Shooting Challenge: One Shot

Anyone can hit a target with unlimited ammo, but the best shooters need to be snipers because they only get one try. For this week's Shooting Challenge, you can take one photo once.

The Challenge

Take one shot and submit it. You cannot retake this shot if you mess up. The pressure is on.


That photo need not be the only photo you take all week. Feel free to warm up today, get comfortable with manual settings or a certain technique. But whatever you submit should be a wholly new (subject, framing, etc) photo - and before you hit the shutter, agree with yourself that "this is the photo I'm going to submit."

The Technique

Why am I having you do this?

Digital is great in that we can take more risks and snap off more attempts to capture the perfect candid or wildlife photo. Cheap, reusable flash memory provides an endless cache of artistic possibilities.


But with film, there was always a cost - even if the financial aspect wasn't a big deal, one always had a limited roll of film in the camera. We were choosier about what we photographed. We were forced to have poise. We were forced to self-edit from the moment of acquisition.

The Example

OK, so our lead shot might have taken 100 tries to get right, but I thought that the "1" had a nice thematic tie with this challenge. It's by drcorneilus, a view from the back of a fire truck station in Eugene, OR.


The Rules

1. Submissions need to be your own.
2. Photos must be taken since this contest was announced (read more on that above).
3. Explain, briefly, the equipment, settings, technique and story behind shot.
4. Email submissions to, not me.
5. Include 970px wide image (200KB or less) AND a 2560x1600 sized in email. I know that your photo may not fall into those exact high rez dimensions, so whatever native resolution you're using is fine.
6. One submission per person.
7. Use the proper SUBJECT line in your email (more info on that below)
8. You agree to the Standard Contest Rules - though we DO accept non-US resident submissions.
9. If the image contains any material or elements that are not owned by you and/or which are subject to the rights of third parties, and/or if any persons appear in the image, you are responsible for obtaining, prior to submission of the photograph, any and all releases and consents necessary to permit the exhibition and use of the image in the manner set forth in these rules without additional compensation. If any person appearing in any image is under the age of majority in their state/province/territory of residence the signature of a parent or legal guardian is required on each release.


Send your best photo by Monday, May 2nd at 8AM Eastern to with "One" in the subject line. Save your files as JPGs, and use a FirstnameLastnameONE.jpg (970px wide) and FirstnameLastnameONEWallpaper.jpg (2560px wide) naming conventions. Include your shooting summary (camera, lens, ISO, etc) in the body of the email along with a story of the shot in a few sentences. And don't skip this story part because it's often the most enjoyable part for us all beyond the shot itself!

Mark Wilson is the founder of photography blog Life, Panoramic and Philanthroper, a daily deal site for nonprofits.


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