Competition Photo Rules & Guidelines

Submission of Entries

Any member in good standing may enter up to FOUR (4) images. They must have been taken by you in any combination of the 3 categories. That is, up to THREE (3) images in one category and ONE (1) image in another category, or any combination thereof. You may enter 4 images as long as they are not all entered into a single category. You may change any image until the cutoff date has passed.

Submission Rules (revised 4/12/2022)

  1. Any member in good standing of DPI-SIG shall be eligible to enter any DPI-SIG Competition.
  2. No image that has previously received a ribbon in a DPI-IG competition may be re-entered in any future competition.
  3. Entries into the annual Year-End Judging shall be limited to only images that have received an award during the season. They will be automatically entered.
  4. Eligibility of entries will be confirmed by the Competition Director or designate prior to publication on the website and acceptance for judging. This may take a day or two. When confirmed, the image will be published on the Current Competition website. If an image is not confirmed, the photographer will be notified by email, and the image will be deleted from the website. The member may enter another image for consideration.
  5. Only images that are totally the work of the individual photographer may be submitted. Work that is not completely your own is not allowed. Clip art and photographs obtained online or from other sources are not allowed.
  6. Another person’s artwork, such as a painting, sculpture, street art, etc. may be included in an image as long as there is evidence that the maker used the artwork as only a part of their own image in an effort to tell a story or to create an interesting visual.
  7. Images that are sexually suggestive beyond normally acceptable boundaries or sexually explicit are not allowed. Acceptance to the competition will be determined by the DPI-SIG Competition Director and Competition Committee, whose decision is final.

Submissions Page

There is also a video tutorial for entering the competitions that should help answer many questions.

The program we use will resize larger images to fit 2048 pixels on the longest side but does not enlarge them, so submit an image that is at least 2048 pixels on the longest side. Send your image as a JPEG, and for display consistency, please use the sRGB color space.
  • Review your image for technical quality. Be sure to check for unwanted artifacts (like dust spots, halos, and noise), excessive color saturation, over-sharpening, evidence of cloning or compositing, and  crooked horizons.
  • If you process your image in the Pro Photo color space (Lightroom for example), make sure you export your image as a JPEG using the sRGB colorspace.
  • Examine the converted and resized image to make certain it appears as you expect.
  • Be sure to remove your name from being displayed on your image or withn its title.
  • A good title complements the image and is part of the presentation to the judges, so choose carefully, and check your spelling.
  • Short titles are usually better and more effective than long ones.
  • Files should be named to reflect the image and not be a camera-assigned file name ( _KB3R1475.jpg, for example),  but rather something like ‘Fields of Wonder’, or ‘Sundown at Cedar Key’.
  • Make sure you are entering your images into the proper category.

The categories are:

Traditional Color – Color images compete in this category, except for those in the Creative category. Any adjustment or enhancement is allowed while keeping the image’s appearance realistic and natural. High Dynamic Range (HDR) images are allowed as these images differ only by a greater range of luminosity, or dynamic range. Images in this category cannot appear obviously manipulated. The key to this category is to maintain an image’s natural appearance.

Traditional Mono – Monochromatic images, which are either completely desaturated or contain only a single-color tone (e.g. sepia, red, blue, etc.), are eligible for this category. Any adjustment or enhancement is allowed while keeping the image realistic. Naturally-appearing, High Dynamic Range (HDR) images are allowed, as these images differ only by exposure. Images in this category cannot be obviously manipulated, or they belong in Creative.

Creative – DPI-SIG defines a creative image as a color or monochromatic image that is “recognizably altered by manipulating a composite of more than one unique image or by an obvious change in natural color, form, shape or any combination of the three.”  The original image, any alterations, and all incorporated elements must be created by the entrant.  The original photographic content predominates and must be identifiable.  However, the creative alteration must be apparent. Obvious High Dynamic Range (HDR) images are considered creative images. If any supplementary images are found to have been taken from another source belonging to someone else, the submitted image will be disqualified. The committee has the right to request the original images if questioned. The key to this category is that the image must appear obviously manipulated.

Exception – Infrared images are permitted in the Traditional Color and Monochrome categories, as long as they appear as ‘natural and realistic’ as possible, and meet the requirements otherwise for either category.  Any submission of an obviously manipulated infrared image should be entered in the Creative category.

DPI-SIG has a pretty flexible approach to things and that extends to the competitions. It is up to the maker to determine what image to submit and what image they believe the judges will think is both appropriate and superior in the competition. If we see an obvious problem, like ruby-red slippers on an otherwise  black and white image that has been submitted to the Mono category, we’ll let you know and give you an opportunity to fix it, if submitted prior to the deadline.
Good luck!!