CATEGORY DEFINITIONS, SPRING 2023
Please note that in many cases the judges or competition chairman cannot tell if the definitions have been rigorously adhered to, particularly with respect to manipulations used, hybrid plants, etc. Therefore, we must depend on the integrity of the competitor to follow the category definitions and competition guidelines and keep our competitions fair.
NOTE: Borders or strokes: Digital images in all categories may optionally include a white stroke on the perimeter of the image to set it off from the black projected background. The stroke may be a maximum of 5 pixels wide and must be included in the maximum width and height pixel dimensions. Prints in all categories may optionally have a maximum of 1/4 inch of the white unprinted paper on the perimeter of the image.
· Digital Categories: Abstract, Monochrome, Nature, Open/Color, Scapes and Travel
· Print Categories: Monochrome, Nature, Open/Color, Scapes and Travel
Abstract: Images in this category depend on light, shadows, shapes, forms, colors, and/or textures to create an interesting composition, which may appear unreal and unrecognizable. All in-camera techniques are allowed, including ICM (intentional camera movement) and double exposures.
Post processing is limited to brightness, contrast, and color adjustments, sharpening, cropping, monochrome conversion, rotating and flipping.
Digital manipulations that make the image notably different from the in-camera original are not allowed; for example, the use of creative art apps, grunge and painterly filters.
Monochrome: Monochrome is defined as a black and white image which contains only various shades of grey. The optional addition of a uniform tint of any single color to the entire image is permitted. Composite images, such as sky replacement or combining elements from multiple photographs, are permitted. However, all of the elements of a composite image must have been taken from the photographer’s own images.
Nature: Note: The Grand Photos “Nature” definition is NOT the same as the current ACCC or PSA definition.
Images in this category depict landscapes, wild animals, and non-hybrid plants in a natural habitat and must be an accurate record of the subject and environment as the primary factors which results in an image that is a true representation of the actually observed scene.
Exclusions in this category include:
-All images of hybrid plants, such as roses and tulips which will be assumed to be hybrid and disqualified unless the Chair is convinced to the contrary by the submitter before the competition.
-Formal floral arrangements, mounted specimens and domestic and feral animals (including all horses) will also be disqualified.
-Evidence of “hand of man” in any part of the image, will be disqualified. One exception to this rule is that scientific bands on animals in zoos or in the wild are acceptable. Photos of zoo animals are acceptable only if the zoo setting replicates a natural setting with no man-made objects such as cage wire or feeding dishes in the scene.
-Limited modifications are permitted in this category. Cropping, adjustments to sharpness, contrast, brightness, color and saturation are acceptable. Techniques such as HDR and focus stacking are permitted.
-Post-processing exclusions include stitched and composite images, such as sky replacement. Removal of items that are part of the scene, such as posts or wires, through any selective process such as cloning is not permitted in this category.
Open - Color: Any image is eligible for this category Except for images meeting the “Monochrome” definition. Composite images, such as sky replacement or combining elements from multiple photographs, are permitted. However, all of the elements of a composite image must have been taken from the photographer’s own images.
Scapes: Images for this category should be sweeping, wide angle views of scenery, landscapes, seascapes, cityscapes, etc., such as you would capture from a viewpoint. Such images may include living things and man-made objects often referred to as the “hand of man”. Images may be horizontal or vertical. Images using “panoramic stitching", “photomerge”, HDR and helicon focus software to combine multiple overlapping images of the scene are allowed as long as the result honestly depicts the actual scene as it appeared at the time it was photographed. Cloning is allowed, but only to remove items that are not normally part of the image, such as trash, contrails, and similar items. Composite images, such as sky replacement or combining elements from multiple photographs, are permitted. However, all of the elements of a composite image must have been taken from the photographer’s own images and the resulting image must honestly depict the actual scene as it appeared at the time it was photographed.
Travel: A Photo Travel image expresses the characteristic features or culture of a land as they are found naturally. There are no geographic limitations. Images from events or activities arranged specifically for photography, or of subjects directed or hired for photography are not permitted. Close up pictures of people or objects must include features that provide information about the location.
Techniques that add, relocate, replace, or remove any element of the original image, except by cropping, are not permitted. The only allowable adjustments are removal of dust or digital noise, restoration of the appearance of the original scene and complete conversion to greyscale monochrome. Other derivations, including infrared, are not permitted. All images must look natural.
Click here for "Understanding the Photo Travel Definition".