Call For Works for the 2014 TUPF is now CLOSED!

This years theme is “CommUnity”

Early Bird Special: $15CDN (per submission – up to 5 submissions)

12:01am Wednesday 15 January 2014 – 11:59pm (EST) Sunday 17 February 2014
(After Early Bird Special ends cost goes up to $25CDN per submission)


Submissions now accepted until 11:59PM (EST) Sunday, 18 May 2014

The Toronto Urban Photography Festival (TUPF) is looking for critical photographic works that explore the intricacies of the urban environment. We are looking for works from visual urbanists, photographers of all genres (street, urban, objects, cityscapes/landscapes), and artists that engage with the photographic medium to examine and critique the urban and peri-urban centers where more than half of the world’s population live.

TUPF’s theme for 2014 is: CommUnity. And, as last year, this vision is very broad and open to interpretation. The only requirement is that the photos match with our theme in some way. Photos can be from anywhere in the world and don’t have to solely be from Toronto (even if you live in Toronto and submit from here).

Some potential ideas: how various shops, buildings, and organizations help shape and build a community; local people; the impact of new projects on existing communities; how pedestrian and vehicular traffic shape and are shaped by community; public transit (or lack thereof?); and myriad other possibilities that fit with TUPF’s core mission and theme of community.

The call for works is to gather the most exciting and critically informed photographers and artists from the GTAH and around the world to showcase their talents in some of Toronto’s premier galleries. Submissions have a chance to be shown as part of the following exhibitions (LINKS ARE FROM TUPF 2013):

Submit your work!

  1. Send your set of 3 urban images and info to
  2. Make a payment with PayPal for your submission fee here:


Terms and Conditions

Dates for submission

  1. Submissions will be accepted from 12:01am January 15th 2014 until 11:59pm April 30th 2014.

What and How to Submit

  1. Each entry must consist of the following:
    1. 1 group of 3 images related to the theme CommUnity
    2. 1 written statement about your images and how it represents the urban context within the photos; minimum 100 words, maximum 500 words
    3. Contact information (for selection notification purposes): Name, address, email address, phone number
    4. Confirmation of PayPal payment (copy and paste from PayPal email)
  2. When you’ve collected the above send your work (each group in a separate email) to
  3. You will receive a confirmation of your work being accepted within 24hrs (after we check that the PayPal has been accepted, and that the images conform to the tech specs).
  4. We will let you know if you’ve been selected by email or phone within 1 month before the gallery opening.

How to Enter

  1. Accepted Works
    1. All photographs/works must be originally produced and not include any copyrighted materials (according to the locale in which it was produced—photographs must abide by all local bylaws)
    2. Both film and digital photography is accepted (see below for technical details for submissions)
    3. Works can have been shown before either in a gallery or commercial production (this doesn’t increase the chances of selection however)
    4. Any work that promotes or incorporates discrimination, hatred, overt sexuality, or criminal acts or behaviour will be refused at the discretion of the TUPF curatorial committee with no refund given
  2. Written Statement
    1. Each group of photographs must be accompanied by a minimum 100 word (maximum 500 word) statement that explains the project within the theme of CommUnity (100-500 words for the entire set of photos… do not submit a written statement for each photo individually)
    2. Refer to the TUPF mission and other articles on our website and information posted on our facebook page and twitter feed for a better idea of what this should include
  3. Entry Fee
    1. There is a $25 Canadian entry fee for each submitted group of works
      1. Fees may change for promotional purposes, but will never be higher than the listed fee (For example: Early Bird Special)
    2. This fee is to help cover costs of promotions and gallery rental charges
    3. No money from the fees goes to the executive or the volunteers of TUPF
    4. Any money that exceeds the budget will be put towards next year’s festival, with some of the proceeds going to help local charitable initiatives
    5. Only once a payment is confirmed (via email from TUPF) will your submission be considered for selection
  4. Number of Submissions
    1. Each photographer/artist is allowed to submit up to 5 groups of work each consisting of 3 images (for selection purposes only—more may be allowed if selected for the exhibition, see below)
    2. Each group of work must contain 3 images that relate to each other photographically and in regards to the written statement
  5. Technical Details About Submissions
    1. Submissions are for SELECTION PURPOSES ONLY (actual artworks selected for presentation will be full quality as discussed below)
    2. Works must be of a photographic nature but can be mixed media and incorporate other forms of visual practice, as long as the photograph is the prominent part of the work then it is acceptable
    3. Digital submissions only (scans of film or artworks are acceptable)
    4. Minimum dimension of 800px and maximum dimension of 2100px in either length or height and should be 72 to 96dpi
    5. File sizes should not exceed 2MB (for each photo)
    6. Please label each submitted photo with first initial and last name followed by the sequence number (ex: CDavidson1.jpg. If submitting more than one group label photos as CDavidsonGroup1-1.jpg, CDavidsonGroup2-1.jpg, etc.)
    7. Any files that do not conform to the above will not be accepted and no refund will be given
    8. Most digital cameras come with software that allows you to adjust sizing, however, if you do not have any software, feel free to download Gimp a free image editing program for Window, Mac, or Linux. Quick tutorial on resizing images.

License and Ownership

  1. All submitted images remain owned by the copyright holder (the photographer)
  2. The photographer, upon submission of the images grants TUPF the right to use the photographs in any and all promotional materials without recompense to the photographer (photographers will be attributed for all used work)
  3. Work may be modified (cropping for space purposes) when being used for promotional purposes, however, no other alterations will be made to submitted photographs without prior consent
  4. Submitted photographs will not be sold by TUPF without the express consent from the photographer
  5. If photographs are selected for exhibition, the photographer will be given the opportunity to sell their work, but will have to comply with the gallery and TUPF’s commission standards (currently under review, proposed 20% – 10% for gallery and 10% for TUPF to cover costs or donate to local charitable initiatives).

Judging and Selection Criteria

  1. Judging of all photographs submitted to the TUPF will be done by critically informed photographic practitioners, visual urbanists, and accomplished visual artists consisting of both the TUPF executive board as well as external peers
  2. All photographic submissions will be judged based on three (3) criteria:
    1. Artistic vision and technical quality of the presented image (composition, lighting, subject matter, and cohesiveness through the body of work) 33%
    2. Critical engagement with subject matter related to the artistic vision; the ‘story’ behind the project, and how it relates to the urban or the practice of visual urbanism – the written statement 33%
    3. Connection between the artistic vision and the written statement; how well the statement matches the photographs and vice versa 33%
  3. Any photographic submissions that are not chosen will not be used for any purposes of TUPF and will be destroyed/deleted upon final selection of winners.

Chosen Works

  1. Work chosen for exhibition will be based on the judging and selection criteria above
  2. Photographers will be expected to cover the costs of printing and framing the photographs for exhibition and will be given sufficient notice in order to accomplish this
  3. TUPF is working with a festival sponsor for both printing and framing and will try to get discounts; if chosen we will inform you of this information when it’s available
  4. All work is expected to be delivered at least 1 week before gallery opening in order for curators to be able to curate the exhibition
  5. Due to number of entries we are not able to confirm exact numbers of pieces and sizes for the final selected works
    1. TUPF plans to have roughly 3-5 8×10 (more if smaller) photos for each selected group of works for those selected for the Build Giants Local and Building Giants Global exhibitions
    2. The size and number of works will be larger for the Building Giants duo exhibition (sizes and number of pieces to be determined)
  6. Selection of works is at the sole discretion of the TUPF curatorial board based on number and quality of entries, and as such, we are unable to confirm the number of expected artists for the Building Giants Local and Global exhibitions
    1. We plan on there being at least 10 artists for each exhibition—Building Giants Local and Building Giants Global (based on 2013 selections), plus at least one overall winner each from Local and Global (total = 22)
  7. All artwork/photographs submitted and exhibited will be the sole responsibility of the artist with regards to insurance and courier fees to and from the gallery and with regards to it being in the gallery.

Data Collection

  1. Any and all data that is collected will be held in strictest confidence and will not be given out or sold to third party groups
  2. By submitting artwork, you give permission for TUPF to send you periodic updates about the status of your submission, as well as festival related emails (such as upcoming opening nights, VIP gallery info, and other materials of note); this will usually be through email and you will always be able to unsubscribe

If you have any questions or need clarification please email us at and we will get back to you as soon as possible (usually less than 24hrs).

TUPF reserves the right to adjust or amend the preceding information without notice. TUPF, will, however make any and all efforts to ensure that the information provided to you is the most up to date and will make every effort to let you know about any changes.

Good luck and happy shooting!

It’s true, the 2014 Call For Works is now OPEN!!! Everyone is welcome to submit for this year’s festival. You can find out more information on the official call for works page.