2024 Photography Contests: Categories, Dates, and Deadlines for the New Year

Hey there, fellow photography enthusiasts! As we bid farewell to 2023 and welcome the excitement of a brand new year, what better way to kickstart our creative journey than by participating in some thrilling photography contests? The year 2024 brings with it a plethora of opportunities for us to showcase our skills, capture stunning moments, and compete with fellow shutterbugs from around the world. In this article, I’ll be sharing all the exciting details about the upcoming New Year 2024 photography contests that you definitely don’t want to miss. So, grab your cameras, charge those batteries, and let’s dive into the world of captivating visuals and fierce competition!

Get ready to unleash your inner artist and make a mark in the photography community with these incredible contests. From landscape photography to portrait shots, there’s something for everyone to showcase their unique perspective and creative vision. Whether you’re an amateur looking to gain recognition or a seasoned professional aiming to add another feather to your cap, these contests offer a platform to showcase your talent and connect with like-minded individuals. So, get ready to explore new horizons, challenge yourself, and seize the opportunity to make a splash in the world of photography.

Contest Overview

In this section, I’ll provide you with an overview of some exciting photography contests that will take place in the year 2024. These contests offer a great platform for photographers of all levels to showcase their skills, gain recognition, and connect with other talented individuals in the photography community.

Here are the photography contests that you should keep an eye on in 2024:

  1. International Photography Awards (IPA): The IPA is one of the most prestigious photography competitions in the world. It covers various genres of photography, including fine art, landscape, portrait, and documentary. With renowned judges and impressive prizes, winning an IPA award can significantly boost your career as a photographer.
  2. World Press Photo Contest: If you have a passion for photojournalism, the World Press Photo Contest is the perfect opportunity to highlight your storytelling skills. This contest recognizes impactful news images that capture the essence of global events. Winning a World Press Photo award can open doors to exciting opportunities in media and journalism.
  3. Nat Geo Nature Photographer of the Year: Hosted by National Geographic, this contest celebrates the beauty of the natural world. Whether you’re capturing wildlife, landscapes, or underwater scenes, this competition offers a platform to showcase your awe-inspiring nature photography. Having your work recognized by National Geographic can be a dream come true for any nature photographer.
  4. Sony World Photography Awards: With multiple categories ranging from architecture to street photography, the Sony World Photography Awards provide a diverse platform for photographers to exhibit their talent. This contest attracts entries from all over the globe and offers exposure and recognition on an international scale.
  5. Travel Photographer of the Year Awards (TPOTY): If you love to explore and document the world through your lens, the TPOTY is the contest for you. This competition celebrates travel photography in all its forms, encouraging entrants to showcase their creativity and unique perspectives of various destinations and cultures.

Participating in these contests not only gives you a chance to compete with photographers from around the world, but it also allows you to push your boundaries, tap into your creativity, and refine your skills. Whether you’re an amateur or a seasoned professional, don’t miss the opportunity to unleash your inner artist and make a mark in the photography community through these exciting contests.

Categories and Themes

When it comes to photography contests, one of the key aspects that participants should consider is the categories and themes of the competition. Each contest usually has a set of different categories that cater to various genres or subjects of photography. These categories not only provide photographers with a specific focus for their submissions but also allow the judges to assess the entries in a fair and structured manner.

In the year 2024, several photography contests will be featuring an array of categories and themes to accommodate the diverse interests and styles of photographers. Here are some of the notable contests and their respective categories:

1. International Photography Awards (IPA):

  • Fine Art
  • Architecture
  • People
  • Nature
  • Advertising
  • Sports

2. World Press Photo Contest:

  • Contemporary Issues
  • General News
  • Nature
  • Portraits
  • Sports

3. Nat Geo Nature Photographer of the Year:

  • Landscapes
  • Animals
  • Aerials
  • Underwater

4. Sony World Photography Awards:

  • Architecture
  • Documentary
  • Landscape
  • Portraits

5. Travel Photographer of the Year Awards (TPOTY):

  • Locations
  • People
  • Wildlife
  • Cultures

These are just a few examples of the contests and categories available in 2024. It’s important to note that the specific categories and themes may vary each year, so it’s essential to stay updated on the latest information before submitting your entries.

The categories and themes not only provide a framework for photographers to focus their creativity but also showcase their skills and expertise in specific areas of photography. This allows participants to showcase their unique perspective and artistic vision. Whether you have a passion for landscape photography, street photography, or wildlife photography, there is a category that suits your interests and allows you to express your artistic voice.

By participating in contests with diverse categories and themes, photographers have the opportunity to challenge themselves, explore new subjects, and push their boundaries. It also provides a platform to connect with fellow photographers, gain exposure, and even secure professional opportunities in the industry.

Rules and Guidelines

When participating in photography contests, it is essential to familiarize yourself with the rules and guidelines. Each contest has its own set of criteria that you must adhere to in order to ensure fair judging. Here are a few important points to keep in mind:

1. Eligibility: Before submitting your photographs, make sure you meet the eligibility requirements. Some contests may have restrictions based on age, nationality, or professional status. It’s important to double-check these details prior to entering.

2. Submission Format: Pay attention to the submission requirements for your photographs. Usually, contests will specify the file format, size, and resolution that your images should be in. Ensure that you follow these guidelines to prevent any disqualification.

3. Subject and Theme: Most photography contests have specific categories or themes that you can enter. It’s crucial to understand these categories and choose the appropriate one for your photographs. Selecting the right category will increase your chances of success and ensure that your work is judged in the right context.

4. Entry Fee: Some contests may require an entry fee to cover administrative costs. Before submitting your photographs, check if there is a fee involved and determine whether it fits within your budget. Keep in mind that paid contests often have higher quality submissions and offer more substantial prizes.

5. Copyright and Usage: Take note of the copyright and usage rights associated with the contest. Make sure you understand whether the organizers will have any rights to use or publish your photographs beyond the competition. It’s crucial to protect your intellectual property and only enter contests that align with your personal preferences.

6. Judging Criteria: Familiarize yourself with the judging criteria for the contest. Understand what the judges will be looking for in terms of composition, technical skills, creativity, and storytelling. This understanding will help you tailor your submissions to meet the expectations of the judges.

Submission Process

When participating in photography contests, it’s important to familiarize yourself with the submission process. Each contest may have slightly different guidelines, so it’s crucial to read through the rules and requirements carefully. Here are a few general steps to keep in mind when submitting your work:

  1. Registration: Most photography contests require participants to create an account on their website or platform. This is usually a quick and straightforward process, where you’ll provide your basic information such as name, email address, and sometimes a username.
  2. Entry Form: After registering, you’ll typically need to fill out an entry form. This form may ask for additional details about your submitted photographs, such as title, description, camera settings, and location information. Make sure to provide accurate and relevant information as requested.
  3. Photo Selection: Once you’ve completed the entry form, you’ll need to select the photographs you want to submit for the contest. Be sure to carefully review the contest’s categories and themes and choose your images accordingly. Remember that your selection should showcase your creativity, technical skills, and ability to convey a compelling story through your photographs.
  4. File Format and Specifications: Pay attention to the file format and specifications required by the contest. Most contests accept digital files in formats such as JPEG or TIFF. Ensure that your images meet the specific size and resolution guidelines provided by the contest to avoid any disqualifications.
  5. Submission: After preparing your selected images according to the contest’s guidelines, you’re ready to submit your work. Follow the instructions provided on the contest’s website or platform to upload your photographs. Be mindful of any deadlines and make sure to complete the submission process before the cutoff date.
  6. Payment of Entry Fees: Some contests may have an associated entry fee. If required, you’ll usually be prompted to submit the payment during the submission process. Keep in mind that entry fees are typically non-refundable, so double-check your selections and make sure you are satisfied with your submissions before making the payment.

Remember, following the submission process correctly is essential to ensure your participation in the photography contests. Read the guidelines thoroughly, adhere to the requirements, and submit your work before the deadline. By doing so, you’ll increase your chances of getting your work noticed, gaining recognition, and potentially winning awards in these exciting photography contests.

Judging Criteria

When participating in photography contests, it’s essential to understand the judging criteria. Each contest has its own set of guidelines, and knowing these criteria can greatly increase your chances of success. Here are some common factors that judges often consider when evaluating photographs:

1. Technical Excellence: Judges look for photographs that demonstrate exceptional technical skills. This includes aspects such as focus, exposure, lighting, composition, and use of color. Paying attention to these technical details can make your photographs stand out.

2. Creativity and Originality: Originality is highly valued in photography contests. Judges want to see unique and innovative perspectives that push the boundaries of traditional photography. So, think outside the box and capture moments or subjects in a way that has never been seen before.

3. Storytelling: Compelling photographs often tell a story or evoke emotions. Judges appreciate images that can communicate a narrative or capture the essence of a specific moment. So, try to convey a message or evoke a feeling through your photographs.

4. Relevance to the Theme or Category: In many contests, photographs are judged based on how well they align with the contest’s theme or category. Make sure your photographs are relevant and directly relate to the contest criteria. This shows that you’ve carefully chosen your subjects and have a deep understanding of the contest’s requirements.

5. Impact: Judges are looking for images that have a strong impact on the viewer. Your photographs should leave a lasting impression and make the judges take notice. Focus on capturing powerful moments that resonate with the viewer.

Remember that different contests may prioritize certain criteria over others. It’s important to thoroughly read and understand the specific judging criteria for each contest you enter. This way, you can tailor your submissions to meet the requirements and increase your chances of winning.

Prizes and Recognition

When participating in photography contests, the chance to win prizes and gain recognition is undoubtedly an exciting prospect. Not only do prizes provide a tangible reward for your hard work and talent, but recognition from renowned organizations and professionals can give your photography career a significant boost. Let’s take a closer look at the prizes and recognition opportunities offered by some of the top photography contests in 2024.

International Photography Awards (IPA)

The International Photography Awards (IPA) offers a range of valuable prizes to winners in various categories. These prizes include a cash prize, publication in the annual IPA book, exposure through media and exhibition opportunities, and valuable gear. Additionally, winning an IPA award can open doors to new opportunities and collaborations with industry professionals and fellow photographers.

World Press Photo Contest

The World Press Photo Contest is one of the most prestigious photography competitions globally, focusing on visual storytelling. The winners of this contest receive a cash prize, global recognition, and extensive media coverage. Being recognized by the World Press Photo Contest can have a profound impact on your career, opening doors to new projects, exhibitions, and assignments.

Nat Geo Nature Photographer of the Year

Organized by National Geographic, the Nat Geo Nature Photographer of the Year contest offers the chance to be featured in National Geographic magazine and website, showcasing your work to a vast global audience. The winner also receives a cash prize, a prestigious title, and the opportunity to join National Geographic’s group of contributing photographers.

Sony World Photography Awards

The Sony World Photography Awards not only provides a platform for photographers to showcase their work but also offers substantial prizes and recognition. Winners receive cash prizes, Sony digital imaging equipment, publication in the Sony World Photography Awards book, and the opportunity to be exhibited at prestigious venues worldwide. This contest’s broad range of categories encourages photographers to explore various genres and themes, catering to diverse artistic visions.

Travel Photographer of the Year Awards (TPOTY)

The Travel Photographer of the Year Awards (TPOTY) celebrates the beauty and diversity of travel photography. Winners not only receive cash prizes and valuable photography equipment but also gain extensive exposure through media coverage and international exhibition opportunities. Being recognized by TPOTY can establish you as an accomplished travel photographer and potentially open doors to partnerships and assignments within the industry.

Tips for Winning

As an experienced photographer who has participated in numerous contests, I’ve learned a thing or two about what it takes to increase your chances of winning. Here are some valuable tips that can help you stand out from the crowd and secure that coveted prize:

  1. Study the Categories: One of the most important aspects of entering a photography contest is understanding the categories. Take the time to carefully read through the guidelines and make sure your images align with the theme of each category. Submitting the right images to the right category greatly enhances your chances of catching the judges’ attention.
  2. Submit Your Best Work: It may seem obvious, but it’s essential to only submit your absolute best photographs. Quality trumps quantity, so take the time to review your portfolio and select images that truly showcase your skills and creativity. A strong, impactful image is more likely to make a lasting impression on the judges.
  3. Pay Attention to Detail: Stand out from the competition by paying attention to the little details that can make a big difference. Check for distractions in the background, ensure proper exposure and focus, and consider composition and artistic elements. A well-executed photograph that demonstrates technical proficiency and attention to detail can leave a lasting impression on the judges.
  4. Tell a Compelling Story: A powerful image is one that tells a story and evokes emotion. Judges are often drawn to photographs that have a strong narrative or capture a significant moment. Look for unique angles, interesting subjects, and captivating moments that convey a message or elicit an emotional response. Craft your images to be thought-provoking and engaging.
  5. Be Original: While it’s beneficial to study and appreciate the work of other photographers, it’s important to develop your own unique style. Showcasing your originality and creativity can set you apart from the competition. Don’t be afraid to take risks, experiment with different techniques, and explore unconventional perspectives. Embrace your individuality and let it shine through your photographs.

Important Dates to Remember

Participating in photography contests requires careful planning and preparation. To ensure that you don’t miss out on any important deadlines, it’s essential to keep track of the key dates for each contest. Here are some important dates to remember for the upcoming photography contests in 2024:

  1. International Photography Awards (IPA):
  2. World Press Photo Contest:
  3. Nat Geo Nature Photographer of the Year:
  4. Sony World Photography Awards:
  5. Travel Photographer of the Year Awards (TPOTY):

Marking these dates on your calendar or setting reminders can help you stay organized and ensure that you submit your entries on time. Be sure to check the respective contest websites for any updates or changes to the dates.


Participating in photography contests can be a great way for photographers to showcase their skills, gain recognition, and connect with others in the photography community. As we look ahead to the photography contests of 2024, it’s important to consider the categories and themes of each contest before submitting our entries.

In this article, I have provided an overview of some notable photography contests that will be taking place in 2024. These include the International Photography Awards (IPA), World Press Photo Contest, Nat Geo Nature Photographer of the Year, Sony World Photography Awards, and Travel Photographer of the Year Awards (TPOTY). Each of these contests offers photographers a unique opportunity to display their talent and creativity.

To ensure that we don’t miss out on these exciting opportunities, it’s crucial to mark the important dates on our calendars. These dates include the call for entries, submission deadlines, and winners announcements for each contest. By staying organized and setting reminders, we can increase our chances of submitting our entries on time and maximizing our chances of success.

So, let’s gear up, prepare our best shots, and take part in these upcoming photography contests. It’s time to showcase our passion and talent to the world and see where our photography journey takes us in 2024.

What is the purpose of the article?

The article provides an overview of photography contests happening in 2024 and highlights the importance of considering categories and themes when participating.

What are some notable photography contests mentioned?

Notable contests mentioned in the article include the International Photography Awards (IPA), World Press Photo Contest, Nat Geo Nature Photographer of the Year, Sony World Photography Awards, and Travel Photographer of the Year Awards (TPOTY).

What are the benefits of participating in photography contests?

Participating in photography contests provides a platform for photographers to showcase their skills, gain recognition, and connect with others in the photography community.

What important dates should photographers remember for the upcoming contests?

Photographers should remember the call for entries, submission deadlines, and winners announcements for each contest. It is advised to mark these dates on their calendars or set reminders to stay organized and submit entries on time.

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