Judging The Competition Entries

The judging of competition entries is split into three stages:

  • Shortlisting
  • Final Selections
  • Overall Winner

Shortlisting

Shortlisting is the first round of the judging process and includes every entry which is submitted. For the 2017 competition the shortlist judges are:

  • Alan Hewitt, freelance wildlife photographer and writer. Photography workshop and safari leader.
  • Steve Ashton, People and Wildlife Manager, Tees Valley Wildlife Trust
  • Tony Henderson, freelance journalist

During the shortlisting round all of the photographs are examined to make sure they are within the competition rules and match the category they have been submitted into. Their photographic qualities are also examined. For example, exposure, focus, use of light, composition etc. As the judging progresses they are further examined to ensure their photographic integrity. Excessive photo manipulation, poor focus and over-cropping etc is sometimes more obvious on full resolution photographs. Also we have to consider that the winning images are displayed in large format in a public exhibition so you will need to have a reasonably large original image, at least 3,000 pixels longest side is recommended.

Final Selections

When the final shortlisted images are selected they are sent to the rest of the judging panel. This could be around 20 photographs for each category. The judges then score each of these entries in order of preference to select 1st place, runner up and highly commended for each category, except wildlife portraits (see below).

The judges are:

  • Andy Griffiths, Head of Environmental Sustainability – Nestlé UK Ltd
  • Janet Blair, Editor – Living North Magazines
  • Martin Kitching –
  • Steve Ashton, People and Wildlife Manager, Tees Valley Wildlife Trust
  • Tony Henderson, freelance journalist.
  • Alan Hewitt, freelance wildlife photographer and writer. Photography workshop and safari leader
  • Max Eve, young amateur wildlife photographer

New for 2017! The shortlisted entries for the Wildlife Portrait category will be put to the public vote – democracy in action!

Overall Winner

The overall competition winner is selected by our guest speaker from the 1st place photographs in each category. In previous years our guest speakers have been Urban Birder & BBC presenter David Lindo, Wildlife Photographer Alan Hewitt, Naturalist and BBC Presenter Dr George McGavin.