Make your own free website on Tripod.com

Columbia Council of Camera Clubs
Image Competition Rules And Guidelines


    The Columbia Council of Camera Clubs' (4Cs) Monthly Image Competitions provide it's Member Clubs, and their individual memberships, the opportunity to compete, display and be recognized with other members throughout the Council. These competitions present its participants the chance to see how their individual images compare to others from around the northwest and 4Cs' Member Clubs can test their mettle against other Member Clubs.

    All 4Cs' Member Clubs in good standing, and their memberships, are invited to participate in these competitions and the images may be of any subject. The competition year runs monthly from October through May, unless otherwise specifically noted in a Division/Class.

    While reasonable caution will be exercised to protect all entries, the 4Cs, the judging club or any associated Member Club cannot assume responsibility for loss or damage to any entry, no matter the cause. The entrant assumes all risk and entry acknowledges this.

    The respective committee and 4Cs' Competition Chairs shall meet periodically for the purpose of developing uniformity and updating these competition materials, with input from the Member Clubs' representatives/competition chairs.


When updates were made, they are indicated on the "main" 4Cs page
The Gold Book is available in .txt, .doc and .pdf formats. If you would like a copy, please email the webmaster at ocpa@hotmail.com.


Contents
(page numbers refer to the official printed Gold Book)

v     General Entry Requirements (page 2)

v     Categories, Divisions & Classes (page 2)

v     Print Category (page 3-4)

·          Monochrome Division

·          Color Division

·          Commercial Division

·          “Print Of The Year” Division

·          Convention Invitational Division

v     Transparency Category (page 5-6)

·          Monthly Slide Division

·          Top 80 Division

·          Creative Slide Division

·          Convention Invitational Division

v     Presentation Category (page 7-8)

·          Mini-Show Division

·          Ben Andrews’ Award Of Excellence Division

·          Mid-length Show Division

v     Submission & Shipping Recommendations (page 9-10)

v     Processing & Return Recommendations (page 11)

v     Judging Guidelines (page 12-16)

·          Guideline Summary

·          Judging and Scoring Guidelines

·          Evaluating Photographs

·          Critiquing Photographs

v     Appendix (page 17-2x)

·          A - Club Competitions

·          B - Print Presentation

·          C1 - Exceptions, Print Category

·          C2 - Exceptions, Transparency Category Monthly Slide Division

·          D - How To Mark Your Slides

·          E - Creative Salon Division Entry Form

·          F - Mini-Show Judging Guidelines

·          G - Ben Andrews' Judging Criteria

·          H - Competition Submission List (Inventory)

·          I - Judging/Scoring Forms

·          J - Judges Comments

·          K -


top

General Entry Requirements

1)    All entrants must be a member in good standing with a 4Cs’ Member Club, which is also in good standing.

2)    All images must be original work of the entrant (processing/printing may vary depending on the Division entered). There currently are no distinctions between digital and conventional imaging.

3)    All images must be clearly identified as specified under a particular Category.

4)    Any image that has been entered in a 4Cs’ competition in a given Category and/or Division may re-enter in a different Category and/or Division in future competitions.

5)    Any image in a given 4Cs’ competition Division/Class that does not win an award (1st, 2nd, 3rd, Honorable Mention and/or Award of Merit) may re-enter in the same Division/Class in future competitions, but not during the same competition year. Images that received awards in the “Print of the Year Division” or were included in the “Top 80 Division”, in any previous 4Cs’ competition year are not eligible to be re-entered at anytime in the same Division/Class.

6)    If, for some good reason (as determined by the Category’s Chair), a Members Club’s images are not available to the judging club in time for the schedule judging, a make-up entry may be made within two months. These images must be sent to the judging club for the current month, NOT to the judging club for the missed month. Make-up images are not eligible for awards (unless circumstances dictate otherwise as determined by the Category’s Chair). Entries that miss the May judging are just plain out of luck and will not be judged. 

    Additional requirements can be found in each category, division and/or class.

top

Categories, Divisions & Classes

v     CATEGORIES are based on general competition media (print, transparency, presentation).

v     DIVISIONS are based on more specific types of competition media (color, monochrome, etc.).

v     CLASSES are based on the size of the competition media and may consist of either:


top

Print Category

    Consisting of images typically printed onto “photographic papers” (but could include, and are not limited to: cloth, stone, glass, wood, metal, fiber papers, etc.)

    The following Entry Requirements apply in addition to the General Entry Requirements 1-6:

1)    All “paper” or “cloth” type prints must be mounted (fixed to a hard, lightweight backing like matboard or foamcore) No frames.

2)    Anything affixed to the mount’s back that may cause damage to other prints when stacked, will not be accepted (like hanging devices or “Velcro” tabs).

3)    Any protective packaging (like plastic, transparent bags, etc.), while recommended for shipping, will be removed for judging purposes. Shrink-wrap will not be removed.

4)    NO writing or markings (titles, signatures, etc.) are allowed on the print/mount/mat’s face/front.

5)    All prints must be clearly identified with the following on the back of the mount (this identification should be written in alignment with the viewing position, top side up):

a)    Division and Class that image will compete in (example: Commercial / 96 square)

b)    Title (example: "My Best Image")

c)    Entrant’s Full Name and Address (example: Joe A. Photographer / 1234 Any Street, Sometown, USA 00000)

d)    Entrant’s Affiliate Organization’s Name (example: IdOreWash Camera Club)


top

MONOCHROME DIVISION: All prints must be made entirely by the entrant, however, initial film development and/or mounting/matting may be done by others. Hand colored prints that have only one color added may be entered in the Monochrome division. Prints colored with two or more colors must be entered in the Color Print Division.

LARGE CLASS: Individual Competition. The minimum print size must be at least 80-square inches with the minimum mount size larger than 96-square inches. The maximum print and/or mount size must not exceed 320-square inches (with the longest dimension not exceeding 20 inches). The print’s presentation will influence the score (see Appendix B “Print Presentation”). Each 4Cs’ Member Club may enter up to four (4) prints, per category division, in each month's competition (see Appendix C1 for exceptions).

96-SQUARE CLASS: Individual Competition. Prints and mounts must have a minimum size of 35-square inches and may not exceed 96-square inches (with the longest dimension not exceeding 20 inches). The print’s presentation will influence the score. A maximum of two (2) prints per individual entrant, per competition month, is allowed regardless of how many 4Cs’ Member Clubs that individual belongs to (see Appendix C1 for exceptions).


top

COLOR DIVISION: All prints must be made entirely by the entrant, however, initial film development and/or print mounting may be done by others. Hand colored monochrome prints using two or more colors are considered Color Prints.

LARGE CLASS: (see Monochrome Division)

96-SQUARE CLASS: (see Monochrome Division)


top

COMMERCIAL DIVISION: Any print (monochrome or color) that had anyone, other than the entrant, produce any part of it (except for the initial film development and print mounting/matting) is considered a Commercial Print. Examples include, but are not limited to: commercially produced prints and friends doing digital corrections or manipulation.

LARGE CLASS: (see Monochrome Division)

96-SQUARE CLASS: (see Monochrome Division)


top

“PRINT OF THE YEAR” DIVISION: Individual Competition. At the end of the yearly competition cycle, all award winning prints (1st, 2nd, 3rd and HM’s) from all Classes (Large & 96-square) in the Print Divisions (Monochrome, Color & Commercial) will be recalled. Judging will be by an organization outside of the 4Cs and the awards will be given and announced for each Division and Class at the 4Cs’ Annual Convention. Notice of recall and shipping information (addresses) will be sent to all clubs with eligible entrants at the end of the year’s monthly competition cycle.

1)    Images must meet all requirements for the Category, Division and Class originally entered.

2)    All images must be the exact same print and mount/mat as originally entered in the monthly competition or an exact duplicate.


top

CONVENTION INVITATIONAL DIVISION: Club Competition. All 4Cs’ Member Clubs are invited to enter images for this competition, which will be judged at the Annual Convention by a panel of three judges selected by the Event Chair (who is appointed by the Convention Committee). Awards will be announced and given at that convention. Notice of competition and shipping information (addresses) will be sent to all Member Clubs with the convention registration packet.

    The following Entry Requirements apply in addition to the General Entry Requirements 1-6 and Print Category Entry Requirements 1-5:

1)    Each 4Cs’ Member Club is invited to enter up to five (5) prints in each class listed below.

2)    Any print that has been entered in a previous Convention Invitational or received an award in the previous year’s “monthly” competitions is not eligible.

3)    Prints must have a minimum print size of 5x7 inches and a mount/mat size not exceeding 16x20 inches.

4)    The print’s presentation will influence the score (see Appendix B “Print Presentation”).

MONOCHROME CLASS: All prints must be made entirely by the entrant, however, initial film development and/or mounting/matting may be done by others. Hand colored prints that have only one color added may be entered in the Monochrome division. Prints colored with two or more colors must be entered in the Color Class.

COLOR CLASS: All prints must be made entirely by the entrant, however, initial film development and/or print mounting may be done by others. Hand colored monochrome prints using two or more colors are considered Color.

COMMERCIAL CLASS: Any print (monochrome or color) that had anyone, other than the entrant, produce any part of it (except for the initial film development and print mounting/matting) is considered a Commercial Print. Examples include (but are not limited to): commercially produced prints and friends doing digital corrections or manipulation.


top

Transparency Category

    Consisting of images presented on material that can be projected (light can be transmitted through the image). Typically, any image mounted in a 2x2 inch slide mount that can be presented in a “Kodak Carousel 80” type slide tray.

    The following Entry Requirements apply in addition to the General Entry Requirements 1-6:

1)    Any protective coverings (like slide sleeves, etc.), while recommended for shipping, will be removed for judging purposes.

2)    All slides must be clearly identified with the following on the front of the mount:

a)    Title

b)    Entrant’s Full Name (entrant’s personal address may be located on back of the mount)

c)    Entrant’s Affiliate Organization’s Name

d)    Thumb Spot (see Appendix D: “How to Mark Your Slides”)

3)    Submission of transparencies automatically grants permission for duplication, for the purpose of being used in 4Cs’ traveling shows of winners (Top 80, Creative Salon, etc.)


top

MONTHLY SLIDE DIVISION: Club Competition by Group. Competing 4Cs’ Member Clubs are divided into three (3) groups: I, II and III. Member Clubs will be placed in a group according to the finishing score from the competition year previous. Example: in the proceeding year’s competition, the top two clubs in Group II and III will move up one Group. The lower scoring two or three clubs in Group I and II will move down one Group. The number of clubs that move up or down may be adjusted to fit the number of clubs competing in that year. All new clubs will be placed in Group III.

    Judging for the competition year is by another Group determined randomly by the Chair. Example: Group II would be judged by Group I, Group III judges Group II and Group I is judged by Group III (see Appendix C2 for exceptions).

    The following Entry Requirements apply in addition to the General Entry Requirements 1-6 and Transparency Category Entry Requirements 1-3:

1)    All images must be made by the entrant; however, development and mounting may be done by others. Slides must be mounted in a 2x2 inch slide mount that can be presented in a “Kodak Carousel 80” type slide tray. Any slide that is mounted so that it will not drop through the slide tray will not be allowed (disqualified). Slides may be masked (taped) and/or mounted in glass, but they still must be able to drop in the tray.

2)    Each 4Cs’ Member Club may enter up to five (5) slides, from five (5) different individuals, in each month's competition.

a)    A maximum of two (2) slides per individual entrant is allowed if there are less than five (5) different individuals entering, that month.

b)    Individuals belonging to more than one 4Cs’ Member Club may enter slides under each club in which they hold membership. Please note General Entry Requirements 4-5. A maximum of two (2) slides per individual entrant, per competition month, is allowed regardless of how many 4C’s Member Clubs that individual belongs to.


top

TOP 80 DIVISION: Individual Competition. At the end of the yearly competition cycle, all award winning slides (Award of Merit and HM’s) from the Monthly Slide Division will be recalled. Judging will be by an organization outside of the 4Cs and the awards (1st to 5th Place plus 10 HMs) will be given and announced at the 4Cs’ Annual Convention. Notice of recall and shipping information (addresses) will be sent to all clubs with eligible entrants at the end of the year’s monthly competition cycle.

1)    Images must meet all requirements for the Monthly Slide Division.

2)    All images must be the exact same slide as originally entered in the monthly competition or an exact duplicate.


top

CREATIVE SALON DIVISION: Individual Competition. This competition normally is held twice a year (exact dates variable). Notice of competition and shipping information will be sent to all Member Clubs prior to the competition(s). Judges are from outside the 4Cs. 

The following Entry Requirements apply in addition to the General Entry Requirements 1-6, Transparency Category Entry Requirements 1-3 and Monthly Slide Entry Requirement 1:

1)    Individuals from any 4Cs’ Member Clubs may enter up to four (4) slides each.

2)    Any slide receiving awards from previous competitions are ineligible.

3)    In addition to standard slide identification (see Appendix D: “How to Mark Your Slides”), all slides must be numbered to correspond with the entry form (see Appendix E: “Creative Salon Division Entry Form”).

What is Creative?
    The Photographic Society of America (PSA) defines creative photography as follows: “Creative photography may be defined as the concept that stimulates the mind of the viewer to interpret the message conveyed through the creative use of line, form and color.”
    The PSA Color Division Creative Committee offers the following expanded definition: "First of all, a traditional photograph depicts a subject based on reasonable fidelity to reality. It is, for example, a landscape, portrait, street scene, still life, nature photograph, etc. Where manipulation, if any, only artfully or delicately enhances reality."
    "On the other hand, a creative photograph depicts subjects in a substantial departure from realism through the use of various non standard techniques and controls. Examples are: abstracts, derivations, diffractions, distortion, black light, bas relief, impressionism, expressionism, symbolism, montage, dye coloring, Kodalith processes, color key, multiple exposure, etch-dye, solarization, posterization, tone separation, surrealism, unreal color, diazochrome, and multiple images with trick lenses. The creative designation also includes motion blur, patterns, selective focus, diffusion, zoomed exposures, double mounts. When the obvious purpose of a such technique is to alter reality to the point where the picture is non-objective, or abstract in quality."
    Computer generated images would also fall within this category.


top

CONVENTION INVITATIONAL DIVISION: Club Competition. All 4Cs’ Member Clubs are invited to enter images for this competition, which will be judged at the Annual Convention by a panel of three judges selected by the Event Chair (who is appointed by the Convention Committee). Awards will be announced and given at that convention. Notice of competition and shipping information (addresses) will be sent to all Member Clubs with the convention registration packet.

    The following Entry Requirements apply in addition to the General Entry Requirements 1-6, Transparency Category Entry Requirements 1-3 and Monthly Slide Entry Requirement 1:

1)    Each 4Cs’ Member Club is invited to enter up to ten (10) transparencies.

2)    Any slide that has been entered in a previous Convention Invitational or received an award in the previous year’s “monthly” competitions is not eligible.


top

Presentation Category

    Consists of programs that showcase images. Typically these are “slide-shows” but could include printed material, computer displays, etc.


top

MINI-SHOW DIVISION: Club and/or Individual Competition. The Mini-Show Division competition is designed for presentations (slide shows) of short-length and using a minimum of equipment. These may be the work of one or more individuals, or may be a club project, but all persons involved must be members of a 4Cs’ Member Club. Alternates may be used to show the program at the judging (excluding competition administrators) and the convention. Mini-show presentations will be judged on their relative value as entertainment or education.

1)    Only one projector may be used.

2)    The presentation is to be no longer than seven (7) minutes.

3)    One restart is permitted without penalty if circumstances warrant.

4)    Mini-Show entries will be limited to one per person or group each year.

a)    If an individual participating as part of a group wishes to submit a show as an individual, no more than 25% of the images in the group show may be those of that individual.

b)    A program may only be considered as an individual effort if at least 80% of the images and 80% of the sequencing were done by one person. Any show that does not meet this requirement will be considered a club program.

5)    If the number of entries warrant, entries will be divided into two (2) Classes by the Division Committee: Clubs and Individuals.

6)    A screen and a PA system will be available for all entrants. However, they should bring their own equipment for projection and sound.

7)    The amount or type of equipment used will have no bearing on the score.

8)    All Mini-Shows will be scheduled and judged on one day at a place to be selected each year. If requested, adjustment of starting times may be done. A panel of three (3) judges will view and score presentations according to the guidelines (see Appendix F: “Mini-Show Judging Guidelines”).

9)    Winning presentations will be shown at the next annual Council convention. The number shown may vary each year depending on the number of entries and the time allotted by the Convention Committee.

10)    The Council Chairman will appoint a rotating Division Committee of three (3) to recruit three (3) judges and one (1) alternate, select a time and place for the judging and coordinate, advertise and facilitate the competition.

11)    The judges will select the First, Second, Third, and Honorable Mention awards depending on the number of entries.

12)    The Division Committee will check to insure that entries meet the competition rules as listed above.


top

BEN ANDREWS’ AWARD OF EXCELLENCE DIVISION: Club and/or Individual Competition. This competition will be held any year in which there are two or more entrants and is designed for presentations (slide-shows) of longer length with no equipment limitations. This presentation may be the work of one or more individuals, or a camera club project. All individuals involved must be members of a 4Cs’ Member Club. Alternates who had no part in the production of the show may be used to show the entrant's program at the judging session, as well as at the Convention.

1)    The presentation must be at least 20 minutes in length and no longer than 45 minutes.

2)    The presentation will be scored on its relative value as entertainment or education (see Appendix G:  “Ben Andrews Judging Criteria”).

3)    The amount and type of equipment will have no bearing on the score.

4)    The Award of Excellence will not be awarded to the same entrant in consecutive years.

5)    Anyone who previously participated in the Ben Andrews Competition but did not win first place, may re-enter the presentation a second time, but not a third time.

6)    All presentations will be judged on one day, or two days, if necessary. These will be scheduled at a time and place to be established each year. A panel of three judges will view all the presentations and score them according to the guidelines given to them. An adjustment of the scheduled judging times and dates may be made, providing it will not interfere with the availability of the facilities, or the judges.

7)    The Council Chairman will appoint a rotating Division Committee of three (3) to recruit three (3) judges and one (1) alternate, select a time and place for the judging and coordinate, advertise and facilitate the competition.

8)    The judges may present the Award of Excellence, a second place, and a third place. However, they are not required to give any or all of the awards (see Appendix G:  “Ben Andrews Judging Criteria”).

9)    The slide presentation awarded the Ben Andrews Award of Excellence should be available for showing that year at the annual Columbia Council of Camera Clubs Convention.


top

MID-LENGTH SHOW DIVISION: Club and/or Individual Competition. This competition will be held any year in which there are two or more entrants and is designed for presentations (slide-shows) of intermediate length with no equipment limitations. This presentation may be the work of one or more individuals, or a camera club project. All individuals involved must be members of a 4Cs’ Member Club. Alternates who had no part in the production of the show may be used to show the entrants' program at the judging session, as well as at the Convention.

This must be a 1-projector show between 7 and 20 minutes long.

Although this is a separate competition, it will be held in conjunction with the Ben Andrews' Award of Excellence Division.

Contact Division Chair for more information.


top

Submission & Shipping Recommendations

HOW TO DECIDE WHAT TO SEND TO A 4Cs’ COMPETITION: While we cannot tell you what subjects to enter, we will suggest that the entrant makes sure the image is submitted into the proper Category, Division and/or Class. Also it is the entrants’ responsibility to make sure that the image meets the requirements and is prepared and identified properly. Example: if a print has a signature or other markings on the face, it will automatically be disqualified and not judged. If a slide has a thumbspot in the wrong corner (while it will be judged) it will be loaded into the tray as indicated and if it projects sideways, it will be scored low (no compensation made by the judges for “how it should have been projected”).
   
Note: an image does not always need to be printed to the maximum size for a given class, the print can always be smaller than the maximum size.


top

CLUB COMPETITIONS (see Appendix A “Club Competitions”):  For Individual Competition Division/Classes, each member from a 4Cs’ Member Club may enter an image(s) – no limit on how many images come from a particular Member Club for a given competition.

    For Club Competitions, a Member Club may submit a single entry, produced by that club’s members. Or, as in the case of some Print and Transparency Division/Classes, individual members bring in their images and the Member Club may submit a limited number of them for that competition (Example: Print Category, Color Division, Large Class – the Member Club can enter four (4) prints). Individual images are still recognized, but points are also awarded to the Member Club.

    How the Member Club decides on which images to send is determined by that Member Club. Some clubs have special jurying procedures/competitions; others send the winners from their internal competitions, while others rely on their club’s competition chairperson to make the decision. However, it is important that the images meet the Entry Requirements for whichever competition they will be submitted in.


top

SUBMISSION: Once it is determined which images will be submitted for a competition, it is up to the Member Clubs’ competition chairperson to make sure that all images meet all the Entry Requirements (in particular, images are identified and marked properly). It is also the responsibility of the shipping club to ensure that the images will arrive clean; the receiving club has no responsibility for cleaning images.

    A “Submission List” (inventory) needs to be filled out and included with the images (see Appendix H “Competition Submission List”). It is recommended that the Member Clubs’ competition chairperson keep a copy of this list for their records.

    Entries for a given month’s competition must arrive at the judging club by the 1st of that month (unless specified otherwise). Example: April’s Print Category, Color Division (both Large and 96-square Classes) will be judged by Member Club “A”. They must receive all entries by April 1st in order to process and judge by April 12th. Since most Member Clubs use the same shipping containers for the next month’s competition, the images must be returned ASAP after judging so next months can be shipped to the next judging club. It is a tight schedule and if the mails (or other shipping methods) slow, the schedule can suffer. Please allow for any holidays.


top

PACKING FOR SHIPPING: While the “suitcase” or “transport” cases are preferred (“boxes” made from polyethylene or fiber board with reinforced corners, a handle and straps), some Member Clubs use flat cardboard boxes and/or padded mailers. Whatever method you use, please remember that this will be the same packaging that the images will be shipped back to you in. Also keep in mind that there is such a thing as “over packing”. Packing should be kept as simple as possible (while providing protection) with the opening readily known. It has been known to happen where a club shipped in a plain brown grocery bag, taped from stem to stern – the packing material literally had to be destroyed to open it). Here are some other recommendations for preparing your submission for shipping:

v     Put your club name on the outside of the mailer. When dealing with dozens of images, it becomes a time consuming guessing game for the judging club if the image and shipping material cannot easily be matched.

v     Plastic covers or sleeves for individual images are recommended. In case the shipment is inclement weather, the image has some protection from getting wet. Remember these covers will be removed for judging and they should be relatively easy to remove and put back on. Also indicate on the covering the club and image they belong to. Make it as easy as possible for the judging club to process and return your images while providing protection.

v     Provide a return address label.

v     Most judging clubs prefer to have the entries shipped to them via the US Postal Service as it can be delivered to PO Boxes (or for other reasons). If you must ship using a different carrier, please contact the particular judging clubs’ chairperson(s) to see if this would be acceptable.

v     Insurance, proof of delivery, speed of delivery or other special services is at the discretion of the club submitting. 4Cs, it Member Clubs (and their individual members) cannot assume responsibility for loss or damage to any entry, no matter the cause. The entrant assumes all risk and entry in competition acknowledges this.


top

RETURN POSTAGE: Please provide the judging club stamps, adequate for the return of your images - not cash, checks or metered postage. Remember that the returned images will weigh slightly more as there will be extra paperwork included. Please be accurate, it is inconsiderate to the judging club if it has to provide funds for extra postage (not to mention the time at the post office). If special shipping, insurance or other considerations are required, please provide instructions and the funds necessary for the judging club.


top

Processing & Return Recommendations

RECEIVING & PROCESSING: When the judging 4Cs’ Member Club receives a competition submitting clubs entry, they should confirm the inventory, return postage and label, remove any plastic coverings from the entries and keep all that entry’s packing material together (double-checking that it indicates which club it belongs to).


top

PRE-JUDGING PREPARATION: Before the entries are judged, the judging club's competition chairperson should check all entries for automatic disqualifications (markings on front of prints, glass mounted slides, etc.) and indicate on the scoring form why it was disqualified.

    This recommendation is still under development (to include forms, stickers and other).


top

JUDGING, SCORING AND JUDGE COMMENTS: Ties will not be broken except for Print Category/"Print of the Year" Division & Transparency Category/Top 80 Division.

    This recommendation is still under development (to include number of awards given, comments and other).


top

PAPERWORK: This recommendation is still under development (to include the return of forms to clubs and 4Cs' Category Chair, simplification of and reduce redundancy of forms, other).


top

RETURN PACKING: The judging club will repack and ship the entries to the submitting club using the original packing material, the return shipping label and postage provided by the submitting club (it is recommended that postage be provided in stamps, NO metered postage, checks, cash or other methods please).

    Also enclosed will be the proper forms (the submitting club needs to consider the slight extra weight when providing return postage). The judging club will need to make sure they follow any special instructions on return shipping (like insurance, overnight shipping, etc.) that was provided (and funds provided) by the submitting club.


top

Summary Of Judging And Scoring Guidelines For 4Cs' Competitions

Judging Guidelines

The 4Cs asks that judges of 4Cs' competitions observe the following nine guidelines:

1)    Use the 9-point scoring system described below.

2)    Be consistent: do not change your scoring in the middle of a session.

3)    Set aside your personal biases on subject and style.

4)    Do not indiscriminately apply the "Rules of Composition."

5)    Do not give a disproportionate number of high and low scores.

6)    Take lint, dirt, and fungus into account if significant.

7)    Take scratches into account.

8)    If you see an image that looks like it was computer generated or manipulated, score it normally: this is okay in 4Cs competitions.

9)    Judges are discouraged from discussing images during the preview and initial scoring stages of judging.


top

Scoring Guidelines

All 4Cs’ competitions will be judged on a 1-9 scale. Please use the following guidelines for giving each score:

1 POINTS
   
Image should be disqualified.

2 POINTS
    Serious technical defects.

3 POINTS
    Either significant technical defects or serious content problems.

4 POINTS
   
Minor technical defects or content not well handled.

5 POINTS
   
Acceptable but not interesting.

6 POINTS
   
Reasonably solid and interesting. Generally the average score.

7 POINTS
   
Very strong. Rewards contemplation.

8 POINTS
   
Exceptional. Unique and worthy of special recognition.

9 POINTS
   
A medal winner, among the best you have seen. Rarely awarded.


top

A Guide To Judging And Scoring Photographs In 4Cs' Competitions

    Most of the clubs in the Columbia Council of Camera Clubs participate in interclub judging of images. This guide has been developed with the objective of assisting individuals and clubs in the 4Cs with their judging responsibilities. It presents a set of guidelines for judging and the reasons behind them, an overview of the scoring system, and scoring guidelines. It also includes a single page summary of judging info for clubs to copy and share with members.


top

Judging Overview

    Anyone can decide whether a photograph is appealing, but skilled judging is about more than a personal reaction: it requires a good understanding of how photographs communicate. For a description of characteristics to look for in evaluating a photograph, see the 4Cs’ document "A Guide to Evaluating Photographs".

    When you have been selected to be a judge, this means a group of your peers think enough of you as a photographer to ask you to judge their work. This is the ultimate honor your peers can confer on you as a photographer. Always treat the invitation accordingly.


top

Judging Guidelines

    The 4Cs asks that judges of 4Cs’ competitions observe the following nine guidelines:

1)    Use the 9-point scoring system described later in this document.

2)    Be consistent: do not change your scoring in the middle of a session. This most often occurs when a judge notices that his or her scores are generally higher or generally lower than the scores of the other judges. The goal for a judge is to score the images so that, in the judge's best opinion, all of the 9s are better than all of the 8's, all of the 8's are better than all of the 7's, and so on all the way down. If a judge changes scoring in the middle of a session, this will not be true. It may even become embarrassing if you find that your scores are much different than the other scores, but you must stay consistent throughout the entire judging session for complete fairness of the competition.

3)    Set aside your personal biases on subject and style. A judge has the simple but serious challenge of being as fair as possible to all photo entries regardless of personal biases or emotional response to a subject. Even though art is subjective, simply reacting to the image is not adequate; it is important for a judge to analyze his or her reaction to an image, screen out any personal bias, and using consistent reasoning in evaluating the image. This is not easy, but is critical for fair judging.

4)    Do not indiscriminately apply the "Rules of Composition." The "rules of composition" are one-size-fits-all guidelines that in many cases are completely inappropriate for a given image. Evaluate composition based on how it works in the image, not how it follows or fails to follow the rules.

5)    Do not give a disproportionate number of high and low scores. It is possible for one judge to single-handedly determine the winners in a competition by giving only scores that are either very high or very low. This is not an acceptable practice in 4Cs’ competitions. For almost any collection of images, the majority of the images will fall in the middle of the group, fairly close in quality to the average for that particular group. Every judge's scores should reflect this.

6)    Take lint, dirt, and fungus into account if significant. It is the responsibility of the slide and print chairmen for each club to make sure the images submitted for competition are clean and are shipped such that they will arrive clean. So if there is a lot of material on the image, score it down to the extent that the debris is distracting. However, realize that even a clean slide may pick up a small amount of debris during projection. So if the amount of debris is limited, give the photographer the benefit of the doubt.

7)    Take scratches into account. It is the responsibility of the slide and print chairmen for each club to make sure the images submitted for competition are free of significant scratches. So if an image has a noticeable scratch, score it down to the extent that the scratch is distracting.

8)    If you see an image that looks like it was computer generated or manipulated, score it normally: this is okay in 4Cs’ competitions.

9)    Judges are discouraged from discussing images during the preview and initial scoring stages of judging.


top

Scoring Overview

    A 4Cs’ competition should use a panel of 3 judges, each using the 9-point scale described below. The minimum total score an image could receive would be 3 points (1 point from each judge) and a maximum of 27 points (each judge giving a score of 9). Ideally, a judge should not know how another judge has scored an image before presenting his or her own score. As a result, verbal scoring is discouraged. Where possible, use scoring machines, individual scoring sheets for each judge, or score cards. If verbal scoring is the only option, rotate the order in which judges call out their scores.

    Most judges will find it helpful to preview all the images in a competition before starting to score; previewing makes it easier to maintain scoring consistency throughout a session. If time allows, you may opt to preview them multiple times.

    Clubs are encouraged to judge prints in a well-lit environment. 

Scoring Guidelines

    All 4Cs’ competitions should be judged on a 1-9 scale (unless specifically noted otherwise). Please use the following guidelines in giving scores:

1 POINT
   
Use this score to disqualify an image. An image may be disqualified if it clearly infringes on another artist's copyright or if it is submitted for a category competition and you feel that it clearly does not fit.

2 POINTS
   
The image shows serious technical defects: gross under or over exposure, very poor focus or significant (and clearly unintended) camera movement, or similar problems.

3 POINTS
   
The image either has significant technical defects, serious shortcomings in image content, or some combination of these problems. Because most of the photographers who compete in 4Cs’ competitions have at least some photographic experience, this score and lower scores are rarely awarded in 4Cs’ competitions.

4 POINTS
   
The image does not have significant technical defects or serious shortcomings in image content. However, it may have minor technical defects, and the content (composition, lighting, etc) is not well handled.

5 POINTS
   
The image is acceptable in most respects but does not create any significant interest.

6 POINTS
   
The image is reasonably solid, creating at least a little interest. Technical aspects and image content all competently handled. This is generally the average score for 4Cs’ competitions.

7 POINTS
    The image is very strong. Handling is a notch above competent, and the image rewards contemplation.

8 POINTS
   
The image is exceptional: unique and worthy of special recognition. You should feel excited about the image.

9 POINTS
   
The image is of the very highest quality; equal to the best you have seen. You feel that it should win a medal in salon competition or slide of the year in 4Cs’ competition. This score is awarded only rarely in 4Cs’ competitions.

This guide was developed by:
    Billy Burke, APSA, Forest Grove Camera Club
    John Dean, FPSA, Spokane Valley Camera Club
    Max Burke, Boise Camera Club
    Rick Charlton, Oregon Color Slide
    Carol Todd, Oregon Coast Photographers' Association
    Ed Gervais, 4Cs Vice Chair, Boise Camera Club
    Gordon Battaile, 4Cs Chair, Forest Grove Camera Club


top

A Guide To Evaluating Photographs

    This document is a brief summary of considerations for evaluating image quality. It is not intended to be comprehensive; if you seek a thorough guide, there are many other sources available to you, i.e., in bookstores, libraries, or members of your club. However, much of the evaluation of images, especially in a camera club context, can be distilled into a relatively small number of concepts. All photographers’ benefit from at least considering the following points, and judges in particular should be used to thinking about them.

    When you are judging prints, you have the actual print quality to evaluate as well as the image content.

Basic Technique

v     Is focus appropriate for the subject? Is depth of field appropriate?

v     Is it exposed in a way that works for the image?

Special Techniques

v     Are special techniques like multiple exposure, sandwiching, panning, or cross processing used effectively?

v     If the image is digitally manipulated, is the manipulation done well?

Composition

v     Is the image balanced or unbalanced? Is the balance level appropriate? If there is a main center of interest, is it well placed in the frame?

v     Are there distracting elements in the picture that could be eliminated?

v     Are there too many unrelated elements? Too few elements?

v     Does the composition make effective use of leading lines?

v     Is depth used (or not used) to good advantage?

v     Does the composition make use of repeating forms?

v     Does the framing work? Mergers?

Lighting

v     Does it show off the subject well?

v     Is the contrast level appropriate?

v     Is there lighting that would work better for the subject?

v     If the lighting is controlled, is it well controlled?

Subject/Interest

v     Does the subject have interesting connotations or associations?

v     Color interest?

v     Interesting textures?

v     Interesting juxtapositions?

Originality

v     Does the image show an original subject or an original approach to a standard subject? Is it anonymous, or does it show a visual signature or convey a personal vision?

Story/Mood

v     Does the image effectively tell a story or convey a mood?

Printing Technique

v     Is the contrast level appropriate for the image?

v     Are there artifacts that make any dodging and burning too noticeable?

v     Is toning well handled?

This guide was developed by:
    Billy Burke, APSA, Forest Grove Camera Club
    John Dean, FPSA, Spokane Valley Camera Club
    Max Burke, Boise Camera Club
    Rick Charlton, Oregon Color Slide
    Carol Todd, Oregon Coast Photographers' Association
    Ed Gervais, 4Cs Vice Chair, Boise Camera Club
    Gordon Battaile, 4Cs Chair, Forest Grove Camera Club


top

A Guide To Critiquing Photographs

    Judging is one skill; critiquing or commenting on pictures is another. To critique successfully requires a thorough knowledge of the basics of what makes a photograph pleasing, in addition to having an ability to communicate this knowledge and opinion.

    Although there is generally no critique for 4C's slide competitions, print competition judges may be requested to supply comments in addition to scores. Also, many clubs invite comments during internal competitions.

    For competitions that combine judging and commenting, it usually works best to appoint one experienced person to critique while others do the scoring. The commentator should, in all cases, make remarks after the judges have scored so as not to influence the judges. However, scores may be actually announced before or after the commentator has made his or her remarks.

    Some clubs have open critique sessions in which anyone present may make comments. For this to be constructive, the group should be trained or be familiar with the basics of a good picture before commenting.

    The 4Cs suggests that judges observe the following guidelines when offering either verbal or written comments on images:

1)    DON'T BE UNKIND. Ill placed comments and individual words that degrade or insult the image or the photographer have no place in this process. They are effective only at reducing membership.

2)    IDENTIFY POSITIVE ATTRIBUTES FOR EACH IMAGE, AND BE CONSTRUCTIVE ABOUT ANY IMAGE PROBLEMS. It's important to be encouraging, especially for photographers who are just getting started. When there are problems, identify ways in which the photographer might improve the image or similar images in the future. Never simply state that an image isn't appealing or doesn't work; always identify the cause of the problem. If all you say is that you don't like the image, you aren't helping anyone.

3)    BREVITY IS THE SOUL OF WIT.

This guide was developed by:
    Billy Burke, APSA, Forest Grove Camera Club
    John Dean, FPSA, Spokane Valley Camera Club
    Max Burke, Boise Camera Club
    Rick Charlton, Oregon Color Slide
    Carol Todd, Oregon Coast Photographers' Association
    Ed Gervais, 4Cs Vice Chair, Boise Camera Club
    Gordon Battaile, 4Cs Chair, Forest Grove Camera Club


top

Appendix

A – CLUB COMPETITIONS

    In the Transparency Category Monthly Slide Division, “Club Competitions” refers to accumulated points for the 4Cs’ Member Club and individual image recognition.

    Example: on a given month, “Club A” enters five (5) images. These images score 25, 21, 19, 22 and 16 points respectively. Slide #1 may receive an “Award of Merit” and slide #4 a HM. The total score for “Club A” for this month would be 103 points. Those points are accrued, tabulated and the Member Club with the most points in their group at the end of the competition year would be recognized (1st, 2nd & 3rd places).

    For the Convention Invitational Divisions (in both the Print and Transparency Categories), “Club Competitions” refers to the Member Club submitting an entry consisting of a determined number of images and those images being judged and given points during the Convention.

    Points will be totaled and the Member Clubs with the highest accrued score (for a given Class) will be awarded 1st, 2nd and 3rd places during the Awards Ceremony at the Convention.

    For all other Categories and Divisions, “Club Competitions” refers to an entry being submitted by a Member Club and treated as a single entry. Depending on the Division/Class, these “Club Entries” may be the only type of entry, compete alongside with Individuals or, depending on the number of entries, may spin-off into a separate Class.


top

B – PRINT PRESENTATION

    Image presentation will be considered in the judging process. Images with marginal presentations should be scored lower, regardless of how good the actual image might be. Specifically (but not limited to):

v     Signatures or titles on the front/face of the mat, image or mount will automatically be disqualified.

v     Matting – mat board unsuitable for the image in terms of size, shape and/or color can and should be scored lower. Poor cuts and use of pencil or other markers to hide “mistakes” should also be considered and scored down in the judging/scoring process.

v     Spotting – poor technique or lack of, score lower.

v     Irregular trimming – the image itself or the mat/mount should not have irregular edges. If border tape is used, it should have even edges and crisp corners.

    Reasonable allowances should be made for damage due to shipping.

    Protective coverings like plastic, transparent bags, etc. (while recommended for shipping purposes) will be removed for judging. However, this covering should be marked as to which image and 4Cs’ Member Club it belongs to (to make the processing easier and to prevent lost coverings). Shrink-wrap will not be removed.


top

C1 – EXCEPTIONS, PRINT CATEGORY

    The month a 4Cs’ Member Club is scheduled to judge a particular category/division, that club and it’s members are ineligible for competition in that same category/division. However, the following month they may enter double prints in that category/division for competition. Since no judging is done in June, the club judging in May can enter double prints in April.

    Example: Camera Club “A” is judging the Monochrome Division in February, thus it’s members are ineligible to enter February’s Monochrome competition (this way, this particular club will not be judging it’s own work). All other Divisions are entered normally for that month. For March’s Monochrome Division competition, Camera Club “A” can enter up to eight (8) Large prints and up to four (4) 96-square prints per individual.


top

C2 – EXCEPTIONS, TRANSPARENCY CATEGORY MONTHLY SLIDE DIVISION

    If, on any given month, an individual has entered images with multiple 4Cs’ Member Clubs and if any Member Club is scheduled to judge, that individual is ineligible to judge or be commentator (if said club uses commentators).


top

D – HOW TO MARK YOUR SLIDES

v     All slides must be clearly identified with the following on the front of the mount:

 

NOTES & RECOMMENDATIONS:

v     Pencil is recommended to mark slide mounts as it will allow the maker to easily make any changes to it if they wish to at a later date.

v     If you are using labels on the mount, DO NOT use address labels that need to be moistened. The glue dries out fairly quickly and can drop into the slide tray and cause big, big problems.

v     Any slide that is mounted so that it will not drop through a “Kodak Carousel 80” type slide tray is disqualified. Glass mounts over cardboard mounts are not acceptable, they are too thick. Any protective coverings (like slide sleeves, etc.), while recommended for shipping, will be removed for judging purposes.

v     If you “tape” any type of mount, make certain there are no sticky edges that can catch on the slide tray.

v     Make certain the “thumb spot” is on the lower left hand corner of the slide when held in the proper viewing position and have the title of the slide so it can be read when it is inserted in a slide tray. Be sure to leave room for the thumb spot! Tip: Some salons will put on a sticker that doubles for the thumb spot and identifying the club entry/slide number, e.g., 22-10.

v     Additional Tips: Any slide sent as an individual to any “outside” salon (PSA or otherwise), should contain the maker’s name and address and ALWAYS have ALL information on the SAME side as the title and thumb spot, and readable without having to turn the slide around. When sending a club entry to any salon or competition, ALWAYS include the name of the club.


top

E – CREATIVE SALON DIVISION ENTRY FORM

 

Slide #

Title

Score 1

Score 2

Score 3

Total

Award

1

 

 

 

 

 

 

2

 

 

 

 

 

 

3

 

 

 

 

 

 

4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Makers Name: ______________________________________________________________________

Address:  __________________________________________________________________________

City: ________________________________________     State: _______     ZipCode: _____________

Club Name: ________________________________________________________________________

Submission of images automatically grants permission for duplication (for the purpose of being shown in the traveling show with other winning slides). Return postage and return address labels are required.


top

F – MINI-SHOW JUDGING GUIDELINES

    The Mini-Show Presentations will be judged as Both Education and Entertainment. Each of the following factors will be scored according to the number of points that may be awarded to each factor as shown below:

v     (15%)  ORIGINALITY (Title, Subject Matter, Approach)
v    
(15%)  AUDIO (Equipment handling, Volume, Clarity)
v    
(30%)  CONTINUITY (Organization, Transition, Sequences)
v     (40%) PHOTOGRAPHY (Composition, Focus, Exposure – salon quality is not a necessary criteria. However, photographic quality is essential)

JUDGING GUIDELINES: Each judge will be provided a rating sheet for each show. The first priority for any photographic competition is to have fun. Next is to learn. Please be honest and constructive in your comments.

The rating sheet should be competed after each Mini-Show.

v     Judges must use a pencil on the rating sheets (this is so that ratings can be adjusted after viewing all the shows; i.e. to break ties etc.).

v     Judges should not consult other judges in completing the rating sheet.

v     After all presentations, each judge will enter the scores onto the judges’ score sheet.

v     After the scores are on the judges’ score sheet the judges will confer and agree on the first, second, and third place. The judges may consult with the alternate judge but the judges have the responsibility to make any necessary adjustments in ratings to eliminate ties and then assign the final order of awards.

v     The Mini-Show chairperson does not participate in the judging but will be glad to offer any assistance or answer questions.

v     The judges will notify the Mini-Show Chairperson of the results. Please do not announce the winners until the chairperson has verified the various totals.

v     The Mini-Show chairperson will notify the contestants, in writing, of the results and include a copy of each judge’s evaluation sheet for their presentation.


top

G – BEN ANDREWS’ JUDGING CRITERIA

    The Ben Andrews’ Award Of Excellence was established in 1978, in memory of 4Cs’ Council Member Ben D. Andrews and the style of slide shows he created.

JUDGING GUIDELINES:

v     Each of the following elements will be scored 1 to 5 points, with 5 being the highest.

v     All slide presentations will be judged the same, whether they are educational, entertainment, or a combination of both.

v     The judges will use a scoring sheet with room for comments, which will be given to the maker after the judging has been completed.

v     Each presentation can receive up to 90 points (30 per judge).

v     Because the key word in the name of the award is “EXCELLENCE,” the award will be made          to the contestant receiving the highest score of 70 points or more*.

v     If no contestant receives 70 points, the judges may grant the Ben Andrews Award of Excellence to the highest scoring contestant, if that contestant receives a score of 24 or more points (80%) from any one judge and if the judges unanimously agree that the contestant’s show is deserving of the honor.

* Seventy points is 78% of the total possible 90 points. Seventy points was chosen as a compromise between 75% of 90 (67.5 points) and 80% of 90 (72 points).


top

H – COMPETITION SUBMISSION LIST (INVENTORY)

This appendix is under development

Competition Date: ___________________________            Submission Date: _______________________

 Submitting Club:  _______________________________________________________________________

 Judging Club: _________________________________________________________________

 Category (Print, Transparency or Presentation): _______________________________________________

 Division (Monochrome, Color, Monthly Slide, etc.):  _____________________________________________

 Large Class or Monthly Slide Division

  Title Maker

1

   

2

   

3

   

4

   

5 (slides only)

   

 96-square Class

 

Title Maker

1

   

2

   

3

   

4

   

5

   

6

   

7

   

8

   

9

   

10

   

11

   

12

   

13

   

14

   

15

   

16

   

17

   

18

   

19

   

20

   

 Duplicate if you need more space for additional entries


top

I – JUDGING/SCORING FORMS

This appendix is under development


top

J – JUDGES COMMENTS

This appendix is under development


top

K

This appendix is under development


When you want to return to OCPA's Website Opening Page,
just close
this browser window


Gold Book Contents
|    About the 4Cs    |
|    Constitution    |    Bylaws    |
|    Competition Rules & Guidelines    |
|    Awards    |    Other    |

|    4Cs Home    |


If you have reached this page using a search engine, you may not be seeing the entire thing as this site uses frames. Click here to reset the page.
|    4Cs Page Reset    |

|    Return to OCPA's Website Opening Page    |


Copyright © 2003  Columbia Council of Camera Clubs & OREGON COAST PHOTOGRAPHERS' ASSOCIATION, Inc.   All rights reserved.
Version: 1.5
Revised: January 19, 2003