Entering Competitions

To enter a Digital Image into a competition, you must prepare your entry in a specific way. To work properly with the software used to project them on screen, digital images must be named correctly and also be the correct size, colour profile and format. This is not difficult to do and is explained below.

Prints also have to be the correct size. For most national competitions the size of the mount is a standard size so that the mount will fit in a set size frame in an exhibition. Most club competitions are also this size but because we want to encourage B Group members to enter prints, and because they may not have invested in larger-than-A4 home printers yet, B Group competitions, and a couple of others, are a maximum print size of A4. For size details see the bottom of this page.

There is also a specific way of naming prints which is also explained below.

Print sizes for competitions

Naming Digital Images

With Digital files, the name consists of 4 parts:
THE TITLE (written in capital letters)
by (written in lower case)
Your Name (written in upper & lower case)
.jpg (the file extension name)
For example, ON THE BEACH by John Smith.jpg
A file named in this way will only show the title when projected in a competition.

The title or your name must not appear within the image itself, nor should there be any copyright or other watermark that is not part of the picture to be judged.
Please DO NOT USE  / \ : * ? “ . < > | in the Title. These marks will not be accepted by Windows.

Naming Prints

Prints in club competitions, should only have The Title, your Club Membership No. and, if relevant, whether you are in the A or B Group on the BACK of the picture.

For external competitions other than Inter-club Battles, for example the KCPA Ross Cup, your name does go on the back as well.

Do not write on the front of the picture or mount at all.

With an image that does not have an obvious top or bottom, ensure that your title on the back is the same way up to the way you want the picture to be viewed or it may be judged upside down - it has happened!

Naming Natural Images

When you name a natural image within a Nature or Wildlife section it is usual but not compulsory to include the Latin name for the subject as well, for example, MUTE SWAN - MUTUS FUERAM by John Smith.jpg

If you include the Latin name on a Pictorial image, you run the risk of it being judged, and possibly disqualified, as a Nature or Wildlife image.
This is not likely to happen in an in-house club competition or inter-club battle (though it may be remarked upon by the judge) but be aware of this when entering into external competitions.

Is it Nature, Wildlife or Pictorial?

Because of the over-use of photo editing of natural images, there are now strict rules of what can and what can’t be entered into a Nature or Wildlife section of a competition. These rules are quite lengthy and only a very short version is shown here. Download or view a PDF of the full PAGB rules.
If your picture does not conform to these rules, enter it into the Pictorial section instead.

Nature photography... allowed

Photos in zoos, falconry centres, botanical gardens, etc. provided the subject is a creature that naturally occurs in the wild. Scientific bands, tags or radio collars on wild animals are permissible.
Enhancing the presentation of the photograph without changing the nature story is permitted. Dust spots and digital noise can be removed.
Color images can be converted to greyscale monochrome.

Nature photography... not allowed

Human elements shall not be present, except where they are integral parts of the nature story. Cultivated plants, feral, domestic animals or mounted specimens are ineligible.
No techniques that add, relocate, replace, or remove pictorial elements except by cropping are permitted. You cannot add canvas, nor improve an image by removing so much as a small leaf or a blade of grass.
Infrared or stiched images are not permitted.

Wildlife photography... not allowed

Everything as Nature but not including zoological or botanical species living under controlled conditions such as in zoos or aquariums. They must be free and unrestrained in a natural or adopted habitat.

Preparing a Digital Image

All images for our digital competitions must fit within a maximum size of 1400px wide x 1050px high so that the application we use to project the images will show them with no distortion and at the best resolution.

Digital image max. size for competitions

Never reduce your master file to this size.
Always keep your master the size it came out of your camera and therefore at the highest possible resolution.
Once you are happy with your image, make a copy of it and use that version to produce your final jpg. This is in case you accidentally save the file when it is reduced.
The following instructions are for Photoshop but the principle is the same for all photo editing applications and you can find many tutorials for them online if needed.

1. To re-size your file, go to Image > Image Size.
If your picture is Landcape (wider than it is tall) make the width 1400 pixels.
If the height reads 1050 pixels or less the file is the correct size but if the height reads larger than 1050 pixels, change the height to 1050 pixels which will reduce down the width and your image size will now be correct.
If your image is Portrait (taller than it is wide) simply make the height 1050 pixels. Click OK. The Resolution size doesn’t matter with these images.

2. To give your file the correct colour profile, go to Edit > Assign Profile.
Choose sRGB IEC6 1966-2.1 and click OK.

3. To make your jpg, go to File > Save As and choose the Format to be jpg Then Name the file as described above and Save.

4. The JPG Options window will then appear, make sure the quality is 12 (maximum quality) and the Format Options is Baseline. Click OK and it’s all done!

Digital image size for competitions

Assign profile

Save the image

Print Sizes

Tha maximum size a print can be including the mount is 500mm x 400mm, Landscape or Portrait shape.
This is used in all KCPA competitions and most club competitions. All competitions in which only the A Group enter and most where the A and B Group compete together are this size.
The paper size you would need to print a good sized print would be A3 or A3 Plus (also known as A3+ or Super A3), though of course an A4 print or smaller could be mounted at this size.

All B Group only competitions and a couple of club competitions have a maximum paper size of A4. The mount can be any size up to 500mm x 400mm. ... See Competition Info for sizes for each competition.

Print sizes for competitions