Megan and Christal Goddard had planned to travel from Santa Fe to Washington State in August 2020, where they'd wed along the Columbia River near Kalama—then COVID-19 public health orders forced a change.
Instead of saying their vows with an audience of 60 friends and family followed by a reception, the brides chose an intimate ceremony closer to home with only two guests—each of their sisters as maids of honor—staged just before sunset atop the isolated ivory gypsum at White Sands National Park. Donning gas masks afterward to mark the occasion was Christal's idea, and photographer Logan Monroe chose the spot for the portrait as pink kissed the sky above a mountain in the background.
The image wins first place in the SFR 2021 Photo Contest.
"It was a beautiful day," Monroe tells SFR. "For me, just driving there to White Sands, it felt like for the longest time I had been stuck in Albuquerque. It was so nice to finally have a break from that…and then when we got there and the sun set, it just really made me feel optimistic in a time when I felt really grim."
Those extra efforts to find beauty and small-scale interpersonal connection factored into judging. Gone were the crowded Plaza streets and art market days and, in their place, even more contemplation of the natural world, which is why the panel chose Luke Linhoff as second-place winner for birds crossing a colorful sky at Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge. Third place goes to Gail MacQuesten for the nostalgic and candid look at a family cruising through Santa Fe in their lowrider.
Never Say Goodbye
Old Energy, New Energy on Route 66
Bubo, Great Horned Owl
Sunset on the Rail Trail
See all the winners during a special, socially distanced SFR Photo Show at the Santa Fe Outlet Mall in the window of Unit 116, 10 am to 6 pm Monday-Saturday and 11 am to 6 pm on Sundays, Feb. 18 through March 18, courtesy of Vital Spaces, Monsoon Design and Lost Padre Records. Purchase posters and prints at sfreporter.com/shop.