08 February 2018

February's Grants and Awards

08 February 2018 - Written by Simon Hall

Featuring the PHmuseum 2018 Grant, the Foam Talent Call, and IWMF’s Howard G. Buffett Fund For Women Journalists, our February awards guide offers a curated selection of competitions currently open for entry.

PHmuseum 2018 Grant // Deadline: 21 February // Entry fee: £30 per project

© Antonio Faccilongo, from the series Habibi (PHM 2017 Grant 2nd Prize winner)

The PHmuseum Grant is an annual initiative that recognises the importance of photographic storytelling. Now in its sixth year, the Grant is designed to support the production and promotion of visual stories through cash prizes and relevant opportunities across online media and international festivals.

The total cash prizes have been increased to £15,000, while the features of the Main Prize winners on World Press Photo’s Witness and the projection of all the awarded works at Just Another Photo Festival (India) have again been confirmed. Leading photo festival, Cortona On The Move (Italy) will also host a projection in addition to a solo exhibition of one project from the submissions, to be selected by the festival’s Artistic Director, Arianna Rinaldo. The New Generation Prize, awarded to a photographer under 30 years-of-age, will include a mentorship program with acclaimed educator, Maggie Steber. All prize-winning projects, the Honorable Mentions, and several selected submissions will also be promoted on the PHmuseum channels throughout the year.

The submissions will be reviewed by an international jury comprised of Monica Allende (Independent Curator), Roger Ballen (Photographer and Artist), Genevieve Fussell (Senior Photo Editor at The New Yorker), and Emilia van Lynden (Unseen Artistic Director). Here you can get valuable insight from the judges to prepare your application and learn more about Unseen and The New Yorker.

Photographers are invited to enter projects centred around a specific theme, narrative, or concept, and they must feature at least 4 images shot after 1 January 2015. The entry fee is £30 per project, with the deadline set for 21 February. Learn more and submit your work at

Foam Talent Call // Deadline: 18 March // Entry fee: €35

© Bubi Canal, from the series Dreamtime (Foam Talent 2016)

The Foam Talent Call is an international competition for photographers between the ages of 18 and 35, acting as a platform that helps emerging talents earn global recognition and exposure to industry leaders. Selected photographers will receive a number of career-building opportunities, including publication in Foam Magazine, participation in a travelling group exhibition that has previously toured Amsterdam, London, New York, and Paris, and a place in the prestigious art collection of Deutsche Börse.

The deadline for submissions is 18 March. Entry fee: €35. Find out more at

Head On Photo Awards 2018 // Deadline: 25 February // Entry fee: AUD$1 - 30

© Oded Balilty, from the series Glass Mountain (Head On Photo Awards 2017 Landscape prize winner)

Head On Photo Festival, one of the leading events on the photography calendar, is calling photographers worldwide to submit work to the Head On Photo Awards 2018. The contest aims to represent a global selection of the best work from both emerging and established photographers across four categories: Portrait, Landscape, Mobile and Student. Judging is done anonymously to ensure “each work is selected solely on its merit rather than the celebrity of the photographer” say the Head On Foundation.

Nataline Colonnello (Beijing Director, Three Shadows Photography Art Centre), Cherie McNair (Director, Australian Centre for Photography), Katrin Koenning (Photographer), Marcus Lyon (Photographer), James Whitlow Delano (Photographer), Paula Bronstein (Photographer), Moshe Rosenzveig (Founder and Creative Director, Head On Photo Festival), Louise Heilpern (Visual Arts Educator), and Mikko Takkunen (Photo Editor at The New York Times) are among the names featured in the judging panel.

The total prize pool is valued at $60,000, including over $22,000 in cash. All finalists will be showcased at either the Festival Hub or NSW Parliament as part of Head On Photo Festival this year, and selected exhibitions will also tour to other international festivals around the world. The entry fee is AUD$30 for the Portrait, Landscape and Mobile categories, and AUD$1 for the Student prize. Member discounts apply. The submission deadline is 25 February. For more information, go to

PhotoEspaña Photography Book Awards 2018 // Deadline: 1 April // No entry fee

© Pablo Casino, spread from the book Barespagnol (PHotoEspaña Photography Book Awards 2017 winner)

Open to artists, publishers, and publishing houses from all countries, the PHotoEspaña Photography Book Awards look to recognise the most outstanding photobooks of the year. An independent judging panel comprised of industry professionals will evaluate the concept, design, and graphic quality of every submitted publication and choose one winner in each of the four categories, namely Best National Photography Book of the Year, Best International Photography Book of the Year, Best Self-Published Photography Book, and Outstanding Publisher of the Year. A selection of finalists will feature in an exhibition at the National Library in Madrid.

To apply, two copies of each publication must be sent to PHotoEspaña's headquarters. The reception of books will be open until 1 April. Learn more at

IWMF - Howard G. Buffett Fund For Women Journalists // Deadline: 9 March // No entry fee

© Sim Chi Yin (IWMF’s Howard G. Buffett Fund for Women Journalists 2016 grantee)

IWMF’s Howard G. Buffett Fund for Women Journalists was created as a platform to strengthen the skills of female photo reporters worldwide. Through flexible monetary endowments, development initiatives, and educational opportunities, the fund provides grantees the professional support to undertake ambitious projects that challenge traditional media narratives and expose under-reported, globally significant issues.

Applicants must identify as a female and be a full time professional practicing journalist with more than 3 years of post-graduate journalism experience. A voting committee comprised of distinguished IWMF Board Members, Courage in Journalism Awardees, former IWMF grantees, and senior practicing journalists will select awardees. The call for the first round of funding for 2018 will close on 9 March. Further information can be found at

VOHH International Foto Fest 2018: Call For Entries // Deadline: 15 February // No entry fee

© Md Shahnewaz Khan (Photographer and Founder of VOHH)

Voice of Humanity and Hope, a non-profit organisation using photography to raise awareness of humanitarian issues, has launched an open call for works to be exhibited at its inaugural festival in Chittagong, Bangladesh this March. Photographers from around the world working in any genre are invited to submit projects that have an underlying theme relating to humanity.

One winner and 20 honorable mentions will be selected for the exhibition by a jury featuring Samer Mohdad (Arab Image), Svetlana Bachevanova (FotoEvidence Press), Eileen Mignoni (Alexia Foundation), Barbara Silbe (EyesOpen Magazine), and Md Shahnewaz Khan (Foto Fest Director and Founder of VOHH). All of the awardees will receive international press exposure and have their work showcased on the VOHH website. The application deadline is 15 February. To learn more, visit

The FENCE // Early Bird Deadline: 13 March; Final Deadline: 10 April // Entry fee: $35 - $45

© Andrea Frazzetta, from the series Danakil: Land of Salt and Fire (2017 exhibitor)

First conceived by United Photo Industries and Photo District News in 2011, The FENCE is a large-scale travelling photography exhibition passing through multiple cities across North America. Its aim is to share powerful visual storytelling with a diverse audience while providing photographers with a truly public platform and unique networking opportunities.

Photographers of all levels, and of all nationalities, are invited to submit work for consideration by the 2018 jury which features, among many others, Ron Beinner (Senior Contributing Photography Producer, Vanity Fair / Conde Nast), Laura Beltrán Villamizar (Photo Editor and Founder, Native Agency), Kate Bubacz (Deputy Photo Director, BuzzFeed News), Vignes Balasingam (Director, OBSCURA Festival of Photography), Alessia Glaviano (Senior Photo Editor, Vogue Italia), Amanda Gorence (Photo Editor, Refinery29), Nicolas Jimenez (Director of Photography, Le Monde), and Stephen Mayes (Executive Director, Tim Hetherington Trust). Each series should fit into one or more of the seven thematic categories: Home, Streets, People, Creatures, Nature, Play, and Food.

In addition to the seven exhibitions in seven cities, prizes this year also include a $5,000 cash grant to support the production and development of visual projects, a Leica camera package plus complimentary access to a MasterClass of choice through the Leica Akademie, and promotion across various channels including the World Photography Organisation.

Early Bird Deadline: 13 March, $35 per series (5 images). Regular Deadline: 10 April, $45 per series (5 images). For more information, go to



Alexia Foundation Student Grant // Deadline: 1 March

This award aims to enable college student photographers the opportunity to produce a compelling story close to where they are located. The award will go to those who clearly and concisely propose significant projects that demonstrate the ability to accomplish their proposals by showing photographs of the highest caliber. First place Undergraduate and Graduate winners will each receive a semester’s tuition at Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and a US$1,000 cash prize.


CENTER Grants // Deadline: 28 February

Not-for-profit platform, CENTER is currently accepting submissions for two of its annual initiatives, the Project Development Grant and the Project Launch Grant. The awards package for each Grant includes a US$5,000 cash endowment, an exhibition in Santa Fe, complimentary participation in Review Santa Fe, an editing workshop, a special invitation to participate in the Art Photo Index, a Lenscratch feature, and an online exhibition at


Every month we curate a list of what is coming up in the world of photography awards. Aimed at early, mid-career, and professional photographers, this list offers details of the most exciting opportunities. To stay up to date, subscribe to our newsletter by registering your email address in the space at the bottom of this page.

Written by

Simon Hall

Reading time

11 minutes