Criteria for Judging

CCT Criteria for Judging “Nature” & “Hand of Man” Categories
March 2019

Technical Merit (1/3)

  • Appropriate focus on key subject matter. Focus does not detract from the intent of the image.
  • Exposure is appropriate for the intent of the image – not excessively over or under exposed.
  • No glare or hot spots that detract from the whole.
  • Image is level when appropriate.
  • Good contrast – appropriate for the subject.
  • Colors true and not over/under saturated – unless intentional.
  • No excessive HDR effect – natural items should appear natural.

Composition (1/3)

  • Main subject is immediately obvious without unnecessary clutter.
  • Image has simplicity/clarity, no distracting items.
  • Important items are not cropped out.
  • Appropriate vacant/noncontributory space for the intent of the image.
  • Good use of available or artificial light to highlight subject.
  • Good use of depth of field, backgrounds are not distracting.
  • Use of angles/lines to draw one into the photo to prime subject.
  • Shot from unique angle/perspective – interesting choice of viewpoint.

Overall Impact (1/3)

  • Visually/aesthetically appealing – generates strong interest.
  • Tells a story and/or has emotional appeal- mood, feelings, excitement, empathy, symbolism, etc.
  • Original/Creative/Uncommon – Doesn’t follow the usual path – unique subject or unique treatment of common subject.
  • A “photograph” – not just a picture/snapshot/record shot
  • Utilizes “light” in a most appealing/effective manner
  • Worthy to hang on your home wall or in a gallery

CCT Criteria for Judging Creative Photos

Composition & technical merit (1/3)

  • Clear center of interest or subject.
  • Complete story within the image.
  • Overall unity, simplicity.
  • Clear what the photographer intended.
  • Pleasing balance in textures, colors, light.
  • No distracting elements – -all aspects tie together well.
  • Demonstrates careful thought about the composition.
  • Absent any obvious technical flaws.
  • Shows creativity in printing (i.e. print media selected) (prints only).

Originality (1/3)

  • Original subject or original approach to standard subject.
  • Conveys a personal/unique vision.
  • Showcases photographer’s skill using software and other techniques to achieve an artistic goal.
  • Demonstrates new concept(s), inventiveness, vision beyond the obvious.
  • Communicates a clear metaphor, symbol or story.
  • Demonstrates the unexpected, unusual, uncommon.
  • Avoids clichés.
  • Effectiveness of the selected image manipulations in transforming the photographic material into an original, imaginative piece of digital art.
  • Demonstrates skill and artisanship.

Impact or “Wow” Factor (1/3)

  • Generates a strong emotional response – positive or negative.
  • Strong first impression, commands viewer’s attention.
  • Subject matter is made more interesting by the photographer.
  • Exhibits real artistic merit.
  • Generates sense of wonder and admiration.
  • Truly fits the concept of photographically derived digital art.
  • Worthy to hang in a gallery or on home wall.