I’ve recently entered a competition.
I’ve only entered a few photography competitions since I started up properly again, and I realise I should try to enter more. It’s hard to put your work out there for judging, but it can also be a very worthwhile exercise.
So when I saw this Exposure Awards, I thought I would try and enter. It’s a big international photographic competition, divided into two categories (both of which you can enter).
THE EXPOSURE AWARD
- $15,000 cash grant
- Private photo reception at the Louvre Musem in Paris
- Global press and publicity,
- One weekend in Paris at the W Hotel
- Limited edition broadsheet of your work distributed at the Louvre event.
- The Exposure Award is granted by our jury panel.
THE VOX POPULI AWARD
- Free to enter!
- $1500 cash grant
- Earn votes and be part of the digital show at the Louvre Musem in Paris
- The Vox Populi Award is selected by public vote.
- Upgrade your entry at anytime to be eligable for the Exposure Award.
I thought if I was going to enter I would go all in – so I entered into both categories. For the Vox Populi Award, I needed to receive at least 100 votes and over 100 original comments.
I was completely and utterly blown away by how supportive everyone was of my work. At last look I have 1231 votes, and 223 comments with 9 hours to go. The comments were incredible and made me cry. I had no idea people felt that way about my photography. When you put your work out there, it often feels like it’s just being lost in a void and no one is really seeing it. To get that form of feedback was something I will never forget.
There were a couple of snags along the way. The Facebook comment system the site was using kept playing up, and on a few of the days I ended up with no comments on my page. It turned out to be a site-wide problem, and luckily the organisers were aware of it and had kept track of everyone’s comments! It wasn’t even the eligibility that worried me, it was the fact that I might have lost all the amazing things people had taken the time to write. I usually screencap things like that, to go back and read when I’m feeling low or feeling like giving up on my photography.
Then on the second last day, I found out that I was actually supposed to have model releases for everyone featured in my entry photos. That meant pretty much the entire Supernatural cast. This was entirely my own fault for not reading the fine print well enough, but now I had to work out how I was going to do it. I could either try, or I could remove most of my photos from the entry.
In the end – again I’m completely blown away by how lucky I am – I have ended up with almost everyone’s permission. I still can’t quite believe it!
There is 9 hours left of voting, my entry is here if you wish to take a look! https://stardustandmelancholy.see.me/exposure2015