Nikon Photo Contest No Longer Accepts Photos Shot Using Film Cameras

Another sign of the times (and bad news for film-photography enthusiasts): one of the most prestigious photo competitions in the world no longer accepts film photographs. Earlier this week Nikon published a “call for entries” for its 34th Nikon Photo Contest. Here’s what the entry guidelines say about “Eligible Works”:

Image data files created with digital cameras (including medium- and large-format cameras). Images that have been retouched using software or by other means will be accepted. Both color and monochrome images will be accepted. (Scans of photographs taken with film cameras are not eligible.)

The contest has been held since 1969 to “provide an opportunity for photographers around the world to communicate and to enrich photographic culture for professionals and amateurs alike.”

The same photo contest two years ago did accept film photographs:

Image data captured with a digital still camera (excluding that captured by medium-format and larger digital cameras) and image data created by scanning an image captured with a film camera (35mm or APS) will be accepted. Images that have been digitally enhanced or edited with software will also be accepted.

On the contest’s official website, Nikon says that the change is in response to the changing landscape of photography:

In the last 10 years, with the wide penetration of digital cameras, the environment surrounding photography and cameras has dramatically changed. And so the contest is changing as well, both in name and in structure.

The new guidelines this year rule out photos shot using the Nikon F6, a $3,000 professional film SLR that’s still in production. They’re also major obstacle to photographers who shoot medium or large format, since it can cost quite a pretty penny to go digital in those formats.

Thanks for sending in the tip, Kav!

Image credits: oldnew camera selfportrait by salguodbocaj, Nikon FM by Khánh Hmoong, Nikon Camera Strap by Jorge Quinteros

  • francesco

    we should massively enter digital files coming from negatives scann to see their reaction or how they will cope with it.

  • Timothy

    Nikon comp organisers, you silly billys!!!! photography landscape is a pathetic excuse. just come out with the truth…… ( WE HAVE DECIDED TO PROHIBIT FILM PHOTOGRAPHY AS WE ARE NOT PROFITING FROM THE SALE OF FILM OR THE FILM SLR CAMERA. FOR THIS REASON WE SUGGEST YOU BUY OUR DIGITAL CAMERAS AND PUT MONEY IN OUR POCKETS!!!!

  • Emily Fitch

    sad times

  • p


  • Bright

    Since they accept images that have been retouched (i.e. Photoshop), it’s as simple as scanning your film, Opening one of your NEF files (or download from the internet a sample), then copy and paste the film shot over. Save it and submit it to Nikon. If you want to get fancy, shoot a blank frame with all the settings that copy the film shot and do the same with that NEF file. As far as you’re concerned you have retouched your blank image to have an image :)

  • Jan N

    I could care less. These contests have always been about moving brand name cameras off the retailers shelves. The manufacturers don’t care about photography they care about selling cameras. Camera buyers are the victims of their marketing ploys. The winning entries are usually boring, oversaturated dross. Save your the time and effort. Go take photographs and don’t buy a camera so you can “play Nikon’s game”.

  • Alessandro

    RIP photography. RIP Nikon.

  • Peter J. Crowley

    Paint with numbers I liked Nikon a whole lot were they were a Japanese Company.

  • Steve

    This is going to hurt them a bit, I shoot film and digital and i have some awesome pictures with film….Too bad nikon, we will have to go somewhere else, maybe we have to go to a canon?

  • nk

    Photography, my friend, is film. Digital is, imaging.

  • Georgi

    people! I think they mean scans of prints are not excepted /which is
    substandard by any means/! I don’t think a proper film scan would be a

  • comrade

    But what is the REASON?