There are lots of photography contests in SL. It’s not hard to find them: You can find them advertised on Flickr or in some of the art groups (SL Art is a good one to join.).

Is it good to enter these contests?

Well, the answer to that is yes and no.

A photography contest can be good to enter for several reasons:

  • Contests keep you working.
    It might seem obvious, but a contest will get you out and taking photos. As a photographer, you should be creating as often as can.
  • Contests usually have a reward of some sort.
    Contest usually have a prize, either lindens or merchandise. That provides a little extra motivation for taking those photos and doing a good job.
  • A photography contest can break you out of a rut.
    There’s usually a theme or restrictions on the type of photo you can enter. The contest photo often has to be taken in a particular sim or featuring a vendor’s merchandise. These restrictions can lead to different types of photos than you have taken, before.

But there are also a good reasons not to enter contest, especially if you’re easily discouraged or you don’t have a thick skin.

  • You probably won’t win.
    The contest judge or judges won’t have the same taste as you. That’s almost a guarantee, so the simple fact is they might not like your work. This doesn’t mean your work is bad or the judges don’t have any taste; it just means another contestant’s work appeals to them more.
  • Merchant contests are usually looking for a specific type of photo.
    Merchant contests are often looking for a photo that shows off their product or products. That’s a particular type of photo that some bloggers do very, very well. That just might not be your creative style.

If you’re easily discouraged, don’t enter contests. Your goal is to keep working, keep creating.

But if you’re looking for motivation to keep working or something new to do with your work, a photography contest might be just what you’re looking for.

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