One of my favourite times of year is the Provincial and National Image competitions for Professional Photographers of Canada. This year, I was thrilled to be invited to judge National Image Competition in Toronto in February.
Competition is an important part of the PPOC and also a photographer’s career. It’s never about competing against other photographers – it’s nearly always about competing against yourself and doing better than you did the year before. I matched my best ever results, with three images selected to appear in the PPOC Image Salon and Inspiration book.
However, judging was a completely new experience for me. I had judged in August for PPOC-AB, but not nationally. When I put my name forward, the first year I was qualified, I thought to myself “Well, they’ll know I am interested for sure the next time I put my name in!”
Imagine my delight and surprise when I was selected to judge this year! My panel consisted of many accomplished photographers, all with their Master of Photographic Arts designations, and it was inspiring just to get to sit on the panel with them, and learn from them.
Every year, the PPOC assembles 2 national panels to review images. Each panel consists of 6 judges – 5 MPAs, and 1 CPA (me this year). There is also a jury chair to keep us on track, as well as numerous volunteers throughout the 2-day process that help to keep the images running through smoothly. Our third day is dedicated to selecting award winners for each category, picking the Photographer of the Year awards in 4 different classes (Portrait, Commercial, General and Wedding), and then it’s on to audio critiques.
It is a packed 3 day adventure, and it was such an amazing experience! I can’t wait to judge again nationally, and will be putting my name forward to judge again in two years (I now must take a year off from the panel!)
Here are my entires that were accepted into the National Image Competition