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2020 Photographic Competition Rules

Click here for Scottish Nature Video Award 2020 Rules

The Scottish Nature Photography Awards is an annual photographic competition open to professional and amateur photographers.

The Scottish Nature Photography Awards website is provided by Perspectives (Partners N & J Irvine) Canach Cottage, Slains, Ellon, Aberdeenshire AB41 8JZ


Entry is open to everyone except for those directly involved in the organisation and judging of the competition and their families.

Entrants must be at least 18 years of age with the exception of entrants to the Junior section.

Entrants to the Student section must be full or part-time students undertaking a further or higher education course with a Photography element.

Entrants to the Junior section must be under 18 years of age on the closing date of 30th November 2020. Entry to the Junior category must be with the permission of a Parent or Guardian and the Parent or Guardian must assume responsibility for the Junior entrant’s compliance with the rules.

Entries are welcome from around the world, but all images entered must have been photographed in Scotland.

Images can be of native, resident or migrant wild species. Wildlife subjects photographed in a studio setting or a captive environment are not eligible. Specific eligibility requirements may be detailed in individual category descriptions, so please check these carefully.

Entrants are responsible for respecting animal welfare and the environment and compliance with wildlife law. Guidance for nature photographers in Scotland can be found on the Scottish Natural Heritage website at

Images that have won an award, or have been shortlisted/commended, in a nationally or internationally promoted competition, or that have been entered in such a competition where the results are still pending, are not eligible for entry.

Images should have been taken within 5 years of the closing date of the competition i.e. from 1st December 2015 onwards.

Entrants are responsible for ensuring that images taken since 23rd March 2020 comply with all Scottish Covid-19 restrictions in force at the time.

Entry format

Entries to be submitted online or by post using the forms provided on the website. Images must conform to the specifications in “Competition FAQs - Submitting Images and Image Setup".

Opening and closing dates

The competition will open for entries on 10th September 2020. The closing date is 30th November 2020 at midnight 24:00 GMT.


Main categories (Scottish Nature Photographer of the Year section):

You can enter any, or all, of the 8 categories. Each category entry automatically includes 1 image entry. You can then enter up to a further 25 images, which you can enter into one category or spread over any of the other categories you have entered. Therefore, if you enter all 8 categories and select the 25 extra images option, you can submit a total of 33 images to the competition.

For the 2020 competition each main category entrant will receive 1 complimentary category entry on payment of at least 1 main category entry fee. This will entitle the entrant to enter 1 image to 1 other main category of their choice.

Student Scottish Nature Photographer of the Year section:
Entry to this category is limited to the portfolio of 3 images on the required nature theme for 2020 - 'Natural Light'. Extra images cannot be entered to this category and portfolios of less than 3 images are not eligible. Students who would prefer to enter the main categories may do so, but only entrants to the Student category will compete for the title of "Student Scottish Nature Photographer of the Year 2020".

Junior Scottish Nature Photographer of the Year section:
Junior entrants may submit up to 5 images, each of which may be on any Scottish nature subject.

Scottish Nature Photography Awards reserves the right to refuse or remove an entry from the Competition for any reason.

Scottish Nature Photography Awards reserves the right to remove any entries from the Competition that it feels may breach or contravene laws of copyright, public decency or may bring the Competition or the Competition’s organisers into disrepute. Such entries will be deemed as void and no refund will be given.

Payments and refunds

All entries must be accompanied by full payment (debit or credit card processing via Paypal for online entries, cheque for postal entries) as detailed in the “Competition FAQs”.

You have the right to cancel within fourteen days of payment. If you cancel your entry, your payment will be returned in full and your image(s) deleted. To request a refund, please complete the contact form.

Images cannot be withdrawn after the closing date unless the organizers are notified of a permissions problem, in which case the images will be withdrawn on request of the copyright holder. No refund will be payable on images withdrawn, except within the seven day period from payment under your right to cancel.

If you submit fewer images than originally paid for then you will not be entitled to a refund.

If you feel you are entitled to a refund (other than by invoking your right to cancel within 14 days), you may request this by contacting us. We review all refund requests on a case-by-case basis and reserve the right to decline any refund for any reason.


A panel of judges will assess all entries and a shortlist will be drawn up in February 2021. All those on the shortlist will be contacted by email to supply a high-resolution file (minimum A3 300dpi, or minimum A4 300dpi for the Junior section) for final judging, along with detailed caption information. For the Main and Student categories we will also request the original RAW or camera JPEG file or original scan from film and we may request this for the Junior category. Failure to produce a high-resolution file of the correct size within the designated time period will eliminate an entrant from the shortlist. If your image features a subject which required a licence for photography (e.g. Schedule 1 species), you should also supply details with your shortlist submission.

The organisers cannot be held responsible for emails that do not arrive e.g. due to the entrant’s email security settings or restrictions placed by their Internet service provider.

In the event that the high-resolution file submitted for a shortlisted image does not meet the technical standard required by the judges, the image may be eliminated from the shortlist. Should the entries in any category fall below the standard required, the Scottish Nature Photography Awards reserve the right not to award prizes.

The winners will be announced in March 2021. All winners will be notified by email. A list of the winners will be published on the Scottish Nature Photography Awards website.

The Judging Panel’s decision will be final and no correspondence will be entered into.

Prizes / Awards

Prizes will be awarded as follows:

In each of the 8 main categories there will be a Category winner, 2nd place and 3rd place. All 8 category winners will then be judged to select the overall winner, “Scottish Nature Photographer of the Year”.

In the Student category, there will be a Category winner - “Student Scottish Nature Photographer of the Year”, 2nd place and 3rd place.

In the Junior category, there will be a Category winner - “Junior Scottish Nature Photographer of the Year”, 2nd place and 3rd place.

Prize information can be found here and will be updated. We reserve the right to offer alternative prizes of comparable value. Prizes are not transferable and no cash equivalent will be available for non-cash prizes. Prizes supplied by 3rd party sponsors are the responsibility of the sponsors and are subject to availability and sponsor's terms and conditions. Unless otherwise stated, travel costs are not included. The competition organisers cannot be held liable for the failure of the sponsors to provide a prize.

Copyright and permissions

The Scottish Nature Photography Awards aims to promote its Photographic Competition and to provide a platform for promoting the Photographers who take part. Therefore, we have made provision for license to use images submitted to the competition for that purpose as detailed below.

By submitting images to the Scottish Nature Photography Awards, each entrant confirms that:

· they are the photographer of each entry and that it is their original work;
· they own the copyright and any rights of each image;
· they have the permission of anyone pictured in the image (or, where the image shows any persons under 18, the consent of their parent/guardian) for the usage rights required by Scottish Nature Photography Awards and will indemnify Scottish Nature Photography Awards against any claims made by any third parties in respect of such usage;
· they have not licensed or disposed of any rights in the image that would conflict with uses to be made by Scottish Nature Photography Awards;
· they have received any necessary permission from the owner(s) of buildings included in submitted images for the usage rights required by Scottish Nature Photography Awards and will indemnify Scottish Nature Photography Awards against any claims made by any third parties in respect of such usage.

By entering the competition, you grant Scottish Nature Photography Awards free, non-exclusive usage of the images for the following purposes directly connected with the competition, until judging is completed.

· on a secure web browser for image submission;
· for judging purposes;
· on the Scottish Nature Photography Awards website;
· for use in press coverage giving information about or promoting the competition, exhibition etc.;

By entering the competition, you grant Scottish Nature Photography Awards a free, non-exclusive, international licence without date restriction to reproduce, enlarge, publish or exhibit, on any media, the shortlisted and winning images for any purpose directly connected with the competition. This may include, but is not limited to:

· inclusion in a book featuring images;
· display at any exhibitions;
· on the Scottish Nature Photography Awards website;
· for use in press coverage giving information about or promoting the competition, exhibition etc.;
· for use as part of the Scottish Nature Photography Awards “Winners Archive” to promote the competition/exhibition in perpetuity.
· for use by sponsors and partners in acknowledging/publicising their support of the competition/exhibition. This usage will be limited to 2 years after the winners are announced.

Scottish Nature Photography Awards will make every effort to ensure that name credits are included with images.

Free usage of any photograph outside of the scope of the competition and exhibition will not be permitted by Scottish Nature Photography Awards, or any of its partners or sponsors.

For any use that falls outside the scope of promotion of the competition, exhibition etc. (as detailed above) royalties will be discussed & negotiated with the photographer concerned.

Entrants retain the copyright to images submitted.

Entrants agree to take part in competition and exhibition publicity if required.


You will be asked for personal data if you choose to submit entries to the Competition. Please see our Privacy Policy for further information on how this information will be protected.


These Terms and the relationship between you and us shall be governed by the law in Scotland. Any dispute may be decided by the Scottish courts or those of any other part of the United Kingdom.


Our full website terms and conditions can be viewed here.

Entry to the competition constitutes acceptance of the website Terms & Conditions and Rules of the competition.

By entering the competition, you indemnify the Scottish Nature Photography Awards, partners and sponsors against any third party claim in respect of your entry.

Scottish Nature Photography Awards bears no responsibility for any loss or damage, however arising, as a result of your entry to the competition.

Any breach of the competition Rules by you will invalidate your entry. If a breach has occurred that is discovered after the award of a prize, we might require the return of that prize.

We reserve the right to amend the Rules and in that event, to detail the amendments on the website. If you do not agree to any changes to the Rules, you may withdraw from the Competition.


If you have any queries or complaints please contact us by post or by email using the details on the Contact Us page.

Thank you,