Call for Works


TUPF 2016: Urban Playground

We live, we work, and we play in a continually evolving landscape. Swinging from place to place, climbing the corporate ladder, and monkeying around in bars, we are more than just passive observers, we are active adaptors and creators in an environment that goes beyond cultural and ecological boundaries.

The city is inspiring and inspired. Defining and defined. But most of all, the city is a sensual experience, a playful experience.

This year’s theme is Urban Playground. It’s about how the city is playful, how we make play in the city, and how we play with ideas of the city. It’s about how we create in and are created by the city. It’s about this playground we live in and call home.

Have fun and play with this year’s theme. Show us how you make sense of the urban, how you make the static dynamic, and how you play in and play with the city. Play with your images, your image making, and your ideas. Be playful.

Each entry must consist of the following:

  • One (1) group of three (3) images related to this years theme: URBAN PLAYGROUND
  • One (1) written statement about your images and how it represents the Urban Playground theme within the photos; minimum 100 words, maximum 500 words
  • Contact information: Name, address, email address, phone number
  • Confirmation of $15 (early bird), or $20 (regular) PayPal payment

When you have all of the above, fill in the form and you will get a confirmation shortly afterward.

We will let you know if your submission(s) has/have been selected by email or phone within 3 weeks before the gallery opening.

Submissions will be accepted from 12:01am Nov. 15th 2015 until 11:59pm April 1st 2016.

Early bird pricing for submissions are $15 and will end on March 1st 2016 11:59pm.

Submissions are $20 after the early bird period.

Accepted Works

  1. All photographs/works must be originally produced and not include any copyrighted materials
  2. Both film and digital photography is accepted (see below for technical details for submissions)
  3. Works may have been shown before either in a gallery or commercial production
  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

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 year’s theme (Urban Playground)

Entry Fee

  1. There is a $20 Canadian entry fee ($15 Early Bird) for each submitted group of works
  2. This fee is to help cover costs of promotions and gallery rental fees
  3. No money from the fees goes to the executive or the volunteers of TUPF
  4. Any money that exceeds the TUPF budget will be put towards next year’s festival, with some of the proceeds going to help local charitable initiatives
  5. Your submission will only be considered for selection once payment has been received

Number of Submissions

  1. Each photographer/artist is allowed to submit up to 5 groups of work each consisting of 3 images
  2. Each group of work must contain 3 images that relate to each other photographically and in regards to the written statement
  3. Each group of work must have it’s own separate and different writeup

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 most prominent part of the work.
  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
  5. File sizes should not exceed 5MB (for each photo)
  6. Please label each submitted photo with first initial and last name followed by the sequence number (ex: CDavidson1.jpg)
  7. Any files that do not conform to the above may not be accepted and no refund will be given
  8. If you do not have any software for image processing, try Gimp, a free image editing program for Windows, Mac, or Linux. Quick tutorial on resizing images.

All submitted images remain owned by the copyright holder (the photographer).

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).

Work may be modified (cropping, etc.) when being used for promotional purposes, however, alterations will be kept minimal to keep the integrity of the initial image.

Submitted photographs will not be sold by TUPF without the express consent from the photographer.

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 10%).

Judging of all photographs submitted to 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.

All judging will be done anonymously in a blind review format.

All photographic submissions will be judged based on five (5) criteria:

  1. Individual Image Quality:
    Each image is judged on artistic vision and technical quality (composition, lighting, subject matter) – 16.67% x 3 (each image)
  2. Image Cohesion:
    The cohesion and connection between all three images as a set – 16.67%
  3. Write Up:
    How the ‘story’ behind the project relates to the theme, and how it critically engages with the subject matter related to the artistic vision – 16.67%
  4. Image/Write Up Cohesion:
    Connection between the artistic vision (images) and the write up; how well the statement matches the photographs and vice versa – 16.67%

Any photographic submissions that are not chosen may be used for TUPF promotional purposes with credit given to the photographer. Photographic submissions that are not chosen stays the property of the photographer.

Board members and volunteers of TUPF are allowed submissions, but in doing so, forfeit their right to judge any and all works submitted.

Work chosen for exhibition will be based on the judging and selection criteria above.

Photographers will be expected to cover the costs of printing and framing/mounting the photographs for exhibition and will be given sufficient notice in order to accomplish this.

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 is available.

All work is expected to be delivered at least 5 days before gallery opening in order for curators to be able to curate and hang the exhibition.

Due to an unknown number of entries we are not able to confirm exact number of selected winners and runners up (previous years have had one Local and one Global winner and 9 each of local and global runners up for a total of 20 winners).

Winning submissions must show the three images submitted. Images cannot be replaced, removed, or added to the winning submission (negotiations can be done upon selection of winners if necessary).

Each winning entry will show all three submitted images at minimum 8″ x 10″ (20cm x 25cm) up to 30″ x 40″ (75cm x 100cm) (some negotiation on sizes can be done upon selection).

Selection of works is at the sole discretion of the TUPF selection committee.

All artwork/photographs submitted and exhibited will be the sole responsibility of the artist with regards to insurance to and from the gallery and with regards to it being in the gallery.

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.

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, 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.

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!