Some years are lean years as far as the Sun Magazine's photo contest goes -- but not this year. I judge by the number of snapshots that make the first cut. (The magazine photographer goes through the entries and winnows them down to whatever number seems worthwhile to him.) Some years it's been as few as 15; this year Patrick Sandor brought the other judges 30 black and whites and 64 color prints and slides.
Things didn't look that promising before the end of the contest. ++ By the next-to-last day, we had received only 56 black and white and 594 color entries. But the last day 105 black and white photos arrived in the mail, along with 593 color -- so besides being an extraordinarily talented bunch, this year's contestants must be procrastinators.
I sent letters out to the winners; but A. M. Chaplin, who wrote the story that starts on Page 14, had the pleasure of talking to some of them before they had read their mail. "In a job where making phone calls can sometimes get to feel a bit intrusive," she says, "it was very nice to call people and know in advance they were going to be glad to hear from you."