Competition Rules

During the season the society gets involved in a number of internal and external competitions. They are a great way of encouraging members to hone their skills and compare their efforts with others.

Depending upon the competition the images can be presented as mounted (not framed) prints up to 500mm x 400mm overall and digital images as 1400w x 1050h jpg files. The programme (syllabus) gives details of the dates of the competitions and submissions. There is a separate rules document.

With the exception of the Day Tripper competition, prints and projected images are never judged against one another, and are considered to be in separate competitions. All entries must be received prior to the published closing date, which will ordinarily be one week prior to the competition.

An external judge assesses the majority of the competitions. Internal competitions have 1st, 2nd, 3rd, Highly Commended and Commended classifications awarded. One form of external competition is the “Battle” between 2 or 3 local photo societies in which a specified number of prints and projected images from each club are given a rating and the club with the highest aggregate score wins.

Members submitting prints are also requested to submit a 1400 x 1050 digital version to help the selection panel choose prints for battles and also for showing, at a reduced resolution, on the Society’s web site.

When an evening has competitions involving both prints and projected images, the prints are generally presented first. This means that they can be displayed around the room during the interval and allow members to fully appreciate the work. The results of the print competition are generally announced at the commencement of the second half of the evening.

Members are free to enter all competitions excepting that only ‘Novices’ can enter the Novice Trophy Competitions and only Advanced members can enter the Merit Competitions. A Novice is defined as a member who has not had their name engraved on any Club Trophy in a previous season, but a non Trophy Winner can elect to be an Advanced member.

DPS Competition Rules

The following Internal Competitions will be held each year. They are open to all full members of the Society.

Open Subject Competitions

The John Hughes Trophy – Monochrome prints
The Gerry Coyle Memorial Trophy – Colour Prints
The President’s Trophy – Projected Digital Images (PDIs)
The Jeff Bartlett Memorial Trophy – Panel of Prints

Nature Competitions

The Wally Mills Trophy – Nature prints
The Toft Trophy – Nature Projected Digital Images (PDIs)

Merit Competitions

3 competitions for Projected Digital Images on subjects to be designated by the committee, for the Walter Heath Trophy
3 competitions for prints on subjects to be designated by the committee, for the Lanchester Trophy

Novice Competitions

3 competitions for Projected Digital Images on subjects to be designated by the committee, for the Novice PDI Trophy
3 competitions for prints on subjects to be designated by the committee, for the Novice Print Trophy

 Summer Competition

A competition including both Prints and PDIs for images obtained over the summer period on an activity specified by the Committee, for the Day Tripper Trophy

Competition Specific Details 

John Hughes Trophy

Members can submit up to 3 Mono prints on any subject.

We use the definition of monochrome issued by FIAP :-

A black and white work fitting from the very dark grey (black) to the very clear grey (white) is a monochrome work with the various shades of grey. A black and white work toned entirely in a single colour will remain a monochrome work able to stand in the black and white category. On the other hand a black and white work modified by a partial toning or by the addition of one colour becomes a colour work (polychrome) to stand in the colour category.

Gerry Coyle Memorial Trophy – Members can submit up to 3 Colour Prints on any subject.

President’s Trophy – Members can submit up to 3 PDIs on any subject.

Jeff Bartlett Memorial TrophyPanel of 3 Prints

Entries to this competition must consist of THREE pictures on a theme chosen by the author. The prints may be mounted individually (this is preferred) or may be on one common mount. Remember that if you are mounting all three on a common mount, it must not exceed 500mm x 400mm. The sequence in which the prints are to be viewed must be indicated clearly on the reverse of the prints, along with the overall title of the panel. It is not essential for each image to have an individual title: it is up to you. You may only submit one panel into the competition.

The Day Tripper Trophy

This competition is for prints and PDIs that were taken for the summer competition. Members can submit up to 2 prints and 2 PDIs but there is only one overall winner, which will be chosen from either category. This competition differs from all others due to the way in which it is judged; external judging is not normally used. Instead, the competition is usually judged on the first evening of the season by the audience present.

Nature Competitions

Up to 2 Prints can be entered for the Wally Mills Trophy and up to 2 PDIs for the Toft Trophy.

We use the definition for nature issued by the PAGB :- See page 2 of this link for the new (Feb 2018) definition for Nature Photography. 

In addition correct descriptive titles should be used. “Cute” titles are NOT allowed.

Merit and Novice Competitions

These are run over 3 rounds each, with subjects declared by the Committee before the start of the season. Each round has two sections, Novices and Advanced and within each section there are separate Print and PDI competitions, in total: Novice Print, Advanced Print, Novice PDI and Advanced PDI. Members can enter up to 2 Prints and 2 PDIs into the appropriate competitions.

Each entrant’s score in a competition
(1st-10pts, 2nd-8pts, 3rd-6pts, HC-4pts, C-2pts)
will be aggregated over the 3 rounds of the corresponding competition to determine the overall trophy winners.

Before the first round each entrant will have to specify which section they wish to compete in, excepting that any member who has already got their name engraved on a trophy will automatically be entered into the Advanced Competitions. Non trophy winners will have a choice of which section they wish to enter.

Judging and trophies

All competitions will have a single judge who will normally be external to the Society. The judge will comment on all entries submitted and will place the best three entries in rank order. The judge may also Commend or Highly Commend any number of entries. In any competition for which there is a trophy, the trophy will be awarded to the author of the entry placed first or in the case of the Merit and Novice Competitions the member with the highest aggregate score. Trophies will be held for a year and must be returned upon request.

General Rules

The closing date for competitions will be no later that one week prior to the judging night. This is to allow the competition secretary sufficient time to collate the images correctly.

It is not permissible to submit the same image to both print and projected image competitions on the same night.

Once an image has been awarded a place in any internal club competition (from first through to commended) it will become ineligible for internal competition use from the following club year onwards. Such images will still be considered for inter-club battles and other external competitions.

Any entry may be rejected if it is considered to be inappropriate by the Competition Secretary.

All photographs must be the original work of the author and copyright of such work must be at the disposal of the photographer.

Submission of Prints

Prints may be trade processed. The author must have done any digital manipulation.

Prints must be mounted on a stiff card mount, which must not be larger than 500mm x 400mm and 4mm thick. There is no minimum size of print.

All print entries must be labelled on the reverse with both a title and your name and address.

As well as submitting prints on or before the designated evening it is also necessary to email a digital version of each print of size within 1400 pixels wide by 1050 pixel high to .
The jpeg file should be titled “PRINT title by photog“

eg PRINT Work Light by Bob Mercer.jpg

(If you don’t receive an acknowledge of receipt then please contact Tony Timmins.)

Submission of PDIs

The original image must have been made by the author on photographic emulsion or acquired with a digital image-capturing device.

Only electronic modifications made by the author will be acceptable.

When submitting digital images for projection it is important that you format the image correctly. The projector we use projects at a resolution of 1400 (wide) x 1050 (high) pixels, and you are encouraged to ensure that your pictures conform to these dimensions. Any submissions that do not will be automatically scaled for projection and this process may result in a poorer image quality than if you sized them before submission.

Images should be colour profiled/calibrated using a correctly calibrated monitor and utilising the sRGB colour space.

Digital files should be submitted by email to as a JPG with a filename that contains the author’s name and the title of the image. This must appear as follows: ’title by author.jpg .
eg: MY BEST GULL by John Doe.jpg
WALKING BY THE SEA by John Doe.jpg

The lowercase ‘by’ surrounded by 2 spaces is used to separate the title and author fields and hence must not appear in your title.

(If you don’t receive an acknowledge of receipt of your images then please contact Tony Timmins.)


By default all prints and images entered in to internal competitions can be used in the Society’s battles, inter-club competitions, external competitions and the Web Site unless the member lets the Secretary know in writing that he/she wishes to opt out.

Members enter their images at their own risk. The Society cannot accept liability for any loss or damage.

Interpretation and Amendment

The interpretation and amendment of these rules is at the absolute discretion of the Committee whose decision on a simple majority vote shall be final.

Updated August 2014