Should you join photography competitions?
Photography competitions provide a wide range of benefits to photographers. These opportunities give us an avenue to examine our skills, gain exposure, build a network, and inspire us to further our careers in photography. Although there have been mixed opinions about joining competitions, it's a good way to measure your growth as a photographer.
Having joined several competitions since I've started photography, the amount of creativity and ideas I witnessed helped me improve my skills, creativity, and resourcefulness. It also gave me an idea of what kind of images make it to the top of these competitions. It's also a good way to see how a certain image or body of work you created would rank in a competitive scene. Joining competitions will give you an idea of what works and what doesn't. Granted that these are events where judges are involved; the best way to approach them is to come in with your own style, creativity, and story.
In the video above, I briefly touch on my experience in joining these events. These competitions are not always just for aesthetics, but a combination of creativity, beauty, diversity, and the story behind the series of images.