Global Encounters Photo & Video Contests
The Lewis Global Studies Center Global Encounters Photo & Video contests provide a venue for Smith students to share their global experiences with the Smith community. All Smith students are encouraged to submit entries depicting a global encounter they experienced abroad or within the United States.
Photo Contest Guidelines
An event held in the fall semester will discuss photography composition, how to choose what to submit and how to abide by ethical photography practices.
Each student may submit up to two photos; each photo must be for a different category.
Submissions are due TBD, Fall 2022.
- Up Close: Close-up images of a specific person or thing. (Micro view)
- From Afar: Expansive views of a place or culture. (Macro view)
- Learning Moments: Social interaction between cultures or of the photographer's own immersion in a cultural context. Images that reflect "aha!" moments of discovery.
- Daily Life: Everyday moments in which one experiences culture and environment or simply the active participation in educational activities such as field work, discussion or reflection.
- Cultural Oppositions: A view of two or more distinct cultures shown in relationship to each other.
- New Category: Life and Learning in the Pandemic: Scenes documenting differences in your daily life/differences in how you learned this past year and a half.
How to Submit
Digital photos of up to 10 inches in longest dimension, at 300 dpi or at least 1080x809 pixels can be submitted. Winning photos will be printed (roughly 8 x 10 inches) and displayed for the exhibit in the Nolen Art Lounge.
Save photos with a file name in this format: Country_Lastname_Firstname_class year.jpg (Kenya_Jones_Ann_25.jpg) and email the high-resolution digital photo files to email@example.com.
In the text of your email, include the following:
- Your name
- Class year
- Location of the image
- Category/categories to which you are submitting your photo(s) (one category per photo)
- If you were participating in a college sponsored activity, include this information (i.e. study abroad, Praxis, Rhythm Nations, international experience grant, etc.)
- Brief artist statement about the photo
You will also need to include this sentence in the body of your email:
"I ____(type your full name here)___ give permission for Smith College Lewis Global Studies Center to use my photographs for promotional purposes in print and web materials."
The photo contest takes place online. All valid entries will be displayed digitally on the Lewis Global Study Center Facebook page.
The public may vote for a Viewer's Choice photo by "liking" the photo.
A panel of Smith experts in photography, visual anthropology and global culture will be invited to participate in a juried review of the contest submissions and will provide commentary on notable photos and techniques of the photos.
The intent of this juried review is to demonstrate the multiple perspectives on the impact of photographic images as well as the different disciplinary appreciations of photography as cultural documentation, aesthetic representation and student engagement.
Reception: Date TBD.
Video Contest Guidelines
Have you had an international experience during your time at Smith that you want to share in a digital format? Use this opportunity to reflect and share your story. Choose what you want to focus on (e.g. personal growth, local culture, relationships with friends/host family, academics) and then turn it into a video narrative using music, voice-over, photographs and/or video footage. Show us how you interacted with a new environment or a lesson you learned through your global experience. Be creative!
- Video should be between 1 and 3 minutes long.
- Who can enter? Smithies who have studied or interned abroad during their time at Smith for: a year, semester, summer or interterm, and international Smithies reflecting on their time in the United States.
The videos that we feel express most thoughtfully the relationship between the student and their global experience will be chosen to receive awards (a small cash prize & a place for your work on the Lewis Global Studies website).
Your work will also be publicly acknowledged and displayed in the Lewis Global Studies Center during graduation events.
All submissions must be digital. Please upload your submission through Google drive and share with firstname.lastname@example.org. In addition, please include the following in your message:
- Your preferred name and class year
- The title of your video
- Where your global experience took place
- A sentence or two about yourself
- You will also need to include this sentence in the body of your email:
“I ____ (type your full name here)___ give permission for Smith College Lewis Global Studies Center to use my video for promotional purposes in print and web materials.”
Submission deadline: 11:59pm, Sunday, March 20, 2022.
Important Copyright Information
Please be sure to use open source music and photographs any time the work is not your own and to credit the original producer. Photographs or video footage of identifiable individuals should have verbal or written consent.
If you have any further questions or would like sample work please contact the Lewis Global Studies Center Social Media Intern Anne Husmann.
2021–22 Global Encounters Photo Contest Winners
Mariam Habib ’25J
Category: Learning Moments
Location of Images: Karachi, Pakistan
I took this photograph on 14 August, Pakistan’s Independence Day. Minutes before, I had watched these children along with their 15 additional family members disembark from a congested and crowded minibus. When I asked if I could take a picture of them, adorned in their patriotic garb, they excitedly told me that just days before, their father had sold his mobile phone so that they could afford to buy these outfits and plan a trip into the city. While they may not have had financial independence, or a say in the quality of life they were given, they were still able to put aside their qualms for one day to come together as a family and celebrate the independence of their country. A pure example of gratitude in the face of adversity.
Morgan Jones ’22
Category: Life and Learning in a Pandemic
Location of Images: Bangor, ME, USA
In a pandemic our habits and responsibilities shift, but breakfast over a newspaper is a constant throughline for this lady. Calm is found in my new routine of sipping coffee, making omelets, reading the headlines, and caring for those around me.
Peris Mwangi ’23
Category: Daily Life
Location of Images: Lamu Old Town, Kenya
The image was taken in Lamu Old Town, Kenya, which I had a chance to visit this past summer while doing an internship remotely. Lamu is an island off the Indian Ocean coast, and it is the oldest and best-preserved Swahili settlement in East Africa. What is fascinating is that there are no vehicles at all on the island. That coupled with the narrow streets means that donkeys are an alternative mode of transport. As an integral part of the community, they are well taken care of at the donkey sanctuary after the day’s work. The only other mode of transport from Lamu to neighboring islands and the mainland is by boat. Additionally, the Arabian style architecture and woman in a buibui in the background showcase Islam’s predominance in the town.
Liliana Wollheim-Martinez ’23
Category: Life & Learning in a Pandemic
Location of Images: Medford, MA, USA
Self Portrait at Sunrise—I lived at home throughout the entirety of the pandemic, and this self portrait was made a few streets from my house. When I would step outside, I was just one small part of what felt like a deserted public space. In the resulting stillness, I was able to experience a new side of the place where I had spent most of my life. Although I did not travel somewhere new, the quarantine offered me a chance to get to know my hometown in a more profound way than ever before.
Elsa Cailletaud ’22, Interdisciplinary Studies Diploma
Category: Learning Moments
Location of Images: Troutdale, OR, USA
“Autoportrait in a Motorcyclist’s Helmet”—When I was 15 years old, I left my home and family for three months and came to the U.S. I was meant to improve my English by fully immersing myself into the language—attending high school, staying in a host family ... But being the typical teen that I was, this trip became mostly about first times: first time going to a basketball match! to Burger King! to a prom night in a proper dress! to a bonfire on the beach! On that list, my first (and only, to this day!) time riding a motorcycle, on the backseat of my host dad’s Harley Davidson.
Curiously, none of this matches my European self’s centers of interests, but my U.S. self seems to love it all. I was told it helps with my English …