Submissions are now open for the 17th annual Truck Camper Magazine calendar contest. Here are the contest rules and proven ways to win. Don’t miss our critical new tips. Stop the crops!
Welcome to the 17th annual Truck Camper Magazine Calendar Contest. There will be thirteen winners, one for each month of the year, plus one more winner for the calendar cover.
All thirteen calendar winners will have their winning photograph and the story behind their photograph featured in the magazine. The thirteen winners will also receive a free 2024 Truck Camper Magazine Calendar.
All submitted photographs will be placed into a 2024 Truck Camper Magazine Calendar Contest gallery. By sending in a photo for the contest, you give Truck Camper Magazine the right to use your photograph in future posts, social media, and in the magazine.
Please read the rules first. Then, click here to submit your calendar photos.
2024 Calendar Contest Rules
1. All photographs must contain a truck camper. A truck camper is a camper that can be demounted from a truck. If it doesn’t demount, it doesn’t count.
2. Only minor color corrections and cropping are acceptable. High dynamic range images (HDR) are also acceptable. Any other alternations via photography editing software, apps, or special filters can render your photo entry ineligible.
3. All photographs must be taken between October 15th, 2022 and October 13th, 2023.
4. Submitted photos must be taken by the person submitting the photo. Do not submit a photo taken by someone else.
5. Along with your photographs, please include the following information: your first and last name(s), the location the photo was taken, and the year, make and model of your truck and camper.
6. All photographs must be submitted digitally. You can send all entry photos at once or one photo at a time (with a limit of 3 photos per person/camper).
7. You can submit up to three photographs for the calendar. That’s three photographs per truck camper rig. Choose carefully!
8. All photographs must be submitted by 11:59pm PST, Friday, October 13th, 2023.
9. All photographs must be horizontal. Please make your shots wide, not tall, like a calendar page; 11-inches wide by 8.5 inches tall.
10. Do not enter panoramic photographs as they are too wide for the calendar format. The final cropping will be 11-inches wide by 8.5 inches tall.
11. All photos must be taken with a six-megapixel digital camera, or better. Smartphone images six-megapixels and above are acceptable.
12. Submit photos in their original resolution. Please do not downsize your photos before submitting them.
Important New Tip 1: Say No To Panos!
Our smartphones are amazing in their ability to take panoramic photos. I myself take panoramic photos with my iPhone all the time. For things like wide vistas or rally group shots, panoramics are the way to go.
However, panoramics often made terrible calendar photos. They’re simply too wide to fit the 8.5 inch tall by 11-inch wide aspect ratio of the calendar. That means your panoramic photos get heavily cropped. Where did the mountain, stream, flowers, or spanning bridge go? It got cropped!
Important New Tip 2: Keep It Horizontal!
Vertical smartphone photography has become a fad over the past five years. Like panoramics, vertical photos almost always make terrible calendar entries because they’re the wrong shape and force us to crop. When taking that calendar winning photo, please hold your camera horizontally. Otherwise, it’s crops for you!
Want to win the 2024 TCM Calendar Contest? Take and enter standard photos, say no to panos, and keep it horizontal.
Six Time Tested and Proven Ways To Win The Calendar Contest:
1. Capture the Golden Hour
The moments immediately after sunrise or just before sunset will give your photographs a beautiful warm glow. You may have to wait patiently for this moment in the evening or wake up early to capture this moment in the morning, but it’s worth it.
2. Take Many Different Perspectives
If you’ve found an amazing place, park your rig and take pictures from many different places and angles. We will often walk in many different directions looking at the camper and how it appears in the scene.
Often times we need to move the camper a couple of times, and move the camera a few times, to get it right. Sometimes we climb a ridge and shoot down, or get on the ground and shoot up. The trick is to try lots of ideas, experiment, and see what looks best.
3. Avoid Most Man-Made Stuff
Do what you can to avoid man-made objects in your photographs, unless they are the subject. For example, an interesting bridge or a red barn are often great, but random trash cans and power lines are not. If there’s a man-made object in your picture, make sure it’s great.
4. Include Your Entire Truck and Camper Rig
Almost without exception, calendar winning photographs feature the whole truck camper; bumper to bumper, cabover to ladder, tires to rooftop – the whole rig.
5. It’s All About Location, Location, Location
Don’t even think about photographing your camper at a campsite, unless the campsite is incredible. This contest is all about finding amazing places and photographing them with your camper.
More often than not, this means finding a pull-off and getting the shot. If you wait until you park for the night, chances are you drove by the interesting places. Always be on the lookout for the calendar winning spot, and have your camera ready.
6. Learn Your Camera (or smartphone)
As camera buffs, we make sure to read camera manuals and watch YouTube videos on photography, and our cameras. This knowledge, coupled with experience, often leads to much better photographs than would otherwise be possible. Automatic mode on most cameras is often good, but knowing how to fully utilize your camera will pay dividends.
Get Inspired By Past Winners
We absolutely love looking at the calendar entries, especially the winners and runners-up from years past.
These photographs not only wow us with their beauty, but also remind us of the possibilities and adventures the truck camping lifestyle offers. Then we find ourselves thinking, “Let’s take pictures like that this year!”
We are inspired!
2023 Calendar Contest Winners
2022 Calendar Contest Winners
2021 Calendar Contest Winners
2020 Calendar Contest Winners
2019 Calendar Contest Winners
2018 Calendar Contest Winners
2017 Calendar Contest Winners
2016 Calendar Contest Winners
2015 Calendar Contest Winners
2014 Calendar Contest Winners
2013 Calendar Contest Winners
2012 Calendar Contest Winners
Good luck everyone!