03 October 2019

October's Photography Grants and Awards

03 October 2019 - Written by Simon Hall

In our curated awards guide this month, we feature the Wellcome Photography Prize, Yannis Behrakis Photojournalism Grants, and our own Women Photographers Grant. Learn how they can help with the development and promotion of your stories.

PHmuseum 2019 Women Photographers Grant / Deadline: 10 October / Entry fee: £18 - £27

© Claudia Gori. 2018 Women Photographers Grant shortlistee

The PHmuseum Women Photographers Grant aims to empower the work and careers of female and non-binary professionals of all ages and from all countries working in diverse areas of photography. Its mission remains to support the growth of the new generations and promote stories narrated from a female perspective, while responding to the need to work for gender equality in the industry.

The prizes this year include £10,000 in cash, features on Vogue Italia and YET Magazine, a solo show at the 2020 edition of Fotografia Europea (Reggio Emilia, Italy), space in a projection at Photo Vogue Festival 2019 (Milan, Italy), and portfolio reviews with a mentor of choice from our Online Education Program. The New Generation Prize – awarded to a photographer under 30 years of age – will include a one-hour online portfolio review with Magnum Photos Global Business Development Director Fiona Rogers and nomination to World Press Photo’s 2020 Joop Swart Masterclass. All prize-winning projects and several Honorable Mentions will also be promoted on the PHmuseum channels throughout the year.

Applicants are invited to enter one, or multiple, series centred around a specific theme, narrative, or concept. At least four images must have been shot after 1 January 2016. All approaches are welcomed, from classic narratives to experimental projects. Submissions will be reviewed by judges Angelica Dass (Photographer), Ashleigh Kane (Arts & Culture Editor at Dazed), Margaret Steber (Photographer), and Marina Paulenka (Artistic Director at UNSEEN). The final deadline is set for 10 October at 11:59 pm (GMT). Learn more and apply at

Wellcome Photography Prize 2020 / Deadline: 16 December / No entry fee

© Michael Duff. Wellcome Photography Prize 2019 winner

The Wellcome Photography Prize was established to celebrate compelling imagery that showcases the importance of health in society and the impact health issues have upon people and communities. Open to visual storytellers worldwide, the award is designed to inspire people to think differently about health, medicine, and life, and ultimately open conversations about the pressing health challenges facing humanity today.

The theme this year is centred around how we address the issue of people living with or recovering from mental health problems. Applicants are invited to submit work into one of five categories using any form of photography including documentary, reportage, portrait, landscape, fine art, or collage. They are: Social Perspectives (exploring how health and illness affect the way we live); Hidden Worlds (combatting health taboos or revealing places difficult to access); Medicine in Focus (showing health and healthcare up close and personal); Mental Health Single Image (dispelling the visual clichés of mental illness); and Mental Health Series (examining mental health from an authentic, human perspective).

The winner of each category will receive £1,250, while the overall winner will be granted a prize of £15,000. All shortlisted images will go on display at a public exhibition in London. Additionally, one entrant to the Medicine in Focus category will be invited to produce the Julie Dorrington commission, a photo story following and documenting a patient’s journey with their condition. The submission deadline is 16 December and the contest is free to enter. For further information, visit

Yannis Behrakis Photojournalism Grants / Deadline: 31 December / No entry fee

© Santiago Arcos. 2019 Yannis Behrakis Photojournalism Grant recipient

The Reuters photography grant program, first launched back in 2017, has been expanded this year and renamed after the long-time Reuters photojournalist and Pulitzer Prize winner Yannis Behrakis. “In renaming the Reuters Photojournalism Grants program, we honour Yannis Behrakis, one of Reuters’ best-loved and most decorated photographers, who was best known for his humanitarian photography from some of the world’s most difficult locations” says Rickey Rogers, the global editor at Reuters Pictures. “[These grants represent] a fantastic opportunity for young, diverse photojournalists from around the world to have their stories distributed and showcased globally.”

As part of the rebranding, Reuters Pictures has multiplied the prizes, now offering ten Grants each worth US$8,000 for photojournalists and students to produce a photo project and develop their visual storytelling skills. Successful applicants will be distributed on Reuters platforms and Reuters Pictures editors will mentor recipients throughout their projects. Grantees will also receive Reuters instruction, including reporting and hostile environment training. Applicants must submit a CV, a portfolio comprised of between 30 and 40 pictures, and a detailed statement explaining an idea that the grant would be used to cover. A focused project examining a subject in a community or location close to you that you can reasonably complete in a few weeks or months is advisable. The contest is only open to those between the ages of 18 and 35. The deadline is 31 December. Visit to find out more.



FotoEvidence Book Award with World Press Photo / Deadline: 10 October / Entry fee: US$50

Open to amateur photographers, photographer’s collectives, and established professionals, the annual FotoEvidence Book Award with World Press Photo looks to recognise a documentary photographer whose work demonstrates courage and commitment in addressing a violation of human rights, a significant injustice, or an assault on human dignity. The selected project will be published as part of a series of FotoEvidence monographs dedicated to showcasing the work of long-form visual storytelling in the humanistic tradition.


Magnum Foundation’s Photography and Social Justice Program / Deadline: 15 October / No entry fee

Magnum Foundation’s Photography and Social Justice Program aims to expand diversity and creativity in the field of documentary photography through both capacity-building and critical explorations of photography and social change. Each year the program supports a diverse, international group of photographers who are passionate about challenging injustice, pursuing social equality, and advancing human rights through visual storytelling. The program specifically places a focus on supporting people of colour, women, gender non-conforming individuals, LGBTQ individuals, individuals who are part of racial, ethnic, or religious minority groups, refugees, and others whose authorship is unevenly represented within the field of documentary photography.


ISSP Riga Residency / Deadline: 15 October / No entry fee

Open to photographers and artists working with still imagery, the ISSP Riga Residency provides an opportunity for dedicated work on a personal project informed by interaction with the city and its residents. Applications are welcome from those interested in creating work referring to the social, cultural and historical context of Riga, as well as those who need to take their time to rethink and complete their ongoing work. The standard duration of the residency is between one and two months. Visiting artists will be afforded the chance to interact with local audiences in a public presentation and through other events like a pop-up exhibition.


Carmignac Photojournalism Award / Deadline: 16 October / No entry fee

Founded back in 2009, the Carmignac Photojournalism Award looks to support the work of photographers working in the field, providing funding every year for the production of an investigative photo reportage that shines a spotlight on human rights violations or geostrategic issues in the world. This year's edition is dedicated to the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), with one laureate to be endowed with a €50,000 grant to produce a six-month project that documents both the complex realities facing the country today and the grounds of hope for the 90 million inhabitants, 60% of which are younger than 20 years old. The report will be turned into a travelling exhibition and a monograph published by Fondation Carmignac.


Crossing Borders Program Open Call / Deadline: 31 October / No entry fee

The Crossing Borders program provides international research grants to authors, filmmakers, and photographers to support the creation of publications that refute commonly held stereotypes, inspire dialogue, and promote mutual understanding. Applicants should have an interest in conducting first-hand research, visiting authentic places, and creating works that offer new perspectives on under-represented societies. Funding is available for German-language publications in countries in Africa, Asia and Europe, while visual storytellers from China, India, Indonesia, Japan and Vietnam can apply for funding for research projects in Germany.


Gomma Photography Grant / Deadline: 4 November / Entry fee: €25

The Gomma Photography Grant is an all-inclusive award that aims to promote and expose photographers - both emerging and established - working across all genres of visual storytelling. Since it was established in 2004, Gomma has gained a reputation for bringing recognition to undetected artists with the jury applying a strict meritocratic approach to judging. Winners of the First, Second, and Third Prize will receive €1,000, €300, and €200 respectively, while a number of smaller recognitions will be granted to the Best Colour Documentary work, Best Black and White Documentary work, Best Colour Picture, Best Black and White Picture, Best Daily Life Story, and Best Rising Talent.


Luis Valtueña International Humanitarian Photography Award / Deadline: 9 November / No entry fee

International humanitarian organisation Médicos del Mundo (Doctors of the World) has launched the 23rd edition of the Luis Valtueña International Humanitarian Photography Award, a prize that strives to denounce the reality of vulnerable communities suffering from human rights infringements in cities across the world. One winner will receive a project grant of €6,000 to develop a photographic essay of at least 50 images and a 30-minute video related to the work of MdM-Spain, whether in Spain or in other countries where the organisation is undertaking humanitarian action or international co-operation programs.


VOHH (Voice of Humanity and Hope) Foto Fest Open Call / Deadline: 20 November / No entry fee

VOHH Foto Fest – a month-long biennial hosted in the city of Chittagong, Bangladesh – is calling all photographers to submit their projects for exhibitions and screenings at next year’s festival. For this edition, the curators are particularly interested in long-term documentary projects that can play a significant role in shaping a better planet and improving humanity. Suggested subjects include war and conflict, international migration, hidden worlds, human right violations, humanitarian concern, and nature and the environment. Applicants must submit stories containing a minimum of 30 and a maximum of 50 photographs accompanied by a 200-word project statement.


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

10 minutes

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