Essence of Essex

I was very excited to see that FirstSight, the controversial art gallery in Colchester is hosting an exhibition of photographs by Martin Parr until 2 October 2016. I haven’t been yet but will make a point of going along next time I am in the area and will of course report back.

Alongside the exhibition there is a free competition on the theme The Essence of Essex that is going to be judged by Martin Parr Himself!!!

It is an opportunity too good to miss, so I have trawled through my archive of photographs taken around Colchester, Brightlingsea and Essex and submitted a few. I have sorted a few more out and will submit them each week until the competition closes. Most photos will become part of an art installation in the gallery and there is a small prize for the weekly and overall winners.

Entries need to be made via their partner Zealous which turns out to be quite a useful site that links to all manner of photography competitions. On the Zealous site you can see all of the submissions so far and perhaps even vote for your favourite (hopefully mine of course).


Travel Photographer of the Year

Next month entries open for the Travel Photographer of the Year competition.

TPOTY is competition run for photographers by photographers. Categories for last year included Faces People Encounters, Nature & Environment, Monochromal, Street Culture, A Moment in Light, Water, Colours of the World and iCaptured (for mobile phone images) as well as categories for short films and young photographers. Some of the categories require a portfolio of four photographs and a fee of £15 and others just a single image and a fee of £7.50.

Prizes include £1,000 in cash, city breaks or equipment. Winning images are also exhibited in London and in a touring exhibition and are included on postcards, greetings cards and portfolio books.

If I am going to be serious about travel photography this is something I really need to take part in. I will speak to my tutors about my current portfolio of images but the closing date is not until October so I have plenty of time.


Pano Awards

The winners of the Epson International Pano Awards 2015 competition have been announced and the standard is incredibly high. These are some of the winning photographs.

I’m not sure I can do anything up to this standard but it certainly is something to aspire to. If any of my Constable photos do turn out as good as this I will enter when the 2016 competition opens in April.

For 2015 the entry fee was $16 or $20 per photograph depending on which category you entered and the prizes were up to $5,000.

IPPAWARDS | 9th Annual iPhone Photography Awards™ | Celebrating the creativity of the iPhone users since 2007

The 9th Annual iPhone Photography Awards is open for entries. With categories for Animals, Abstract, Architecture, Children, Flowers, Food, Landscape, Lifestyle, Nature, News/Events, Panorama, People, Portrait, Seasons, Still Life, Sunset, Travel, Trees, and Others means there is something for everyone.

Photos can be taken on any iPhone or iPad and can be edited by any iPhone or iPad app. There is a small entry fee of $3.50 per photograph and the prizes are not going to significantly boost any photography career but it might be fun to enter.

More information can be found at the iPhone Photography Awards website

Photography Competitions

Not being very competitive by nature I’m really not very keen on the idea of entering photography competitions however I can see that there is a benefit in being a finalist or better still a winner of a competition.

I have an account on ViewBug and have entered a few of the free competitions finishing in the top 10 of some of them, and with thousands of entrants for each one I am quite pleased with that. It is simply for fun and will not particularly lead to any significant publicity I don’t think.

There is a great list of photo competitions on but there is only one that catches my eye.

I’ve just missed the Travel Photographer of the Year competition but I’ve added it to my diary for next October. it is run by photographers for photographers and next year there are new categories and new opportunities to showcase travel photography.
There are:

• Three Portfolio categories
• Three One Shot categories
• Smart Shot category
• New Talent category
• HD Video category, Travel Shorts
• Young Travel Photographer of the Year
Categories can be entered more than once and entry into two or more portfolio entries means that you are automatically entered into the title Travel Photographer of the Year award.

Photos can be film or digital and judges will be looking for contemporary images so up to date photos are a must. Over manipulated photos are frowned upon but anything that could be realistically achieved in a darkroom is acceptable.

Entry fees start at £8.00 and is open to any photographer, amateur and professional, aged 19 years and over, from any country.

The prize is worth around £30,000 and the winner’s work is displayed at exhibitions around the country including at the University of Greenwich. They receive £4,000, a selection of StaaGluxury leather travel goods and sterling silver accessories, £500 of Paramo clothing and personalised leather portfolio case.

Winners in the portfolio categories win a Fujifilm X-Series camera and lens. The winner of the best single image in each portfolio category received a giclée exhibition print.

Ferens Open Exhibition

The Ferens Art Gallery in Hull hosts an Open Exhibition each year. This year, as part of the course, I was required to enter up to two framed images.

I’ve taken lots of photos this year that I was proud of so wasn’t really sure which ones to enter. After chatting with family, classmates and tutors I eventually chose the follow two images. I put the ‘couples’ photograph in a dark wooden frame with a cream mount and the ‘slinkachu’ photograph in a navy blue and silver frame with a double blue and white mount.

A couple of couples
A couple of couples


I was thrilled when I heard from the gallery and found that both of my images had been accepted for the exhibition and that I had been invited to the VIP opening. It was very exciting to see my photos hanging in a gallery and interesting to see how they had been arranged with the other works around them.

As the exhibition is nearing the end now I popped in a couple of days ago to see when I was required to collect my photos and was pleasantly surprised to see that both of them have been sold!