It’s thrilling to have an image exhibited for viewers to celebrate. Being juried into a competition show is a highlight for all of us.

Submitting your work for “judging” can also be a great opportunity to review your own work with an objective eye, grow your self-critique skills, learn from constructive feedback and plan for future shoots.

So… How exactly do you choose which competitions to enter and which images to submit?

A great place to start is the Professional Photographers of America (PPA) list the 12 key criteria used to select the “merit” images in its annual competition. While not specific to nature photography, this article’s recommendations are a still relevant to whatever you shoot. []

It’s also enlightening to follow the blog of professionals you know and whose work you respect, to better understand how they approach and compose their images. Many share fantastic tips and techniques that will help the next time you capture.

Recommended Sites to Explore

North America Nature Photography Association (NANPA)

David Akoubian

John Gerlach

Rick Sammon

Charlotte Gibb

Joyce Dumas

Kathleen Clemons