Credentials / Merit Image Review

Work toward your degree, one image at a time, 10 months out of the year.

Hone your skills by submitting images to be evaluated by trained jurors who assess images against the 12 elements of a merit image standard. Jurors will review your image and provide you with constructive feedback, so you’ll know where to improve your work, and how.

Merit reviews take place monthly from February through November. That’s 10 months out of the year!

Your image(s) will be reviewed by a panel of 5 PPA Approved Jurors. The jurors will place your image(s) in one of 4 levels:

  • Category A - No merit and low potential for future merit
    • (This category suggests to a maker that choosing another image might garner more success.  This result suggests that there is a base exposure issue, lighting issues, focus problems, conceptual flaws, low-impact subject matter, or an overall lack of execution of 1 or more of the 12 elements.)
  • Category B - No merit, but with potential to merit with some improvement by the maker
    • (This entry is very close to crossing the merit threshold but falls short for correctable reasons such as dust sensors, cropping, minor post-processing issues, retouching issues, and other correctable issues)
  • Category C - Merit Image
    • (Images that meet the level of merit-worthy professional photography as it relates to the 12 elements)
  • Category D - Image Excellence
    • (An entry that achieves the highest level of success in portraying the 12 elements.  This result is the top end of professional photography and is head and shoulders above an entry in the merit category)

The ultimate goal of the Merit Image Review is to motivate and educate PPA members to be the best photographers they can possibly be. The PPA image merit is the industry standard for professional photography.