Monday, June 11, 2012

Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2012: Call for Entries

You have until 9 July 2012 to submit entries for the £12,000 Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2012.

Some of the most impressive portraits I saw last year were in the exhibition for the Taylor Wessing Portrait Prize.  There's something about this competition which stimulates a much more creative approach to portraiture - see Review: Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2011

Wen, 2011 by Jasper Clarke (4th Prize, 2011)
© Jasper Clarke

How many people enter and how many get selected?
  • The National Portrait Gallery expects to get around 6,000 entries
  • The exhibition will display photographic portraits by around 60 photographers.
  • That means those if you enter you have about a 1% chance of getting selected
Are there any awards?
  • the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2012  is worth £12,000
  • the John Kobal New Work Award is worth £4,000 (including a commission).  This NEW prize will be awarded to a photographer under the age of 30 who is selected for the exhibition. 
What sort of work is eligible?

‘Portrait’ may be interpreted in its widest sense, of ‘photography concerned with portraying people with emphasis on their identity as individuals’
  • all photos must have been taken after 1 January 2011
  • all entries must be the photographer’s own work
  • the photograph must be a portrait
  • photographs can be in black and white or colour
  • must be unmounted and on paper no smaller than 420x297mm (A3 size) and no larger 
  • than 1015x760mm. The image may be smaller than the paper size
Who is eligible to enter?
  • all photographers over the age of 18. You must must have been 18 years of age or over on 1 January 2011
  • there's no constraint in terms of where you live or work
  • in terms of status you can be a professional photographer or a gifted amateur or a Student of photography
  • previous winners of the competition are not eligible to enter
What's the limit on the number of entries?
  • You can make submit one entry form
  • In your submission you can enter up to 6 photographs (all photographs have to be entered as part of the same application)
What's the entry fee?
  • Every photograph you enter attracts a fee of £24
What's the deadline for entries?
  • The closing date for online registration: 23:59 GMT+1 Monday 9 July 2012 (UK time)
  • Entries can be sent in advance of this date either by post or online
  • Entry forms will not be accepted on the day when prints are delivered. How do I enter
How are the entries judged?
The prize winners and exhibition selection is judged, on an equal and anonymous basis, from original prints. We have reviewed our judging guidelines in the last year and provided judges with procedures relating to the process, the judging and conflicts of interest.
How to enter

Read the rules
Online entry
Postal entry
  • Download the postal entry form please CLICK HERE
  • Alternatively write and request an application form by sending a stamped self-addressed A5 envelope to: Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2012, National Portrait Gallery, St Martin's Place, London WC2H OHE
  • all photographs, whether delivered in person or by post/courier, must be received between Monday 23 July – Friday 3 August 2012 (09.00 – 17.00 hrs only)
  • The delivery/collection point address will be provided once the registration process is complete
Selection decisions
  • Photographers will be notified of the judges’ decision by email or by post by Tuesday 21 August 2012.
The Exhibition

The Taylor Wessing Photographic Prize Exhibition will be held at the National Portrait Gallery, London from 8 Nov 2012 – 17 Feb 2013. A 72 page catalogue will feature all the photographs selected for the exhibition.

Tips for photographers entering the exhibition

I'm repeating below the tips for potential entrants in my last post about this exhibition

First off, check out the numbers.  In 2011, the 60 portraits in the exhibition came from 6,033 photographic portraits submitted by 2,506 photographers. This means:
  • 1% chance of getting your work into the exhibition
  • most photographers submit more than one entry
  • the average number of photographs entered is 2.4 photographs (ie spend at least £50 on the entry fees). It would be interesting to know whether those selected had a higher average submission rate and whether seeing more photos by the same artist was more likely to generate a selection. (I shall ask!)
Gallery view of portraits in the exhibition
Practical considerations are as follows
  • Review my gallery shot to get a sense of the sort of size of the prints submitted
  • no distinction is made on the label for the work between film and digital - although I have a feeling the selectors are told. Both the first and third prizes were film photos.
  • all photographic prints need to be submitted flat
  • there is no need to frame your prints
  • prints are matted and framed by the exhibition organisers which means that the "look" of the exhibition is very uniform and we're not distracted by differences in framing. All work is matted in white and framed with a black wood frame. 
  • At least one of the award winners told me that the glazing used for the framed prints had darkened and subdued the colour in the prints. 

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