The 7 Best Photo Contests to Enter Today: You’re a Star, Now Show the World

Blue Ribbons, what you'll be getting soon enough!Benjamin Franklin once said, “Never leave that till tomorrow which you can do today.”

It’s advice we would all do well to take.

We think it’s high time you got some recognition for all those gorgeous photos you’ve been taking. You know the photos we’re talking about. The ones you knew were gonna be great the minute you clicked the shutter. The ones that made you gasp when you saw them on your computer. Time to share them with the world.

Luckily, getting your images in front of a panel of judges is easier than it’s ever been. Galleries, magazines, and photo agencies are all looking for fresh new talent as we speak. We’ve identified some of the best to get you started.

Submit today. We’re rooting for you.

The 7 Best Photo Contests to Enter Today

Here they are: our picks for the 7 best Photo Contests to Enter Today. Don’t dilly dally.

1. Photo Friday
Ease your toes into the water by submitting to Photo Friday. Every week Photo Friday puts out a call for photographs that relate to the theme of the week (e.g. red, candid, fancy). You send them a link to your submission and watch as hundreds of people have a look-see at your image. Visitors to the site help pick each week’s noteworthy shots.

2. Hey, Hot Shot!
Each season Jen Bekman, one of the foxiest NYC galleries, puts out a call for emerging photographers. Lucky for you they are now accepting submissions for their Spring competition. This contest is a super way to get the attention of not only Jen Bekman, but a panel of super judges like Caterina Fake, the co-founder of Flickr!

(Monday May 8, 2006 is the deadline, so you’ll have some time to consider judge Eliot Shepard’s advice before you submit.)

3. PDN: World in Focus
PDN is a comprehensive resource for everything related to the photo industry. They also feature a Contests section, which lists several top contests and grants for amateurs, students, and professionals. Currently, PDN is soliciting travel photographs for their World in Focus contest, co-hosted by National Geographic. The deadline is August 15.

4. National Geographic: Your Shot
Speaking of National Geographic, your big break awaits you! If your photo is selected in their Where I Vacation contest, it will appear in print as well as online in August. What makes this contest even more wonderful is that the editors will take the time to explain their selections.

5. IPA (International Photography Awards)
IPA holds two contests a year, one for professionals and one for amateurs. The winners from both contests compete for the top prize of the $10,000 Lucie Award. They are now accepting entries in a variety of categories ranging from Architectural to Nature. The deadline is May 31.

6. JPG Magazine
JPG accepts online submissions and prints them in their quarterly magazine. The passionate husband and wife team behind JPG feature the work of “in between” photographers–not quite amateurs and not quite pros. Like Photo Friday, each issue is themed. Presently the theme is Oops! Submissions accepted until April 30.

7. Nerve Monthly Photo Contest
For those of you who are not on the shy side we suggest you check out’s monthly call for sexy shots. Each month the Nerve staff dreams up racy themes for you to shoot, like Sexiest photo of someone brushing their teeth, or our personal favorite, Sexiest photo of someone enjoying pasta. This month’s theme is Sexiest photo of someone wearing nothing but flip-flops. First place takes home $500. Get to it.

Bonus: Submit your photo for display in Times Square, NYC (runs until May 7th, pictures go up every day!)

Now go get ’em, tiger!