Photo Contest Judging Criteria

Press Enter to show all options, press Tab go to next option

West_Simon_Student_Experimental_Enhanced_True_ColorsPhoto by Simon West (Student) - True Color

It All Makes a Difference! 

Remember the judges are watching out for these...


You don’t get a second chance for a good first impression. Does your image meet all entry requirements?
Is the photograph clean and within size limits? Is the foam core mounting board white and clean with smooth edges? Is it the proper 16”x 20” size?

Are the objects in the photo arranged in a meaningful, pleasing manner or are they “haphazard”? Did the photographer use the best angle or otherwise interesting perspective?

Technical Quality
Is the photograph in focus? If not, does it appear to be an intentional effect to enhance the image in some “artistic” way? Watch for proper exposure, shutter speed, white balance, and depth of field.

Relevancy to Category Topic
Is the photo an obvious illustration of the category in which it is entered? Is the category chosen appropriate for the image’s artistic treatment?

Did the photographer pay thoughtful attention to proper lighting of the subject matter? Do any extremes of darkness or brightness lend to or detract from the image content?
Judge’s Tip: “Watch those Hot Spots!”

Creativity/Artistic Merit/Originality
Do all the elements come together with the photographer showing some creative thought or original idea in the making of this image? Was the subject matter selected pictured in a unique way or was something common shown from a non-traditional point-of-view? 

Is there an effectiveness of visual communication between photographer and viewer? Is it eye-catching?


Photo by Sam Berry (Student) - 


Davidson Allen Proficient Wildlife Backyard Hawk at Sunrise
Photo by Allen Davidson (Proficient) - 

Backyard Hawk At Sunset