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Assignment

My Best Photos of August 2018

This assignment ran from Aug 26 to Sep 4, 2018.

This assignment is simple: I want you to share your best photos taken during August 2018.

I have noticed a tendency of submitting older photos into our assignments. I get it, you are sharing your favorite images. However, to really take advantage of Your Shot — a platform where you have the opportunity to receive expert feedback from National Geographic photographers and editors, AND encouragement from your community peers — to become a better photographer and more thoughtful storyteller, you need to keep shooting. You need to keep practicing. I want you to share your BEST photos.

Recently I was taking pictures at a music concert, and because I don't shoot as much as I once did, I was extremely rusty. Two songs into Trombone Shorty's set, I received permission from his publicist to photograph his part of the show. At one point, he wandered into the crowd and I did not do as good of a job as I should have because my mind was racing to calculate the proper exposure instead of focusing on the composition and moments in front of my camera. I eventually got a good picture, but I wasted a few precious minutes of opportunity to make fantastic pictures because I was not mentally prepared.

Just like you, I want to become a better photographer and more thoughtful storyteller. I too need to keep practicing. I too need to keep shooting. I too need to follow the light, observe the composition, anticipate the moment, and make pictures that share visual stories. You may feel pressure to submit only photos from exotic locations. However, I encourage to remember that the theme of this assignment is "My Best Photos of August 2018." Maybe the best photo you take this month will be today. Challenge yourself and make this your goal.

I am trusting you that every photo submitted follows the one rule for this assignment: it was taken in the month of August 2018. Please don't lie, you are only cheating yourself.

You can submit two photos. Deadline is September 4, 2018 at 12PM EST.

David Y. Lee
Producer, Nat Geo Your Shot

FYI - I am planning to continue these "My Best Photos of (Month)" assignments to encourage you to keep shooting new photos. Keep shooting. Keep sharing. This is how you will become a better photographer and more thoughtful storyteller. One photo at a time. Keep it up. You got this.

Curated by:

David Lee
Producer, Nat Geo Your Shot
Assignment Status
  • Open

    Everyone’s welcome to contribute their best shot to open assignments. Learn more.
  • Closed

    Completed assignments—with our favorite photos included—will be published online. Learn more.
  • Published

    Once the submission period is over, we'll review all contributions and select our favorite images to be included in the story. Learn more.
Published Sep 17, 2018.
Thank you for your contributions!

My Best Photos of March 2019 is Now Open

Posted mar 26, 2019

In case you missed it, “My Best Photos of March 2019” assignment is now open. The prompt is simple: share your best two photos taken from March 1 to 31, 2019. Submission deadline is April 1, 2019 at 12PM EST.

Also, because I loved the “On January 1, 2019, I…” and “On March 1, 2019, I…” assignments, I am doing this again for April 1, 2019. The prompt for this assignment is simple: share your best two photos taken on April 1, 2019. The assignment will open on March 31, 2019 at 12PM EST and close on April 2, 2019 at 12PM EST.

I hope you will also recognize that these “On (Day), I…” and “My Best Photos of (Month)” assignments as an opportunity — whether you are a professional or an amateur, these assignments require you to submit NEW photos. These assignments reset the playing field for every participating community member and is a new chance to receive Editor’s Favorites, Editor’s Notes, and be published.

DYL

"My Best Photos of February 2019" assignment is open

Posted feb 26, 2019

In case you missed it, “My Best Photos of February 2019” assignment is now open. The prompt is simple: share your best two photos taken from February 1-28, 2019. Submission deadline is March 1, 2019 at 12PM EST.

Also, because I loved the “On January 1, 2019, I…” assignment and final story, I am doing this again for March 1, 2019. The prompt for this assignment is simple: share your best two photos taken on March 1, 2019. The assignment will open on February 28, 2019 at 12PM EST and close on March 2, 2019 at 12PM EST.

On March 11, 2019, I will be launching a one-week assignment for anyone who has NEVER been published — this includes Daily Dozen, final story selection, Photos of the Week, or Photo of the Day.

DYL

Three Upcoming Your Shot assignments

Posted dec 28, 2018

I hope everyone is having a lovely holiday. I want to tell you about three upcoming Your Shot assignments:

On January 1, 2019, I… // The prompt for this assignment is simple: Share photos taken on January 1, 2019 (your local time zone). Launching on December 31, 2018 at 12PM EST. Deadline is January 3, 2019 at 12PM EST.

For Your Shot Instagram (@natgeoyourshot) // I will be curating for photos to feature on the Your Shot Instagram account. You do not need to be on Instagram to participate. Launching on January 2, 2019 at 12 PM EST. Deadline is January 23, 2019 at 12PM EST.

My Best Photos of January 2019 // The prompt for this assignment is simple: Share photos taken from January 1-31, 2019. Launching on January 25, 2019 at 12PM EST. Deadline is February 1, 2019 at 12PM EST.

DYL

My Best Photos of 2018 assignment

Posted dec 11, 2018

"My Best Photos of 2018" assignment has launched. Make sure you turn on your notifications, so you are alerted if we open to a fourth, and maybe even a fifth submission.

In the meantime, to get inspired, check out a gallery of the best images from this year — curated by the Your Shot team from thousands of photographers and over a million photographs.

DYL

My Best Photos of November 2018 launches today (November 24, 2018)

Posted nov 24, 2018

“My Best Photos of November 2018” launches today (November 24, 2018) at 12PM EST. The prompt for this assignment is simple: Share your best two photos taken from November 1-30, 2018. Deadline is December 1, 2018 at 12PM EST.

David Y. Lee
Your Shot Producer

My Best Photos of October 2018 launches tomorrow (10/25/18)

Posted oct 24, 2018

My Best Photos of October 2018 launches tomorrow (October 25, 2018). The prompt for this assignment is simple: Share your best two photos taken from October 1-31, 2018. If your submission does NOT meet this one assignment criteria, you will NOT be selected for the final story. Deadline is November 1, 2018 at 12PM EST.

DYL

My Best Photos of October 2018 launches on October 25, 2018

Posted oct 12, 2018

I want to remind everyone that My Best Photos of October 2018 will launch on Thursday October 25, 2018. Submission deadline will be Thursday November 1, 2018. I hope everyone has been out taking pictures. You get 15 uploads per week, so take advantage; I have already uploaded five images this week.

Follow the light, observe the compositions, anticipate the moments, and go have fun as a photographer. I look forward to your best photos from the month.

DYL

My Best Photos of October 2018

Posted oct 1, 2018

FYI — The "My Best Photos of October 2018" assignment is tentatively scheduled to launch on  October 25, 2018. Because you participated in "My Best Photos of August 2018," this is your advance notice...

DYL

"My Best Photos of September 2018" is open

Posted sep 24, 2018

"My Best Photos of September 2018" has launched. Submission deadline is October 1, 2018 at 12PM EST.

Submission deadline for "Everyday Moments" is tomorrow, September 25, 2018 at 12PM EST. Your Shot photographer Shannon Hunt has opened the assignment up for four submissions.

DYL

Final Story Published

Posted sep 17, 2018

The final story for "My Best Photos of August 2018" has been published. The 31 photos selected for this final story — for the 31 days in August — are sequenced in chronological order, creating a visual diary of our world during the month.

Like I did previously with "We Love Animals" and "I Want to Go There…" story, I started a discussion board conversation where you can ask me questions about my editing and curation process.

For those who were not selected for the final story, I highly encourage you to participate in our "Everyday Moments" assignments — curated by Your Shot photographer Shannon Hunt, and part of my Mentorship Program. Anytime you are picking up your camera to take a picture, your intention is to document an everyday moment. Shannon is doing an excellent job curating this assignment. Submission deadline is September 25, 2018.

"My Best Photos of September 2018" assignment is scheduled to launch on September 23, 2018. The prompt of this assignment is simple: share your best photos taken from September 1-30, 2018. Submission deadline for this assignment will be October 3, 2018. These "My Best Photos of (Month)" assignments encourages you to keep shooting and sharing new photos. This is how you will grow into a better photographer and a more thoughtful storyteller - one photo at a time. Keep shooting. You got this.

DYL

Editor's Update 01

Posted aug 31, 2018

I am really enjoying this assignment. Sometimes I feel like a broken record — but to become a better photographer and more thoughtful storyteller, it is important to keep shooting. It is important to keep practicing. Whenever I work into a room, I am always looking at the light, even if I don't have my camera. I am always taking mental photographs — like right now as I type this Editor's Update, I am distracted by this fellow staffer sitting in the kitchen wearing a purple shirt, eating alone as he checks his smartphone. The mood is quiet, and I find myself composing a frame in my head while imagining how I would make a great photo.

The submission deadline is September 4, 2018 at 12PM EST — which means right now, it being August 31 at 12:51PM EST, you still have less than 12 hours to get out and shoot new photos. Maybe your best photo taken in August 2018 will be shot in a few minutes.

But PLEASE do not submit photos taken in September. I will be repeating this assignment theme with a "My Best Photos of September 2018" — so you can submit then. I am telling you this now, so you can start planning ahead. Keep checking back on our assignments page to learn about this, and future assignments to participate in.

For example on Tuesday September 4, 2018 I will be launching a new assignment called "Everyday Moments" which will be curated with Your Shot photographer Shannon Hunt. This assignment is part of a mentorship program I am developing in my efforts to inspire you to become better photographers and more thoughtful storytellers.

Have a great weekend everyone.

DYL

David Lee

David Lee

Producer, Nat Geo Your Shot
Before joining the Your Shot team, David covered the White House for Time and Newsweek, and served as an official photographer for Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. He also started The Waiting List, a non-profit storytelling project humanizing the statistics of organ donation.