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DPG Masters Underwater Imaging Competition 2023

Rules & Guidelines

General Rules
  1. The DPG Masters Underwater Imaging Competition is open to entrants of all skill levels.
  2. Organizing staff are allowed to enter the contest; however, photo contest staff and judges are not allowed to enter.
  3. Each individual can only win one prize or prize package. Entrants with multiple winning entries will be given priority in prizes by value.
  4. Winners will be announced and published on
  5. Any image that, in the opinion of the organizers or judges, shows subject manipulation, will not be awarded. We adhere to the conservation rules established by EPIC®. Marine life should never be stressed or endangered for the sake of a photo. Conservation rules will apply to all entries, and decisions will be final. Entries suspected of exhibiting the following behavior will be disqualified: 
    • Divers visibly damaging the environment (e.g. gear dragging or kicking up sand)
    • Animals displaying signs of stress (e.g. puffed puffers, inking octopus)
    • Images in which the subject has been moved into a position or environment in which they are not normally found
    • Marine life being touched (e.g. coral polyps, seahorse tails)
    • Divers exhibiting poor buoyancy control
    • Images which have been captured in a manner that may cause distress or injury to the marine environment
  6. Category descriptions are available on the photo competition description page.

Additional Rules for Image Entries

  1. All submitted images must have been taken by the entrant.
  2. Images or videos that have won, been placed or listed as a finalists in any major photo or video contest announced before September 1st, 2023, may not be submitted. The definition of a “major” contest is subjective and will be determined in a case-by-case approach by the judges. As a guideline, if your image or video has been widely publicized as a result of its placing, it is likely that this would be considered to be part of a “major” contest. Any single image that was part of a portfolio, but did not place as a single image, is eligible to be entered.
  3. Photographers retain all copyrights to their images. The organizers retain the right to publish the contest entries in print or online to congratulate or feature the winners and their respective images, and to promote future events. Winning images will be included in a press release for third party websites and publications in the context of congratulating and/or featuring the winners and winning images, and to promote future competitions. Strict guidelines requiring photo credit and specific one-time press release usage are issued along with the press release.
  4. All images need to have been taken underwater, except when noted otherwise in a category description.
  5. Entries may have been taken from any camera, digital or film (as scanned slides).
Additional Rules for Video Entries 
  1. All videos must be limited to 5 minutes long, not including titles or credits where underwater footage is not used. Absolute length including titles and credits may not exceed 5 minutes 30 seconds.
  2. A minimum of 50% of the footage must have been taken underwater.
  3. Videos should not show deliberate harassment of the marine creatures unless this harassment is the ecological point of the video.
  4. Please ensure that you have all rights to any media that is used in your video(s): music, visual footage, personal, copyright, or any other legal rights.
  5. Multiple videographers and editors are allowed, but only the submitter will be awarded the prize.
Photo Submission Guidelines
  1. Entries must be saved in JPG/JPEG format, sized to be between 2000 and 6000 pixels in the longest dimension, and have no watermarks. Please limit your images to a maximum file size of 5,000KB (5MB). Images will be viewed on a large monitor and should be in the AdobeRGB 1998 or sRGB color space.
  2. An image can be uploaded into multiple competitions, but only assigned to one category per competition.
Video Submission Process
  1. All video submissions will be registered for and paid for online, but actual submissions must be made using a file hosting service such as Dropbox, WeTransfer, or Google Drive.
  2. After you register and pay for your submission, please print-to-PDF the submission form provided.
  3. Email the PDF submission form to, and in the body of the email include the download link to your video submission on your file hosting service; DO NOT attach your video file to your email. Emails without the attached PDF submission form cannot be accepted.
Video Submission Guidelines
  1. Films must be no longer than five minutes in duration, and at least 50% of the footage must be shot underwater. There are NO EXCEPTIONS to this rule, and entries over 5 minutes long will be disqualified.
  2. All videos must be submitted as an MP4, MPEG, or MOV file.
  3. If your video wins, we may ask for a file in the highest possible quality for public presentation.