Ocean and Coastal Pictures Tell the Story

Dylan McDaniel's "Blanket of Rain" was the Judges' 3rd Choice Winner

From gorgeous coastlines and beautiful birds to underwater sea life and happy kids, photographs from the California Ocean and Coastal Amateur Photography Contest are on exhibit at our Santa Monica Pier Aquarium (SMPA) beginning March 1.

The California Coastal Commission, the Thank You Ocean Campaign, and Fairmont Hotels & Resorts sponsor the annual contest. The photos selected for the exhibit represent winning entries from over the years. Santa Monica’s Mayor Richard Bloom, who is also a Coastal Commissioner, requested the traveling exhibit make a stop in Santa Monica.

“I am excited to present science and art together to educate the general public about how interconnected these two disciplines are,” Aquarium Director Vicki Wawerchak said. “The ability to see what the ocean looks like underwater through this exhibit is a great tool to inspire awareness and conservation of the ocean environment. We are pleased to partner with the California Coastal Commission to bring this opportunity to our Aquarium.”

The SMPA uses space in its Dorothy Green Room to exhibit an array of art installations that connect to the marine environment. Exhibits rotate through every four to eight weeks, offering a variety of artists the opportunity to present selections of marine-related work. The exhibits have highlighted creatures from Alaska to Tahiti, depicted in photographs, pen and inks, digitally created images and watercolors.

The Aquarium is open to the public from 2 to 5 p.m., Tuesday through Friday, and from 12:30 to 5:00 p.m. weekends. The marine science education center is closed Mondays.

To view winners throughout the years, visit the Coastal Commission's contest home page.