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The importance of your image title in photographic competition

06/20/2022 4:16 PM | Lisa Hill (Administrator)

You’ve created an incredible image. You’ve looked at it through the lens of the 12 Elements of a Merit Image. You’re happy with the end result and you’re almost ready to enter competition. Now you have to give your image a title.

While the title isn’t one of the 12 elements, it IS the first experience the judges have with your image and can make a difference in the final score.

During competition, the judges will sit in front of a calibrated monitor. The Judging Panel Chairperson will read the title and then the image appears on their computer screen. Did your title increase the impact of your image and the story you’re telling?

What makes a strong title?

Here are a few Do's and Don’ts:

Don’t use too many words. Don’t be too cliché (unless used for irony). Don’t use words that are difficult to read (this includes foreign languages) – you don’t want the Chairperson to mispronounce the title!

Do look at song titles and lyrics, poems, phrases, simple words, something that truly tells the story of your image. Unexpected, fun, whimsical, somber - what do you want to create in the judge’s minds before they see your image? Do make sure you’ve spelled the title correctly! When this image is shared post-competition, whatever you type in as the entry title will stay with the image forever.

These are not hard and fast rules, but your title IS important and can make an image go the extra distance!

2021 Merit Image: Feathered S Curve | Lisa Hill

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