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The Winning Pictures from FOTO's Fourth of July Contest

FOTO's first photography contest — which focused on July Fourth — went off with a bang. We received some 600 submissions with an incredible number of truly excellent pictures that often captured familiar aspects of the holiday (Fireworks! Flags! Food!), but with a thoughtful twist.

Today we are excited to announce the four winners of our contest, each of whom will receive a framed print from Photos.com. You can view the winning photos below, along with a selection of images from the finalists.

Thanks to all who entered, and a special thanks to our judges Brandon Ruffin, Leah Frances, and Lisa Guerriero each of whom brought their keen eye and unique perspective to the task; Bill Shapiro, FOTO's editor-in-chief, also judged.

There are more photo contests to come; be sure to sign up for our newsletter, and we'll keep you informed.

THE WINNERS

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Photo by @bryanregan

"This photo really captures the unabashed love that this man has for his country. I admire everything about this photograph, especially Bryan's use of color, and how he carefully places the flag on the right side of the photo to frame the image. The strong flash and the expression of the subject's face give me a sense of how passionate and serious this man is about the meaning of the Fourth of July. Overall, a visually striking image that gives the viewer a strong sense of emotion."
— Lisa Guerriero   (@analogstreets)

00 elzabouhassira story large 73ce1fa5 4da4 4bd7 8a1a 6d945a3c45e1

Photo by @elzabouhassira

"For much of America, the Fourth is not only about fireworks, but also about being together, and this picture perfectly captures both. Who are these people? Presented as they are in silhouette, it's anyone guess and, frankly, it doesn't matter: They are us. I love how one couple is close together, and the other is sort of keeping their distance; it feels like there's a story there, and I want to know more."
— Bill Shapiro  (@billshapiro)

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Photo by @wednesdaythrufriday

"This photograph drew me in for a few reasons. It spoke to me about excess and American over-the-topness, and instantly reminded me of Martin Parr’s work. But what I really loved was the crop and composition. All of that exuberance — the flags, rings, bracelets, and bangles — is barely contained within this tight point of view. It’s almost as though the image is a firecracker, about to explode out of the frame. It was a striking and unusual way of conveying the excitement and energy behind the holiday."
— Leah Frances   (@americansquares)

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Photo by @jmacneillphoto

"I really enjoyed this photo. Often, events seen through the eyes of a child seem larger then life — and this photograph captures that well. There is instantly a sense of the 4th of July when you see this image: The colors were well selected, composition was well thought out, and the silhouette provides perspective and depth while also furthering the concept that the child is our important figure in this scene...this is his 4th of July."

— Brandon Ruffin   (@ruffdraft)


THE FINALISTS

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Photo by @anniebdw

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Photo by @blueamberphoto

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Photo by @mostetler

Sincerely nadira story large 4925e4b6 c6ac 4c4e 9047 2f85dc578969

Photo by @sincerely_nadira

wayneogrant story large 59e148e8 4600 49ba 8eb9 5c42521f13fd

Photo by @wayneogrant

rosiedreadful story large 50d98180 0dc4 4b4e 8bfe abcdd8565ab4

Photo by @rosiedreadful

bryanregan story large f97d1b5a 55fa 4ab3 98d3 3362c3df9e65

Photo by @bryanregan

wayneogrant2 story large fa5413e1 2b90 4312 96cc 8827c87a6aa3

Photo by @wayneogrant

kristian

Photo by @kristian.l.i

sean

Photo by @sean.duan

swanson

Photo by @swanson.wayne

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Photo by @anniebdw

benjamaticautomatic story large 70f0dfe8 f113 4d8e a61d bb57ed67d9f7

Photo by @benjamaticautomatic

DCcityGirl 2 story large 8a737777 9f93 4fc1 bd99 d516cc2ee75d

Photo by @dccitygirl

ashleighcoleman 2 story large 97c2b5d8 9b7c 4d69 aea1 8c39a97af4be

Photo by @ashleighcoleman

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Photo by @amy_lizbeth_u

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Photo by @wagesoffear

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Photo by @jamesandkarla

rickona49 story large e9c921f4 a799 48af bd42 3e164ea0dc22

Photo by @rickona49



SPECIAL CITATION

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Photo by @emencher

MEET THE JUDGES

BRANDON RUFFIN   (@ruffdraft)
An Oakland-based photographer, filmmaker, and writer who specializes in portrait photography, with a focus on the African-American community in Oakland.

LEAH FRANCES   (@americansquares)
A New York City-based photographer whose American Squares page captures “the lovely and lovable world which quietly persists..."

LISA GUERRIERO   (@analogstreets)
A Los Angeles-based documentary photographer whose work focuses on social documentary, subculture, and life in small-town America.

BILL SHAPIRO  (@billshapiro)
The editor of FOTO and the former editor-in-chief of LIFE magazine.




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