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Author Topic: Submitting images to a photo contest  (Read 1355 times)

Wawe

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Submitting images to a photo contest
« on: October 18, 2017, 06:19:10 AM »

Hi all,

Iíve recently become interested in submitting my images to some photo contests and thought it might be good to first ask advice from more experienced photographers in order not to make all the rookie mistakes. Iím not completely new to photography in general, having been an enthusiast photographer for some five years now but have newer taken part in any photo contests.

My images would probably best be described as travel photography, and I shoot landscapes, cityscapes, street and nature & wildlife in my travels. I showcase my work on my website where you can see my portfolio as well as other galleries if youíre interested.

Iím looking for recommendations on the best contests to take part in. In choosing the best ones for me, Iím paying attention to the following aspects:

  • Terms and condition
(Iím, of course, not willing to give away the copyright to my images etc.
Iím primarily looking for competitions that allow image editing beyond simple color corrections but welcome also recommendations on contests with more strict, photo journalism like rules
I donít know if there are any but if the contest would allow a photo to be submitted in more than one contests that would be great as well)
  • Exposure the winners get
  • Actual prizes
(I would prefer cash but gear is always welcome as well)
  • Participation fees

Thanks everyone in advance for any help!

-Wawe
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langier

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Re: Submitting images to a photo contest
« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2017, 08:50:44 AM »

Always read the fine print... many contests take non-exclusive, perpetual rights, no royalties forever as part of the "privilege" of entry. Others offer "exposure" but charge large fees.

Double-check the rules. The 2012 National Geo Travel winner was DQed just a day or two after he won...cloned out an unnoticeable plastic bag in the shadows that he could have just cropped or darkened and in any case, it made little difference to the pix other than aesthetics, yet broke the rules.

Photoshelter publishes a guide annually that you may be able to find and download from their site that lists the good and the ugly contests and offers pretty good advice.

Sometimes a good way of prepare this is to have a folder on your hard drive of photos ready to go through the year for various contests. You may even prepare different versions of your work, some with your "spin", others more subtle and true to the movement.

In any case, competition is good in that you start thinking of deadlines and, best of all motivation to produce new work and improving your vision and craft.
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Wawe

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Re: Submitting images to a photo contest
« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2017, 10:12:04 AM »

Thanks for your help!

Do you have examples of contests that would exploit participants by taking the rights to the images submitted in the way you mention? Sounds like the organizers in these cases are thinking very short-term as I would guess contests like these would quickly receive some very bad publicity.

-Wawe
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BobShaw

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Re: Submitting images to a photo contest
« Reply #3 on: October 23, 2017, 05:20:39 PM »

Do you have examples of contests that would exploit participants by taking the rights to the images submitted in the way you mention?
Most of them. Travel companies run travel photo contests so that they can get free images for their own publicity. Governments are the worst.
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NancyP

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Re: Submitting images to a photo contest
« Reply #4 on: October 24, 2017, 08:33:23 PM »

On the other hand, if it is a non-profit organization that you support - why not? Since I am not pro, and don't need the measly amount of money one can get for an image, I would be glad for a conservation organization or state conservation department to use one of my photos for free. Lots of people submit photos to the state conservation department for use in the free monthly magazine, the calendar, or online.
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BobShaw

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Re: Submitting images to a photo contest
« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2017, 01:29:18 AM »

On the other hand, if it is a non-profit organization that you support - why not? Since I am not pro, and don't need the measly amount of money one can get for an image, I would be glad for a conservation organization or state conservation department to use one of my photos for free. Lots of people submit photos to the state conservation department for use in the free monthly magazine, the calendar, or online.

I don't know if you get paid a measly amount of money for whatever it is that you do for a living, but some like and need to get a reasonable payment for what they do for a living.

If you are passionate about some cause then OK. However a lot of non profit organisations actually have huge amounts of money and one way to get more is to get services for free.

As for government departments, well I supported a major cause and a photo I gave them finished up in a national newspaper. No credit given but that was OK at the time. All for the cause. 12 months later for their annual visitor guide they decided that a photo competition would remove the need for paid photos from local photographers.
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The View

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Re: Submitting images to a photo contest
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2017, 12:03:55 PM »

Almost all photo contests are scams.

They have high entry fees, questionable judges, copyright theft, tiny prize money, and no effect on the career of a photographic artist.

Their only effect is to make money for the organizers.

It is much better to use social media or get any other form of publication, like book publishing, magazines, exhibitions, newsletters, to promote your work.
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Slobodan Blagojevic

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Re: Submitting images to a photo contest
« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2017, 12:16:01 PM »

Almost all photo contests are scams...

Not almost all, but ALL generalizations are wrong... including this one ;)
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