The Irish Times Amateur Photographer of the Year awards  celebrates the great work done by keen amateur photographers throughout Ireland.

Open to all – snappers and serious semi-professionals, welcome

The competition is open to all amateur photographers from the serious hobbyist to the casual snapper and we welcome great images whether they are carefully composed sets of photographs, works of photographic art, or snapshots which show inventiveness and spontaneity.

Entries are welcome from students and any amateur practicing the art of photography in any style once it conforms to the rules of the contest.

Photography is a discipline like no other that really blurs the line between professional and amateur. Some of the best photographs have been taken by amateurs. There is a large community of non-professional photographers active in Ireland today who are committed to taking great photographs for whom photography is a passion. We were looking for a way to give this community a platform to celebrate and showcase their work to the wider Irish Times audience. When the team at Picturk pitched the idea to the Irish Times to run an Amateur Photography awards we jumped at the opportunity: we see this as an excellent opportunity to celebrate and give recognition to the great work done by keen amateur photographers throughout Ireland.

Great Awards have great judges

We’ve pulled together a judging panel of respected judges who represent the best photography practitioners and curators in Ireland today. Staff photographers Frank Miller (the Chair) and Brenda Fitzsimons from the Irish Times, and commercial photographer Barry McCall. John Duncan from the Source Magazine; Tanya Kiang from the Gallery of Photography; and Angel Luis Gonzalez  from the Photo Ireland Festival.  The photographers Michael O’Sullivan and Des Clinton from the Irish Photographic Federation and Daniel McCaughan from the Northern Ireland Photographic Association. We’ve also included last years Photographer of the Year, Amaia Arenzana, as part of this years panel. Judges are looking for photographers who demonstrate a keen eye, and images that have impact, originality, and creativity.

There are seven categories – Monochrome, Colour, Open, Travel, Nature, Street, and Portraiture. There will be awards in each category. 

Photographer of the Year - the €1,000 cash award is for the best portfolio or set of images entered in the awards. The photographs may be a variety of images across several categories or could be a set of images on a single theme entered in one or more categories. The photographer who win photographer of the year will also be invited back to join the judging panel to pick next years photographer of the year.

Photograph of the Year. the €1,000 cash award is for a single outstanding image selected by the judges as the most impressive image entered in the awards.

The medals for each category have been specially commissioned and are being created by Glass Artist, Peter Maguire.

Reach and recognition

Photographs entered in the Awards will appear in the online and print editions of the Irish Times showcasing individual photographers work – the photographers will be fully credited when their work appears, and the work will only appear in connection with the Awards.

Top 300 Photographers

The top 200 to 300 entrants work will be short listed. Their work will be published in the awards catalogue which will be available free to all entrants in electronic book format.