Stunning snapshots captured from behind the lens are being sought in a new competition which will see the best entries transformed into greeting cards to raise funds for Waipuna Hospice.

'Your Portraits of Our Place' is a photo competition encouraging people to submit photos they've taken from the Western Bay of Plenty that showcase what they love about the District.

Run by Western Bay of Plenty District Council, the competition will see the 15 best photos selected and turned into greeting cards that will be sold to the public as a fundraising initiative for the hospice.

Council's Community Relationships Manager, Frank Begley, says the idea for the competition arose after Waipuna Hospice approached Council for help creating some greeting cards.

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"Rather than using generic images of the District, we thought this was an awesome opportunity to get our communities involved and get people sharing what they love about the Western Bay.

"Not only does it inspire excitement and community spirit, but it's also for a really good cause."

Waipuna Hospice Fundraiser, Ingrid Hennessey, says the money raised will go towards the specialist nursing and medical care the hospice give patients in the community with a chronic, life-ending illness.

She hopes the cards will help kick start the now rare tradition of receiving a card.

"We're really excited about collaborating with our community on this project. It gets us paying more attention to the beauty we often take for granted, images that evoke memories, feelings of optimism and 'the little things'."

The competition follows on from Council's 2014 Portraits of our Place campaign which saw the residents work with Council to create six themes that represent what they love about the District.

The themes have been transformed into six categories for the competition: Just Coasting (Kiwiana, holidays, coastal lifestyle); Nature Nurture (rivers, beaches and reserves); Bountiful Bay (produce and products, creativity and growth); Community heart (special memories, community); Kia Kaha (culture and tradition); and Land lovers (rural, land).

Photos can be entered by posting them to the 'Your Portraits of our Place' post on Council's Facebook page or by emailing photocomp@westernbay.govt.nz
Entries should include a short caption including what category the photo is entered in.

The top 15 photos will be selected from across the categories and be turned into greeting cards, which will be released for public sale in May (a generic 10 pack) and later this year (a Christmas-themed five pack). The winning entrants will have their name credited on their greeting card, and the 'supreme' winner will also receive an Apple iPad Mini.

People can enter as many times as they like. The winning photos must be able to be supplied in high resolution form after the competition closes. For full terms and conditions visit www.westernbay.govt.nz/your-portraits

The competition is open from today to Sunday, April 17, 2016.