Clip Contest – Pictures of the Month

The Eastern POM is sponsored by Loyalist College


Previous Winners of the Eastern Clip Contest:

1974 – Bob Chambers, Hamilton Spectator
1975 – Graham Bezant, Toronto Star
1976 – Andrew Clark, The Canadian Press
1977 – Ottmar Bierwagen, Hamilton Spectator
1978 – Ottmar Bierwagen, Toronto Sun
1979 – Bill Grimshaw, Ottawa
1980 – Larry MacDougal, Ottawa Citizen
1981 – Ken Gigliotti, The Winnipeg Free Press
1982 – Jim Wiley, The Winnipeg Free Press
1983 – Ken Kerr, Toronto Sun
1984 – Gary Hershorn, United Press Canada
1985 – Bernard Weil, Kitchener-Waterloo Record
1986 – Gary Hershorn, Reuters
1987 – Mark Fraser, Hamilton Spectator
1988 – Mike Blake, Reuters
1989 – Barry Gray, Burlington Spectator
1990 – Willy Waterton, Owen Sound Sun Times
1991 – Scott Gardner, Burlington Spectator
1992 – Scott Gardner, Burlington Spectator
1993 – Jason Kryk, Ottawa Sun
1994 – Peter Power, Toronto Star
1995 – Derek Ruttan, Ottawa Sun
1996 – Bernard Brault, La Presse
1997 – Barry Gray, Hamilton Spectator
1998 – Dan Janisse, Chatham Daily News
1999 – Steve Russell, Toronto Star
2000 – Carlo Allegri, National Post
2001 – Dave Chidley, London Free Press
2002 – Steve Russell, Toronto Star
2003 – Steve Russell, Toronto Star
2004 – Dave Chidley, London Free Press
2005 – Steve Russell, Toronto Star
2006 – Peter Power, Toronto Star
2007 – Derek Ruttan, London Free Press
2008 – Tyler Anderson, National Post
2009 – Tyler Anderson, National Post
2010 – Mark Blinch, Reuters
2011 – Mark Blinch. Reuters
2012 – Mark Blinch, Reuters
2013 – Mark Blinch, Independent
2014 – Mark Blinch, Independent
2015 – Mark Blinch, Independent
2016 – Mark Blinch, Independent



The Western POM is sponsored by Epson


Previous Winners of the Western Clip Contest:

1980: Brian Gavriloff, Edmonton Journal
1981: Brian Gavriloff, Edmonton Journal
1982: Dean Bicknell, Edmonton Journal
1983; Larry MacDougal, Calgary Herald
1984; Larry MacDougal, Calgary Herald
1985; Larry MacDougal, Calgary Herald
1986; Kim Stallknecht, Calgary Herald
1987; Larry MacDougal, Calgary Herald
1988; Kim Stallknecht, Calgary Herald
1989; Mike Sturk, Calgary Herald
1990; Mike Sturk, Calgary Herald
1991; Keith Anderson, Kamloops Daily News
1992; Rick Collins, Chilliwack Progress
1993; Rick Collins, Chilliwack Progress
1994; Rick Collins, Chilliwack Progress
1995; Marc Gallant, Winnipeg Free Press
1996; Marc Gallant, Winnipeg Free Press
1997; (*Tie) Marc Gallant, Winnipeg Free Press / David Chidley, Calgary Sun
1998; David Chidley, Calgary Sun
1999: Joe Bryksa, Winnipeg Free Press
2000: John Lucas, Edmonton Journal
2001; Grant Black, Calgary Herald
2002: John Lucas, Edmonton Journal
2003: Marianne Helm, Calgary Herald
2004: Darryl Dyck, Edmonton Sun
2005: Darryl Dyck, Edmonton Sun
2006: Darryl Dyck, Edmonton Sun
2007: Darryl Dyck, Edmonton Sun
2008: Darryl Dyck, Independent
2009: Darryl Dyck, Independent
2010: Darryl Dyck, Independent
2011: John Lehmann, The Globe and Mail
2012: John Lehmann, The Globe and Mail
2013: Darryl Dyck, Independent
2014: Darryl Dyck, Independent
2015: Darryl Dyck, Independent
2016: Darryl Dyck, Independent




The clip contest, also called “Pictures of the Month” (POM), recognizes the published, unpublished and even personal work of NPAC members. Membership information can be found here.

This contest rewards consistently good work each month as opposed to one or two outstanding images each year. Photographers accumulate points in 12 monthly contests and the member with the most points at the end of the year wins the clip contest for that year.

All images entered in the clip contest must have been taken in the month of entry. A photographer may submit a maximum of 12 entries per month. There is no fee to enter this contest.

Starting with 2018, there will no longer be separate east and west contests.



1) The clip contest is open to any NPAC member in good standing.


2) The contest is open to all photographs that have been taken during a particular month. Each entry must be the work of an individual photographer.


3) The overall contest runs from January 1 to December 31.


4) Entries must be emailed to the Clips Chair ( by midnight of the 15th day of the following month. For example, entries for the January contest (for pictures shot in January) must be submitted by midnight February 15th. In your email subject line, please include the month and year, for example: June 2015 clips


5) Categories:

Spot News – News pictures of unplanned events. Examples include, but are not limited to, accidents, fires, disasters.

General News – Coverage of events for which advance planning was possible. Examples are news conferences, demonstrations and protests. Spot news that develops during the course of planned events should be entered in Spot News.

Feature – A photograph depicting a found event or scene not arranged, planned, orchestrated or created by the photographer.

Sports – Sports action or sports feature images depicting a competitive sport.

Portrait/Illustration – A controlled situation intended to clarify or dramatize a preconceived idea. This includes, but is not limited to, posed portraits, food photography, fashion and images that are manufactured or altered.

Multi-Picture – Two or more unique pictures depicting an event or story. Examples include photo-essays and ongoing series. Weak pictures may be eliminated from a published series or essay. A series of related pictures published in more than one month may be entered as a single entry for the month concluding the series.

Note: If a category has fewer than four entries in a given month, those entries will be held over and included in the next month’s contest or until that category has at least four different photographers with entries. Please note that should this apply to a category in the month of December, the points awarded to winning December entries that were held over will apply to the photographer’s point total in the following year.


6) A photographer may submit up to 12 entries in any given month. They may all be in the same category. An entry in the Multi-Picture category counts as one entry regardless of the number of images it may include.


7) The same picture can not be entered in more than one category. The exception is that a photo from a Multi-Picture entry may also be entered as a separate entry in one of the other categories.


8) All entries must be a jpeg file using a compression of 8 with the longest side 1200 pixels. Entries are submitted to the Clips Chair (


9) Images photographed in the calendar year but published in a different month can be submitted to the contest for the month it was published instead of the month it was shot. Please be sure to advise the Clips Chair of this when submitting your entries.


10) All entries must include a caption but the name of the photographer must be removed from all of the IPTC fields. Please include the media affiliation or publication, if applicable. Names and places may be included.

The caption may be the original published caption or a freshly produced caption that clearly explains in 40 words or less what the picture shows (who, what, where, when and maybe why).

Entries with incomplete or missing information may be excluded from the contest.


11) The entered image should not be altered beyond industry standards. And remember, that means journalism standards not general photography standards.


12) Points will be awarded to monthly winners as follows:

1st place – 30 points

2nd place – 20 points

3rd place – 10 points

Honourable Mention – 5 points


13) The winning photographer will be she/he who has accumulated the most points that year, providing she/ he has shown versatility by placing first, second or third in at least two categories.


14) By entering pictures, the photographer acknowledges and agrees that they are giving NPAC permission to reproduce their images, with appropriate credit, in any NPAC publications, such as the annual Pictures of the Year book, and on the NPAC website. Ownership of the image remains with the original owner.


15) Failure to adhere to all of the above rules may result in the disqualification of the entry and forfeiture of any awarded points.





Prepare each photo using the following process:


1) Open the photo using Photoshop. Re-size the image to 1200 pixels long side.


2) Open the FILE INFO area and prepare a caption. This should clearly mention what is happening in the photo (who, what, where, when and maybe why). Try to keep your caption brief and less than 40 words. Do not include the photographer’s name in the caption.

Example: Matt Johnson, 12, (left) is cheered by his sister Emily Johnson, 6, (right) as he competes in the pie-eating contest at the annual summer fair on August 3, 2008, in Pouce Coupe, British Columbia.

Leave the “Byline” and “Author” fields blank. Do not include the photographer’s name anywhere in the File Info.


3) Each photo should be saved as a jpeg at a compression setting of 8.

Use the “SAVE AS” function and follow these steps when naming your photo. Each photograph you enter should have the following in its filename:

CATEGORY Month Initials EntryNumber .jpg

Start all of your filenames using the category code:

SNW – Spot News
NEW – General News
FEA – Feature
SPT – Sports
PRT – Portrait
MPX – Multi-Picture

Next, use the following abbreviations to indicate the month:

January – Jan
February – Feb
March – Mar
April – Apr
May – May
June – Jun
July – Jul
August – Aug
October – Oct
November – Nov
December – Dec

Follow this with the photographer’s three initials from their first, middle and last names.

Finally, number each entry. Remember, you are allowed up to 12 entries per month.

An example of a filename for a photo entered by John M. Doe in the Feature category in March would look like this:



Multi-picture entries are submitted using the same method as for single picture category entries but with one change. The letter a, b, c, … etc.  is added to the filename indicating the order in which the photos should be viewed.

For example, let’s say John M. Doe has another entry for March, a multi-picture story consisting of five photographs. The filenames for these five photos in his multi-picture entry would be:


John Doe now has another multi-picture story, his third entry for the month, consisting of three photos. He uses the following filenames for each of these photos:


The last entry John Doe has is a single Spot News photo from one of his Multi-picture stories he is entering. He makes a duplicate jpeg of this image and gives it the following filename:


For more than one entry, save all the images in one folder named with the photographer’s three initials and zip compress the folder.

So for example, on John Doe’s computer, he now has a zipped folder named JMD ready to be emailed containing the following four entries:





Remember, even though the maximum number of entries for each month is 12, each Multi-Picture entry counts as one entry.


4) Email your entries to In your e-mail subject line, please include the month and year, for example: June 2015 clips. It helps us organize the incoming e-mails.


5) Members will receive an email reply indicating their entries have been received.


Thanks for participating and good luck!