Announcing: Conscientious Portfolio Competition


I’m excited to announce the first Conscientious Portfolio Competition, which hopefully will turn into a regular feature (to be held at the end of each Summer). The winner of the competition will have her or his work featured here on this blog, in the form of an extended conversation/interview (which, of course, also showcases the photography). Details below. (slightly updated>

First of all, the Conscientious Portfolio Competition (CPC) is free. It’s no pay-to-play scheme. There are no costs involved for you, other than whatever time it takes to send me your stuff.

Second, CPC is aimed at emerging photographers. Of course, the term “emerging” is not extremely well defined; what it means that photographers not represented by a gallery will get preferential treatment over those that already are (but of course, the quality of the work also plays an important role).

Third, CPC happens in two stages. The first stage - where we are now - is the submission stage. Photographers are asked to send in their application via email in the following form:
email address
website URL (no Flickr, no blogs!)
name of the portfolio.

Any additional information contained in the email will be ignored! If you need a statement for your work, it should be on the website. Your website should have a bio/CV, of course. If you don’t have a website you will not be able to enter the competition; this might strike you as unfair, but I think every serious photographer should have her/his own website, because it shows that s/he is serious about what s/he does (plus, my blog is about linking to websites - and what can I link to if there’s no website?).

The portfolio can be either a project or a collection of images; but all the images for consideration have to be in a single place on your website (so “three images from project A and four images from project B” won’t work; and multiple applications from the same person are also not an option).

Email the information to: review at (you’ll have to replace the “at” with @ and remove the spaces for this to work, of course).

The deadline is 31 August 2009, 11:59pm ET. No exceptions.

From the pool of submissions, 25 candidates will be picked for the second round. The photographers in this pool will receive an email, and they will have to send in ten jpeg images, in a uniform format (size etc.). In the future, a separate judge will then pick the winner from this pool. This year, I’m going to be that judge.

Having a second round is based on the idea of making everything as equal as possible. With uniform file sizes, fancy websites won’t be able to beat out simple ones. With a special naming convention for the jpegs (which will hide the full names), the winner will be solely chosen based on the quality of the work and nothing else.

Your jpegs will not be used for anything but the judging (so there’ll be no Facebook-style re-use of your work!).

As I wrote above, the winner of the competition will have her or his work featured here on this blog, in the form of an extended conversation (this will be done via email). The two runners-up will also be featured on the blog (in the form of the regular photographer posts I do every day).

Good luck!