How To Enter The Competition

Registration, Deadlines, and Fees

To enter the competition as a TPPA Member, click here to make sure your 2021 dues have been paid.

  • Judging will be held on March 26, 2021.
  • Registration opens on March 1, 2021. All registration takes place at: www.printcompetition.com.
  • Entry Deadline is 11:00pm CDT, March 25, 2021.
  • TPPA is holding three competitions: Photographic Open Competition, Artist Competition, and Wedding Competition. Entrants may enter up to eight entries in each of the three competitions.
  • The entry fee is $15 per individual entry.
  • Entries include any combination of digital entries and digital album entries.
  • $10 per image for image critiques. Please allow 4 weeks following the completion of the competition.

Need help navigating PrintCompetition.com?  Check out this video for instructions and for help.

How To Enter The Competition2021-03-17T15:21:33-05:00

Awards List

To download this document as a PDF, click here.

Registration, Deadlines, and Fees

  • Judging will be held on March 26, 2021.
  • Registration opens on March 1, 2021. All registration takes place at: www.printcompetition.com.
  • Entry Deadline is 11:00pm CDT, March 25, 2021.
  • TPPA is holding three competitions: Photographic Open Competition, Artist Competition, and Wedding Competition. Entrants may enter up to eight entries in each of the three competitions.
  • The entry fee is $15 per individual entry.
  • Entries include any combination of digital entries and digital album entries.
  • $10 per image for image critiques. Please allow 4 weeks following the completion of the competition.

Merit Standard Images

TPPA Recognizes the “Merit Standard” in Image Competition as Accepted or Not Accepted. Accepted images will be judged a second time for a “best of the best” designation known as Texcellence. All Accepted images are eligible for our Photographic Awards. Awards will be decided upon by the panel of jurors.

All images Accepted by the jury panel will also earn a Fellowship Point for TPPA members.

Top Entries Pins

  • Bronze – 4 entries are Accepted in a single competition (Photographic Open, Artist, or Wedding)
  • Silver – 4 entries are Accepted and 1 image receives a Texcellence designation in a single competition (Photographic Open, Artist, or Wedding)
  • Gold – 4 entries are Accepted and 2 images receive a Texcellence designation in a single competition (Photographic Open, Artist, or Wedding)
  • Platinum – 4 entries are Accepted and 3 images receive a Texcellence designation in a single competition (Photographic Open, Artist, or Wedding)
  • Diamond – 4 entries are Accepted and all 4 images receive a Texcellence designation in a single competition (Photographic Open, Artist or Wedding)

Photographic Open Awards

Portrait

  • Best Portrait of an Animal or group of animals (Pets)
  • Best Portrait of a Child
  • Best Classic Portrait (little or no digital enhancement applied)
  • Best Portrait of a Group (People)
  • Best Portrait of a Man
  • Best Portrait of a Woman
  • Best Portrait by a Master
  • Best Portrait General Exhibit (non-Master)

Important Definitions

Man/Woman/Child/Group – These sub-categories are all for portrait images of people, including families, groups, couples, adults, children, relationships, models, and fashion portraits, as well as tastefully artistic figure studies.

Animal – This sub-category captures an animal(s) portrait using structured lighting in a studio or outdoor environment, where the owner or photographer controls the animal.

Classic Portrait – This sub-category is for any Portrait entry that has little or no digital enhancement applied. Entrant may be required to submit RAW, unprocessed file if requested by the TPPA Image Competition Committee.

Illustrative

  • Best Aerial Image
  • Best Architecture Image
  • Best Commercial Image
  • Best Fine Art/Still Life Image
  • Best Scenic Image
  • Best Sport/Reportage Image
  • Best Wildlife Image
  • Best Illustrative Open by a Master
  • Best Illustrative Open General Exhibit (non-Master)

Important Definitions

Commercial – This sub-category is used when images are created for a commercial client to advertise a product and promote a brand or company. 

Aerial – This sub-category is for images created from an airborne vehicle, manned or unmanned. 

Scenic – This sub-category shares joy and adventures while expressing a sense of place. Flowers, seascapes, cityscapes, urban landscapes, and sunsets with or without people can be placed here.

Architecture – This sub-category can be an interior or exterior of a structure or within an industrial environment.

Wildlife – This sub-category is for wild animals in an uncontrolled lighting environment, including zoo animals.

Fine Art/Still Life – This sub-category is for entries not easily classified in one of the other categories. It may be with or without people. This sub-category can also be conceptual images that tell a story.

Sport/Reportage Image – This sub-category is for sports and non-wedding events (such as news events) where the maker does not have control over the action, environment, lighting, and other factors. These images have little or no digital enhancement applied. Entrant may be required to submit RAW, unprocessed file if requested by the TPPA Image Competition Committee.

Photographic Open Album

  • Best Album General Exhibit (non-Master)
  • Best Album by a Master

Artist Awards

  • Best Artist Entry by a Master Artist
  • Best Artist Entry General Collection (non-Master Artist)
  • Best Restoration Image

Wedding Awards

  • Best Bride
  • Best Couple or Group
  • Best Groom
  • Best Wedding Moment
  • Best Wedding Still Life
  • Best Wedding Open by a Master
  • Best Wedding Open General Exhibit

Wedding Album Awards

  • Best Album by a Master
  • Best Album General Exhibit (non-Master)
  • Best Multi-Maker Album by a Master
  • Best Multi-Maker Album General Exhibit (non-Master)

Other Awards

  • Best First Time Entry TPPA
  • Judges Choice Ribbons. Each judge awards one ribbon.
  • CPP Award for the best image by a Certified Professional Photographer
  • ASP State Elite Award
  • Best of Show (Chosen from the Best individual entries of all sub-categories)

Awards List2021-03-17T15:20:53-05:00

TPPA Image Competition Rules

To download the Texas PPA Image Competition Rules in a PDF, click here.

Texas PPA holds three annual Image Competitions:  Photographic Open, Artist, and Wedding (each described below) The purpose of these competitions is to allow the entrant to measure their skills against a standard of excellence using the 12 Elements of a Merit Image, as defined by the Professional Photographers of America. For more information on the 12 Elements of a Merit Image, please visit A Fresh Look at the 12 Elements

General Rules

These rules pertain to all three competitions.

  1. All entries must be registered at www.printcompetition.com. There is a separate fee payable to PrintCompetition for use of their service.
  2. Entrants may only submit digital images for judging.
  3. Entrants may enter up to 8 images in each competition.
  4. A minimum of 4 entries is required to be considered for top entries awards.
  5. No changes to your entry are permitted once the entry deadline has passed. No refunds will be issued after the entry fee is paid.
  6. Images that are entered into PPA’s District Competition are also eligible for the TPPA Annual Competition provided the images are submitted to TPPA’s competition prior to the start of the District Competition.
  7. Once an image has been awarded a Merit in PPA District, IPC, or any previous TPPA Annual Photographic Competition, it may not be entered into the TPPA Annual Competition again. This includes any image from an album that has received a Merit.
  8. Entrants do not need to be TPPA members to compete in the TPPA Image Competitions. All entrants are eligible for Texcellence, pins, and ribbon distinctions, however, only TPPA members are eligible for trophies and fellowship points.
  9. All entries must have a Title, chosen by the maker.
  10. The entrant has obtained and has access to all necessary releases (model or property) and agrees to hold TPPA harmless against all claims and liabilities arising out of TPPA’s display, publication, promotion, or other use of each image submitted to TPPA.
  11. The entrant’s name shall not appear anywhere in or on the face of the entry.
  12. Entry media includes digital files and digital albums. A case includes any combination of digital entries and digital album entries up to the maximum allowed in a case.
  13. No entry will be eligible if it has been made under the supervision of an instructor or as a class assignment. All images submitted must be self-directed. Images created in an educational environment under direct supervision from an instructor are ineligible.
  14. Entries of the same subject in multiple images will be allowed, as long as the images are substantially different, including background, location, clothing, and concept. The same subject rule applies across all three competitions and all cases submitted by an entrant in a given year. For example, you may not use the same subject, background, location, clothing, and concept in both Photographic Open and Artist competitions. The same subject rule also applies to an individual image and an album (if that subject, background, location, clothing, and concept appears in an album, it cannot also be entered as an individual image.
  15. If an entry, in the good-faith opinion of the TPPA Photographic Competition Committee, violates copyright, trademark, or any other applicable law and cannot be proven otherwise, that entry shall be disqualified and trophies, awards, and TPPA Fellowship Points revoked, if issued.

Digital Submission Specifications

  • Files must be sized so the longest dimension is 4000 pixels. Each file must contain an embedded color profile of either sRGB or Adobe RGB1998 and be saved at a JPEG quality setting of 10. In most cases, the total file size should not exceed 3.5 MB. Larger files will be accepted when necessary so long are they are JPG/10.
  • Files are to be named
    • <title>.JPG, where <title> is your image’s title. No underscores or special characters are required.

    Viewing Conditions for Image Review

    This is for your information only. 

    For color management help, see Video Tutorial: PPA.com/IPC_tutorials

    • Digital Files: Monitor Settings, D65, 120 cd/m2, 2.20 gamma

    Digital Album Entry

    See Video Tutorial: PPA.com/IPC_tutorials

    All albums must be submitted in digital form.

    1. All page/spread files must have the longest file dimension at 4000 pixels, have an embedded color profile of either sRGB or Adobe RGB1998, and saved at a JPEG quality setting of 10.
    2. Each page/spread file may contain as many images as you desire.
    3. An entry shall contain a minimum of 5 page/spread files up to 36 page/spread files.
    4. Files are to be numbered in viewing order using two digits, i.e. 01 jpg, 02 jpg, 03 jpg, etc.
    5. All individual files must be compressed into a single ZIP file. ZIP file must be named: Album Title.zip (e.g. Summer Wedding.zip).
    6. Studio identification or entrant’s name cannot appear on any file within the album entry.
    7. Each entrant must use the same title when entering a multi‐maker album.

    Photographic Open Competition Rules

    The Photographic Open Competition is for all images and albums not created during a wedding event (see Wedding Competition Rules) where the maker is responsible for creating the images of the primary subject(s) of the final entry.

    1. Entrant must have captured and created the original exposure or exposures.
    2. All processing, manipulation, and printing or rendering, were done by the entrant or under their direct supervision.
    3. All photographic elements in the final image must be created by the entrant or:
      1. Photographic elements created by another person must have added guide images on the submitted digital canvas to indicate they are not created by the maker. This includes physical, photographic backgrounds not originally created by the maker. This does not include abstract painted backgrounds.
      2. Photographic elements not created by the maker may be used so long as the entrant is prepared to provide appropriate written documentation indicating permission for usage. This documentation may be requested by TPPA before, during, or after the competition.
      3. The primary subject of the final image must still have been created by the maker.
      4. Entries with guide images are still entered into the appropriate category: Portrait, Illustrative, Album, etc. The Creative Open no longer exists as its own category.
      5. Jurors will be instructed to evaluate the entire image but the elements that were created by the maker must still be worthy of acceptance as well as the overall image.
    4. Entry media includes digital files and digital albums. A case includes any combination of digital entries and digital album entries up to the maximum allowed in a case.

    Photographic Open Categories

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

    • PORTRAIT: Consists of portrait or wedding images. Images can portray a subject or subjects from all walks of life and should reflect the personality of the subject(s).
    • ILLUSTRATIVE: Consists of commercial/industrial images, scenics, pictorials, digital paintings, and similar subject matter. Portraits and weddings are not appropriate for this category. Capturing the beauty of nature, wildlife, industry, and architectural areas are considered illustrative.
    • ALBUM: albums consist of non-wedding social events, such as bar mitzvahs, etc., or albums of portrait and storytelling albums.
    • MULTI‐MAKER EVENT 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.

    Artist Competition Rules

    The Artist Competition allows the maker to demonstrate their art skills and expertise in the creation of an image made from one or more sources. The maker is not required to have photographed any of the source images. Entries will be judged for digital, artistic, and technical proficiency. Entries can be created using digital or traditional art (such as painting and airbrush) or a combination of both.

    1. Entries may be reproduced from existing photographs, portraits, graphics, or any other artwork so long as the entrant is prepared to provide appropriate written documentation indicating permission for usage. This documentation may be requested by TPPA before, during, or after the competition.
    2. All processing, manipulation, artwork, or rendering must be done by the entrant.
    3. Guide images must be included on the submitted digital canvas.
    4. Entry media is single digital files up to the maximum allowed in a case.

    Artist Competition Categories

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

    • CREATIVE OPEN (Artist): These are works created by the entrant from any combination or original photographs or other art sources.
    • RESTORATION: These are works created by the entrant from original, damaged photographs.

    Wedding Competition Rules

    The Wedding Competition is for all images and albums created by the entrant under the time constraints of an actual wedding event.  Jurors will keep in mind that the maker has limited control over many aspects of a wedding, including the subject matter, environment, and time of day. Images should include some kind of visual wedding reference(s).

    1. Entrant must have captured and created the original exposure or exposures.
    2. All images and all elements of an image must have been made during the course of an actual wedding event. Images not created during the time constraints of an actual event (such as engagement or bridal portraits) must be entered in a different competition. The original captured image (in RAW, jpg, or film) must be available, if requested, by the TPPA Photographic Competition Committee.
    3. All processing, manipulation, and printing or rendering, were done by the entrant or under their direct supervision.
    4. No entry will be eligible if it has been made under the supervision of an instructor or as a class assignment. All images submitted must be self-directed. Images created in an educational environment under direct supervision from an instructor are ineligible
    5. Any entry that has been created from an existing photograph, portrait, graphic or any other artwork produced by another person is a violation of the competition rules and will not be judged, accepted or displayed.
    6. Entry media includes digital files and digital albums. A case includes any combination of digital entries and digital album entries up to the maximum allowed in a case.

    Wedding Competition Categories

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

    • WEDDING OPEN: Images eligible in the Wedding Open category must be created during the time constraints of the actual event.
    • WEDDING ALBUM: All images included in the Wedding Album must be created during the time constraints of the actual wedding event. You may enter as a single maker or a multi-maker; (2) photographers creating a minimum of twenty images each from the same wedding.

    Please Note: Failure to comply with these rules may result in disqualification of the entry. The decision of the TPPA Photographic Competition Committee is final.

    Edited January 2021

TPPA Image Competition Rules2021-02-26T19:12:16-06:00
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