What’s The Purpose Of Entering A Photo Contest?

Sometimes it seems like it takes more effort than it’s worth. Not only do you have to keep up with your regular business and client work, but then you have to add in creating specialty images to enter into photo contests too? Is it really worth it?


A photo contest ultimately does three things for you.

1. It boosts your confidence. Nothing can put a smile on your face more than being recognized by your peers. When they recognize your photographic talent, you know you’ve accomplished quite a bit in your career.

2. It educates you. Taking photographs for clients is completely different than taking photographs for awards. You look at things differently, put new perspectives on your subject matter, and learn more about the true art of photography.

3. It proves your expertise. When you market your photography, your client judges you based on your images and your marketing materials. When you add “award winning” in, it changes the dynamics. Your client instantly knows you’ve been recognized outside of the typical business world, and others appreciate what you do as well.

Win a few awards, and your business can easily become more professional, more saleable – which means you can charge more for what you do.

If you enter a local contest, you can list “award winner”.

If you enter an international contest, you can list “international award winner”.

With just a couple of wins behind you, you could quickly improve your status by becoming an “International Award Winning Photographer”.

And you could win some pretty cool prizes along the way too.

Here’s a look at contests happening right now.

2nd Annual Great Outdoors Photo Contest 2011

Have a chance to show off what you can create in nature, and have a chance at winning a week long Polar Bear Adventure.

The Photo Contest

Browse through this blog to find a variety of contests and photography competitions from around the world. They have different categories – portrait, sport, travel, etc – so you should be able to find something corresponding to your interests.

31st Annual Spring Photography Contest

Winning photographs will be published in the November 2011 issue of Photographer’s Forum Magazine, and exhibited at Brooks Institute Gallery.

World Photography Organisation

WPO was created to support the art of photography at all levels, including professional, amateur and students. They have a variety of award opportunities available all year long, including their monthly Facebook photo competition.

Professional Photographers of America

They have a variety of competition programs available to professional photographers, ranging from their international photographic competition, to the AN-NE awards for marketing, to the Affiliate Communication competition for organizations that put out newsletters, magazines or websites.

SanDisk Professional Photography Contest

Would you love to be a part of the SanDisk Professional team and have your images in the Winners Gallery? Four categories include nature, wedding/events, action and fashion.

Photo District News

PDN offers you a variety of chances to enter and win, including The Curator 2011 search for outstanding and undiscovered fine art photography, portrait photography, and the great outdoors.

Still Life Competition

Through the London Photographic Association, enter your still life for a host of prizes.

Travel Photographer of the Year

An international photography competition for amateur and professional photographers.

Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers

A monthly competition exclusively for society members, with over 34 categories to enter – from sports, press and news, to weddings, advertising and architecture.

4 thoughts on “What’s The Purpose Of Entering A Photo Contest?”

  1. Awesome post! With so many opportunities it seems a great way to sharpen your skills and be involved with your craft! It also gives you an excuse to shoot something you might not have otherwise as in self assignment.


Leave a Comment