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ASK JASON - FAQs: Travel Photography Scholarship 2010

WORLDWIDE | Monday, 2 August 2010 | Views [15149] | Comments [51]

- ENTRIES NOW CLOSED - Winner announced!


We have created ASK JASON - FAQ's video blog with our program mentor, Jason Edwards.  Hopefully you will find the answer to any questions you might have about the Travel Photography  Scholarship.


1. Tell me more about the photographic theme. Can a 'place' be anywhere? How many photos should I submit?


2. I have a technical question about;

a) Colour calibration.


b) Saturation and Contrast


c) Sharpening


d) Cropping


e) Digital Enhancement


3. What kind of camera/equipment can I use to take my photos?


4. Am I eligible to apply? What constitutes a professional or semi-professional?


5. How does the judging work? What exactly will I be judged on?


6. What will I get out of this scholarship?


Don't have time  to watch the videos? Here are a few tips about Judging Criteria and Digital Adjustments.

1.Preparing your entries - digital adjustment guideline

-Calibration and colour Images must be colour profiled/corrected using a calibrated monitor and utilising Adobe RGB 98 colour space before submission. Allowances will NOT be made for poorly colour managed/corrected images.

-Please ensure your images are not over saturated and faithfully represent the subject matter. The same applies to Contrast Levels, the resultant image should be realistic.

-Sharpening is allowed but use sparingly – many images are ruined by over-sharpening. Likewise for Noise Reduction, only use this function where absolutely necessary, and keep it to a minimum.

-Mild cropping is allowed, but please be mindful that if you are a finalist and the original file is requested for comparison with your submitted image, you may be penalized for excessive cropping. We are interested in your ability to capture the image at the time, not find the perfect composition whilst sitting at the computer.

-Digital adjustments are only acceptable if limited to minor cleaning work (removing dust spots), levels, curves, colour, saturation and contrast work. Setting the Black and White Points, minor adjustments to the Curves and correcting for any colour shifts should be all that is required.

-Compositing and multiple exposures are not allowed. Sandwich shots, double exposures, photographs which consist in any way of more than one separate image and images that have been digitally manipulated are not eligible.

-Adding or removing people, animals, parts of animals, plants, reflections, distractions, architecture, objects etc into/from the image is NOT allowed. Always keep in mind as a finalist you may be required to submit the original file or film for comparison.

The faithful representation of what was captured at the time of the shot
being taken must be maintained.

2. Judging Process

Jason has identifies 10 key factors in the judging process;

1.Composition: Every element should have it's place in an image, even shadows and highlights.

2.Exposure: The exposure should match the tone and mood of the image, without manipulating the integrity of the subject matter.

3.Originality: There are more images being taken in the world today, but there are fewer photographers. See it differently.

4.Story: Every individual frame should tell a story, if an image doesn't do this then remove it.

5.Opinionated: Is your story opinionated? It does not have to be a moral or ethical viewpoint just your emotion coming through.

6.Depth: Have you explored your story or scraped the surface?

7.Captioning: Do not rely on an editor seeing everything you see in an image. Provide at least some background to what is happening in the frame.

8.Reason for why you should win: Always a personal viewpoint, entrants were ranked based on what people hoped to gain from the experience and what they hoped to contribute back to the greater community.

9. Willingness to learn: Very, very important! It is a scholarship, and the successful applicant had to be willing to learn, and in some cases re-learn elements of their photographic technique and how they behave as photographers.

10. Contribution to Photography: Did the images and story as a whole contribute something to the art of photography?


3. Some final thoughts from Jason...

Today the world is awash in imagery but there are fewer Photographers. Is the art of photography dying, quite possibly, and the root cause is the reliance on post-production software to make poor images better. Our scholarship provides a unique opportunity to learn the art of making a beautiful image in the field rather than in front of the computer. I am not interested in your skills with imaging software, in fact quite the opposite.

We are looking for an individual with potential, and the greatest desire to listen and learn. I am working on this assignment and will need your assistance; this will take patience and focus. Remember that we analyse every image in your submission, so read the Judging process and Conditions carefully. If one frame is weak then leave it out, you do not necessarily have to submit five images. In addition, the format of your entry does not matter, film, digital, and 35mm or medium format. However, if you are mixing formats ensure the images work together.

The theme of your story does not have to be wondrous or exotic, just a place you have visited. Look at your immediate life and be creative.

Travel. Learn. Create.

For all of you aspiring creatives, check out our Scholarships page and sign up to hear about our latest opportunities, tips, advice and interviews with industry professionals in the fields of photography, travel writing and filmmaking.

And if you're lucky enough to be mentored by one of our industry professionals, it could kick start your career!

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Hi Jason - thanks for posting the videos. They contain plenty of useful information on your photographic ethics. Anyway, the videos bring up three questions:
(1) You say that you strip away all the written info, but then later say that captions and our statement counts for points. How does that work?
(2) You don't mention white balance. In the olden days, I would have chosen to shoot Velvia while in the jungle, or maybe Portra while in a city. I see white balance as one of the key benefits of the digital age - the ability to essentially choose my "emulsion" for each frame individually. If selected as a finalist and you ask to see the raw files, would it also be appropriate to send the .xmp file (for Canon anyway) which contains the white balance info?
(3) The particular sequence of images I am thinking of submitting are B&W. These are a combination of B&W film images and conversions from dSLR colour images. I know you've said time and time again how you want to see what we've captured at the time (e.g. if you want it to look like a Holga, shoot with a Holga!) but is conversion to monochrome acceptable?
I look forward to hearing from you,
Cheers, Dan

  Dan Shugar Aug 6, 2010 1:01 AM


Hi Dan,

In answer to Q1, the captions refer to the description of the photos (what are we looking at?). The written component refers to your essay - the 'why you should be chosen part'. The essay is not considered in the first round of judging - but then weighs in quite heavily once we have a shortlist.

Ill ask Jason to have a look at Q 2 & 3.

Amanda (WN)

  scholarships Aug 9, 2010 10:32 AM


Hi Dan,

Thanks for the post. Just in addition to Amanda's comment I judge the images independently of the text ie I review the images numerous times and then then I review them again with the captions. The reason I do this is so that I judge the images on their merit alone. Once those processes have occurred I then judge the written component for each finalist. It's only after that round is completed that I then review the entries in their entirety. Nomad's have created a portal for me whereby I can access the entries in stages to make this possible. You don't see this publicly but it does happen behind the scenes.

2. You are correct that I didn't specifically mention white balance and the reason is that many people do this as part of their normal workflow, but in addition if people correctly adjust the black and white point and correct for colour shifts the resultant image will appear fine at our end. As you can imagine EVERY entry is balanced differently so we do allow considerable latitude for such things. By keeping treatments to a minimum we are hoping to make it easier for everyone to prep their imagery. Given that I work entirely in the RAW/DNG arena I can easily ascertain how great an image will become when completed. But if necessary we will ask for additional information.

3. Yes mixing the formats is fine and converting a digital image to monochrome is also fine. But keep in mind the sequence will need to flow together and not look like a mix of film and digi. We had some very fine b&w entries last year that were processed conservatively and still made it though to the finals so don't go nuts. Same applies here, I will know what potential an image has even if it is treated with kid gloves.



  Jason Edwards Aug 9, 2010 11:20 AM


1. How do you feel about exposing for not blowing highlights and then adjusting the exposure as you really want it in the raw converter? I mean ONLY raw converter now, not several raw conversions or layers in Photoshop, just in the raw converter, and only once.

So the picture turns out how I want it, but I expose to get the most details.

2. What about multi exposure? It turns into one file.

I won't be delivering HDR to this competition, but sometimes HDR is necessary to get what you see, the cameras today do not have the dynamic range we have :) My HDR are made to look realistic, not the artsy kind.

Not starting a discussion here, just saying this since you said "it's ment to be about the truth of what we see", and cameras doesn't always capture that.

3. What's your thoughts on polarizing filters?

  SpeedFreakNO Aug 9, 2010 3:35 PM


please let me know what sizing and how big minimum you would like to receive the images ?

  celeste Aug 10, 2010 6:25 AM


I'm in the final year at college (3 year course, specialize in photography).
Can I apply ?

  Hao Aug 11, 2010 5:05 PM


Hi Everyone,

4) SpeedFreakNO, yes I agree exposing to not blow out your highlights is a good start to any image capture. And altering your exposure in RAW converter the way you have described is fine but keep in mind conservative treatment is best. Images can still be ruined in RAW converter by pushing settings too far.

Unfortunately multiple exposures joined in any format are not suitable for this event. I understand the point you are making but traditionally documentary, reportage, travel and wildlife (to name a few), were and still should be, captured in one frame. Yes there are limitations to the equipment and it will likely never evolve to a point where it can see the subtleties of the human eye, but part of the art of photography is learning how best to expose an image capturing as much as possible accurately. If you shoot in this way post-production is greatly reduced and artistic merit greatly increased.

Polarising filters are fine as they are not manipulating the image content but helping to compensate for a particular wavelength of light. However, they can be overused and people get caught-up in the deeply saturated tones they create. If your images look like this judges may presume you've treated them heavily and penalise you for it. At times I've had to de-saturate my images in post even when I did not use a polarising filter (which I've not used since the mid 90's), so that they look realistic. Nature can throw you freaky light and colours at you!

5) Celeste, good question. I will get back to you on that and apologies for not specifying it on the Nomads site.

If you upload photos to WorldNomads, they will be re-sized to 520 pixels on the longest side. Users cannot control or change this.

Uploading to Flickr: Photos are resized to a maximum of 1024 pixels for a free account, or at your original size for a pro account.


6) Hao, Yes as long as you meet the general criteria on age and photography income etc. Check out video blog 4 on who can enter.


  Jason Edwards Aug 13, 2010 8:36 AM



the pictures i plan to submit were taken on a Canon 1000D, however, i can't provide the exact ISO, Shutter, Aperture readings.

do i still qualify?

i'm hoping to hear from you.
this is a very exciting opportunity...

  shruti Aug 18, 2010 2:51 PM


I looked on the website for sizing, resolution etc., but I don't find this information on the website; I saw that also someone else asked this before; can you help me with a link to this information?
Thank you:)

  Catalina Aug 18, 2010 7:57 PM


Hi Catlina,

Regarding size of image - it depends if you are uploading to Flickr or direct into World Nomads.

If you are using Flickr - it's just as per the terms of their site;

Our photo uploads work a little differently . So if you have a photo taken on a good digital camera, the physical size of might be 3,264x px wide x 2,448 px tall.

When you upload it to WorldNomads, we will re-size it at 520pixels on the longest side. Users cannot control or change this.

A landscape will typically be: 520px wide x 346px tall
and a portrait will typically be : 346px wide x 520px tall

So Flickr does give your more freedom in this regard, this is why we have given you the option to integrate from Flickr. Flickr is free to join & use.


  scholarships Aug 19, 2010 9:37 AM


Thanks for a wonderful opportunity. Three questions: 1. To what dpi must the images be saved? 2. What is the max size jpg file for each individual photo? 3. Must all photos be submitted in one batch? Before resizing my photos are all at 72 dpi, are 4272x2848 pixels and average about 5MB. Surely this is too big to upload to WorldNomads?

  Helen White Aug 20, 2010 1:13 AM


Hi! I want to know one thing... I might sound silly, but I am really not that much professional in Photography. I use Lightroom to retouch my photos and I use mobile camera. Am I still eligible? I can't watch the videos, as my net speed is too bad!

One more thing, should the pictures be story oriented or concept oriented or landscape oriented? Should the series contain pictures from same place or country?

  zayedh Aug 21, 2010 5:08 PM


Hi Helen,

Did you read the post above yours? When you upload to World Nomads it will resize - or you can upload into Flickr (its free and easy to join) where you have more freedom in this regard.

In your entry post - you must submit a maximum of 5 photos. You can go back and change/edit these if you wish prior to the deadline, but yes it must all be submitted within the one post.
See what other people's entries look like;


Zayedh - yes you can take photos on any sort of equipment you like - mobile camera is fine. The photos you submit should tell a story about a place you have visited. Place can be anywhere. Each photo should tell a story - and also the series you submit should tell a story.The subject of your photos is up to you - it may be landscape, people, architecture, wildlife, whatever you like.

Have a look at last year's finalists to give you an idea;


  scholarships Aug 23, 2010 11:58 AM


Hello again,
Yes I did read the post above mine and that is what prompted me to ask about the dpi. Will post mine next weekend anyway and if they don't go through, will try again.

  Helen White Aug 23, 2010 8:40 PM


Hi Everyone,

Just in case you didn't know, all computer monitors (to my knowledge), are 72 ppi/dpi. It doesn't matter if you have an image that is 4000 ppi/dpi as it will only display at 72. The extra resolution of the file comes into play as you blow it up. Just make sure you have enough width and length in your image dimensions and that the resolution is never lower than 72 dpi/ppi.


  Jason Edwards Aug 27, 2010 9:30 AM


What time span is acceptable for the photos? Can they be from multiple visits to the same place over a period of time?

  Scott Sep 2, 2010 7:54 PM


I'm 23years old from Thailand. I'm not a professional photographer but after I read your article I really want to join and want to chage my hobby become more serious
with supporting of professional. I'll do it. Thanks you Jason

  North Sep 2, 2010 11:26 PM


hello JE
do you mind that the story of pictures is from idea not from real happen?

  Nut Sep 6, 2010 4:54 AM


Hi Scott - there are no specifications/limitations on time span.

Nut - the story should have truth to it, but many things tell a story. Have a look at last year's winner and shortlist to give you some inspiration;

  scholarships Sep 6, 2010 8:59 AM


Thanks JE

  Nut Sep 6, 2010 11:36 PM


Hello Jason and Amanda, I have one question. I got the e-mail about Scholarship to Bhutan while I was already on the road, 5000 km on a bicycle across Norway. I am still on the road, and will be still on the move after 17th of October. I do not have computer with me, I use public computers for the Internet access, and personal computers when I stay at peoples homes around Norway. I cannot calibrate anyones monitor, especially since I know that it is not an easy task. Moreover, I am not customized to Windows Vista, since I use Linux at home. Third, even if i try to calibrate computer here, I do not understand Norwegian language, so it makes the task of calibration to aRGB really a nightmare. and lastly, people here in Norway use mostly Windows Vista, at least people with whom I have been staying and they are not proficient in managing computer stuff. So this is my situation. I am affraid that my digging through somebodies else's computer in search for a proper calibration could end in data loss and system crash. So, with this problem, can I still send my images, as I was waiting for this opportunity? I have some images in sRGB, some in aRGB. thanx for your kind reply.
Luka Horvat

  Luka Horvat Sep 24, 2010 9:21 PM


Hi JE & Amanda

Just a small query, are multiple entry sets allowed..but of 2 different places?

No, there is one entry per person

  Supriya Sep 28, 2010 1:34 AM


Hi Jason,

Really excited about this contest. Just wanted to make sure it's OK to have a combination of vertical and horizontal images in the set -- i.e., they don't all have be the exact same size dimensions across the board, right? Thank you!

  Lisa Weatherbee Sep 28, 2010 6:50 AM


Supriya - only one per person entry is allowed.

Lisa - dimensions do not need to be the same, mixing horizontal and vertical is fine.

Luka - what an adventure and challenge! Yes, just upload what you can.

  scholarships Sep 28, 2010 11:05 AM


21) Luka, My apologies for the delay I posted a response but must have neglected to hit 'add'. Your situation is difficult but might I suggest you post your RGB photos and see how they appear on the site. If they appear ok then balance your sRGB images to match those. It possibly will mean posting and deleting a couple of times to get them to match but I would use your RGB files as the benchmark. If your RGB files need a little work then do that and still use them as the benchmark. Does that make sense?
23) Lisa, Please mix away I always try and do this myself!
26) Kayleigh, let me get back to you.


  Jason Edwards Oct 5, 2010 9:56 AM


1 - You said in the video you don't think it's possible to tell a story with less than 3 images. Shortly afterward, you said each image should tell a story by itself.

2- Can we use photos we have already taken before hearing about this contest?

  Wilson Oct 6, 2010 6:42 AM


26) Wilson, Yes it would be very unlikely if you entered three or less images that you would stand a chance of winning. And yes, every image should tell a story in it's own right and then they should all flow together to tell a larger story about the place you have visited. If an image says nothing by itself it is likely not strong enough to be included in your submission.

There is no time limit on when the images could be taken, yesterday or ten years ago it doesn't matter.


  Jason Edwards Oct 7, 2010 7:48 PM


are black and white photos acceptable/encouraged/discouraged?

Hi chris - b&w or color photos are acceptable. There is no preference for either.

You can find the FAQ's at http://journals.worldnomads.com/scholarships/story/60917/Worldwide/ASK-JASON-FAQs-Travel-Photography-Scholarship-2010

  Chris Oct 12, 2010 2:48 PM


and what constitutes a proffessional photographer?

Please check the FAQ's at http://journals.worldnomads.com/scholarships/story/60917/Worldwide/ASK-JASON-FAQs-Travel-Photography-Scholarship-2010

  alex Oct 13, 2010 11:00 AM


Thank you for this tremendous opportunity.

My question is whether flash technique is allowed? For example, Gary Fong or a snoot or something?


  Jessie Oct 14, 2010 12:23 AM


may i ask that can i submit 5 photos that telling stories more than 2 places, not just one place?thanks

Tan - please watch the FAQ videos. Your brief is a tell a story about one place. Please check the FAQ's at http://journals.worldnomads.com/scholarships/story/60917/Worldwide/ASK-JASON-FAQs-Travel-Photography-Scholarship-2010

  Tan Oct 14, 2010 3:34 AM


30) Hi Jessie sorry for the delay on assignment in the Pacific for NG. Yes flash is allowed including snoots and spheres etc.



  Jason Edwards Oct 15, 2010 11:16 AM



I will be in another country (i.e. not my country of residence) during December. So I wouldn't want to leave from my country of residence, if that makes sense. Would that be a problem? Do I need to specify that in my application?


  Natalia Oct 15, 2010 2:07 PM


Hi Natalia - no that won't be a problem. We can fly you from where ever you will be.

  scholarships Oct 15, 2010 2:10 PM


Do you guys send us an email confirming we are indeed participanting in the competition?

  amazonturtle Oct 16, 2010 1:36 AM


Long story short - I had some self-created problems with my original entry (the one with all the information filled in from the application form) and somehow deleted it. When I tried to start a new one I was told I couldn't because I'd already entered once. I'm not sure if it thinks the entry is still there (it's not) or if you can actually only enter the one time, but my question is this -If I create an entry with the same tags and titles will you be able to find it and will it be eligible for judging? I notice that my original one was titled My Photo scholarship 2010 entry and the new one I created appears as Photos: My Photo scholarship 2010 entry . I realize I really screwed myself up here and the deadline is looming so any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

  9stars Oct 16, 2010 4:37 AM


Hi Everyone,

35) and 36) Guys these are questions Amanda will know the answer to, I'm sure she will check this weekend.


  Jason Edwards Oct 16, 2010 7:32 AM


Hi 9stars - Yes you can only enter once, but we can see your entry fine.

Amazonturtle - If you have filled in an entry form and uploaded yor photos then you are competing.

Good luck everyone.

  scholarships Oct 16, 2010 9:26 AM


I was wondering if it is fine to alter the picture's proportion during cropping.
I don't mean distorting the picture but just the proportions when cropping

  Rishi Oct 17, 2010 1:18 AM


40) Rishi, under the cropping guidelines we allow only minor cropping so if you are altering the proportions it sounds like that would constitute major cropping and therefore would not be allowed. We are interested in seeing what you captured at the time rather than what was made of it on the computer.



  Jason Edwards Oct 17, 2010 8:33 AM


Hi dan, I completed my application having submitted the photos to worldnomads. At the time I didn't realize the sizing limitations. I have a flickr acct but I chose not to submit my photos through a flickr set because was close to my maximum allowed monthly upload space. Is there a way that I can make a change to my application and submit my photos through a flickr set? I am concerned that the limited sizing that worldnomads provides will hinder in the viewing of the photos.

Thanks for your time!

  tommymoseabbott Oct 17, 2010 12:05 PM


who can i upload photo on flicker

  AK RUMEL Oct 17, 2010 6:08 PM


Hi. I've been following the Current local time in Brisbane from my computer and time now shows an hour to midnight. I'm trying to apply, but the competition is close. What did I wrong?!

  Daniela Oct 18, 2010 12:22 AM



I have a similar problem: In the "Last call for entries" email Amanda Byrne wrote that the closing date is "midnight (Aussie Eastern Standard Time) this Sunday, Oct 17". I have ulpoaded my entry at 11:10 pm Eastern Standard Time, but I can see that the entry is registered at 12:10 am Eastern Daylight Time.
Have I applied too late?

  memories Oct 18, 2010 12:35 AM


Hi! I have been trying to apply for the past 2 hours and haven't been able to due to the website repeatedly crashing - no doubt from everyone trying to do the same! And now the website says it's closed. I'm devastated to think I've missed out on putting my entry in - is there any leeway on the deadline due to the congested web traffic?

  annathommo Oct 18, 2010 12:45 AM


I'm having the same troubles as Daniela and others!! Have been trying for three hours to get my submission in but the site keeps crashing. I've uploaded my pics to a set on flickr but can no longer access the application form or successfully create a gallery on my journal. I really hope I'm not too late, I would be devastated if we had to wait until next year! :(

Shaneene x

  thelittleblondeone Oct 18, 2010 1:27 AM


Hi!! I'm also another person having the same problem of submission of my entry. I've been trying for the past hours

  Martha Flores-Gardea Oct 18, 2010 1:37 AM


same here......i am absolutely horrified at not being able to upload my photostory on the site.....would you please please reconsider for all the others in the same dire situation including me.this is really an opportunity that all of us dream of and most of us have worked our heads off to get a decent photostory.

  arkodatto Oct 18, 2010 1:45 AM


Hi Trish , no you didn't fill in the entry form so you havent entered correctly. Please email me;
[email protected]

  scholarships Oct 18, 2010 12:10 PM


Hello Everyone,

If you have entered correctly you will be able to see your entry at http://adventures.worldnomads.com/tags/?t=travel+photography+scholarship+2010
and they will be reviewed by the judges.

Please don't ask us to verify your individual entries.

Best of luck with all your entries!

  scholarships Oct 29, 2010 8:36 PM

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