03 May 2018

May's Grants and Awards

03 May 2018 - Written by Simon Hall

The Cortona On The Move Photobook Prize, Photo Vogue Festival open call, Unseen Dummy Award, and Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize are among the top opportunities open for entry this May. Learn how they can help support your work in our curated awards guide.

Cortona On The Move Photobook Prize / Deadline: 17 June / No entry fee

© Loulou D'Aki, from the book Make A Wish (2017 Cortona On The Move Photobook Prize winner)

For the third year running, international Italian festival Cortona On The Move is inviting all photographers around the world – professional and amateur alike – to submit dummies for participation in their Photobook Prize.

The sole juror this year is Lesley Martin of Aperture, the publishing house and non-profit foundation connecting the photography community through its multi-platform program. On 14 July – during the festival’s opening weekend – Martin will discuss the finalists’ projects in an open presentation with the public and announce the winner, whose prizes include the production and publication of the dummy in addition to an exhibition of the work at the 2019 edition of COTM.

To take part, photographers must send their dummy to the organisers in Cortona as near as possible to its final version, both in appearance and materials used (paper type, font type, colours, format etc), and it must be possible to bring to final production using traditional publishing methods and techniques for mass production. The deadline is 17 June. No entry fee. Find out more at

Photo Vogue Festival Exhibition / Deadline: end of July / No entry fee

© Cécile Smetana Baudier (Photo Vogue Festival 2017 exhibitor)

In November this year, the Italian city of Milan will become a stage for the celebration of photography, with the third edition of Photo Vogue Festival set to bring together leading visual storytellers, the most influential curators, and the most prestigious agencies. Among the highlights will be a special exhibition dedicated to the discovery and appreciation of varying aesthetic models within individual cultures. “In order to contrast visual homogenisation and the levelling out of thought, which is the result of the dominant consumeristic logic, we should reclaim diversity” declare the festival’s organisers. “[We must] search for that richness that can only emerge through plurality as it is clearly shown by the strategies implemented by fashion brands, which, now more than ever, address body diversity, multi-culturalism and inclusion.”

The works on display will be selected by an international jury featuring, among others, Monica Allende (Artistic Director of GetxoPhoto Photo Festival), Tasneem Alsultan (freelance Investigative writer/photographer), Giorgio Armani (Chairman and CEO of the Armani Group), Giovanni Bianco (Brand Creative Director of Vogue Italia), James Estrin (Senior Staff Photographer for the New York Times), Michael Famighetti (Editor of Aperture magazine), Alessia Glaviano (Senior Photo Editor of Vogue Italia and Web Editor of, Azu Nwagbogu (Founder and Director of the African Artists’ Foundation), Ramón Reverté (Editor-in-chief and Creative Director of Editorial RM), Newsha Tavakolian (documentary photographer), and Duan Yuting (Founder and director of Lianzhou Foto Festival). To enter, photographers are required to sign up to Photo Vogue for free and then regularly upload images from now until the end of July. To learn more and apply visit

Unseen Dummy Award 2018 / Deadline: 10 August / Entry fee: €30

© Malgorzata Stankiewicz, from the book Cry of an Echo (2017 Unseen Dummy Award winner)

Dutch international photography platform, Unseen and publishing company, Lecturis have come together once again in a creative collaboration to award and showcase the dummies of designers and photographers worldwide.

A pre-selection of maximum 50 photobook dummies will be made prior to the opening of Unseen 2018 (21 – 23 September) and exhibited during the festival. A jury featuring leading industry figures will then convene on the opening day and select three runners-up, and one winner, who shall have their book published next year and presented at Unseen 2019.

Submissions must be a physical photobook dummy and may not be (self-)published or offered for (pre)sale prior to the award. There is a limit of one book entry per candidate to be completed via the online application form. An administration fee of €30 is charged to cover operational costs. The deadline for entries is 10 August. Further information about how to apply can be found online at

Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize / Deadline: 12 June / No entry fee

© Cesar Dezfuli (2017 Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize winner)

Organised by The National Portrait Gallery, London, the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize is the leading international competition of its kind, celebrating and promoting the very best in contemporary portrait photography. Since its inception in 1993, the award has established a reputation for creativity and excellence, with works submitted by a wide range of image-makers, from prominent professionals to talented amateurs and emerging artists.

All submitted images will be reviewed anonymously by a panel of judges and the entrants who are successful will be invited to deliver their work to a venue in London for a final round of live judging. In addition to participation in the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize exhibition at the NPG, one winner will receive a £15,000 endowment. The jury, at their discretion, will also award cash prizes to one or more shortlisted photographers. It is also for the fourth year running that applicants are being encouraged to submit a body of work in addition to single images, with one series to be shown in its entirety.

The competition is open to all photographers, of any nationality, aged over 18. The deadline is 12 June. Visit to find out more.

PhotogrVphy Grant / Deadline: 31 August / No entry fee

© Fabian Muir, from the series Shades of Leisure in North Korea (2017 PhotogrVphy Grant winner)

Moving into its 4th edition, the annual PhotogrVphy Grant aims to support the work of emerging visual storytellers through cash prizes and exposure to industry professionals. “Our idea is to evoke artistic activities and create a space to promote new trends in photography” say the organisers at PhotogrVphy Magazine. “We strive to inspire participants to improve their photographic skills and develop their vision. We believe that each participant has potential and talent waiting to be discovered” they continue.

Photographers can submit a project sharing a common theme (of up to 10 images) in one of the five categories, namely Daily Life, Body, Climate, Experimental, and Urban, with one grand prize winner to receive US$1,000. The jury this year features 20 names from the world of photography, including Alison Zavos (Founder/Editor-in-Chief of Feature Shoot), Rohit Vohra (Co-founder/ Editor in Chief of APF Magazine), Steve Bisson (Founder of Urbanautica), Gianpaolo Arena (Editor at Landscape Stories Magazine), Robyn Lange (Curator, Shutterstock), and Kim Aram (Founder of Blink Magazine)

The competition is free to enter, and the submission deadline is 31 August. Go to for more information.



Pampa Energía FoLa Awards / Deadline: 14 May / Entry fee: $15

Supported as a media partner by PHmuseum, the inaugural Pampa Energía FoLa Awards have been established to shine a light on the work of contemporary image-makers from Latin America. In the first prize – to be judged by Rodrigo Alonso, Florencia Portocarrero, and José Antonio Navarrete - $9,000 cash awards will be granted for the best single images. The second will be juried by Andrea Jösch, Claudi Carreras, and Magdalena Herrera and looks to support and promote visual storytelling through monetary endowments worth $9,000 and international exhibition opportunities.


Void - Hunger Issue No. 4 Open Call / Deadline: 31 May / No entry fee

Independent publisher and educational platform, Void is calling for entries to the fourth issue of its publishing initiative, Hunger. Artists using the photographic medium are invited to submit a visual response to the theme, A Hunger Artist, an idea inspired by a Franz Kafka short story of the same name. Seven issues of the publication will be released, one every 6 weeks, with each containing two to three invited artists and one selected by Void’s editorial team through open calls. PHmuseum supports this initiative as a media partner and those artists participating in the project will also be presented as part of the PHmuseum online exhibition program in November 2018.


Getty Images Reportage Grant / Deadline: 15 May / No entry fee

The Getty Images Reportage Grant is designed to support independent photojournalists around the world by providing the creative freedom necessary to pursue work that is of personal importance. Three $15,000 grantsare available with selection to be based on the jury’s determination of the applicants’ ability to execute the proposed project with compelling a visual narrative in a documentary format, taking into account the quality of the portfolio, the project's merit, and professional ability.


Women Photograph Grants / Deadline: 15 May / No entry fee

Launched back in 2017, the Women Photograph Grants aim to elevate the exposure of female, female-identifying, and non-binary visual journalists. The first prize, presented in collaboration with Nikon, offers five $5,000 endowments to support the production of photography projects - either new or in-progress - from journalists working in a documentary capacity. For the second, Women Photograph has partnered with Getty Images to award $10,000 to help fund an ongoing documentary project from a professional photojournalist who has demonstrated a long-term commitment to their story.


Aaron Siskind Foundation Fellowship Grant / Deadline: 18 May / Entry fee: US$25

The Aaron Siskind Foundation, a non-profit organisation serving the photographic community, is offering a limited number of Individual Photographer's Fellowship grants of up to $10,000 each for artists working in photography and photo-based media. Awardees will be selected by an independent jury on the basis of artistic excellence, accomplishment to date, and the promise of future achievement in the industry.


Cortona On The Move. Happiness ONTHEMOVE Award / Deadline: 27 May / Entry fee: €10

As in all six previous editions, Cortona's seventh annual Happiness ONTHEMOVE Award invites photographers to submit work with happiness as the central theme. One winner will receive a monetary prize of €3,000 plus a solo exhibition at the next COTM in 2019, while the winning project will be screened during the inauguration period of this year's festival in July.


Canon Giovani Fotografi Award / Deadline: 31 May / No entry fee

Open to emerging talents between the ages of 18 and 35, the Canon Giovani Fotografi Award returns for its 13th edition with Tells us a Story as the central theme. For the first time this year, the contest features a new multimedia category in addition to the traditional photography award, and the winning projects of both prizes will be included in the official exhibition program at Cortona On The Move 2018. Further relevant prizes include Canon digital imaging equipment and multiple tutorship sessions, worth around €3,000, with leaders in the industry.


W. Eugene Smith Grant in Humanistic Photography / Deadline: 31 May / Entry fee: $50

The W. Eugene Smith Grant in Humanistic Photography is awarded annually to a photographer whose previous work and proposed project, as deemed by a jury, follows in the tradition of W. Eugene Smith's concerned photography and dedicated compassion as a photographic essayist. For 2018, one photographer will receive a grant of $35,000, while an additional $5,000 will be dispersed to one or more finalists deemed worthy of special recognition.


Verzasca FOTO Festival Awards / Deadline: 31 May / Entry fee: 20 Swiss Francs

Verzasca FOTO Festival is calling all photographers to submit their visual stories for exhibitions and screenings at this year’s festival, to be held from 29 July to 29 October in Sonogno, Switzerland. A cash prize of 2,000 Swiss Francs will also be granted to one overall winner. Applications must feature between 3 and 10 images from a personal photo story and the choice of theme is completely open.


Howard Chapnick Grant / Deadline: 31 May / Entry fee: $25

Established in 1996 by the W. Eugene Smith Memorial Fund, the Howard Chapnick Grant is now one of the leading awards dedicated to photography research. The $5,000 endowment may be used to finance any of a range of qualified undertakings, which could include a program of further education, research, a special long-term sabbatical project, or an internship to work with a noteworthy group or individual. The judges will give special consideration to initiatives, organisations or projects that promote social change and/or examine the crucial role of photojournalism in the twenty-first century.


The Pierre & Alexandra Boulat Grant / Deadline: 14 June / No entry fee

Established by the Pierre and Alexandra Boulat Association to promote the creation of documentary work with a social purpose, the Pierre and Alexandra Boulat Grant offers a €8,000 endowment to a photographer looking to produce a story that has never been told and cannot find support for within the media. The application dossier can found on the VII Agency website.


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

14 minutes

Support PhMuseum Journalism

Since 2012 PhMuseum's articles have always been free and without ads. Every year we work to keep you informed and invite you to discover the work of hundreds of photographers. If you enjoy reading us, this can be a nice way to give back and support our independent organisation, granting us more means to increase the quality and number of contents. Thank you!