Competition Rules

  • Photographer must be a resident of Connecticut
  • Enter 5 photos across 9 categories
  • Enter only 1 photo in a category
  • Only photographs taken and edited exclusively by the entering photographer may be submitted. In the case of composites, all components must have been taken by the entering photographer.
  • Identical photographs, near-duplicates, different color or monochrome versions of the same image, or more than one photograph of the same subject (for example the same landscape, same bird or animal species, same portrait subject, etc.) may not be submitted.
  • Photographs entered in previous TOPS competitions are not eligible. Photographers are urged to enter new work.
  • Entries may display a realistic rendition of the subject(s) or be creative, having been manipulated using in-camera techniques or an image editing program. The judges will be asked to judge the photographs for overall photographic impact, not the amount of manipulation required to achieve the effect.
  • Photographs must be in the JPEG format, sRGB profile and will be automatically scaled to a maximum of 1920 pixels wide and 1080 pixels high. The aspect ratio will be preserved. See Upload Help for details.
  • Photographs must be uploaded by 10 pm on Sunday, March 12, 2023.
  • $10 fee must be paid by March 15, 2023 or the photos will be disqualified.

Category Rules

  1. Cityscape (urban landscape) – is a photo of the physical aspects of a city or urban area. It is the urban equivalent of a landscape.
  2. Creative – the photo may be of any subject matter and must obviously display a change in natural color, form, or shape; or be digitally manipulated in a way that creates the image. All photos must be original and may not incorporate elements produced by anyone else. Artwork or computer graphics generated by the entrant may be incorporated if the original photographic content predominates. Photos may not be constructed entirely within a computer. High Dynamic Range (HDR) photos without further changes are not considered “Altered Reality.”
  3. Landscape – is a photo of a natural environment that can incorporate human elements.
  4. Monochrome – photos are black and white or varying tones of only one color (sepia, blue, red …) across the entire photo.
  5. Nature – A Nature photo is one that reflects a wild being in its natural environment, or a natural scene without any signs of human activity. No domestic or captive animals. Photos that do not meet the Photographic Society of America (PSA) Nature Guidelines will be disqualified. Handy info from NECCC on Evaluating Nature Images using the PSA guidelines.
  6. Open Subject – Anything goes!
  7. Photojournalism – Photojournalism entries should be photos with informative content and emotional impact, reflecting the human presence in our world. The journalistic (storytelling) value of the photo shall receive priority over pictorial quality. In the interest of credibility, photos that misrepresent the truth, such as those from events or activities specifically arranged for photography or of subjects directed or hired for photography, are not eligible. Techniques that add, relocate, replace or remove any element of the original photo, except by cropping, are not permitted. The only allowable modifications are removal of dust, scratches or digital noise, restoration of the existing appearance of the original scene, sharpening that is not obvious, and conversion to greyscale monochrome. Derivations, including infrared, are not eligible. All photos must look natural.
  8. Portrait – is a photo of a person or animal that captures the personality of the subject. Either formal or informal.
  9. Waterscape – is a photo that incorporates a body of water.

Upload Rules

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