Underwater Photo & Video Competition

The underwater photo and video competition of this festival is open to everyone, visitors and locals alike. As a shootout competition all photos and video entered must have been taken during the festival period. There are fantastic prizes up for grabs worth close to $30,000 and we anticipate strong participation, so book your shootout space early.

All photographs and video to be taken between 29th of April and 2nd of May 2009. See detailed competition rules below.

Photos and Videos will be judged in the following categories

  • Best Festival Portfolio - 5 photographs
  • Best Festival Photograph - SLR camera
  • Best Festival Photograph - Compact camera
  • Best Festival Photograph - Novice & Sealife Camera Trials
  • Best Festival Photograph - freediving / snorkel
  • Best Festival Video

and in addition we will present the

  • Neville Coleman Awards - most interesting critter finds (can be photo or video entries)

Shootout participants receive also free welcome BBQ, free entry to all marine wildlife presentations as well as the UF09 finale at the Buddha Bar which includes the presentation of the awards and more.


Byron Underwater Festival Shootout Competition rules

  • This competition is open to everyone.
  • This is a shootout competition over 4 days. Only photos and video taken on dives during this period can be entered. Photos and video taken on the night dives of the 29th and 30th can be included.
  • There are now 5 categories in this competition: SLR cameras, Compact cameras, Novice, Freediving / Snorkelling & Portfolio as well as a Video category. In addition to these will be the Neville Coleman Award for most interesting critter find (photo or video). Most categories will have a 1st, 2nd and 3rd winner.
  • The novice section is restricted to photographers with underwater photography experience of less than 12 months / Sealife Camera Trial participants. Novice entrants are unable to compete in other categories.
  • Only images taken underwater can be entered into the competition (over-under shots are permitted).
  • Submissions can only be digital.
  • Images can be “cleaned up” and colour corrected, but cropped images are not permitted. Over-manipulation of images will effect judges decision.
  • Photos have to be submitted by Saturday afternoon 6pm. Collection of entries is at the Byron Bay Dive Centre and Planula. Submissions are accepted on DVD, CD or USB memory stick. Submissions must be labeled clearly with the entrants name, contact phone number and entry category. Up to 10 images can be submitted in the photo shootout. All images have to be submitted as original files (with all image data intact) as well as the optimised versions. Images have to be named in the following manner: firstname-lastname-number(1-10)-original/optimized. For example: tim-hochgrebe-1-ori.jpg. Please make a main folder firstname-lastname and subfolders originals, entries, portfolio and neville.
  • Any participating photographer can also enter the portfolio category - please create an additional folder on your submitted media with the name portfolio and include 5 of your up to 10 photographs that you think work best together as a representation of your work. Do not submit any additional photos - only 10 photos in total will be accepted. If you submit more photos you will be automatically disqualified.
  • Video entries have to be submitted by Saturday afternoon 6pm. Collection of entries is at the Byron Bay Dive Centre and Planula. Finished submissions are accepted on DVD only and should be in mpeg-2 format and be playable in a standard DVD player. Maximum length for submission is 10 minutes. Each entrant can only submit one film. Submissions which use sound or any other material that is copyright protected and not used with permission will be disqualified. We also need all original media whichever format you have shot on (HDD,DVD,miniDV etc) to verify the shooting dates of your raw footage. Submissions must be labeled clearly with the entrants name, contact phone number
  • Video and Photo shootout participants can submit separate entries for the Neville Coleman Awards. Please submit these images into a neville folder in the same folder than your main entries and label them Neville + your name - for example neville-tim-hochgrebe-1.jpg. Images in this category will be judged by Neville only and prizes will be awarded for the most ‘intriguing’ critter finds.
  • The copyright of the entered photos remains with the photographers. The Underwater Festival organisers retain the right to publish any submitted photo on the underwaterfestival websites and other print and web publications for the purpose of promoting future festivals and in those cases there will be no payment for the use of the copyright. We will not sell or give away the rights to use your photographs to any third party without seeking prior consent.
  • Touching of marine life is strictly prohibited, this competition in conducted within a sanctuary zone of the Cape Byron Marine Park and you will need to adhere to the Code of Conduct of the New South Wales Marine Park Authority.
  • AGAIN, media with correctly labeled entries has to be submitted by 6pm on Saturday either at the Byron Bay Dive Centre or at Planula Divers Retreat - late entries will be disqualified.
  • Photos will be judged by an experienced panel. All decisions of the judges are final, and not subject to review.
  • Winners will be announced as part of the Byron Underwater Festival Finale on 3 May 2009 and prizes will be handed over that evening (if possible).
  • Prizes and entry categories are subject to change.
  • By entering the Byron Underwater Festival Photographic Shootout Competition you agree with the above terms and conditions.

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