International Contests

A FREE to enter International Photography & Film Competition with great prizes across several genres. Photographers of all ages, backgrounds, and experience are eligible to enter the Xposure International Competitions. We have also introduced a new category for film-makers from 2018. The panel of judges are looking to award an Overall Winner from the photography categories and additionally a winner and runner-up from each category including moving image & short-films.

Nature & Landscape
Portrait & People
Architectural
Photojournalism
Mobile Photography

Night Photography
Best of the Emirates
Junior Category*
Sharjah Government Open**
Short Film & Moving Image

In each category, there will be:

1 Winner
1 Runner-up
5 Shortlisted photographers

In addition to the category winners, there will be an overall winner determined from the highest score achieved, regardless of category entered.

Prizes & Benefits
Overall Winner  – $3,000 (USD) / digital imaging equipment / Flights and accommodation to the Awards Ceremony in Sharjah UAE / Included in the Xposure festival exhibition  / Publication in the Xposure Year Book

Category Winners – $1,500 (USD) / digital imaging equipment / Flights and accommodation to the Awards Ceremony in Sharjah UAE / Included in the Xposure festival exhibition  / Publication in the Xposure Year Book

Category Runner-up – $750 (USD) / Included in the Xposure festival exhibition  / Flights and accommodation to the Awards Ceremony in Sharjah UAE /Publication in the Xposure Year Book

Shortlisted – Online Exhibition  / displayed during the Xposure Festival

* Junior Category for under 18 – UAE Residents
A restricted “Junior” category for residents of the United Arab Emirates who are under 18. (Alternate prizes apply – see below) In addition to the main prizes of best overall entry, all winning and shortlisted photographers of each category will be included in the publication of the Xposure Year Book and featured in a gallery at Xposure.  In each category, there shall be awarded:

  • Junior Category under 18 ‘Winner’ – Photo equipment and included in the Xposure festival exhibition  / Publication in the Xposure Year Book / Invitation to the Awards Ceremony.
  • Junior Category under 18  ‘Runner-up’ – Included in the Xposure festival exhibition / Invitation to the Awards Ceremony.

**Sharjah Government Open – This is a restricted category specifically for individuals who are in the employment of the Sharjah Government.

Competition Entries
Online entries will be accepted from 1st April 2019 to 13th July 2019. The latest time for submitting an entry will be 23:00 GST – Gulf Standard Time (Standard Time) is (UTC +4) 

Term
The Contest opens for online submissions on 1st April 2019 and closes on 13th July 2019, at 11:00 pm GST (the Entry Deadline).  All entries must be received by the Entry Deadline.

Who may enter?
This competition is FREE to enter and open to all nationalities over the age of 18. There is a Junior Category for under 18’s resident in the UAE.
Employees of Sharjah Government Media Bureau, and each of their affiliates, subsidiaries and agents, are not eligible to enter or win a prize in the main categories, however, there is a restricted category for Sharjah Government employees.

How to enter
For the photography categories, images must be submitted through our online awards platform at XPOSURE AWARDS  The images should be suitable for public display, printing and publication in the Xposure Year Book. The JPG file format should be used and the preferred resolution is 300 dpi and preferably in a ratio of 3:2

For the film category, you can upload your file in MP4 or AVI formats with a maximum file size of 1GB. Scripts together with other information may be referenced. Uploads are accepted through the competition platform in the respective category.

More detail for photo submissions

  • The preferred image size should be close to 5,000 pixels on the longer dimension. We accept images that were not captured at this resolution as long as they are over 2700 pixels on the long dimension. For more information on electronic submission guidelines see our FAQ.
  • To enter electronically, you must first register online. Once the registration process has been completed, you will receive an e-mail confirmation. Just log into the competition and follow the instructions to upload images from your computer. Digital images should have a long dimension of at least 2,700 pixels and saved at 300 dpi 28cm, or larger, as a jpeg file.  We can accept images that are up to 8 megabytes uncompressed if you cannot downsize the pictures. (Uncompressed is the size you see in Photoshop’s “Image Size” display which represents the count of pixels in the image. It is not the file size on your computer’s hard drive viewable on your desktop.) Images may be colour profiled in sRGB, Adobe-1998, or not colour-managed.
  • You may enter up to ten (10) images or films per user distributed in any ratio across the competition categories and each entry must be allocated to the category selected from the drop-down selection box. (see categories). To enable entrants to submit across multiple categories only one image may be uploaded at a time with the exception of stories in the TAPSA section.
  • To qualify, your photographs of films must be taken or produced in the past 3-years.
  • An entry consists of one photo or film, in addition to completed Title, Caption, Place Taken and Date Taken.
  • Each submitted photograph, in its entirety, must be a single work of original material taken by the competition entrant. By entering the contest, the entrant represents, acknowledges and warrants that he or she has full power and authority to enter the photograph and that the photograph does not infringe any copyright or violate any other intellectual property rights. The entrant agrees to indemnify Sharjah Government Media Bureau from any and all third party claims arising from the photograph.
  • Photographs that include sculptures, statues, paintings, and other works of art will be accepted as long as they do not constitute copyright infringement or fraud, provided that entrants are prepared to submit a release form as described below in “Third Party Releases/Licenses.” When photographing the work of others, it must be as an object in its environment and not a full-frame close-up of another person’s art.
  • Photographs that include a watermark or name that is not part of the original image capture will be disqualified.
  • The entries will be judged in accordance with the Judging Criteria, as defined in judging and awards. The photograph must not, in the sole and unfettered discretion of the Sponsors, contain obscene, provocative, defamatory, sexually explicit, or otherwise objectionable or inappropriate content. Photographs deemed inappropriate will be disqualified without notice.
  • On-line entries must be made by a user registered online at our awards platform and by the authorised account holder of the e-mail address submitted at the time of entry. “Authorised account holder” is defined as the natural person who is assigned to an e-mail address by an Internet access provider, online service provider, internet domain owner, or other person or organisation (e.g., business, educational institution, etc.) that is responsible for assigning e-mail addresses for the domain associated with the submitted e-mail address.

PHOTOGRAPHY JUDGING

The panel of judges is looking to award the overall winner of the annual international competition and the overall best picture from all season 2018 International categories. The competition closes for entries on 13th July 2019 at 23:00 GST. The winners will be announced on 1st August 2019.

In addition to the main prizes, all winning and shortlisted photographers will be included in the publication of the Xposure Year Book and featured in a gallery at Xposure 2010. In each category, judges will award:

One winner
One runner-up
Five shortlisted photographers

The winner and runner-up from each category will be invited to the Xposure Festival Awards Ceremony where the final outcome of the position will be announced.

Qualification
All submitted images will be screened by the Moderators to ensure that no offensive or culturally sensitive material is presented to the Jury. Submissions will either be approved or rejected at this stage. Any offensive submissions will be removed from the competition without notice.

Judging Procedure
Round One – Entries will be judged from artistic merit and overall impact
Round Two – Entries will be judged from the composition, technical quality and effectiveness of expressing the category theme

Round One Process
The VIP jury (the “Judges”) will independently review each entry and apply a credit rating on the basis of Overall Impact and Artistic Merit. The collective credit ratings from this process form the round one score.

Short List Round One
The 25 highest ranked images in each category will go forward to round two. In the case that two or more images are in ranking position 25 all those images with the equal 25th point score will go ahead into round two.

Round Two Process
In Round Two the judges will apply a credit rating on the basis of Photographic / Technical Quality, Image Composition and Effectiveness in expressing the category theme.

The Judges individually consider the three aspects (criteria) for each image and allocate credits on each element. The collective scores will determine the ranking. Should one or more images be placed equally in ranking 1, 2 or 3, there shall be a final “Tie-Break” round of judging.

Tie-Break Process
If a tie-break is required, the judges will consider the respective images once again based on the criteria of Originality. The Judges will apply a credit rating of 1 to 6 in the Tie Break process. Decisions of the Judges are final and binding.

SHORT FILM JUDGING

Since 2018 the International Competitions includes short film. These will be judged and scored following the criteria set out below. Short Films include video clips and can be any running length from 1 min to 18 min.

One winner
One runner-up
Five shortlisted filmmakers

The winner and runner-up from this category will be invited to the Xposure Festival Awards Ceremony where the final outcome of the position will be announced.

Qualification
All submitted films and video clips will be based on a URL submission to your video clip or film hosted on Vimeo, YouTube or any other suitable platform. Any offensive submissions will be removed from the competition without notice.

Judging Procedure
Round One Process
The VIP jury (the “Judges”) will independently review each entry and apply a credit rating on the basis of Merit. The collective credit ratings from this process form the round one score.

Short List Round One
The 25 highest ranked video clips / short films will go forward to round two. In the case that two or more entries are in ranking position 25 all those in the equal 25th place score will go ahead into round two.

Round Two Process
In Round Two the judges will apply a 1 – 8 credit rating on the basis of seven criteria.

  • Concept.
  • Theme
  • Style/Tone
  • Characters & Dialogue
  • Structure / Plot & Pacing
  • Presentation
  • Commercial Potential

The Judges individually consider the criteria for each video clip / short film and allocate credits on each element. The collective scores will determine the ranking. Should one or more entries be placed equally in ranking 1, 2 or 3, there shall be a final “Tie-Break” round of judging.

Tie-Break Process
If a tie-break is required, the judges will consider the respective entries once again based on the criteria of Originality. The Judges will apply a credit rating of 1 to 6 in the Tie Break process. Decisions of the Judges are final and binding.

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.