The Big Poster Challenge and Canteen magazine photo competition – Soggy Saturday Round Up

© Sam Irons, The Big Poster Challenge billboard sites

The market for some genres of professional photography may be shrinking but where photography competitions are concerned, it’s booming. Hardly a day goes by without an announcement of some kind relating to a competition – the launch, the results or other related news. So, this weekend’s post includes two very different competitions, The Big Poster Challenge, an ‘ideas’ competition aimed at creatives in the UK, and Canteen magazine’s international open photography competition.

THE BIG POSTER CHALLENGE
The Big Poster Challenge is organised by Lisa Pritchard Agency (LPA) in partnership with the Mental Health Foundation and Clear Channel Outdoor.

The brief? To come up with a concept for a poster campaign to raise awareness among the public of “the invaluable benefits of mindfulness, a simple form of meditation that alleviates stress”. Now, that rings a bell. I associate mindfulness with a particular form of meditation I practised on a 10-day Vipassana meditation course.

The Mental Health Foundation has launched a campaign for Mindfulness which is where the competition comes in. “The campaign is supported by a report that investigates the effectiveness of psychotherapy and demonstrates that Mindfulness-based therapies can be incredibly effective to treat depression, anxiety, stress and other mental and physical health problems.”

So, if you’re an ideas person (“anyone working in the communications industry as a creative”) and like the idea of inhabiting the skin of a creative director, this could be the competition for you.

The winning idea will be produced by LPA and realised by one of the agency’s commercial photographers. It will be shown on 48 and 6 sheet posters around the UK. The winner will be notified on 14 May or “as soon as possible thereafter”.

DEADLINE
Creative concepts to be submitted by 18 March.

SUBMIT
A PDF file no larger than 4 MB to: thebigposterchallenge@lisapritchard.com

The following is from The Brief, a downloadable PDF. Even if you don’t enter, it can be useful to look at how comms strategies are put together.
“WHAT THEN IS THE CHALLENGE FOR COMMUNICATIONS?
To take Mindfulness into the mainstream and communicate Mindfulness as a technique to cope with the stress of modern life. There is something you can do and there is somewhere you can go to help manage these feelings and to help you cope. You can be in charge again.

WHAT THEN IS OUR REASON TO BELIEVE?
Clinically proven – A simple technique that helps you effectively manage your feelings of stress and anxiety. Designed for the needs of modern living – Accessible to anyone. You can learn Mindfulness online, in your own time.

THE CREATIVE STORY
WHAT THEN IS THE CREATIVE CHALLENGE FOR COMMUNICATIONS?
To overcome people’s perception of managing stress and tell them they now have an alternative.

WHAT’S AT THE HEART OF THE STORY?
‘The modern answer to stress management – Mindfulness gets you back on top, living life’ We need to grab the consumer’s attention in an interesting, entertaining and original way to identify and emotionally connect with the everyday causes of stress and motivate them to make a change and get control. We need to direct them to the website http://www.bemindful.co.uk

WHO ARE WE TELLING THIS STORY TO?
Primary target audience – the consumer ABC Male/Female, 15 – 55

WHERE AND WHEN SHOULD WE TELL THIS STORY?
National 6 and 48 sheet campaign, breaking July 2010. Creative needs to communicate a central idea beyond one execution although the best single execution of a campaign idea will go into production.”

CANTEEN MAGAZINE PHOTO COMPETITION
I have to admit that I am not so familiar with Canteen magazine, based in Brooklyn, NY , but I recently received an email about an international open photography competition which I said I would pass on. Winners will be featured in Canteen magazine and in a show at powerHouse Arena. Canteen are aiming to make the judging process as transparent as possible and have given details of the selection process which I have also included. Having taken a look at the website and the magazine online, I’m looking forward to seeing, touching and reading it in print also.

PRIZES
Winner $500 + portfolio published in Canteen Six, posted on website, and featured in contest show at powerHouse Arena. Three runners-up: $100 + work posted on website and featured in contest show at powerHouse Arena.

COST
Entry is $15 (which also gets you a copy of the magazine or subscription)

DEADLINE
28 February

SUBMIT
Five to eight Jpegs. Work derived from “all traditional and digital photographic processes, as well as mixed-media work that is primarily photo-based, will be considered”. However, “projects that have been published in book format with a photographic publishing house or a university press are not eligible for the competition”.

Photographic Themes – “All themes are acceptable, but keep in mind that Canteen is an art publication—so we’re not really looking for adorable pictures of your kittens wearing matching sweater”s.

Artists’ Statements: “Use the “Comments” section in our submission software to indicate the process or medium used, as well as the final exhibition size. You may also use this section to include a project synopsis and/or an artist’s statement of up to 3,000 characters. Synopses and statements are welcome but not required”.

SELECTION PROCESS
“The 20 finalists will be selected by Matthew Porter and Canteen’s art directors, JJ Sulin and Betsy Bell. The first-place winner and three runners-up will be selected by Arnold Lehman and Matthew Porter. We will depict parts of the selection process on our website, including the judges’ comments, alongside thumbnails of the entries discussed.”

JUDGES
Arnold Lehman (Director of the Brooklyn Museum)
Matthew Porter (nyc-based photographer)

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