Its that time of year again.

Well it would seem that this week is all about winners. There's that big fat Blurb book prize with the winner here. Which is excellent by the way. And then there's the AOP awards here (not such a big prize, in fact what do you get!). And finally the IPA Awards here With another juicy prize.(Ok that was not this week but I needed another..). There was also the Sony World Photography Prize and the Jerwood Visual Arts Prize a few months back, not to mention all the others competitions I have obviously missed and of course the ones to be announced later in the year.

It seems like everything in photography is a competition these days. I happened across an advert for a photography workshop the other day on how to self publish. With all these on line publishers knocking about these days I thought it might be a good idea to check it out. But what was this? You had to submit a body of work and then the 'winner' was allowed to sit down with some fella who showed you how to self publish. Merciful Dogs, is this Pop Idol for photographers. I would much rather pay for someone's services than the cost of printing an entire body of work with the risk of being told to shove off. Its a bit like asking a girl out, and then having to defeat her ten evil ex boyfriends before you can give her a kiss and perhaps run your fingers through her hair..

Standards are slipping my friends and people are getting lazy. You simply cannot call people up any more and pop along with your portfolio on a Wednesday afternoon. I know budgets are being slashed and funding is disappearing, but what happened to spending a little time with a photographer without taking their money. You can't even get your work criticized these days without paying for it. In fact if someone wants to criticize a photographers work, they should pay the photographer.!

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