2019 Gomma Grant FAQ

Some of our readers have been sending in some questions regarding this year's Gomma Grant. As these questions could be of interest to many others, we have decided to add this FAQ webpage.

How's Gomma Grant's juring been made?

After the pre-selection, which is made by Gomma editors and skims off the really, really bad work, each of the jurors will view and vote all the works within their own internal submission platform. The voting goes from 1 to 10, where 10 carries a winning status. At this stage, jurors cannot see what other jurors are voting.

At the end, when all the jurors have casted their votes, the system generates mathematically, through all the votes the final ranking. The first 30 photographers are the shortlisted ones. The first 3 winners are selected from the 30 shortlisted. Jurors at this final stage will debate and finally decide unanimously about the first three winners and the honorable mention.

Do jurors see the authors' names?

Yes. We, at Gomma, have decided that jurors should have the possibility to view the authors' names. Most of our jurors are editors and curators, so we allow the possibility for them to get in touch with any submitter, if they wish. This gives the photographers that have submitted, shortlisted or not, the possibility to be contacted for possible jobs or publications.

Why should I submit to photo contests?

In photography, like in many other creative industries, exposure means jobs. It can open doors to new collaboration, publishing and commissions. Photo contests are still a very useful and succesful way to get your work known across a wide international audience.

For sure, many photographers feel sick and tired about photo competitions, there are simply way too many. Every day we see new photo contests sprouting up, and it is difficult to decide whether one is more ethical and reliable than another one.
So we have compiled a brief set of points below. We suggest you - following these points - question yourself about the photo contest you are looking to apply to:

a) The Jury. Investigate about the jury throughly. Do you know those jurors? If you don't know them, try to google their names.
Is it a jury mainly made of photographers? (Photographers, unless they work as editors, do not normally publish your work, do they?) A jury made of curators and editors is what you need, these are the people who can lift your career.

b) The year it was established. Find out when that contest started. The older the better. If it's a new contest, investigate about the company/organization behind it.
Regarding Gomma Grant, this year is the third edition and Gomma was founded in 2004.

c) The submission fees. Are the fees reasonable? If not, ask yourself why the fees are so high. Are those high fees justifiable?

d) The dimension. If the contest is huge and receives thousands of entries your chances of winning or being shortlisted is obviously slighter than when taking part in a smaller photo competition.

So be very critical about the work you are submitting and about the contest itself.

Why should I submit to Gomma Grant?

If photo contests were shops, imagine Gomma Grant like a bijou, quality-focused, collectible shop compared to the Walmart kind of supermarket of the major photo competitions. It depends on what you are looking for and how you would like your work to be judged.

Among Gomma Grant jurors, this year we have influential and prominent editors and publishers. These professionals receive numerous enquiries and requests every day, even getting in touch with them and have your work seen by them is extremely difficult nowadays.

If you submit to Gomma Grant, your work will be seen and judged by them, this alone is an achievement. Sometimes jurors do get in touch with photographers taking part in photo contests, regardless whether the photographers get shortlisted or not, because they see a potential. Maybe some editors are more visionary than others, and even if they don't consider you a winner for this photo contest, they might want to publish your work. We assure you that this does happen.

Photo contests are a big rip off. Nowadays you do photo contests just to make money.

We cannot speak about other photo contests. We at Gomma, with the submissions fees we receive, we cover the costs, the cash grants and barely a fraction of the time we spend working on it.

Normally, if we have any profit left, we do invest it in other projects, like the publishing of books/workshops etc.

Again, judge critically the photo contest you want to take part in.

You added new prize categories, how do we submit into these categories?

You can choose your Gomma Grant category during submission, on this page: gomma.submittable.com/submit.

Your first Gomma Grant was free, why do you charge now?

Unfortunately, running a contest for a grant like this one comes with substantial costs - from the interface submittable.com fees, to web hosting/ web developing & graphic design costs, to the time-consuming selection process (which can take months), marketing and advertising expenses, etc. Therefore since the secon edition we have been forced to apply a small submission fee in order to counterbalance all of these costs.

How long does the selection process take?

Juring starts on 5th November 2019 and it ends on 19th February 2020.

Full submission page here

For further info and to submit please log on to: https://gomma.submittable.com/submit

For Copyrights and Rights Usage information: http://www.gommamag.com/copyright.html

Entry Fees

First Deadline: Friday 14 June 2019: €10.00

Second Deadline: Saturday 31 August 2019: € 15.00

Final deadline: Monday 4th November 2019: € 25.00

Multiple entries are permitted but must be from different bodies of work.

REGISTER FOR GOMMA DESPATCHES. The new Gomma periodical newsletters.

Stay up to date with Gomma and its projects, and with what is going on in the photography world.