Unexpected Moments: Photo Contest Winners

CG Pro Prints Unexpected Moments Photography Contest

Our latest photography contest was launched on April Fool's Day and was inspired by the light-hearted and frivilous spirit of the holiday. It's not often that the candid, more unexpected moments are celebrated in professional photography. For this contest, we wanted to inspire some laughs and highlight the non-traditional, behind-the-scenes moments. You know, the images your client may not expect to see in their final gallery, but end-up loving even more. Scenes like the flower girl picking a wedgie (see above photo by Emma Vidmar), unexpected animal photobombs, temper tantrums, and genuine laughs (often at other's expense)! Sometimes, the best photos are found in the most unexpected moments and this couldn't have been more evident based on the submissions we received.

With over 100 entries, 1,000+ votes, and countless laughs during the judging, the decision was not an easy one. Checkout our "Staff Selection Winner" as well as our top ten additional favorites that were awarded "Honorable Mention." The laughs were too good to keep to ourselves! We hope you enjoy them as much as we did!

CG Pro Prints Staff Selection Winner

"Brotherly Love" by Julie Fairman
Happenstance Photography

Happenstance Photography Portland Oregon Children Photographer

"This photo was just a fun little surprise--I didn’t even realize I had captured it right away. I have photographed these brothers before--they are always fun and adorable! This time, the bit of a downhill slope caused an unexpected tip-over, and the little brother just thought it was hilarious! So did I!" - Julie F.

Honorable Mentions

"Bubbles From The Beluga!" by Kristen Stoltenberg
Kristen Alise Photography

Kristen Alise Photography beluga whale childrens portrait

"While on a family vacation last summer, we went to an aquarium in Connecticut. The beluga whale was very interactive with our kids. It would follow them around and also liked posing for the camera. It was nearing closing time and there weren't many people around so my kids sat down by the beluga whale to eat some ice cream. It swam up to them and blew some bubbles. The kids loved it and I was fortunate enough to have my camera ready." - Kristen S.


"Beware of the Wind!" by Gerardo Brucker

GABFOTO Colorado childrens portrait photographer

"This was supposed to be the classic picture in which my daughter Rebecca would open a cattail and then blow on the fluffy seeds coming out with the sun as a background. In her usual approach to things, she decided to take things into her own hands and make as many seeds as possible by vigorously breaking the seed head with her hands. The plan was good until the wind changed directions. I was happy to be there with my camera to catch the sudden reversal of fortune." - Gerardo B.


"Wardrobe Malfunction" by Andrea MacDonald
Rooted in Love Photo

Rooted in Love Photography Disney World Princess Shoot

"This photo was from when I took our family to Disney World for the first time. I had this grand image in my mind about how she was going to look like a beautiful princess in her dress in front of the castle. It was very early in the morning to beat the crowds so she was cranky and then when the crown fell over her eyes, we all laughed and it ended up being my favorite photo from the session. I can practically hear her laughing." - Andrea M.


"That Embarrassing Itch" by Sharon Borla
Sharon Borla Photography

Sharon Borla Photography scottish cow portraits

"This image was taken just this spring and is of a purebred Scottish Highlander cow on a small farm located in Southeastern Montana. 
I was a bit embarrassed to submit it, but it really is hilarious--even more so in person!" - Sharon B.


"But I Wanna Ride the Pony!" by Jessica Lawson
Painted Freckles Photography

Painted Freckles Photography spring childrens portrait

"This little girl's mom kept promising her pony rides if she just kept smiling for the camera. It only worked for so long, as you can see,
before she decided she'd been dangled that carrot one too many times and she began screaming for that pony ride.  It is one of my favorites!" - Jessica L.


"Potty Training Advice" by Jamie Lucido
Jamie Lucido Photography

Jamie Lucido Photography family and childrens portraits

"Sister snagged Mom's shoes and gave her brother potty training advice!" - Jamie L. 


"Seeking Shelter" by Nathan Adams
Optical Tranquility

Optical Tranquility by Nathan Adams seashore landscape photography

"This image was shot almost a year ago to the date on May 7, 2016 at Melbourne Beach behind my house. On this morning I was wondering around looking for something to shoot when I saw this effect take place as I walked the shore line. I took it upon myself to set this shot up then patiently waited until the sea foam hit the shell at the right speed and this was the best result out of about 10 attempts.
This was shot on a Canon 1D Mark IV and a 70-200mm f/2.8 L Non IS @ 1/1250 shot wide open at f/2.8 with an ISO of 100" - Nathan A.


"Unhappy Toddler" by Valerie McClanahan
Cajun Girl Photography

Cajun Girl Photography family portrait photographer

"This photo was taken in the beautiful Longfellow State Park in southern Louisiana. This sweet little family has allowed me to photograph them for the past couple of years. Last fall was a little challenging since their baby girl is now a toddler. I did manage to capture some good shots of the three of them, but this photo shows how the session started out :) Thank goodness these mommies are really laid back and didn’t let a little tantrum ruin the day! Real life y’all!" - Valerie M.


"Spit Up" by Shauna Wells
Olivia Andrew Photography

Olivia and Andrew Photography newborn photographer

"Always expect the unexpected! I really thought he was about to smile when little B decided to spit up instead. I didn't even realize I had captured this until after we had cleaned up the mess." - Shauna B.


"The Engagement Dog" by Heidi Barnes
Heidi Barnes Photography

H Barnes Photography engagement photographer

"This adorable couple from Scottsbluff, NE, and I were just starting their engagement session at the Scottsbluff National Monument.  They really wanted to include their fur babies. I loved the idea! As we were playing around and getting the dogs ready for their portion of the shoot, Brooke, my bride-to-be said, “We could try putting it on his nose, he does it with treats.” I thought that was a great idea. The dog sat very nicely for a few shots then all of a sudden he flipped it up with his nose and tried to eat it. Thankfully, Chris, the groom-to-be stopped that from happening. But of course, as a photographer, I immediately starting looking through the photos I had just taken to see if I managed to “Get the Shot." Sure enough, with all the luck in the world, I managed to capture this unforgettable photo. All of our hearts were pounding for a few minutes before we found the ring on the ground. I also begged them to bring the dog to the wedding!" - Heidi B.


Thank you to everyone who participated in our "Unexpected Moments" Photo Contest! We invite you to tell us your favorites in the comments below. Look out for more photography contests throughout the year!

Megan Sievert