An annual photo contest that aims to capture the essence of Downtown Long Beach through the lens of everyday photographers has returned this month, and there’s still time to submit your photos for accolades and prizes.

The photo competition, DTLB Unfiltered, invites photographers of all skill levels and professions to hit the streets and capture both big and small moments from around the Downtown area. What’s more, it’s free to enter.

Charlie Nguyen’s photo “Huskie” was a winner of the 2022 DTLB Unfiltered photo contest. Photo by Charlie Nguyen.

The competition has been organized by the Downtown Long Beach Alliance for the last six years, with past winners having snapped some of the most captivating photos of Long Beach ever documented, showcasing the city’s rich history, character and nuances.

“This competition goes beyond just capturing stunning visuals. It’s a showcase of the heartbeat of Downtown Long Beach, driving attention and support to our local businesses and neighborhoods,” DLBA President and CEO Austin Metoyer said in a statement. “Each photograph tells a story of our city’s beauty and resilience, and we’re proud to facilitate this celebration of our community’s unique character.”

Laura Marin’s photo “La Catrina at the 7th Annual Dia de Los Muertos Festival” was a winning photo from the 2022 DTLB Unfiltered photo contest.

Photographers are asked to submit photos from around the Downtown Long Beach area only, under six categories:

  • People, Places and Events
  • Skyline and Architecture
  • Flora and Fauna
  • Shop Small (new)
  • Food and Drink (new)
  • Outside the Frame (new)

Photographers are also invited to meet up on Saturday, Oct. 14 at the Long Beach Convention Center for a daytime photography walk with veteran photographer Travis Stock-Tucker of Happily Bearded After. The walk will take photographers around the area, ending at the Downtown Art Walk happening that afternoon. If you’re not connecting the dots already, that may or may not be a fantastic place to get some shots for the “People, Places and Events” category.

Aaron Barrera’s photo “Mountains” was a winning selection in the 2022 DTLB Unfiltered photography competition. Photo by Aaron Barrera.

Photos for the contest must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. on Oct. 22.

The winning photos will be selected by a panel of judges appointed by the Arts Council for Long Beach with a grand announcement scheduled for late October. The winners in each category will receive $200 in gift cards to Downtown businesses and, of course, those sweet, sweet bragging rights.

For a comprehensive understanding of the competition, including terms, conditions, category specifics and the photo submission form, visit You can also find more info on the photography walk by visiting the website.