Competition Categories Explained


To help you understand each of the competition categories we have provided a summary description of each of the Xposure International Competition. Considering the technical advances in photographic equipment with the capabilities of recording high-resolution movies, we have added a new  “Short Film” category for the benefit of film-makers. The Short Film category covers genres of documentary, drama, action or animation / stop motion.

Nature & Landscape covers a wide range of photography taken outdoors and devoted to displaying natural elements. Specifically, Landscape Photography shows spaces within the world, sometimes vast and other times microscopic. Nature photography typically captures the presence of nature, wildlife, plants, and close-ups of natural scenes and textures. Wildlife means undomesticated animals that live in the wild and does not include pets or animals that live in a Zoo.

Portrait & People Typically Portrait Photography is captured with the awareness of the subject, while People Photography is candid. Portrait photography is a photograph of a person or group of people that capture the personality of the subject by using effective lighting, backdrops, and poses. A candid People photograph is a photograph captured without creating a posed appearance. This is achieved in many ways, for example: when the subject is in motion, by avoiding prior preparation of the subject, by surprising the subject, by not distracting the subject during the process of taking. You want the viewers of the image to feel that they are getting an unguarded, fly-on-the-wall glimpse into the scene

Architectural photography is the photographing of buildings and similar structures both exterior and interior, that are both aesthetically pleasing and accurate representations of their subjects. A deep depth of field is usually employed so that both the foreground and background (to infinity) are in sharp focus. Architectural photography typically shows either the exterior or the interior of buildings.

Photojournalism is a particular form of journalism (the collecting, editing, and presenting of news material for publication or broadcast) that employs images in order to tell a news story. It is now usually understood to refer only to still images, but in some cases, the term also refers to video used in broadcast journalism.

Mobile Photography As technology on smartphones is more than adequate for taking photos and publishing them online this category is dedicated to mobile or smartphone photography. Depending on the camera quality and the number of pixels, photos can have excellent results. The significant difference today is that everyone with a smartphone has a camera handy.

Night photography refers to the activity of capturing images outdoors at night, between dusk and dawn. Night photographers generally have a choice between using artificial lighting and using a long exposure, exposing the shot for seconds, minutes, or even hours in order to give the film or an image sensor enough time to capture a desirable image. This category includes Astrophotography, Star Trails etc.

Best of the Emirates
Images that have been taken in the United Arab Emirates that can include Landscapes, Architecture, Cityscape, Heritage, Cultures and Places.

Junior Category – (under 18 – restrictions apply)
The Junior category is separate from the main awards and open to all types of still photography recorded by a phone, DLSR or mirrorless camera and produced at a Junior level (entrants must be under 18 to enter). Photos must have been taken in the past two years. Entrants must be resident in the United Arab Emirates.

Sharjah Government Open – (Employees of Sharjah Government)
This open category is specifically for individuals in the employment of Sharjah Government at time of entry and who remain in the employment of Sharjah Government at the time of awards. Any socially accepted genre of photography is valid and the judging criteria remain similar to other categories.

Short Film & Moving Image
The short film category includes moving image & stop motion. To enter requires uploading your file in MP4 or AVI format with running length of up to a maximum of 15 minutes including credits to a maximum 1GB in file size. The scope can be either documentary, drama, action, animation / stop motion or news. Stop motion is an animated-film making technique in which objects are physically manipulated in small increments between individually photographed frames. This does not include computer-generated animation.