is $25. The other photos represent the honorable mention winners.