Exhibit Departments


Click here to view 2019 Photography Winners

(fǝ tog’ rǝ-fi): The art, hobby, or profession of taking photographs and developing and printing the film or processing the digitized array image.

About the Department

We take a little different approach in our Photography Exhibit, than other county fairs in the state do.

We believe that a photograph is that “special moment” in time that the photographer wants to always be able to recall…and wants to share that “special moment” with others.

We don’t just display the winners in our exhibit…we hang every photo that is brought to us… your “special moment” in time.

IT’S YOUR TIME… to hear a friend, a neighbor, a patient, a customer say to you ”I saw your photograph at the Ventura County Fair….it was great….thank you so much for sharing”. IT’S YOUR TIME…. IT’S YOUR TIME!

This is an adult competition.
The competition is open to residents of Ventura County, Agoura and Westlake Village who are 18 years of age and older.

To create a well-rounded and just competition for all photography submissions, the entries are categorized by the photographer’s level. Please note our guidelines:

1. Amateur – one who engages in photography for their own pleasure and has basic limited knowledge or skill set.

2. Advanced Amateur -one who engages in photography, has taken various workshops or classes and has a higher skill set. Photographers in this category may have received passive compensation for their work.

3. Professional – one who makes a living from or selling photography, or have their photographs printed in newsprint or other publication on a continual basis.
All Photographs must be PRE-ENTERED prior to photograph being accepted.

Entry forms may be mailed, hand delivered the to fairgrounds Administrative Office at 10 W Harbor Blvd., Ventura, CA  93001 or entered online at www.venturacountyfair.org.  No emailed entry forms accepted.

Entry forms accepted: June 7-July 20, 2020.  You can enter online at www.venturacountyfair.org – June 7-July 20, 2020.  Online entries close at 11:59 PM
All photography entries must be pre-entered. Entry forms may be mailed, hand delivered to the Fairgrounds Administration Office at 10 W. Harbor Blvd., Ventura, CA 93001 or entered online at the fair’s website at www.venturacountyfair.org.  Entry forms can be found on the Fair’s website and at the Fairgrounds Administration Office.

See Photography Entry Guide for contest guidelines.

Bring Photographs to Fairgrounds on: Friday, July 24, Saturday, July 25 and Sunday, July 26, 2020 – 10:00 AM-5:00 PM.

Where to take/pick-up Photographs at Fairgrounds:
Enter the main gate of the Fairgrounds located next to the Administration Building. The Photography Building will be the first permanent structure on the right side of the main street. The building is located behind the large barbecue vendor.

Pick-up Photographs:
Photographs are to be picked up Monday, August 17, 2020 – 12:00 Noon-7:00 PM.  All photographs not claimed on Monday, August 17, 2019 become the property of the Fair and will be discarded unless prior arrangements have been made with Superintendent.
What makes a great photograph? Traditionally it was an issue of aesthetics… (what is beautiful?). However, today’s experts are interested in both the beauty of an image and its intellectual meaning. Aesthetics: color and design, composition, line and texture, balance, sharpness and depth-of-field. Intellectual Aspect: mystery, ambiguity, contradiction, humor and social relevance.


 The Departments

» Academic Rodeo
» Agriculture
» Amateur Art
» Floriculture
» Gems and Minerals
» Hobbies and Collections
» Home Arts
» Horse Shows
» Large Livestock
» Photography
» Professional Art
» Small Livestock
» Uncle Leo’s Barn
» Youth Expo

Click here for the
2020 Photography Entry Guide

Adult Photography Entry Form

Lou Cunningham

I have lived and worked in Ventura County for over twenty years. My main interests are photography, stained glass and fishing. I also enjoy serving the community.

I started taking pictures with my grandma’s old Kodak in Wisconsin when I was 9 years old. I remember using the old rolls of film. I remember mowing lawns to raise the money to buy the film, but sometimes could never afford to get it developed. I’m sure that somewhere somebody probably has discovered some of my old pictures. Over the years, like most people, I’ve taken thousands of pictures.

I believe that taking photos not only preserves the history of my being, but also the history of this country. What I look for in my award winning photos (at least, I believe they are) is secondarily the subject matter and the background but primarily the focal point which is the total composition. I feel that the greatest photo doesn’t have to be your best but only needs to grab the eye and the imagination of the viewer. After all, remember that our minds are like a camera and that we all can visualize someone, something or someplace that we’ve been or seen that has touched our lives. 

The Photography Department is presented by the Ventura County Transportation Commission.

Bud Light, Ventura County Fair sponsorChumash Casino, Ventura County Fair sponsorChevrolet, Ventura County Fair sponsorChumash Casino, Ventura County Fair sponsor