Competition Rules

Eligibility to enter

Only financial members of the Williamstown Camera Club can participate in competitions. All financial members will be assigned a 3-digit Williamstown Camera Club Competition Number.

Number of competitions

Typically, there are seven Club Competitions per year: six Competition Rounds, and an End of Year Competition

The club may also be invited and elect to participate in multiple inter-club competitions throughout the year. At last revision our club participates in two inter-club competitions: Knox Monochrome Inter-club and the VAPS Annual Competition.


Members of Williamstown Camera Club participate in competitions in grades. We run two grades at Williamstown Camera Club:

  • A-Grade: for advanced photographers, and 
  • B-Grade: for members learning and refining their photography skills.

New members to the club will automatically be placed in B-Grade unless they elect to submit images for grading to qualify for A-Grade, this must be done prior to entering their first competition.

New members wishing to be graded for A-Grade competitions must submit a minimum of 6 images taken within the last 12 months for grading. The Competitions Subcommittee will assess the images and report back to the member their decision.

For all members, grading will be reviewed annually at the completion of the competition season and movement between grades for the following year will be communicated to the members.  In regrading members, the Competitions Subcommittee will take into account the member’s performance throughout the year and any new skills and experience shown. Promotion to A-Grade is recognition of the member's growth and is something all competing members should strive toward.

Throughout the year members participate within their grade. Movement between grades during the year is not permitted.

Club Competition Categories

Each competition round is made up of a Set Subject and an Open category in the two grades in a single format Digital. Prints remain suspended at the club level for the 2023 season, but may return in 2024.

Set Subject

Six Set Subject categories are nominated and defined by the Committee prior to the start of each year. All images entered in this category must satisfy the definition of the Set Subject as provided. The definition will be provided to the judges, however, the Club has no control over the judge’s interpretation, acceptance, or non-acceptance of the definition. The subjects and definitions are outlined on the relevant Competitions Theme page on the website.


In addition to the set subject category for each round there is an "Open" category.

The Open category enables the member to submit an image of their choosing with no requirement to adhere to a theme; though it must comply with the technical specifications detailed below.


For 2023 we are only accepting Digital images (EDPI) for club competition rounds. Print entries are still required for Interclub competitions.


Also known as EDI (Electronic Digital Image), DPI (Digital Projected Image), and EDPI (Electronic Digital Projected Image), the digital format is an electronic format. Images may be created with a digital camera, created with a conventional film camera and scanned into electronic format, or may be created by use of a scanner.

Your digital entries must adhere to the following specifications:

Digital Specifications

  • JPEG format (file extension .jpg).
  • RGB Colour Profile - this is pretty standard, and is how it comes out of your camera.
  • A maximum file size of 10MB.
  • Named in five (5) segments as follows:
    • Grade: A or B
    • Competition number three digits with leading zeros, as required, followed by an underscore: 021_
    • Category followed by an underscore: Open_ or Set_
    • Image title, with words separated by underscores: Wave_Pool_High_Tide
    • File extension .jpg
    • Resulting in: A021_Set_Digital_Wave_Pool_High_Tide.jpg
  • See the export and renaming guide for more information.

Note: For all competitions your digital images will be resized to fit within the dimensions of 1920 pixels wide x 1080 pixels high before transmission to the judges. This is a ‘fits within’ resize rather than a ‘long edge’, meaning a portrait image will be sized to a maximum height of 1080 pixels rather than a long edge height of 1920 pixels high.

Entry Submissions

Entries are due as per the closing date set out on the Competitions main page, these will always coincide with a club meeting.

Entries must be emailed to the Competition Steward ( no later than 11:59pm on the closing date.

Once submitted, images cannot be replaced. Entries that fail to meet the specifications above will be removed from the entry pool.

Competition Round Entries

A maximum of two entries are permitted per round. One image in each of the two categories:

  • 1 x Set Subject Digital
  • 1 x Open Digital

Note: An entry that has previously placed (1st, 2nd, 3rd) in any round, including in previous years, may not be reentered into subsequent competitions rounds, but are more than welcome in the End of Year Competition (for the year originally entered) and any Inter-club competition for which it meets the criteria of entry.

End of Year: Digital Image of the Year Entries

End of Year entries must have been entered in one of the six competition rounds throughout the year. It’s not necessary for entries to have gained a place to be eligible for entry.

Images may be reworked for submission. Due to the removal of print entries we allow members to submit 3 entries as digital entries. Images must be supplied with the same file name as previously entered so we can confirm the image has been entered previously.

For 2023 a maximum of three entries are permitted:

  • 3 x Digital

Judging and Scoring Club Competitions

After the closing date, images will be forwarded electronically and delivered physically to independent VAPS judge/s for assessment, scoring, and critique.

In judging our images the judges will assess based on the following criteria:

  • Technical skill: Focus, exposure, depth of field etc
  • Aesthetic & Artistic Ability: Point of interest, balance, colour, leading lines
  • Concept & Subject: What holds the viewers interest and stands out? The ability to elicit an emotional response from the viewer.

See What Judges Look For? for more detail.

Competition Rounds

The judge will attend a club meeting as per the schedule and present their critique to members having already assessed and scored the work prior to attendance.


A Score out of 15 will be given for all images in the A and B Grades, in each Category, for each format.

As a guide to the scores consider the following table

Score Explaination
14-15 Exceptional image technically and compositionally in concept and originality.
12-13 An image above average quality in concept, composition and technique, with no major technical faults.
10-11 A basically sound image in concept, composition and technique, but lacks the impact of the above categories.
8-9 Significant deficiencies in technique, composition, and subject selection.
7 Does not meet the rules of entry.


In addition to the score, the Judge will award Placings of 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. The judge may also award Highly Commended (HC) awards to entries they feel deserve it. All placings may, at the judges discretion, have multiple winners.

Note: Scores and Placings are independent. A score of 15 ? 1st place, 14 ? 2nd place and so on. There may be multiple scores of 15 given, with the judge determining the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd placings. E.g. We may have two images scoring 15, and three images scoring 14. From the 15s the judge will determine the 1st and 2nd place and will decide a 3rd place from those scoring 14. As stated above they may also decide to award multiple placings if they so choose.

End of Year Competition: Digital Images of the Year

A panel of three or more judges from another camera club will assess the images presented. The panel may elect to attend our End of Year Awards night to present their assessment and awards.

There are only one award per grade:  

  • 1 x Digital Image of the Year - A Grade
  • 1 x Digital Image of the Year - B Grade


Competition Rounds

1 st, 2nd, and 3rd placings as well as images deemed “highly commended” by the judge (at their discretion) will be announced on the night of judging in each format and category combination for your grade. A Williamstown Camera Club certificate of recognition will be issued at the time.

Images receiving an award during the year may not be entered again in subsequent competitions.

In addition to the placings, all entries will receive the following points towards our aggregate end of year awards:

  • 1st - 10pts
  • 2nd - 6pts
  • 3rd - 4pts
  • HC - 2pts
  • Entry - 1pt

Note: Entering into both available categories in each competition round will see you awarded a minimum of 12 points toward the end of year aggregate awards: 6 comps x 2 format category combinations x 1 point for entry in each = 12 points.

End of Year Awards

At the end of the year we celebrate the year that was with the following awards:

Aggregate awards

The aggregate awards are based on the combined points from the 6 club competition rounds throughout the year. Points for Set Subject and Open categories are combined to provide a total for Digital aggregates.

Trophies are awarded for:

  • Grade-A Aggregate Digital Category award: 1st, 2nd, and 3rd
  • Grade-B Aggregate Digital Category award: 1st, 2nd, and 3rd.

In the event of multiple 1 st or 2nd places, 3rd places will be awarded at the discretion of the committee based on a score count back.

Print of the Year and Digital of the Year

Trophies are awarded to the Digital Image of the Year in both Grades A and B. There can only be a single winner per grade combination:

  • Grade-A Digital Image of the Year
  • Grade-B Digital Image of the Year

In addition to a trophy, the winners of the Print and Digital images of the year will have their names added to our perpetual shields.

Inter-club Competitions

The inter-club competitions we compete in from time to time will be governed by their own rules and specifications. For the large part they maintain the same specifications as above as we are all guided by the VAPS competition rules and specifications. Where these rules differ they will be conveyed to the members by the Competition Steward when entries are requested.

Often times the number of images we are able to submit for inter-club competitions are restricted, entries by members may go through a selection process by the Committee or the Competitions Subcommittee. Members will be notified of the final submission when these have been made.

Maker’s Own Work

All images must be the maker’s own work and the entrant must be the sole copyright holder of the work. Images may be enhanced or manipulated using dark room or software editing techniques, however, the entire work must constitute the maker’s own work.

Right to display

By entering any of the Williamstown Camera Club competitions, the entrant is granting Williamstown Camera Club a non-exclusive right to present their work across all mediums in perpetuity. This includes using images for display on the Williamstown Camera Club website (, and other domains) and for the purposes of entering inter-club competitions and for club promotion across all media.

At all times the maker retains copyright of their image and, where possible, the maker will receive attribution for their work.

Shoot with Intent

While not expressly a “rule”, the Williamstown Camera Club encourages members to make their images for the competition theme, rather than go through their archives and find images that fit the theme. 

We understand if you have an amazing photo from a trip taken years ago, or an aged image you wish to rework for the competition, we welcome those images, however, wish to convey the intention of competitions at Williamstown Camera Club is for members to make new images and expand their skills through the experience of doing so.

What Judges Look For?

Technical Skills Aesthetic & Artistic Ability Concept & Subject
Sharpness & blur Impact Choice of subject
Aperture & depth of field (DOF) Focal point Relevance & audience
Shutter speed & camera shake Distractions Set subject & definitions
ISO / grain Aesthetics Planning
White balance & colour casts Art elements: 
  • Line
  • Tone
  • Colour
  • Texture
  • Shape
  • Space
Gear & lens choice Unique perspective
Exposure Purpose / intent / meaning
Details in shadows / highlights Design principles:
  • Balance
  • Emphasis
  • Contrast
  • Movement
  • Rhythm
  • Pattern
  • Repetition
  • Unity
  • Variety
  • Proportion
  • Scale
Lighting Influences & inspiration
Time of day Mood & emotion
Editing Art Concepts Story telling
Printing & mounting Composition & Cropping Unity & cohesion
Timing Camera angle & perspective Creativity (pre & post production)


Meeting: Club End of Year Dinner - End of Year Awards

We will meet, eat, and drink, celebrating the year that was 2023 and present our end of year awards

As with previous years this will be held at our club rooms with catering provided. 

Cost is $18 per person for food with members encouraged to bring along drink and nibbles to share.

Payment to attend must be paid by November 30, 2023 via our bank account details found on our Membership page, include your competition number and surname in the reference field.

Walker Close Community Centre
12th December 2023 7:30 pm
Meeting: Welcome Back BBQ and Matt Cutting

Join us for an earlier start time of 6:30pm for our traditional BBQ welcome back. We'll follow this with a matt cutting workshop and a presentation on Camera Basics.

Entries due for competition 1: Monochrome and Open

Walker Close Community Centre
13th February 2024 6:30 pm

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