In getting more serious about promotion, I threw my hat into the ring of a competition for editorial shooters: Photo District News’ Annual Photo Contest. It was intimidating.
When I first registered, I hoped to gain a bit of exposure, but I’ve since discovered a much deeper set of lessons and a darker set of motives.
These lessons alone are worth the $35 entry fee and any potential swag being offered.
Lesson #1 – psych
Fear and Pride are generals in the Army of Self. I have wrestled them both in the course of this contest entry and hopefully am a bit stronger for it.
What I mean to say is that in the interest of protecting an artistic ego, my default settings are set for self preservation and as my Fight vs. Flight mechanisms grind gears to see which way to go, the voice of Fear whispers, “Do not risk judgment and public humiliation”. That’s about when, Pride hollers out, “Good call! You’re work is just fine the way it is. Don’t waste your money!”
This time, however, I just got tired of all that protectionist BS ’cause it’s high time I found out if I really do have what it takes.
Lesson #2 – accounting 101
This is simple math:
$35/entry x 4,000 entries = $140,000
Note to self: There’s good money in hosting contests.
Lesson #3 – ethics
Contests are often broken down into categories. The most popular one is probably People’s Choice and here I found one particular gem of a lesson. After registering, paying fees and uploading an image, I learned that contestants could vote for their own entry. I then found within the ballot system an embedded application that helps entrants blitz every social media contact they have… cut, paste and ka-ching. We have a winner!
You know how in business, they say it’s not what you know, but who you know that counts? Apparently, it’s not even who you know that counts. It’s how many ‘whos’ you know. The score now? Social Media = 1 : Democracy = 0.
So, what more can I say now that my soul is laid bare at 72 dpi before a jury of my peers’ contact lists? Where is objectivity? Where is integrity? Where is truth? Ah, what the heck. Go find my entry by clicking HERE.
Vote now… vote often. Thanks for stopping by.