Competition Guidelines and Rules

During the season we run two competition categories where 3 images may be submitted for both. No separate entry fees are required.

The Print League
The Projected Digital Image (PDI) League

The Len Clarke Memorial Trophy is a separate panel competition usually held in February and does not count towards the print league.

The John Harrison Cup is awarded for the Flora and Fauna round of the League Competition in which “flora” is defined as wild plants, fungi, crops and garden plants growing outdoors.  Fauna is defined as wild animals, birds, insects and fish in the wild, zoos, wildlife parks etc.

All competition entries are judged by an independent external expert.  Entries remain anonymous until the judging has finished and the winners are announced. The dates and subjects for the competitions can be found in the club programme. All images submitted must not only be taken by the entrant, but be their sole work and hold the copyright. A PDI and a PRINT online entry form must be completed for each competition – otherwise you are not eligible to enter.

The Print League & Ladies’ and Gentlemens’ Trophies

Photographs can be home or commercially printed. PRC Digital In Liphook is a possible local shop for commercial printing, but there are online companies where you can upload images, such as DSCL Colour Labs. They are very competitively priced and turnaround time is usually a couple of days.

All images must be mounted on mount card/board not exceeding 50cm x 40cm.  White is the generally accepted colour for competitions and exhibitions, though other colours may be used. Mounts can be bought pre-cut or the prints can be fixed using mount spray. Mount board can be purchased from Midhurst Framing or an online company such as Paper Spectrum.  The size of the prints is at the photographers discretion. The minimum size is 6” x 4” up to a maximum which will fit on the mount board.

Each print must have the title and entrant’s name clearly written on the back at the bottom right hand corner and large enough to be read in low light.  Entries must be submitted at least 2 weeks prior to the competition and given to the Print Competition Secretary at a club event.

PDI League Competitions

PDIs are projected from a Windows-based laptop using MagicLantern software.  We project in sRGB so you need to convert your image accordingly.  In Photoshop both image resize and colour profile conversion is under Image.  In Lightroom go to File, Export and scroll down to imaging size etc.  The image size should not exceed 1400 pixels horizontally and 1050 pixels vertically – NOT 1400 vertically please. Our projector’s native resolution is 1400 x 1050 for optimum viewing.  If your images are smaller than these dimensions they will be displayed a little smaller on the screen.  Please do not add “white space” to make your image up to 1400 x 1050.  The DPI used makes no difference, however 72 dpi makes a smaller file.  Images must not contain layers and must also be “flattened” prior to submission. Files must also be in jpeg format, under 4mb and named according to the current convention: title£title-your£name.jpg for example: Dawn£Chorus-Fred£Bloggs.jpg.

Magic Lantern

This year we are using a new program – MagicLantern – which will enable us to use a new scoring system.  This has been kindly provided by Mr Geoff Bridges of Kidlington Camera Club who wrote the program and has made it available to camera clubs free of charge.

Len Clarke Memorial Trophy

This is a panel competition of up to 6 images on a related theme. If the images are individually mounted, they must meet the same entry specifications as the print league. If they are multi-mounted on the same board, there is no restriction on the mount size.  As this is not a league competition, individual prints can be submitted to subsequent competitions as new entries.

Scoring and Prizes

At the 2020 AGM, the membership approved the following experimental league competitions system for the 2020–21 season:

The leagues are designed to encourage members to improve their work, by fostering a spirit of gentle competition.  The new system is designed to maintain this aim, while reducing some unwelcome pressure on members.

There will be 2 leagues, one for prints, the other for PDIs.  When coronavirus precautionary measures require club meetings to be held online, rather than face to face, the images for the print rounds on club nights which have to be held online will be submitted as PDIs, but will still count towards the Prints league.  Each round will be either open or for images fitting a set category, as before.

Each league will be judged as a single class, so that all entries are judged to a common standard.  League trophies formerly awarded for the Club class of the leagues will be awarded to the highest placed Club class member in each league at the end of the season.

A maximum of 3 images may be submitted per member for each round.

The judge will be asked to select a first, second and third placed image, as before.  Each first placed image will score 10 league points, second placed images will score 9 and third placed images 8.  Joint places are permitted.  The judge will be asked to assign a grade to images other than the top three, the grades being Highly Commended and Commended.  Highly commended images will score 7 points, Commended 6.  There will be no set number of grades awarded in each round.  Not all images will be awarded a grade.  Only the points earned by place and grade will be entered in the league tables to establish the season’s trophy winners. The judge will also, for the benefit of the entrant, award marks for each image judged, but these marks will not be recorded as league points.  For print rounds, stickers for the reverse of the print mount will be awarded for First, Second, Third, Highly Commended and Commended images.

For the purposes of league competitions, new images are defined as images which have not been entered in a previous league round. Tables of league positions published after each round on the website will record only members whose images have been awarded grades.

Non-league competitions such as the Ladies & Gentlemen’s and Len Clarke panels will be scored in the same way, but the scores will not be added to league.

There is also a trophy for the Image of the Year and selected from the Print and PDI images which have won a league round during the season and judged at the Annual Photographic Exhibition.

Judging

We may not always agree with the judge’s comments, but you are free to discuss this with them at the end of the meeting. The judges’ decisions are purely subjective, so you might find that what one judge likes, another might not. The most important thing to remember is WE take and submit our chosen photographs because WE like them. A judge is merely there to advise on what they think and to share their experience and knowledge.

These competitions give us the opportunity to share our work with fellow members and learn from the comments given, thus allowing us to improve our photography in the process.

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