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2022 Heritage Art Award

Celebrating Depictions of Waterfowl and Their Habitat

The Waterfowl Festival has received a generous contribution of $5,000 to be used solely for cash awards for original waterfowl compositions to be judged and ultimately displayed and offered for sale at the 2022 Waterfowl Festival.

The genesis of the Waterfowl Festival was initiated 52 years ago by a number of individuals who shared a common belief in the beauty of abundant waterfowl thriving in their habitat throughout the Chesapeake Bay Watershed and nearby coastal bays…spanning more than 64,000 square miles and encompassing parts of six states – Delaware, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia – and the entire District of Columbia.


Artwork featuring various waterfowl plus waterfowl habitat areas, vistas, etc., has always been a very important theme for the Waterfowl Festival and we wish to commemorate the critically important contribution and value that waterfowl art has been for the Festival and its visitors through Waterfowl Heritage Art Award!


Judging shall take place prior to the Festival’s opening ceremonies on Thursday, November 10, 2022 between 2:30 – 3:30 p.m.  All entries must be in place by 2:00 p.m.

Subsequently, commencing at 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 10th the artwork submitted for judging must be then displayed and available for sale at the artist’s designated art venue and, when sold, must remain on display by the artist’s venue until 4:00 p.m. November 13, 2022.



  • 1st place winner will receive a cash award of $2,500 plus certificate and ribbon;
  • 2nd place winner will receive a cash award of $1,500 plus certificate and ribbon;
  • 3rd place will receive a cash award of $1,000 plus certificate and ribbon

Rules for Submission:

All artwork must be the exhibitor’s original creation. Artworks copied or that duplicate previously published art (such as published paintings, drawings or photographs) in print or online are ineligible for consideration, as are any pieces from the artist’s own previously completed or published works.


Deadline to submit this form: October 15. You must use the form below to apply and to provide the number and dimensions of each piece you intend to enter. Maximum pieces are two (2). The artwork must be in full color, in a medium of the artist’s choice and must be framed to museum standards and wired ready to hang. Composition sizes shall be no smaller than 11 x 14 or larger than 24 x 30.


The Waterfowl Festival must be informed by no later than October 15, 2022 on the number and size(s) of work that the artist intends to enter. (Submission form below)


A panel of three judges, each having a history of support for the conservation of waterfowl and wetlands, will be appointed by the Festival’s Art Committee to judge the eligible art. The judges will be a representative cross section of individuals with expertise in waterfowl biology, waterfowl hunting, effective artistic expression, method and design. Judges selected will serve without compensation.

Judging Criteria: 


  • Visual Appeal: Attractiveness & creativity of the composition, regarding spatial balance, lighting and harmony of subject(s) and background;
  • Anatomical Details of Species: Level and accuracy of detail in all aspects of the anatomy and coloration of the chosen waterfowl species;
  • Habitat Accuracy: Appropriateness and detail depiction of the waterfowl species habitat;
  • General Rendering: Inter-relationship, accuracy and depiction of all individual and collective elements of the composition.


Judging Procedures:


STEP 1: The judges will evaluate and rate each designated artwork piece on a scale of 10 to 1 [with 10 being the highest and 1 the lowest].
STEP 2: The pieces receiving the ten (10) highest scores will be then be judged on a scale of 1 [with 1 representing the very top or 1st place] to 10 [with 10 representing the very bottom or 10th place];
STEP 3: The piece with lowest total cumulative score will be designated by the judges as “1st place”, the piece with the second lowest score designated as “2nd place” and, the piece with the third lowest score designated as “3rd place”.


In case of ties for either 1st, 2nd or 3rd place, the judges will re-judge the tied pieces in accordance with step 3 order to determine/finalize the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place pieces; the selection of the awarded artwork by the judges shall be final.


NOTE: The judges reserve the absolute and unconditional right to withhold the granting of monetary awards if, in their sole opinion and discretion, the submitted artwork is either not in accordance with the stipulated guidelines or does not accurately capture the anatomical characteristics and details of the depicted waterfowl and their natural habitat.

Interested artists must complete the interest form below by October 15.