National Pictures of the Year Rules and Submission Guidelines

Rules and submission guidelines for the 2016 National Pictures of the Year (NPOY).
(Updated January 6, 2017)

 

** The entry period for the 2016 NPOY has ended. **

 

HIGHLIGHTS

• NEW – Photojournalist of the Year portfolio may have up to 18 images and it may include a Picture Story as one of the up-to-18 images.

• NEW – Picture Story is split into two categories: Picture Story Feature and Picture Story News.

• NEW – Student Photographer of the Year portfolio includes ten images that demonstrate diverse abilities and photojournalistic excellence. There is no requirement for specific news, sports or feature images.

• NEW – Student Multimedia category.

• Before entering the NPOY, you must have purchased an NPAC membership in 2016 OR purchase a membership before January 31, 2017.

• Deadline for all entries, except for Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia, is 11:59PM (Pacific Standard Time) January 31, 2017.

• Deadline for Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia entries is 11:59PM (Pacific Standard Time) April 15, 2017.

• The NPOY fee is $10.00 per entry to a maximum of $150.00 per member. A member can have up to 20 entries plus one Photojournalist of the Year entry for a total of 21 entries at a maximum cost of $150.00.

• There are no entry fees for Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia.

• All photographs entered must have been made within the 2016 calendar year, with the exception of Picture Story (see below), Student Photographer of the Year (see below) and Student Multimedia (see below).

• Non-published work is eligible.

• The maximum number of entries per person is 20 plus one Photojournalist of the Year entry.

• Each student may submit only one entry for Student Photographer of the Year. There is no limit for Student Multimedia entries.

• Winners will be announced at the NPAC 2016 NPOY Awards Ceremony in Toronto on May 6, 2017, during the annual NPAC Photojournalism Conference.

 

TOP PRIZES

• Photojournalist of the Year: $2,000.00. Sponsored by The Canadian Press.

• Photograph of the Year: $500.00. Sponsored by Sony Canada.

• Student Photographer of the Year: $1,000.00. Sponsored by Southern Alberta Institute of Technology.

• Student Multimedia: $500.00. Sponsored by Nikon.

 


 

2016 NATIONAL PICTURES OF THE YEAR RULES

 

WHO IS ELIGIBLE and PROCESSING FEES

1. The 2016 National Pictures of the Year (NPOY) Contest is open to NPAC members only. Before entering the NPOY, you must have purchased an NPAC membership in 2016 OR purchase a membership before January 31, 2017. Memberships can be purchased at the NPAC online store.

2. There is a processing fee of $10.00 per photo entered. Entries in the Photojournalist of The Year and Picture Story categories are $10.00 per entry, not per picture. Although each member can submit 20 entries plus one Photojournalist of the Year entry, there is a maximum fee of $150.00 per member.

3. Entry in the Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia categories is free. Only NPAC Student members may enter the student categories.

 

DEADLINES

1. Entries, except for Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia, will be accepted only between January 1, 2017, and January 31, 2017. All entries must received by the NPOY committee no later than 11:59PM (Pacific Standard Time) January 31, 2017. This deadline is strictly enforced.

2. To allow students more time to produce images and video during the school year, the entry period for Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia will be later than other categories. Entries for Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia will be accepted from March 15, 2017, until 11:59PM (Pacific Standard Time) April 15, 2017. This deadline is strictly enforced.

 

ENTRIES

1. All entries, except for Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia, must have been made between January 1, 2016, and December 31, 2016. The only exception to this rule applies to images from long-term projects which have been photographed over multiple years.

All Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia entries must have been made between January 1, 2016, and April 15, 2017.

2. Any entries that have been manipulated beyond industry-accepted techniques such as cropping, colour correction and tone adjustments (e.g. levels, curves or burning/dodging) will be disqualified and any prizes will be revoked. Remember that we use journalism standards not general photography standards.

3. Video frame grabs are not eligible.

4. Each entrant may submit a maximum of 20 entries. A Picture Story entry is considered one entry. A portfolio submission for Photojournalist of The Year is separate and does not count towards the maximum number of entries.

5. The same image cannot be entered in two different categories, with the exception of any image from the Picture Story and Photojournalist of The Year categories. Single images from Picture Story and Photojournalist of The Year may also be entered in one additional category but each must be entered separately and each counts as a separate entry.

A Picture Story that is part of a Photojournalist Of The Year portfolio may also be entered into one other Picture Story category but it must be entered separately and it will count as a separate entry.

6. Judges will not reclassify entries. Entrants must edit and place their work in the appropriate category.

7. The judging panel reserves the right not to assign awards.

8. The decisions of the contest judges and committee are final.

9. All entrants acknowledge and agree that credited submissions may be displayed in public and/or published in print and electronic formats for NPAC’s NPOY promotional purposes and NPAC’s annual Pictures of the Year book.

10. Nominees for each category will be announced prior to the awards ceremony. The winners will be announced in Toronto on May 6, 2017, at the NPOY Awards Ceremony held during the annual NPAC Photojournalism Conference.

11. Deadline for all entries, except for Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia, is 11:59PM (Pacific Standard Time) January 31, 2017. This will be strictly enforced.

Deadline for Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia entries is 11:59PM (Pacific Standard time) April 15, 2017. This will be strictly enforced.

 

AWARDS

The winners will be announced at the annual NPAC Photojournalism Conference and NPOY Awards Ceremony to be held in Toronto on May 6, 2017.

Winners will receive prizes as follows:

• Photojournalist of the Year: $2,000.00

• Photograph of the Year: $500.00

• Student Photographer of the Year: $1,000.00

• Student Multimedia: $500.00

All other categories:

• First place: $400.00

• Second place: $200.00

• Third place: $100.00

 

CATEGORIES

PHOTOJOURNALIST OF THE YEAR   Category code: PY

Based on a portfolio of individual images that demonstrate diverse abilities and photojournalistic excellence. This portfolio may include a Picture Story. The portfolio may have up to 18 images and a Picture Story would count as one image.

One winner will be selected. Sponsored by The Canadian Press.

 

PHOTOGRAPH OF THE YEAR   Category code: none

One image will be chosen from the winning pictures of all categories. Sponsored by Sony Canada.

 

SPOT NEWS   Category code: SN

A single photograph of an unscheduled news event for which no advance planning was possible. Sponsored by The Camera Store.

 

GENERAL NEWS   Category code: GN

A single photograph with serious content and strong human interest elements of a scheduled or organized news event (e.g. mourners at a funeral, protesters, press conferences or staged coverage opportunities). Sponsored by CNW.

 

FEATURE   Category code: FE

A single photograph of an unstaged situation that has a high human interest element and/or a fresh view of an everyday scene. Sponsored by the Winnipeg Free Press.

 

SOCIAL ISSUES   Category code: SI

A single photo with strong and serious content concerning a social or political issue that is relevant to the community at large. Examples include, but are not restricted to, socio-economic, health, environmental or current affair subjects. Sponsored by Fujifilm.

 

SPORTS ACTION   Category code: SA

A single photograph that captures the competitive peak action or spirit during a sporting event. Sponsored by Nikon.

 

SPORTS FEATURE   Category code: SF

A sports-related photograph other than game action that has strong human interest qualities. Sponsored by Sony Canada.

 

PORTRAIT / PERSONALITY   Category code: PP

A single photograph of a person or persons that reveals the essence of the subject’s character. Sponsored by Beau Photo.

 

PICTORIAL   Category code: PI

A single photograph with compelling and pleasing aesthetic qualities with respect to composition and graphic elements. Sponsored by Canon.

 

PICTURE STORY NEWS   Category code: PN

A series of photographs that tells a visual story or is centered around a single theme. Subject matter can be news or social issues. There is a limit of 12 images per Picture Story entry. Sponsored by Leica.

 

PICTURE STORY FEATURE   Category code: PF

A series of photographs that tells a visual story or is centered around a single theme. Subject matter can be feature or sports. There is a limit of 12 images per Picture Story entry. Sponsored by Leica.

 

SINGLE MULTIMEDIA   Category code: SM

Multimedia shot, edited and produced by one person and includes at least two of the following elements: still photography, audio, video. Sponsored by Vistek.

 

TEAM MULTIMEDIA   Category code: TM

Multimedia shot, edited and produced by more than one person and includes at least two of the following elements: still photography, audio, video. The person submitting the entry must be an NPAC member. Sponsored by Thomson Reuters.

 

STUDENT PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR   Category code: SY

Based on a portfolio of 10 images that demonstrates diverse abilities and photojournalistic excellence.

One winner will be selected. Sponsored by the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT).

 

STUDENT MULTIMEDIA   Category code: ST

Multimedia shot, edited and produced by one or more students and MUST include both video and captured audio. It may also include still images. Rights-released music may be included but it should not be the main audio feature and the winner may be asked for proof of rights release.

One winner will be selected. Sponsored by Nikon.

 

PREPARING YOUR ENTRIES

1. All images must be:

• Resolution: 300 ppi
• Image Size: 3000 pixels on the long side
• File type: jpeg
• Be sure to append each file with: .jpg
• Jpeg compression: 10
• Colour Mode: Adobe RGB

2. Each entry must have a complete and clear caption that indicates the who, what, where, when and why elements of the photograph. Do NOT include your name or media affiliation in the caption area.

3. All images must have the photographer’s Credit field completed in the file info. Also, in the Source field, please mention the name of your employer, the name of the media outlet which assigned you, or if you were independent (self-assigned work).

4. Each entry must use the following filename format:

(CATEGORY CODE)(PHOTOGRAPHER’S FIRST, MIDDLE AND LAST INITIALS)(entry number)

The entry number should be zero-padded: 01, 02, 03 … 09, 10, 11, 12, 13 …

 

CATEGORY CODES

PY – PHOTOJOURNALIST OF THE YEAR
SN – SPOT NEWS
GN – GENERAL NEWS
FE – FEATURE
SI – SOCIAL ISSUES
SA – SPORTS ACTION
SF – SPORTS FEATURE
PP – PORTRAIT/PERSONALITY
PI – PICTORIAL
PN – PICTURE STORY NEWS
PF – PICTURE STORY FEATURE
SM – SINGLE MULTIMEDIA
TM – TEAM MULTIMEDIA
SY – STUDENT PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR
ST – STUDENT MULTIMEDIA

 

PREPARING PHOTOJOURNALIST OF THE YEAR ENTRIES   Category code: PY

1. Each portfolio can have up to 18 images produced in 2016 and it may include a Picture Story that was completed in 2016. A Picture Story will count as one image in the up-to-18 allowable images.

2. Portfolios will be judged on impact as a unit. Each portfolio should demonstrate the diverse abilities and photojournalistic excellence of the entrant.

3. Entries must follow the same image preparation guidelines and adhere to the same filename format requirements as for entering an individual image and Picture Story.

Name the images in your portfolio in the order you would like them to be viewed. Add letters to name each Picture Story image in the order they should be viewed. For example, Susan L. Brown’s Photojournalist of the Year entry includes 14 images and one Picture Story with 10 images. She wants the Picture Story to be viewed after the single images:

PYSLB01.jpg (1st image to be viewed)
PYSLB02.jpg (2nd image to be viewed)
PYSLB03.jpg (3rd image to be viewed)
PYSLB04.jpg (4th image to be viewed)

PYSLB14.jpg (14th image to be viewed)
PYSLB15A.jpg (1st image in her Picture Story)
PYSLB15B.jpg (2nd image in her Picture Story)

PYSLB15J.jpg (10th image in her Picture Story)

An optional 50- to 100-word summary can accompany a Picture Story. This will be read to the judges prior to viewing the entry. Summaries that exceed this word limit will be shortened for brevity.

4. Single photographs that are a part of a Photojournalist Of The Year portfolio may also be entered into one other category but each must be entered separately and each counts as a separate entry.

5. A Picture Story that is part of a Photojournalist Of The Year portfolio may also be entered into one other Picture Story category but it must be entered separately and it will count as a separate entry.

6. Each entrant may submit only one portfolio.

 

PREPARING PICTURE STORY NEWS ENTRIES   Category code: PN

1. Picture Story entries MUST be submitted as single images and follow the specifications outlined above. The images should be coded in the order you would like them to be viewed by using letters from the alphabet: A=1st image, B=2nd image, C=3rd image, D=4th image, etc., up to a maximum of 12 images.

For example, Peter J. Parker’s Picture Story News entry should be coded as follows:

PNPJP01A.jpg (1st image in his 1st Picture Story)
PNPJP01B.jpg (2nd image in his 1st Picture Story)
PNPJP01C.jpg (3rd image in his 1st Picture Story)
PNPJP01D.jpg (4th image in his 1st Picture Story) etc… up to a maximum of 12 images.

If Parker were to submit a second Picture Story News entry, his filenames would be:

PNPJP02A.jpg (1st image in his 2nd Picture Story)
PNPJP02B.jpg (2nd image in his 2nd Picture Story)
PNPJP02C.jpg (3rd image in his 2nd Picture Story)
PNPJP02D.jpg (4th image in his 2nd Picture Story) etc… up to a maximum of 12 images.

An optional 50- to 100-word summary can accompany each Picture Story entry. This will be read to the judges prior to viewing the entry. Summaries that exceed this word limit will be shortened for brevity.

2. Single photographs that are a part of a Picture Story may also be entered into one other category but each must be entered separately and each counts as a separate entry. Single entries from a Picture Story can only be entered in another category in the year they were made.

3. If a Picture Story was shot over a period of more than one calendar year, it should be entered in the year it is completed.

 

PREPARING PICTURE STORY FEATURE ENTRIES   Category code: PF

This follows the same requirements as the Picture Story News category (above) but please use the category code PF.

 

PREPARING STUDENT PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR ENTRIES   Category code: SY

1. This annual award is open to NPAC Student members registered at an accredited post-secondary institution as of January 1, 2017. NPAC student membership must be obtained by April 15, 2017.

2. Each portfolio entry MUST consist of 10 images produced between January 1, 2016, and April 15, 2017. Each portfolio will be judged as a whole and should demonstrate the diverse abilities and photojournalistic excellence of the entrant.

3. Picture stories may be included and each picture story will count as one of the ten required images. There is a limit of 12 photos per picture story. For example, a student could enter nine single photos plus one 12-photo picture story and that would meet the requirement of having ten images. Another student might enter, say, seven single photos and three picture stories.

An optional 50- to 100-word summary can accompany each picture story and will be read by the judges prior to viewing. Summaries that exceed this word limit will be shortened for brevity.

4. Entries must follow the same image preparation guidelines and adhere to the same filename format requirements as for regular members entering the NPOY.

For example, student Mary N. Jones might enter nine single images plus an eight-image picture story and her filenames would be:

SYMNJ01.jpg
SYMNJ02.jpg

SYMNJ09.jpg
SYMNJ10A.jpg (first photo in her picture story)
SYMNJ10B.jpg (second photo in her picture story)

SYMNJ10H.jpg (last photo in her picture story)

5. Each student may submit only one portfolio.

6. All student entries must be received no later than 11:59PM (Pacific Standard Time) April 15, 2017.

 

PREPARING STUDENT MULTIMEDIA ENTRIES   Category code: ST

1. This award is open to NPAC Student members registered at an accredited post-secondary institution as of January 1, 2017. NPAC student membership must be obtained by April 15, 2017.

2. Each entry must have been made between January 1, 2016, and April 15, 2017.

3. Each entry MUST include both video and captured audio. It may also include still images. Rights-released music may be used but it should not be the main audio feature and winners may be asked for proof of rights release.

4. Each submission must be 3:00 minutes or less.

5. This category will be judged on three key elements: story, video and audio.

6. The entry may be shot, edited and produced by one or more students. The student submitting the entry must be an NPAC Student member.

7. All student entries must be received no later than 11:59PM (Pacific Standard Time) April 15, 2017.

 

UPLOADING ENTRIES

1. Entries, except for Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia, will be accepted between January 1, 2017, and 11:59PM (Pacific Standard Time) January 31, 2017.

Entries for Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia will be accepted between March 15, 2017, and 11:59PM (Pacific Standard Time) April 15, 2017.

2. Entry processing fees must be paid online at the NPAC online store. (Note that the entry fee option will be available on the Store page only during the NPOY entry period).

If you have more than 15 entries, use “15” as the quantity on the Store web page.

There is no entry fee for Student Photographer of the Year or Student Multimedia.

3. There is a $10.00 processing fee for each photograph or multimedia piece entered in the following categories:

Spot News
General News
Feature
Social Issues
Sports Action
Sports Feature
Portrait/Personality
Pictorial
Single Multimedia
Team Multimedia

4. Each Picture Story News, Picture Story Feature and Photojournalist Of The Year entry is considered as a single submission at a cost of $10.00 per entry.

Entry fees for each member is capped at $150.00.

5. Even though entry fees are capped at a maximum of $150.00 per member, each member can enter up to 20 entries plus one Photojournalist Of The Year entry. If you have more than 15 entries, use “15” as the quantity on the Store page.

6. After submitting the entry fee, you will be emailed a receipt with an Order Number and a password. The password is required to upload your entries.

Be sure to use the Order Number and not the Transaction ID which is for your credit card process. The Order Number appears near the top of the “Order Received” page and again on the emailed receipt:

 

The Order Number is listed on the “Order Received” page (left). The Order Number is also shown on the credit card receipt (right) along with the necessary upload passwords.

For Student Photographer of the Year and Student Multimedia, since there are no entry fees and no need to use the online store, upload instructions and password will be posted in the Student section of the NPAC Forums during the student entry period.

7. All still photograph entries must be placed in ONE folder titled:

YourLastName_OrderNumber

For Student Photographer of the Year entries only, since there is no entry fee, there is no order number. So the Student Photographer of the Year entry folder should be named with your two initials and surname:

FirstInitialSecondInitialLastName

If you don’t have a middle initial, use X, Y or Z.

This folder must be compressed into a self-contained .zip file. Depending on your computer operating system, one way to do this is to right-click or crtl-click on the folder of entries and select “Compress” or “Create Archive.” Do NOT put multimedia entries in this folder.

Upload this zipped folder of still images at npoy.ca.

If you have problems uploading your zipped folder, try using Firefox or Chrome since a few Safari users have had problems in the past.

 

8. All multimedia entries, including Student Multimedia, should be uploaded to NPAC’s Vimeo account. After submitting the processing fee, you will be emailed a sales receipt with the 
login and password. This information will also be posted in the Student section of the NPAC Forums.

Uploaded videos will be viewable only by entrants and judges and will not 
be made public. Winning multimedia entries will be published on NPAC’s own site, npac.ca.

When uploading your multimedia entries, give each video a filename 
in the same format as photo entries:

(CATEGORY CODE)(PHOTOGRAPHER’S FIRST, MIDDLE AND LAST INITIALS)(entry
number)

The entry number should be zero padded: 01, 02, 03 … 09, 10, 11, 12, 13 …

For example, Peter J. Parker’s Single Multimedia filenames would look like:

SMPJP01 (his first Single Multimedia entry)

SMPJP02 (his second Single Multimedia entry)
etc.

If Parker were to submit Team Multimedia entries, his video filenames would be:

TMPJP01 (his first Team Multimedia entry)

TMPJP02 (his second Team Multimedia entry)
etc.

If student Jane W. Smith entered the Student Multimedia category, her filenames would look like:

STJWS01 (her first Student Multimedia entry)

STJWS02 (her second Student Multimedia entry)
etc.

In the Description field, be sure to include a complete and clear
 caption that indicates the who, what, where, when and why information of the 
video. 
Do NOT include your name or media affiliation in the Description field.

If the video contains any logos or credits that indicate who shot the
 video then these elements must be removed or covered up before uploading
 to Vimeo.

If a logo is seen throughout the video and cannot be easily snipped out then
 simply import your video into Final Cut Pro and place a slug or a small 
black jpeg image over the logo to cover it up.

Finally, for all multimedia entries, after you’ve uploaded your entry (or entries), please send an email to npacvideo@gmail.com with the following information:

• The entry code or filename.
• Title of your video.
• The full who-what-where-when-why description of your video.
• The name of the videographer and, if applicable, all other team members plus their titles (e.g. photographer, audio, editor, producer, reporter, etc.)
• The media affiliation of each person involved with your video. Freelancers may use “Independent” or “Freelance.”
• Any related story URLs.

All this information helps to properly identify and credit nominated and winning entries.

If you have any problems uploading, try using Firefox or Chrome. If that doesn’t solve the issue, please email: npacvideo@gmail.com

 

If you have any questions about any of the above rules or procedures, please ask by email or on the NPAC Forums.

— NPOY Chairperson: Ric Ernst – npoy@npac.ca