New stamp art contest calls for accurate depictions of osprey

(Pexels)

CASPER, Wyo. — Osprey is the name and stamp collecting is the game.

Artists who think they can create catchy and accurate image of an osprey may want to consider submitting their ideas to the Wyoming Game and Fish Department.

“Submissions open soon for the 2021 Wyoming Game and Fish Department Collectible Conservation Stamp art contest,” the department said on Monday, Oct. 7. “The subject of the 37th annual contest is the osprey, and the winning image will be featured on the 2021 collectible conservation stamp.”

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Artist submissions will be accepted beginning Jan. 2, 2020, but artists can begin to peruse the online rulebook now. 

“The osprey is a unique and challenging subject for artists,’ said Margaret James, who organizes the contest for Game and Fish. ‘Judges will focus closely on the anatomical accuracy of the artist’s depiction and ecological correctness of any habitat. Judges will ensure any habitat illustrated is habitat found in Wyoming.’”

Osprey are birds of prey and are among the largest in the state.

“Their backs and long, narrow wings are dark brown and their bellies and chests are white,” Game and Fish adds. “They have a white head and crown with a dark horizontal eye patch. Osprey are typically found near lakes and rivers as their diet is comprised mostly of fish.”

“Their habitat is closely associated to lodgepole pine, Douglas fir, Englemann spruce-subalpine fir and cottonwood-riparian trees. Osprey nest atop trees, poles or cliffs near their water source. In Wyoming, they can be found nesting over much of the state, primarily near lakes and rivers. In the winter they migrate to Central and South America.”

Judges will consider the accuracy of body coloration, shape, color pattern and plumage. If prey or habitat are depicted, these will be judged for accuracy as well.

“Entries determined to be biologically inaccurate will be ineligible to win a monetary award and may only be eligible to win an Honorable Mention,” Game and Fish says. “All artwork must be the artist’s original creation. Any artwork recognized as a copy will be ineligible for a prize.”

The deadline for submissions is 5 pm March 2, 2020.