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Photo contest

The Photo Contest is a place where photographers can submit their photos. Each contest has a specific theme. The photographers should follow the theme if they want to be successful. Judges compare two photos and vote on which one they think better captured the contest theme. The ranking algorithm takes votes and computes the ranking.

Contests evolve through five stages: Upcoming, Open, Live, Closed, and Archived.

  • Upcoming Contests do not accept entries, but they will soon! This helps photographers prepare their photos ahead of time. Remember to read the contest description before taking your photos. Good luck!
  • Open Contests are waiting for photographers’ photo entries. You can submit new or old photos. Challenge yourself by submitting your photo!
  • Live Contests are open for voting. You can also be the judge. Train your photographer’s eye by voting as a judge in the contest!
  • Closed Contests have already published the winners. This happens after a long time as the algorithm needs to collect enough data to choose the winner.
  • Archived Contests are no longer visible in the application and are moved to the archive.

Read more about the voting system about the ranking algorithm.

 

Photo contest Awards

Fotovea grants awards based on the round in which the photo was eliminated. You can read more about the voting system in the voting system.

In the Photo Contest, the submitted photo can receive one of the awards:

  • R1 – Round 1 Participant – Photo participated in the photo contest.
  • R2 – Round 2 Participant – Photo advanced to the 2n round.
  • FQ – Quarterfinalist – Photo advanced to the quarterfinal round.
  • FS – Semifinalist – Photo advanced to the semifinal round.
  • FL – Finalist – Photo advanced to the final round.
  • HM – Honorable Mention – Photo finished in the round at positions 2, 3, …, 12.
  • CW – Contest Winner – Photo won the contest.

Each photo can attend many Photo Contests. Sometimes, your photo can reveal the following pattern:

  • Your photo usually received the Round 2 Participant award.
  • A few times it received the Round 1 Participant award.
  • One time got to the Quarterfinals.

This pattern can help you understand the strengths and weaknesses of the photo and what makes it unique.
After some time of growing with Fotovea, you will be able to see improvements in your ranking that indicate your progress as a photographer.

 

Photo rank and rank resolution

Photo rank is a score that compares your photo to others in the Photo Contest. During the voting period, the photo rank reflects the votes your photo has received so far. For more details on the voting system, please see the Voting system.

As more votes come in, the photo rank becomes more accurate. During this time, the rank may fluctuate—like a pendulum swinging—before stabilizing. This fluctuation is normal and reflects the continuous comparison of your photo with others. These changes ultimately lead to a fair assessment of your photo’s quality, with the final rank accurately reflecting your work’s quality.

“Rank resolution” estimates your photo’s final rank once all votes are collected. It is shown as a range. The middle of this range is where your final rank is most likely to be. As more votes are gathered, this range will narrow, making the prediction more precise.

Visualization in the application:

  • The grey bar represents all photos in the current round. The best photos are on the right side of the bar. The lowest-ranked photos are on the left side of the bar. The participating photo is indicated by a line labeled “My Rank Photo.”
  • The cut-off line separates the photos that will move on to the next round from those that will be eliminated. The photos on the right side of the cutoff line will continue to the next round.
  • The orange range around “My Rank Photo” is the Rank Resolution region.

Please note the “Rank Resolution” feature is available only in the premium version of the application.

 

Photographer level

A great photographer is active and can take amazing photos. However, to get there, he needs to be consistent, challenge himself, and set bigger goals as his skills improve.

For this reason, we have created a ranking system based on 3 components.

  • activity
  • the quality of the portfolio
  • achievements in contests
1Newbee
2Novice

Activity conditions

  1. Photographer attended more than 10 contests.
3Beginner

Activity conditions

  1. Photographer attended more than 15 contests.

Portfolio quality conditions

  1. At least 5 different photos achieved Round 1 or better.
4Enthusiast

Activity conditions

  1. Photographer attended more than 30 contests.

Portfolio quality conditions

1. At least 10 different photos achieved Round 1 or higher in the competition.

Awards achievements conditions

  1. The photographer’s photo achieved Round 2 or better at least in 5 photo competitions.
5Hobbyist

Activity conditions

  1. Photographer attended more than 50 contests.

Portfolio quality conditions

  1. At least 25 different photos achieved Round 1 or better.

Awards achievements conditions

  1. The photographer’s photo achieved Round 2 or better at least in 15 photo competitions.
  2. The photographer’s photo achieved Quarterfinal or better at least in 1 photo competition.
6Semi-pro

Activity conditions

  1. Photographer attended more than 100 contests.

Portfolio quality conditions

  1. At least 10 different photos achieved Round 2 or better.

Awards achievements conditions

  1. The photographer’s photo achieved Round 2 or better at least in 30 photo competitions.
  2. The photographer’s photo achieved Quarterfinal or better at least in 5 photo competitions.
7Expert

Activity conditions

  1. Photographer attended more than 100 contests.

Portfolio quality conditions

  1. At least 20 different photos achieved Round 2 or better.

Awards achievements conditions

  1. The photographer’s photo achieved Round 2 or better at least in 60 photo competitions.
  2. The photographer’s photo achieved Quarterfinal or better at least in 15 photo competitions.
  3. The photographer’s photo achieved Semifinal or better at least in 1 photo competition.
8Professional 

Activity conditions

  1. Photographer attended more than 150 contests

Portfolio quality conditions

  1. At least 40 different photos achieved Round 2 or better.
  2. At least 12 different photos achieved Quarterfinal or better.

Awards achievements conditions

  1. The photographer’s photo achieved Round 2 or better at least in 80 photo competitions.
  2. The photographer’s photo achieved Quarterfinal or better at least in 20 photo competitions.
  3. The photographer’s photo achieved Semifinal or better at least in 5 photo competitions.
  4. The photographer’s photo achieved the Final or better at least in 1 photo competition.
9Virtuoso

Activity conditions

  1. Photographer attended more than 150 contests.

Portfolio quality conditions

  1. At least 60 different photos achieved Round 2 or better.
  2. At least 20 different photos achieved Quarterfinal or better.
  3. At least 10 different photos achieved Semifinal or better.

Awards achievements conditions

  1. The photographer’s photo achieved  Round 2 or better at least in 100 photo competitions.
  2. The photographer’s photo achieved  Quarterfinal or better at least in 40 photo competitions.
  3. The photographer’s photo achieved  Semifinal or better at least in 15 photo competitions.
  4. The photographer’s photo achieved  Final or better at least in 3 photo competitions.
10Maestro

Activity conditions

  1. Photographer attended more than 150 contests.

Portfolio quality conditions

  1. At least 60 different photos achieved Round 2 or better.
  2. At least 30 different photos achieved Quarterfinal or better.
  3. At least 20 different photos achieved Semifinal or better.
  4. At least 10 different photos achieved Final or better.

Awards achievements conditions

  1. The photographer’s photo achieved Round 2 or better at least in 150 photo competitions.
  2. The photographer’s photo achieved  Quarterfinal or better at least in 60 photo competitions.
  3. The photographer’s photo achieved  Semifinal or better at least in 20 photo competitions.
  4. The photographer’s photo achieved  Final or better at least in 5 photo competitions.
  5. The photographer’s photo achieved Honorable Mentions or better at least in 1 photo competition.
11Notable Maestro
Maestro that showed consistency, in the last 2 calendar months received at least 2 awards Honorable Mentions or better and attended during this time in average at least 2 contests per month.
12Spectacular Maestro
Maestro that showed consistency, in the last 3 calendar months received at least 4 awards Honorable Mentions or better and attended during this time in average at least 4 contests per month.
13Exceptional Maestro
Maestro that showed consistency, in the last 4 calendar months received at least 8 awards Honorable Mentions or better and attended during this time in average at least 6 contests per month.
14Grand Maestro
Maestro that showed consistency, in the last 5 calendar months received at least 15 awards Honorable Mentions or better and attended during this time in average at least 8 contests per month.
15Phenomenal Maestro
Maestro that showed consistency, in the last 6 calendar months received at least 18 awards Honorable Mentions or better and attended during this time in average at least 10 contests per month.
LevelName & Conditions
 

Judge level

The Judge level reflects the user’s activity as a judge in contests on the app. Having a higher Judge level also means more Orbs for the user. Remember, Orbs can unlock more perks in Fotovea.

The number and quality of votes are the key factors for judges. Each vote is converted into points. The number of points the judge received in the previous 30 days defines the level.

The table shows each level and the minimum points required to reach it:

JudgeThreshold
Qualified3000
Associate5000
Junior9000
Senior15000
Principal23000

There are also top judges that have special responsibilities and privileges. For example, they help the community to decide if a particular photo

  • shows violence.
  • of a mother feeding her baby should be considered
  • violates the rules of the contest

These judges hold titles like Grand Judge, Chief Judge, or Highest Judge.

 

Orbs

Orbs are beautiful transparent balls used in photography for making exciting photos.

In Fotovea the Orbs are the in-game currency.

Orbs are there to show you that your actions like voting are appreciated. The Orb economy creates a balance between payback to the community and receiving quality feedback from other users.

You can receive Orbs:

  • by voting
  • as a reward in contests
  • as part of your subscription

Orbs can be used to submit photos to the photo contest, take part in special events and unlock special perks in the app.

 

Voting system

Voting in Fotovea has two main aspects:

  • Voting is split into several elimination rounds.
  • In each round, judges vote about the photo pairs.

Judges see two photos at a time and choose the one they consider of higher quality. Seeing pairs helps judges focus and reduces overload. The algorithm selects pairs and judges to make the ranking of photos as fair as possible. Each photo is part of many pairs in each round, giving it multiple chances to prove its value, so photos are not eliminated due to bad luck in being paired with a high-quality photo.

Judges who vote on a pair together create a consensus on which photo is of higher quality. Adding more judges to a pair improves the consensus but doesn’t automatically make one photo better ranked. Judges are assigned to many pairs, but voting is distributed so one judge can’t impact one photo too much.

Fotovea collects votes in each round, and the ranking algorithm calculates a ranking from these votes. Photos below the cut-off line at the end of each round stop competing, and their ranks are final. The remaining photos continue to the next round. This process repeats until the final round. In the final round, judges vote on the top 100 photos. The top photo becomes the Contest Winner, and the next 11 photos receive the title “Honorable Mention.” Other contest awards are summarized here.

Sometimes photographers can feel that the rank of their photo does not fit the photo quality. Having more judges solves this situation. You can read more about More Judges here.

 

Ranking Algorithm

The ranking algorithm is a crucial component of our Fotovea application. It works in tandem with the voting system. So the photo ranking expresses the quality with minimal impact of other factors.

The ranking algorithm uses judges’ votes as input. Each vote represents a judge’s preference for one of the two photos. Each judge casts their vote on many pairs, and many judges vote about each pair. The algorithm sets the ranks of photos to be the best fit that balances all opinions of the judges. You can learn more about the voting system in Voting system.

Sometimes photographers may feel that the rank of their photo does not fit the photo quality. In such cases, photographers can use the More Judges feature. You can learn more about More Judges in the More Judges Request.

 

More Judges Request

We want to be sure that the photo rank represents the quality of the photo. So, we use an advanced approach to rank the photos. You can read more about it in the Voting System and Ranking Algorithm.

Sometimes, photographers might believe that their photos deserve a better rank. This can happen in a couple of scenarios:
1. At the start of voting, when there are not so many votes in the system and photographer wants to have a better information about the ranking right from the beginning.
2. If the judges up to now were maybe not a good mix for their photo.
3. At the end of the round, when the photo ranking is around the cut-off line and with very good precision, decide about advancing to the next round. In all cases, more votes from more judges will make things fairer.

By activating More Judges, photographers can request the collection of extra votes about their photos. The request for More Judges tells Fotovea to collect more votes on the selected photo. These extra votes improve the rank resolution in a shorter time. Thus, the photographer can be sure that the ranking corresponds with voters’ opinions.

Please remember that the rank of the photo in our application is not the sum of votes. More votes make the ranking more accurate as the better photo from the pair is confirmed by more judges. This means “More Judges” requests do not guarantee a better result. Your rank can improve, worsen, or stay the same as more votes are gathered.

We’re happy to share that we’re working on the “More Judges” feature and will add it to the Fotovea app soon. Keep an eye out for this new update!

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