NVPPA Image Competition & Evaluation * PPA-Degreed Judges * OPEN HOUSE * Learn!

  • October 16, 2013 · 7:00 PM
  • This location is shown only to members

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Meet & Greet / Registration / Room Setup: 6:15pm
Meeting Start: 7:00pm
Competition Duration (approx): 2.5 hours
End (approx): 9:45pm
Admission is FREE to NVPPA Gold Members, PPSGW, MDPPA, & BWPAA Members.
Non-Members: OPEN HOUSE! FREE! 
Up to 4 Images: $20.
Title: Digital Image Competition / Evaluation;

Enter a FREE Selfie (self-portrait)!


NVPPA Digital Image Competition & Evaluation

Rules for Submission - Categories - Judging - Scoring

Submission Deadline: Midnight, Sunday, October 13th, 2013.

"There's no better time than now to experience the benefit that many professionals credit with making them better photographers."


The NVPPA competitions will not only advance your photography expertise and skill to the extreme, but prepares you for gaining merits towards your PPA Master of Photography Degree (M.Photog.) which is recognized throughout the world.  The judges scoring will allow you to "test" your images prior to sending to PPA to be judged for degree merits.  NVPPA members will also receive points that will be recorded and tracked towards our Photographer of the Year Awards.

Competitions & Evaluations are a benefit of NVPPA Gold Membership.

Submission Deadline:

Digital image files must be received by midnight, Sunday, October 13th, 2013.

Who is Eligible?

NVPPA Gold Members can attend this competition for FREE.  BWPAA, MDPPA, and PPSGW official members can attend this competition for FREE as well.  For all image entries, the image entry fee of $20 for up to 4 images applies

Non-members and other Meetup members can attend this competition event for $20 via PayPal. You don't have to enter images to attend but you can -- The image entry fee of $20 for up to 4 images still applies

Non-members can save by joining NVPPA and attending this meeting as a benefit of membership.

We are a non-profit association. The image entry investments only offsets some of our expenses. We pay honorarium to our judges and host them for dinner. We invest heavily in specialized display hardware, calibration tools, and projectors -- joining helps us maintain the high quality programming we are known for, respects our profession, and its mentors.

The highest scoring entries may be published on this event post and website with NVPPA Gold Members having priority. By entering, you grant NVPPA the right to publish the images on its website and for use in other marketing materials.  We will give you appropriate, visible credit, if published.

Image Qualifications:

  • Any image entered must have been taken by the entrant. Editing, if performed by someone other than the entrant, must be under their direction.  The resulting edited image should be true to the original or it may be re-categorized as an Electronic Imaging entry, and the original, untouched images will be required along with the resultant, final image.
  • No entry will be eligible that has been made under the supervision of an instructor or as a class assignment; this includes instructional workshops, seminars, etc... Images in which another photographer provides assistance in the posing, lighting or composition (other than holding a light or reflector) are also not permitted.
  • Electronic Imaging is the only category where the source images do not have to be the entrant's but you must receive permission to use the source images and there must be substantial changes to them and/or to the resultant final image.  See this document PDF by on Electronic Imaging by PPA:http://www.ppa.com/files/pdfs/articles/eicompetition.pdf.
  • No more than one entry of the same subject by any photographer will be accepted unless treatment of the subject is such that it produces an entirely different image. If your event is a wedding per se, then only one image of the bride can be entered. The final interpretation of this rule is up to the Competition Chairperson.

Checklist - Disqualification occurs if your image:

    • doesn't accompany a payment
    • exceeds the maximum file size
    • doesn't match the required resolution in any direction
    • is submitted without an accompanying entry form or if the form is not completed properly
    • violates the Image Qualification rules
    • (this section under review...)


Number of Entries, Types of Entries, Image Submission, & Entry Fees:

A maximum of 4 submissions is permitted per entrant. The entries may be distributed across categories as desired. Available categories are Portrait, Wedding, Illustrative, Commercial, and Electronic Imaging. No albums will be accepted for this competition.

For competitions, there is a member entry investment of $20 for up to 4 images.





To stay current with PPA, and digital photography & imaging, our rules are updated frequently.  Even if you have already read the rules from a previous competition, please re-read them (in this event post) prior to submitting your payment.  By submitting payment, you have read and agree to the rules.

Click the PayPal button below to remit your entry investment (up to 4 images):

Pay Now



Click here to submit an entry form for each image.


Email each image, separately, to [masked]
Use a subject line beginning with "NVPPA-COMP: "
<filename of attached image>.  Do not type the quotes or the "<>".



We will award ribbons or certificates as follows:

* "Best in Show" for each specific Category of entry (Portrait, Wedding, Illustrative, and Commercial); this is the "judges choice" award and typically considers scores of 80 or above only.
* 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places
* Corner (Your image scored above an 80, but did not receive any of the above placings.)

Get Yourself Ready:

I am posting the information in this section as a help guide to direct you to more PPA tools...

NVPPA will review images relative to the PPA 12 Elements of a Merit Print.

Look at these video tutorials:

Competition Tutorial

Profiles and Calibration


The purpose of the PPA International Photographic Competition (IPC) is to allow photographers to enter photographic prints, CD albums and/or albums to be judged relative to the 12 Elements of a Merit Print.

For NVPPA competitions, the image criteria, and the judging mirrors the PPA competitions as much as possible.  This gives the NVPPA member the background and experience needed to succeed at the PPA national level.

PPA members are eligible to achieve PPA Exhibition Merits toward the Master of Photography Degree. These rules pertain to images entered as prints created by traditional photographic processes as well as those captured electronically with a digital camera or scanner.

Click here to download the PPA 2013 Photographic Competition rules.

File Type:

All images will be submitted as jpeg ".jpg" files.

No Logos, Copyrights, or Watermarks:

All entries must be anonymous to the judges, so please No Logos, Copyrights, or Watermarks on your images.

Image Size Specifications:

The judges' monitors will be set at a resolution of 1920-pixels-horizontal by 1080- pixels-vertical (16:9 screen ratio).  All images should be placed on a square background (canvas) of 3840 x 3840 pixels. Your image can cover the entire surface or be a portion of the "canvas" along with pinstripes, strokes, mats, borders, etc...

To create your square canvas and add your image, the software of choice is Photoshop or Photoshop Elements.  You can use any other software that can create layers. OnOne Software's Perfect Layers 2 or Gimp http://www.gimp.org/ are free.

The maximum file size is 5 Megabytes.  Note that the jpeg image Quality setting (which adjusts the compression) may need to be reduced to bring the file size within the maximum.  We recommend a JPEG quality setting of 10 to start:

Please note that pixels-per-inch or "ppi" can be ignored.  Due to restrictions on display size, both Master Photographers and Non-Master Photographers must adhere to these same specifications.

To Understand Image Size:

Please see this article, "A Photographer’s Guide to Image Sizing" at http://www.nikondigital.org/articles/image_size_ryan.htm

Color Space and Color Management:

First, watch the video above, "Profiles and Calibration".  Digital images should be submitted in the sRGB color space. (export the jpeg as sRGB). We used the X-Rite www.xrite.com i1Display Pro with the I1Profiler Software to calibrate the judges' monitors and the audience's projector.

A screen paste of Photoshop's Save As dialog with the sRGB Color Profile selected:

A screen paste of the I1Profiler Software settings for our monitors:

File Naming Convention:

To facilitate image sorting and identification, files must be named according to the following scheme. The digital image file name will consist of, in the following order, separated by the hyphen character, "-": the CategoryCode, the EntryCode, the photographer's MemberID, EntryNumber and an Image_Title. Individual words of the Title are separated by an "_" underscore character as a replacement for the space.  All submissions must have a title.  If you're not a member, use your 3-character initials.

All members, will receive, or have received, their MemberID by email.  The subject will contain the word, Competition.

Filename = CategoryCode + EntryCode + Hyphen + MemberID + Hyphen + EntryNumber + Hyphen + Title + .jpg

Do not put quotes or the plus signs in the filename. There should be no other special characters in the filename other than underscores and hyphens -- no punctuation, no periods, and in our example, no spaces.  For Mac users, no ".Dat" or parantheses.


(Portrait, General, MemberID, Entry #01, “Little Girl in Forest”)

(Wedding, Master, Initials, Entry #02, "Under the Stars")


PPortrait: Consists of Portrait entries.

WWedding: Consists of Wedding entries.

IIllustrative: Consists of landscapes, pictorials, digital paintings and anything else, even people. Studio portraits and weddings are not appropriate for this category.

CCommercial: Consists of commercial and industrial entries.

EElectronic Imaging: See this PDF document for definition: Download Electronic Imaging Competition (PDF).


M – Master photographer

G – General (non-master photographer)

MemberID: sent to you via email.  Use your initials if you are not a member and do not have a member ID.

EntryNumber: the number 01, 02, 03, or 04 (up to 4 images) indicating the number of your unique image entry; use a leading zero.

Title: The title announced when the image is displayed to the judges. Separate words with the Underscore character, "_".

The Title is the ONLY way that you can communicate with the judges.  It's an important component of the judges understanding and the scoring of your image -- be terse, descriptive, and creative.

Submission Method:

Digital Images must be emailed to [masked], use a subject line beginning with "NVPPA-COMP".

Send each image in an email of its own. Each image will be acknowledged via return email.

Submission Deadline:

Digital image files must be received by midnight, Sunday, October 13th, 2013.

Judges (2 to 3 of the following):

Gil Jackson, Photographic Craftsman, CPP, BWPAA President

Anthony Marill, Master Photographer, Photographic Craftsman, PPSGW President, PPA Counselor, CPP

James Roy, Master Photographer, Photographic Craftsman, CPP, (via Skype)

George Singleton, SEPPA President (incoming), Master Photographer, Photographic Craftsman, PPA Counselor, CPP

Webster Wright, Master Photographer, CPP

Jackie Hicks, Master Photographer, Photographic Craftsman, CPP, Awarded

Philip Brasch, NVPPA President & Founder

Judging & Scoring:

Judges will review images relative to the

"12 Elements of a Merit Print"

1. Impact*
2. Creativity
3. Style
4. Composition*
5. Lighting*
6. Color Harmony
7. Center of Interest
8. Print Presentation
9. Subject Matter
10. Technique
11. Story Telling
12. Technical Excellence/Print Quality


NVPPA Follows the PPA Point System

to Score Images from 0 To 100

Exceptional = 95-100

Superior = 90-94

Excellent = 85-89

Deserving of a Merit = 80-84

Above Average = 76-79

Average = 74-75

Acceptable = 70-73

Unacceptable = 0-69



Competition Chair at [masked]


The Submission Rules may change as we progress to a formal PPA-sanctioned image and print competition.


We acknowledge our members from MDPPA that lent the framework and advice for the development of these rules. Thank you to Mark Gilvey, Michael George, and Philip Brasch for your contribution.  Event, rules, and judge bookings posted and updated by Philip Brasch.

BIO, Ed Buxton, Master Photographer, Photographic Craftsman, CPP

BIO, Bert Pasquale, CPP

BIO, Roger Hammons, Master Photographer, CPP

BIO, Anthony Marill, Master Photographer, Photographic Craftsman, President PPSGW, CPP

BIO, James Roy, Master Photographer, Photographic Craftsman, CPP

BIO, Webster Wright, Master Photographer, CPP

BIO, Jackie Hicks, Master Photographer, Photographic Craftsman, CPP

BIO, George Singleton, President SEPPA, Master Photographer, Photographic Craftsman, CPP

Singleton Studios promotes the vocal and visual artistry of George Singleton. This website features the visual side of George Singleton's artistry.

A Certified Professional Photographer, George Singleton is President of Maryland Professional Photographers Association, (MDPPA), a member of the Board of Governors of Southeastern Professional Photographers Association, (SEPPA), Treasurer of Professional Photographers Society of Greater Washington, (PPSGW), and a member of Wedding Portrait Photographers International, (WPPI).

Additionally, George Singleton is in his second three-year term as one of two Councilors who represent PPA members living and working in the state of Maryland to the Professional Photographers of America Council.  Recent Awards include Small Business of the Year, 2004, from the Greater Silver Spring Chamber of Commerce, (GSSCC); The Fujifilm MASTERPIECE AWARD for Portraiture, 2005; and his wedding album "Olumide and Doris" won a blue ribbon in a MDPPA monthly print competition.

George Singleton's work has been exhibited nationally and locally, including several PPA International Exhibitions, The Spectrum Gallery in Georgetown, Washington, DC and the Billy Graham Center for Sacred Arts in Wheaton, IL. Several of his images have graced US Air Force Band CD recording jackets.

BIO, Gil Jackson, Photographic Craftsman, CPP

Gil Jackson is an award winning photographer, mastering the creative art of photography to capture beautiful, high impact portrait and wedding images. He is fully a Professional Photographer and has been a member of the Professional Photographers of America since 1992 and joined the Maryland Professional Photographers Association that same year.

He began his career in photography in 1984, followed by opening of his studio in August 1987, shortly after photographing his first wedding.   He has honed his technical and artistic eye by studying under some of the world’s best known wedding and portrait photographers.

Gil has a Photographic Craftsman degree and is a Certified Professional Photographer. He has chosen to share the knowledge that he worked hard to obtain, with up and coming photographers as well as other professional photographers. In 2006 he founded the F Stop Professional Photographers Association (FSIPPA) and is currently the CEO of that group. FSIPPA is an organization that has mentored many successful photographers in the MD/DC & VA area.

He is also a speaker & print judge who has spoken to & judged for many organizations in Maryland as well as nationally. Some of these organizations include other local PPA organizations.

Gil has emerged as one of the most talented photographers, winning awards both locally and nationally. He was one of the first photographers in the local area to embrace the digital revolution, excelling in graphic design and now owning a complete photographic design laboratory, including artwork for portraiture and custom designed wedding albums.  He has merged the two worlds of photographic art and digital technology to present creative images that capture the precious memories and life stories his client’s desire.



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NVPPA VA/DC Woodbridge, VA - Regular Monthly Photography Meeting
For more information on NVPPA and joining, please see our  About Page .


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Join or login to comment.

  • Philip B.

    Please reTweet this: Our Image Competition ROCKS @NVPPA in #NoVA 10/16! See the Reviews: ow.ly/pYjl3 Welcome to our new members from @OurPPA JOIN Now!

    or try your own...

    October 19, 2013

  • Philip B.

    If you haven't left a comment about this meeting as yet, just rate and "Like" someone else's. --Thanks! Philip

    October 18, 2013

  • Sandra L.

    Wonderful, Awesome and lots of fun! Great learning experience. Getting better with each one. :)

    1 · October 17, 2013

  • Philip B.

    I just wanted to remind folks of what your scores are equivalent to in terms of a quality rating. We Follow the PPA Point System to Score Images from 69 To 100:

    Superior 90-94
    Excellent 85-89
    Deserving of a Merit 80-84
    Above Average 76-79
    Average 74-75
    Acceptable 70-73
    Unacceptable 69

    1 · October 17, 2013

  • Mark G.

    I thoroughly enjoyed listening to the comments and critiques of all the judges. I always learn a lot from these competitions. Thanks again to George, Bert, and Ed for judging the competition. It was great to see everyone who came out and for those who couldn't make it, as they said in the movie Endless Summer... "Ya shoulda been here yesterday!" Come on out next time, you'll grow from it no matter what your skill level.

    2 · October 17, 2013

  • Terry W.

    I am so glad I entered the NVPPA competition! Thank you all for your time in putting this all together. Anyone who believes they can grow and become a better image maker needs to take advantage of this opportunity.

    This was my first image competition. I learned so much information on how to improve my current and future images from listening to the specific critiques from the PPA-Degreed Judges. This will help me and anyone entering IPC images and result in improving our craft.

    3 · October 17, 2013

  • james p.

    great crowd...great judges....great advice and instruction....gentle with criticism...exactly what you need to improve skills and confidence

    4 · October 17, 2013

  • Timothy S.

    Thank you Sandy and Philip had a great time and learned a great deal. Look forward to the next meeting

    3 · October 17, 2013

  • Philip B.

    This was one of the best NVPPA competitions ever! A variety of insightful / specific evaluations and plenty of member entries made this 5-stars. Ed Buxton was Skyped in from Florida! Our members cleaned up on scoring merits at this one! Thank you for the time, expertise, and support from Michael George, Mark Gilvey, and Sandy Bauerly (and me too :). Welcome to our two new members, Timothy Swanson and Terry Wingfield! Tim thanks for your help with all the equipment! Michael W. and Roger thanks for representing NVPPA and hosting our judges for dinner.

    2 · October 17, 2013

  • Sandy B.

    Great Job everyone who worked on creating this event. Thanks to the Judges.

    2 · October 17, 2013

  • Philip B.

    Judges for Competition – final! These judges are all highly awarded as Professional Photographers and have earned multiple degrees (Master / Photographic Craftsman) awarded by the most prestigious organization in the world for professionals, PPA. They are all long-term members of MDPPA, the MD affiliate for PPA.

    1. George Singleton
    2. Bert Pasquale
    3. Ed Buxton (via Skype from Florida)

    On-site Alternates & Advisors:
    1. Roger Hammons
    2. James Roy

    October 15, 2013

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