District Photographic Competitions

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Entering your local district competition is one of the best ways to push yourself to be more. You'll learn where you stand—how your photography matches up with your peers. You'll learn about the 12 elements of a merit image, and start incorporating them into your daily photography. You'll learn what it takes to create a merit image, and if you stick with it, work your way up to the Loan Collection.

You'll learn you're capable of so much more than you imagined. It's perfectly normal to be a little nervous going in, but don't be afraid of getting better.

It's easy to get involved. First, find your district. Then, fine-tune your four best images and submit either prints or digital copies.

And if you can, make sure you attend the judging. All photographic competitions are open to the public, and it's the best way to maximize your learning potential. Whether you've entered images or not, watching is a great way to grasp what the judges are looking for. The PPA-approved jurors are some of the best in the business—photographers who truly care about raising the bar in the industry. You can even pick their brains during breaks!

Find Your District & Wow Them!

District MapAs a PPA member, you're assigned a district based on where you live (Southwest, Northcentral, Western, Northeast, Southeast and Asia Pacific). Don’t know yours? Check out this handy map.

Northcentral District Photographic Competition

2015 Judging Dates: March 20-21, 2015 Des Moines, Iowa
Download the Photographic Open Rules
Download the Artist Rules
Entries open: February 9, 2015
Entries close: March 11, 2015

Western District Photographic Competition

2015 Judging Dates: March 26-28, 2015 Vancouver, Washington
Download the Photographic Open Rules
Download the Artist Rules
Entries open: February 16, 2015
Entries close: March 18, 2015

Northeast District Photographic Competition

2015 Judging Dates: March 13-14, 2015 Columbus, OH
Download the Photographic Open Rules
Download the Artist Rules
Entries open: January 26, 2015
Entries close: March 6, 2015

Southeast District Photographic Competition

2015 Judging Dates: April 30-May 2, 2015 Charlotte, NC
Download the Photographic Open Rules
Download the Artist Rules
Entries open: March 23, 2015
Entries close: April 24, 2015

Southwest District Photographic Competition

Enter the 2015 Photographic Open Competition
Enter the 2015 Artist Competition
Entries open: December 1, 2014
Entries close: January 2, 2015
Download the Photographic Open Rules
Download the Artist Rules
2015 Judging Dates: January 8-9, 2015 San Marcos, TX

Scoring at District Competitions

Images at the PPA District Photographic Competitions can receive scores up to 100 points, dependent on how they meet the 12 Elements of a Merit Image. See what the scores mean:

100 - 95 Exceptional

94 - 90

Superior
89 - 85 Excellent
84 - 80 Deserving of a Merit
79 - 75 Above Average
74 - 70 Average
69 - 65 Below Exhibition Standards

Seals of Approval & Merit Images

Earn a score of 80 or above at a district competition, and you will receive a Seal of Approval. A "sealed image" is often referred to like a "merit image," but it requires an extra step to get that merit. You will earn one merit when your sealed image is entered in the next International Photographic Competition. (It will also automatically be accepted as part of the General Collection.) Remember: You must enter that sealed image in the next International Photographic Competition BEFORE you can earn the merit.


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