Eligibility & Teams
a. Each country may be represented by only one team. Each team must elect a captain who may be or may not be a team member. Only one captain per team can enter information and download team images into the system.
b. Prior to submitting their entry, teams must first apply for submission through the WPC Online Entry System.
c. Teams generally are created by a national association made up of professional photographers, legally constituted in their country of origin, provided they are nationally representative, they include a significant number of professional photographers, and they operate democratically with each member having one vote. In special cases, ad hoc created – and not for profit – national photographic committees may also apply for submission. All teams will be made up of professional and artist photographers whose citizenship is within the relevant country. Members of a national team with dual citizenship can represent the country of their choosing, and members of a national team who gain a new citizenship, or wish to compete for a different national team, can do so as long as at least three years have passed since they most recently represented for their previous national team in the WPC competition.
d. Should more than one organization or group from any given country petition to enter a team, it shall be at the sole discretion of the WPC governing committee to determine which of the petitioning organizations or groups will act as the official team committee for that country. On recognizing submissions from countries, priority shall be granted to the previously submitting organization. In the European area, FEP members associations have submission’ priority right. In the Asian area, UAPP member associations have submission priority right. Contributing photographers are not required to be members of contributing associations but their images must be submitted through their team captain.
e. Each team is responsible for determining its own methods and criteria for choosing the individuals and images which will comprise its team submission in each category.
f. Individuals may be selected to represent their team in more than one category. However, no team may enter multiple images from a creator in a single category.
g. Some teams may choose not to participate in all categories. However, in this case the aggregate score of the national team will be limited to the images submitted.
h. The WPC Governing Committee at its discretion may choose to do not accept or to de-certify a team.
i. Once an image is entered, it cannot be entered again IN ANY FORM in the competition, whether in the current year or in any subsequent year. Images from a single photographer should be essentially different from WPC edition to edition.
j. The images must be anonymous and in the case of images pertinent to advertising campaigns, they must not contain any text or graphic elements, which were not part of the original exposure. Images containing text will be immediately disqualified.
k. Submitted images must not be presented as being in the competition until after they are validated. The WPC Governing Committee will communicate the date from which the submitted images may be shown in public as accepted in the WPC Competition.
a. The fee for team participation will be, for one year only, and as a very exceptional case, € 300,00, to all teams which participated in the WPC 2022. Teams can pay this amount with credit card directly on the WPC website entry area. Fees for teams which did not enter WPC 2022 is € 400,00, which have to be paid by wire transfer. The participation fee is regardless of the number of images a team chooses to enter. There is no “per image” fee to participate.
b. From next edition (WPC 2024), there will be a return to the normal fee of € 400,00 for all teams.
Rights, Licenses & Releases
a. Submitting the team entries, team captains certify that all individual creators, whose images are selected for their team’s submission, are professional and artist photographers and present their original work, that they own all rights pertaining to the work or they possess the permission of the copyright holder to submit the work, as well as all necessary model release forms and permits pertaining to the image.
b. Team captains also certify that all individual creators whose images are selected for their team’s submission agree to hold the World Photographic Cup harmless against all claims and liabilities arising out of the WPC’s consideration, display, or other non-commercial use of the image.
c. Team captains certify as well that by agreeing to participate in their team’s World Photographic Cup submission, individual team members agree to license to the World Photographic Cup the right to display the image(s) on the WPC web site, in articles, exhibitions and publications pertaining to the World Photographic Cup competition, included the annual WPC printed exhibition and the annual book of the winners and for future WPC promotional purposes.
d. The WPC partner companies will have the possibility to display the winning images on their media or through their products (prints, collections, exhibitions, books etc.). This opportunity will be limited to non-commercial purposes and subjected to the WPC rules and regulations on rights, licenses and releases with the authors of the images.
e. The WPC and the partner companies have no rights to display the submitted images beyond those outlined in this paragraph.
Images that become part of the Best of the Best internationally MUST set the highest standard and demonstrate a strong photographic foundation supported by post production enhancement opportunities. Images, to become part of the Top Ten in each category must be of unsurpassed quality in ALL aspects of original capture, retouching and creative enhancement, technical and artistic excellence.
Each team may submit up to three images in each of eight categories, including:
Images with an intended use by a commercial client to promote or brand a product or company. Advertising, fashion, beauty, still life, food, architecture, corporate photography are all included in this category. Composite and non-composite images, and highly manipulated images (Photoshop or similar), as well as the use of computer generated images (CGI), are allowed as relevant in this category.
An Illustration is a graphic depiction of any concept or subject. The main principle of an Illustration is to elucidate or define a concept, story, literature, activity etc. in such a way as to provide a visual representation of the story, title or concept. Composite and non-composite images, and highly manipulated images (Photoshop or similar), as well as the use of computer generated images (CGI), are allowed as relevant in this category.
This category is for photography that is devoted to displaying natural elements such as landscapes, cityscapes, plants, flowers, trees and close-ups of natural scenes and textures. Aerial, macro and astrophotography are included in this category. It is allowed to crop, rotate, selective dodging and burn, reduce noise, sharpen, adjust colour/black-and-white, apply grain and minor cleaning jobs like removing sensor dust or chromatic aberration. It is also allowed to combine several photos to one (photo stitching, focus stacking, multi-exposure, etc), shot at the same time and on the same place as a consecutive sequence, seconds or minutes apart). It is NOT allowed to add, delete or move elements by cloning, healing, patching, content aware fill, liquify or similar tools. The original captured image (in RAW or jpg) must be available if requested by the WPC.
Images must illustrate the astonishing diversity of wildlife from all parts of the world showing images of actual wildlife in a natural habitat. It is allowed to crop, rotate, selective dodge and burn, reduce noise, sharpen, adjust colour/black-and-white, apply grain and minor cleaning jobs like removing sensor dust or chromatic aberration. It is also allowed to combine several photos to one (photo stitching, focus stacking, multi-exposure, etc), shot at the same time and on the same place as a consecutive sequence, seconds or minutes apart). It is NOT allowed to add, delete or move elements by cloning, healing, patching, content aware fill, liquify or similar tools. The original capture image (in RAW or jpg) must be available if requested by the WPC.
Images where styling, creative photo techniques, extensive makeup or props are allowed. Post production techniques are encouraged and may be an essential part of the final story in the photograph. Entries in this category would include images that have been highly manipulated or stylized.
Images where lighting, posing and highlighting of the person’s NATURAL appearance, essence, personality and character is key. Images should tell a story about the personality/ies and possibly their culture or traditions. Images that use extensive makeup or props to transform the natural appearance, must be entered in Illustrative Portrait or Illustration/Digital Art categories. Post production techniques are not to be an essential part of the final story in the photograph.
Images that illustrate an actual public or non-public event, life, an area of human interest, telling news that have meaning on the context or record of events, high impact and/or lasting emotional response. Images that illustrate sporting events are included in this category. Basic color and brightness adjustments, cropping, dodging and burning in are allowed. Only single-capture images will be accepted. Composite and multiple exposure images will not be accepted. The original captured image (in RAW or jpg) must be available if requested by the WPC.
Entries in Wedding must be done in connection with an actual wedding event (not a commercially created image). Images must reflect the personality of the subject(s) and/ or illustrate the story of the event. They must include some visual reference(s) that defines the wedding event (traditional clothing, church flowers etc.). Composite images are allowed as long as the digital postproduction is not a significant part of displaying the essence or the personality of the subject(s). Commercial, Illustrative and Fashion images are not permitted in the Wedding category and instead must be entered into Commercial or Illustration categories. Judges will consider the relevance of highly manipulated images and the spirit of intent of the rules as it relates to the category. In instances where an image is challenged regarding an image from the wedding event, the captain will be asked to provide additional images from that event that define being from a real event (bride and groom, groups, ceremony etc).
a. Submissions will be entered via the WPC Online Entry System by each team’s designated captain using the supplied login information.
b. Colour and black & white pictures may be submitted. Images must be:
- A minimum of 4,000 pixels on the longest side
- Format: maximum-quality JPEG, to be under 16 megabytes
- Embedded profile: sRGB, Adobe 98 or Greyscale
- Digital Certificates of participation will be given to all the individual team members.
- Nation Awards certificates will be given to the author of the highest scored image of each and all entered teams (score compiled by computed results).
- Finalist certificates will be presented to the authors of the Top 10 scored pictures in each and all categories (score compiled by computed results).
- Gold, Silver and Bronze medals will be awarded to the first, second and third highest score images in each category (score compiled by computed results).
- Certificates will be awarded to the 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th and 10th place teams (based on aggregated score of top ten placement in all categories).
Trophies will be awarded to the second and third place teams (based on aggregated score of top ten placement in all categories).
The World Photographic Cup will be awarded to the national team which receives the highest score (based on aggregate score of top ten placement in all categories).
Computing Team Scores
- For purposes of computing team scores, points are given out to each country. All finalists (the top 10 photographers on each category), get points from 10 (the golden medalist) to 1 (tenth place).
Judging Process and Criteria
a. Images are judged by a panel of international judges from around the world. Each accepted national team has the right to select and nominate 1 judge, so the number of the judges will be depending by the number of the national entered teams. Judges must be selected based on their photographic technique, experience, and previous training as a photographic judge. An association may elect to do not nominate a judge. Judges images may not be part of countries submission. Team captains may not be selected as judges. Judging will be blind and every image will be judged by each judge. But the scores for their own country will be taken out automatically. Selected judges must have an extensive national and international judging experience and are requested to participate in “on line” briefings for this judging. Judges not participating in the scheduled briefings may be subjected to exclusion from the jury.
b. Overview of the principles of judging for WPC:
Each image is assessed two times and two scores entered. It is critical that judges look at each image for its strength based on the category (images that don’t clearly relate to the category description should score lower). Judges must be open minded about creative expression and not fall victim to digital enhancement that does not support the image concept when scoring, especially in portrait and wedding categories.
While digital enhancement is part of photography today and relevant, all submissions should demonstrate foundation photographic skills. Images with extensive post production (electronic/digital manipulation) are accepted so long as the photographic component is dominant. Judges are asked to recognize photography as the core contribution to all image categories. Post Production should be relevant for the image. Images with a simple yet powerful message may not rely on Creativity or Technical manipulation to be recognized as a top scoring image. Any post production must be done under the direction of the photographer (author) of the image.
c. Scoring will be based on two criteria, each of the 2 criteria will contribute a maximum of 50% of the total score:
Impact and Visual Language
Does an image have an impact? Does it create in you a sense of emotion when you see it for the first time? How does the image effect you (laughter, sadness, anger or other strong emotions)? Is the image powerful, vibrant, creative, original? Is the visual language used compelling? Is the Photographic art used well to convey an idea, a message, a thought, or an impression, and recognizes the photographic relevance or contribution? Does the selected visual language (style, light, technique and enhancement) support the intent of the image and expresses relevantly the definition of the category of submission?
Technical excellence / composition
Is the image professionally impeccable and technically strong? Is the lighting and posing (where applicable) done with excellence? Is the product (car, building etc.) showcased with excellence? Is the post production management done with excellence (color balance, sharpness, retouching and compositing where applicable)? Is the composition strong – and possibly innovative? Does the composition support the story of the image, holds the viewers’ attention to the image and emphasizes the message of the image?
d. Judges and members of the WPC Governing Committee, the WPC Staff or the WPC Judging Sub-Committee are not eligible to participate as individual team members or as Team Captains.
e. The jury’s judgment is final and binding.
A validation sub-committee of the World Photographic Cup governing committee, made up of 5 members, will check the eligibility of all submitted images. Submitted images must not be presented as being in the competition until after they are validated. The validation sub-committee of the WPC has the authority and ability to disqualify images that conflict with the rules, including the technical parameters. The validation sub-committee has the authority and ability to disqualify images that it deems do not satisfy the description in the category or conflict with the spirit of the category description. A qualified majority (4 of 5 or 75%) must be in agreement and every opportunity will be afforded the effected team to replace any disqualified image. In the event of a disqualification, the CEO of WPC will notify the related team captain and he/she will have 5 days to replace or modify the entry. Captains wishing to appeal the decision of disqualification may submit an appeal stating their reasons. A group of four WPC present or past committee members (not on the validation team) will review the appeal within the next 24 hours. It will take 3 of 4 appeal members to overturn the decision of the validation committee.
Governing Committee & Support Structure
The World Photographic Cup Governing Committee will have final authority on all matters involving the WPC, administration, structure, teams, images, and judging.