Are competitions worth entering? To enter or not to enter, that is the question…

one of the photos I might enter…

I thought it would be worth sharing with my readers about several competitions I am entering. Several are free to enter and only some require UAE residency…all of them are due December 31st!

Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum International Photography Award – This is a photo competition with 3 categories: Dubai, Love of Earth/Homeland, and General. Grand Prize? 100,000 dollars. It isn’t listed in USD or AED, but I am guessing AED. Free to enter.

Emergent Artist Award – Categories for this award change every year, this year the focus is photography. You have to enter 15 images. The prize? Solo shows in Dubai and Nice. This one does have an entry fee of 20 USD.

Sheikha Manal Young Artist Award – I’m having trouble accessing their website so I have attached their Facebook page link. Ages 18 – 30 can submit artworks in a variety of media. Free to enter.

Another photo to consider?

To enter, or not to enter. I have read a lot of opinions about whether it is worth an artist’s time and effort to enter work in projects such as these. Many experts recommend entering projects that do not charge a fee but to also work on networking and focus on client sales. I let myself pay for an entry once or twice a year, but I try to stick to competitions that are free to enter. For me, it is motivating to have a guiding idea to lead a project (not to mention a deadline!). Yes, the rejections can get discouraging but I’ve read so many articles of people applying for grants for up to 8 years before getting financing for certain works, etc. that I know its patience and perseverance that will lead to more recognition and opportunity. You can’t win if you don’t play!

Do you enter a lot of competitions? Do you think it is worth an artist’s time to invest in such activities?