Q2 Preliminary Print Competition has arrived!

Opening April 1st and accepting image submissions through May 20th

Judging event will take place on Sunday, May 21st from 10am – 2pm. You do NOT have to be present at the judging event to enter, but it is a great experience, so try to be there if possible!

Location: Bill Barley’s Studio
71 Crystal Springs Drive, Lexington SC 29073

Are you motivated and ready to increase your skill level? Earn merits towards your PPA degree? Feeling competitive and want to see how you hold your own? Competing in state, district and international print competition gives you valuable feedback on how to constantly improve your skill level, boost the sense of pride in your images and work towards distinguished degrees such as your Craftsman, Masters of Photography or Master Artist. Entering print competitions will make your client work better, too!  Through real, positive constructive criticism, you learn to apply techniques for better images and how to avoid mistakes to improve your all around photography skills.

Being a competitor is more about the photographer as a growing and evolving artist than the other competitors. Sure it’s great to be rewarded for your accomplishments and go head to head with your peers, but self-improvement should be the main goal. Not all great images are great for competition. Just because you create incredible photographs for which your clients will pay you and sing your praises, doesn’t mean the same photographs are appropriate for competition. A great competition image will, however, be one that your clients will greatly appreciate. Competitions have rules; they have to. This ensures a playing ground as level as possible for all competitors. Be sure to check out the 12 elements of a merit image.

PPSC is starting a regular series of quarterly “less formal” print competitions in addition to our Annual Print Competition. Your work will be judged and critiqued by jurors trained to understand the 12 elements of a great photograph. Our goal is to provide a recurring forum to grow your image making skills and creativity.  We will also have fun, great conversations, socialize and receive recognition and awards.

You do not have to be a PPSC member to enter these print competitions. Submissions will be digital images only. We will not be accepting physical prints in any preliminary competition.

Our first quarterly print competition is May 21st at Bill Barley’s studio (71 Crystal Springs Drive, Lexington SC 29073). We would like to invite everyone to submit digital entries at www.printcompetition.com beginning April 1st. Entry deadline is May 20th. Entries are $10 each.

We would also like everyone to attend the competition in May  and will have a social room where you can watch the judging in a relaxed environment. You do not have to submit images to attend the judging of the competition, but we encourage you to enter.

To learn more about print competition, we are having educational meetings in Greenville, Columbia and Charleston where you can learn the details, ask questions and get answers. Visit our PPSC calendar page at www.ppofsc.com for full details and dates.

The Judging Process

During an annual event at least three judges, approved by the PPSC Image Salon Chairperson, will assemble in a controlled environment and examine each accepted entry individually. Digital images will be displayed on an approved calibrated display. Each judge will give a score and an average score will be announced. At this point a judge may challenge the score and declare a reason why he/she believes the image should score higher or lower. The image will be re-scored. Images receiving a score of 80 or higher are considered “deserving of a merit.” In some cases, judges may discuss an image and will often point out specific reasons for the scores. Images receiving a 79 or 80 will be automatically called back near the end of the competition and a final determination will be made as to whether or not the score should remain or if they should be re-scored, thus changing their status as a merit image.

Attending Judging
  • All entrants and event attendees may attend the judging event and are asked to remain silent during the judging process.
  • It is important that all questions for the judges be held until the end of the competition.
  • Entrants should never reveal themselves as the creator of an image until the very end of the competition and all awards have been determined.
  • When possible, a display will be provided for the audience to view the digital images as they are being judged. This display is for reference only and may not have the same color and brightness settings as the monitor used by the judges.
  • After the competition is over and all images have been scored and awards have been assigned, some of the judges may make themselves available to answer questions. At this point, an entrant may identify him/herself and claim their images in order to request feedback.
Entry Fees

Fee is $10 per image/entry. Up to 20 images/entries are allowed per person.  Album entries count as one entry. During our annual print competition, cumulative scores that qualify entrants for “Top South Carolina Photographers” will be calculated using the 4 highest scoring images/entries.

Image Files

As part of the online registration you will be required to upload your image files for competition. You must re-size images to 4000 pixels on the longest edge. Be sure to embed ICC color profile and save at JPEG quality 10. The image file name should coincide with the title of your image. This will be very helpful to the print salon staff.

Entry Process

Once you have selected and prepared your images for competition, go to www.printcompetition.com to submit your entries.

  • All entry forms will be printed from the website.
  • You will be emailed a password when registering on the Print Competition website. Be sure your email address is correct in the PPSC database or you will not receive a password. To verify your email address on file visit www.ppofsc.com to sign in and update all of your current information. Do not wait until the last minute to do this. PPSC is not responsible for incorrect email addresses.
  • Once you receive your password for the print competition website you can go back and edit titles or make other changes, if necessary. Please try to ensure all information is correct at the time of submission. Erroneous submissions and failure to comply with all the rules of the competition WILL result in disqualification.
  • The are no refunds for disqualified image submissions.

Photographic Open Competition Categories

You must designate one of the below categories for each entry.

  • PORTRAIT: Consists of portrait or wedding images.
  • ILLUSTRATIVE: Consists of commercial/industrial images, scenics, pictorials, digital paintings and similar subject matter. Portraits and weddings are not appropriate for this category.
  • ALBUM: EVENT albums consist of time‐sensitive social events, such as weddings, bar mitzvahs, etc. NON‐EVENT albums consist of portrait and storytelling albums.
  • MULTI‐MAKER ALBUM: Images in the album must be the work of the entrants (up to three), with a minimum of 20 images per entrant. Each entrant must individually enter the competition and pay appropriate entry fees. Multi‐ maker albums will be judged as one entry.

Master Artist Competition

There is only one category. This includes restorations and images created by you from one or more images captured by you or others.  We are only judging your editing/creative talent.

  • Artist
Rules and Eligibility

Any entry not following the following rules WILL be automatically disqualified. The Jury Chair will have the authority to make any decision not specifically covered
by salon rules. That decision will be final.

  1. Eligibility: PPSC Image Competition entry is open to everyone to receive a score and/or a critique.  Only current PPSC Members at the time of the competition are eligible for awards.  If your due are not paid and current, you will not be eligible for awards.
  2. Photographic Open entrants must have captured and created the image.
  3. Master Artist entrants can use images they did not capture, but must do all of the artistic editing themselves.
  4. The entrants name shall not appear anywhere on the face of the entry.
  5. No two entries shall be of the same subject/s.
  6. Total number of entries permitted is 20.
  7. Only three entries per sub-category will be accepted.
  8. The image or subject that is included in an album or print cannot be entered as an individual entry in any other category.
  9. Entries previously scoring 80 or above in any PPSC or PPA endorsed competition are NOT eligible.
    1. EXCEPTION: In the event that DISTRICT judging occurs before the PPSC Competition, you ARE permitted to enter the same images into the PPSC print competition as they have been entered into DISTRICT competition. If images you have entered into DISTRICT receive a merit (score 80 or higher) prior to South Carolina judging, the image will NOT be disqualified. Images entered into any PPSC or other PPA endorsed competition in prior years/judging periods which have received a score of 80 or higher are still NOT eligible.
    2. Images entered into any PPSC events as “fun” or “feedback competitions” which are not official image competitions, are all eligible entries.
  1. Retouching is permissible on entries in the Photographic Open classification. However, excessive retouching may result in a lower score or placement out of the merit range.
  2. Entrant Certification of Responsibility:
    1. In Photographic Open Competition, the Entrant must certify that he or she has created, composed, and made the original exposures and the processing and any special effects were done by the maker or by a lab following directions of the maker.
    2. In Master Artist Competition, the Entrant must certify that all the processing and any special effects were done by the maker.
  1. No photograph or album will be eligible that has been made under the supervision of an instructor or as part of a class assignment.
  2. If a person is in the image, then you must have a model release on record. You will indicate that you have such release on the entry form. You may not be required to submit the actual release form at the time of entry.
  3. Entry form must be completed in full.

A Gallery of Images that received awards at the 2014 PPSC Image Competition