Competition rules


Competition Rules
Ratified Sept 10, 2007
Amended Oct 25, 2007
Amended Dec 5, 2007
Amended Aug 7, 2008
Amended Jul 16, 2009
Amended Jun 24, 2010
Amended Jun 16, 2016
Amended July 25 2108
Amended September 12, 2019
These rules are in effect as of September 12, 2019
Only members who paid for the season may enter competitions.
The President will announce, in advance of the first competition night, the schedule of competitions and which competitions are “Open” and which are for a specific “Theme”. This information, including descriptions of themes will be posted on the RPS web site at the beginning of each season.
There will be separate competition categories for black-and-white and color at each competition meeting.
The President will announce the maximum number of entries that a member may place into each competition. Starting with the 2019/2020 season, the maximum number of entries is three in each competition category with a maximum of 6 images per competition meeting. The entries can be in any category – color or b&w.
Entries may have been processed by the entrant or commercially. No distinction is made between entries taken with film vs. digital cameras, nor between chemical vs. digital processing.
Any individual photo may be submitted in a maximum of two monthly competitions.
The same image cannot be entered in both color and Black&White in the same month.
As soon as a photo wins an award, it is no long eligible to be entered in a future monthly competition.
If a photo is substantially altered it will be considered a new photo and is subject to the same two competition maximum. Examples of substantial changes include making a vertical picture of a horizontal or vice versa, severe cropping, or sandwiching with other material.
Entries in the print competitions must also be submitted as digital versions of their print, in the same manner as for digital competitions.
The size of the digital version of your photograph must be no more than 1400 pixels in either direction.
The award winners in the print competitions are responsible for bringing their original prints – not reprints – back for judging at the annual banquet.
“Black-and-white”, in these rules, actually includes any image made up of a single color and white. “Sepia-tone” and “monochrome” would be considered black-and-white. Black-and-white prints that contain only one added color are to be judged as black and white prints. Those that contain two or more added colors are to be judged as color prints.
Entries must be family friendly. The print team/digital chair and the president will decide to allow or disqualify an entry at their discretion.
Print competition
All prints must be mounted on mat board or similar stiff medium. No double sticky tape or adhesives may be exposed on the backing. Mats are optional but must be firmly attached to the backing. Framed pictures under glass and pictures with a hanging mechanism on the back, are not allowed in any competitions. All methods of print production, including digital, are welcome.
The minimum print size shall be 49 square inches in area. There is no longer any minimum length or width. Prints may not be larger than 16" x 20". Overall dimensions may not be larger than 16" x 20".
All prints must bear the name of the photographer, the title, the classification (Beginner, Advanced or Salon), and the Theme (“Open” or the specified theme of the evening) in which the picture is to be entered. This information must be on an official Raritan Photographic Society label, which will be available at meetings at no charge. The label is firmly affixed on the back of the print in the upper right corner. Labels have been prepared for each class and are colored coded according to Classification. These stickers are color coded by classification. Beginner is red, Advanced is blue and Salon is green. These are the only acceptable labels for use in our competitions. It is the competitor’s responsibility to fill out the correct sticker with the TITLE, MAKERS NAME and DATE legibly PRINTED in black ink. It is also necessary to circle Color or Black & White at the top of the sticker. The label should be oriented so that the top of the label points to the top of the print. If the photographer desires, the title may be legible on the front of the print. No other information may be on the front.
All Prints must be pre-registered on the PCP Submit Pictures Program no later than midnight on the Tuesday before the competition. Prints that have not been pre-registered will not be accepted at the door.
Prints with their completed labels should be delivered to the Print Chairpersons between 7 PM and 7:20 PM on the night of the competition.
Digital competition
“Digital” here refers to how the images are submitted and judged, not how the images are captured or developed. It is considered synonymous with the term “Electronic” used by NJFCC and PSA, but is more commonplace.
Digital images are presented to the judge and the audience using a digital projector, displaying the entry’s “actual pixels” (no re-sampling).
Submitted images should be no wider or taller than 1400 pixels
All files must be in jpeg (.JPG) format and submitted through the PCP Submit Pictures Program no later than midnight on the Tuesday before the competition. The digital image competition chair may extend the deadline at his or her discretion.
There is no restriction on how you name your image files.
Digital image makers will compete at the same skill classification level in digital competitions as they do in print competitions. A competitor may have different classification levels in color and b&w digital competitions. The competitor is subject to reclassification, as described below.
The purpose of classification is to give photographers a chance to compete with others of comparable ability.
There are three skill classes: B (Beginner), A (Advanced), and S (Salon).
Those who have never competed before would normally enter the B (Beginner) class, except when three RPS members appointed by the President are of the opinion, the competitor should be placed in the A (Advanced) class after his/her second entry.
Once classification has been set, a photographer in class B may ask to be moved to class A.
After the annual banquet at the end of the season, the scores of all photographs that were submitted in the B class will be examined. Photographers whose photographs have earned an average score of 7.00 or greater and entered at least 10 (1/3 of total possible) entries in each category (color, B&W) will be advanced to the A class. Scores earned for each submitted image and awards are tallied to construct an overall point score.
Reclassification from Advanced to Salon is determined separately for color and B&W categories. For each category the reclassification process is as follows:
Only Advanced members who submit at least 10 (1/3 of total possible) images in the category during the season, and whose season average score is 7.3 or better, will be considered for promotion.
Those members being considered will be ranked in order of their average score for all images they submitted in the category during the season.
Up to two of the highest ranked members may be promoted to Salon by the Board at their discretion.
If there are fewer than two members exceeding the 10 image minimum, the lesser number is promoted.
In the case of near-ties, the planning committee can vote to promote 3 advanced members instead of 2 in a category.
A member may decline a promotion to Salon one time. If a promotion is offered again in a subsequent year that promotion must be accepted.
At the annual banquet, all photographs by an entrant will be judged in the classification in which the photograph had won in the monthly competition.
A photographer may have different classifications in different categories (e.g., A in black and white, B in color).
Judging and awards
The scale for judging is on a scale of five to nine points, where 5 is the worst and 9 is the best.
The scorekeeper will indicate to the judge the number of competing images.
In any competition, the entry must receive a score of 8 or better to receive an award.
PhotoContestPro will give an Equal Merit award to all 9's and Honorable Mention to all 8's.
Award winners will receive a Contest Award Certificate if they request them ahead of time from the Awards Chair.
The titles of all photographs that receive an award , and the names of the photographers who produced each of these pictures will be announced, and the pictures shown at the end of the competition (time permitting). With the individual judge’s consent, members will be allowed to request the judge to expand upon his comments at the end of each category.
The procedure for handling competition rule violations shall be as follows:
Anyone observing a suspected rule violation may file a protest with the president.
If the president judges the protest to be plausible, s/he will discuss the protest privately with the alleged violator.
If the president concludes that there was indeed a violation, s/he will issue a warning to the violator and keep a record of it. The warning may include related rules that were reviewed at the same time.
If the president judges the competitor violates a rule that s/he has been warned about, including any related rule recorded as above, the president will disqualify the entry (or entries) involved, meaning that the entry will lose any award it received, the entry will not be eligible for the banquet, and the entry will not count toward promotion.
Disqualification of an image will not change the scores or awards given to other images.
These procedures must be conducted discreetly, such that they do not disrupt or delay the competitions themselves.
The print team and digital chair may still reject entries on procedural grounds (e.g. exposed tape) without filing a protest. The competitor can appeal to the president if they disagree.
In all cases where there are questions or disagreements concerning the interpretation of the rules, the decision of the President and/or a committee appointed by the President shall be final. Only the persons presenting the images and the president or his delegate should speak to the judge about these rules before or during the competitions. Others having pressing concerns should discreetly speak to the president or his/her delegate. As much as possible, the president will only speak to the judge about procedure between categories.

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