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Competition Help

Photography Techniques

Interested in entering a competition?  Not sure if your image meets the category criteria?

Sorting Images

Want to enter a competition but dont know how to prepare your images?


Rules for entering our competitions.  As with all competitions, there are rules and guidlines.

Throughout the season we hold a number of internal competitions, for all society members, both DPIs and prints.  Entering competitions is not compulsory but members do feel that having their images professionally judged, and seeing other member's photographs being judged, helps them to improve their photography.  Its also a bit of fun.


Much of the terminology maybe confusing, you may not know how to present your prints or maybe you just want to understand the rules before entering.  This guide is here to help answer all your questions.  

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Jan Zoltonos Cup - 'Scapes'. DPI's

Images of the countryside, landscapes, seascapes, nightscapes, cityscapes, and urban landscapes. Humans or animals within the image should only be there to show a sense of scale in the image. 


Secretary's Cup - Open Colour or monochrome. DPI's

Images of any subject e.g. Architecture, Culture, Creative, Motion, Landscape, Lifestyle, Natural World & Wildlife, Portraiture, Still Life, Object, Street Photography and Travel.


Eddie Kevill Memorial Cup - Nature. DPI's

Nature means Images where living organisms (plant, animal or fungi)  are the primary subject matter. The storytelling value of an Image will normally be weighed more than the pictorial quality.

Nature includes:

Images were taken with subjects in controlled conditions such as zoos, game parks, botanic gardens, aquariums and enclosures where the subjects are dependent on man for food. Scientific bands, tags or collars are permissible.

Nature excludes:

Images where the subjects are obviously domestic animals or plants. Images where an obviously artistic treatment has been applied.

Processing of the captured image, by cropping, exposure adjustment, colour correction, noise minimisation, dodging/burning, HDR, focus stacking and sharpening, is permitted, as is cloning of image defects and minor distractions including overlapping elements. An Image appearing to meet these criteria will be accepted as Nature. The Judges will normally assume that any Image presented to them is eligible. Access to some biological subjects may be restricted. Where that is relevant, then Photographers warrant that they have followed relevant codes of practices and hold any necessary licences.

Images of a specific part of the organism are acceptable although it is usually advisable to include the whole. Titles must be the correct common name or the Generic name, and/or Latin name with, perhaps, a description of any activity (avoid anthropomorphisms such as ‘Eagle eating his dinner’).

This definition is in line with current PAGB guidelines.

Rosebowl Trophy - Flora. DPI's

Images of flowers or plants only. Images of fungi are not permissible for this trophy.

Cartridge World Cup – Open Animal in any habitat. DPI's 

Can include; Wild, Zoo, Captive, Domesticated and Working animals in any habitat or scene.

Raymond Platt Trophies -  

1. Macro. DPI's

An image taken with the subject close to the camera either with a Macro lens or a normal lens (usually a telephoto) working at its closest focus distance.

2. Open Prints

Prints must be mounted, Max. size of print A3, max. size of the mount 50cm x 40cm


John Marsh Interim Cup - "Small Prints" Open

Prints of any subject

Prints must be mounted, the maximum print size should be A4 not including mounts.  Letterbox prints smaller than A4 would be acceptable as long as the size did not exceed any A4 dimension. 

Spot Cup – Best projected 'Monochrome image.  DPI's

See the monochrome definition below


Borders Counties Advertiser Cup – Open, DPI's

Colour or monochrome, Images of any subject e.g. Architecture, Culture, Creative, Motion, Landscape, Lifestyle.

Colin Powell Cup – 'Personal Best' projected image of the season – Open. DPI's.

Members can submit images that they feel reflect their best work for the season. This competition can include images that have been entered into previous competitions in the current season.

John Marsh Challenge Cup - Best Print of the season

Can be your best images entered in this season or new images not yet shown at OPS at any other time.


The images entered may have been taken at any time and have been previously entered into club competitions. Images will be shown in random order, two at a time, members will vote for the preferred image of the two, and the winning image will pass to the next round. Any image unpaired at the end of each round will be given a bye to the next round.


General Definitions


MONOCHROME is defined as an image which comprises colouration in White and one colour only (including Black). Black and white images which have a small area containing a further colour are not mono images and are NOT eligible to be entered in this category.

STILL LIFE is defined as a posed picture of one or more inanimate objects.

MACRO is defined as an image taken with the subject close to the camera either with a Macro lens or a normal lens (usually a telephoto) working at its closest focus distance.

CREATIVE is defined as an image that stimulates the imagination. Effects like merging multiple images, deliberate blurring (lens zooming and panning), solarisation, double exposures and tone mapping are allowed.

PORTRAIT is defined as an image of a person or group of people in either a posed or candid situation, showing something of the character, personality or occupation of the subject.

STREET PHOTOGRAPHY is basically a form of candid photography where the emphasis is on capturing chance encounters and random incidents in public places. Street photography does not have to include a 'street' or even an urban environment to be effective. Images of people in a contradictory or complementary context, which also have visual humour or pathos work well.

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How to submit printed images.

Mounted prints are brought along on competition evenings and supported by an uploaded image which is projected while the Judge examines the print itself.

A digital copy of the print must first be must be uploaded via our Photoentry portal (or from the main menu above) no later than midnight of the competition end date.


It is the members' own responsibility for ensuring their entry details have been uploaded correctly. 

Prints must be mounted in recessed card mounts so that when stacked they do not damage other prints. Framed prints are not allowed.

•    The maximum size for the photographic prints is A3 (30x42cm) within a mount                max size of 50cm x 40 cm
•    The minimum size of the photographic print image allowed is A5.

The member must put the title on the reverse in the top left-hand corner along with the member’s unique membership number. Members should not put their names on the front or back of the print mount.

Digital entries : 
Digital entries, also known as DPIs (Digital Projected Images) should have the title as the file name with jpg extension eg “Clouds1.jpg 


When saving your image it must be saved at a maximum size of 1600 pixels horizontally or 1200 pixels vertically and be entered via Photoentry at least 7 days prior to the competition.   It is advised that they are saved at maximum quality and be in the sRGB colour space to ensure correct display. 



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