Celebrate the Sea Shoot-Out Competition 2018

Competition Terms & Conditions

Once you have registered to enter the competition you will receive a detailed competition brief which describes the details of submission, file naming, timings and other detailed instructions.

1.    The Ocean Geographic Pictures of the Year Competition Shoot-Out (“the Competition”) is positioned as the most influential underwater Shoot-Out photography competition, with awards chosen by a panel of ocean luminaries; some of the world’s most celebrated ocean-image makers, fine art artists or scientists.
2.    The competition aims to attract entries from both professional and amateur photographers.
3.    The competition aims to promote the splendour and conservation of the North Sulawesi marine heritage.
4.    The Competition is owned and organised by OceanNEnvironment Ltd (ONE) and Ocean Geographic Society (OGS), staged in conjunction with the Celebrate the Sea Festival.
5.    The competition encourages innovative composition and originality for all submissions.


Terms of Entry

1.    Each entrant must read, understand and agree to participate according to the Competition Terms & Conditions.
2.    By submitting an entry, the entrant agrees to the Competition Terms & Conditions and confirms that their entry complies with the competition requirements.
3.    Any entry that fails to comply with the Competition Terms & Conditions will be disqualified.
4.    No refunds or allowances will be made in such instances and any prize will be forfeited.
5.    The decision of the judges on all matters relating to the Shoot-Out Competition is final and binding. There will be no negotiation.

Entering the Competition
1.    Pictures for this Shoot-Out competition must be captured during a maximum 10 dives in Bunaken Marine Park, Lembeh Strait, around Bangka Island or within Manado environs between 1 – 3 April 2018.
2.    Competitors must dive with one of the participating resorts from 1 - 3 April. Each resort has their own CTS package - please see the Resort Packages page here.
3.    Each competitor must undertake a maximum of 10 dives between 1 - 3 April at their chosen resort. Additional diving before 1 April or after 3 April can be arranged directly with the resort, but competition submissions are only valid from up to 10 dives during 1 - 3 April.
4.    The competition opens for shooting at 09:00 a.m. 1 April. Competitors must arrange the timing of a night dive as part of their 10 dives directly with their chosen resort.
5.    The Shoot-Out Competition is open to anyone aged 18 and above on the last day of submission.
6.    A definition of compact camera is a camera set up with a fixed lens i.e. without the use of interchangeable lenses. Add-on wet lenses such as fisheye or magnifying diopters can be used. This category (CC) is specifically for amateur and novice photographers who do not want to compete with more established photographers. Ultimately, the final decision to compete in this category is up to the photographer; however, we have established some basic guidelines and restrictions. At time of entry, the photographer: 1. has been shooting underwater less than five years 2. Has never placed (1st, 2nd, 3rd) in a major competition 3. has never won more than $200 (value) in a photo competition 4. Has never licensed an image for more than $200.
7.    All competitors will receive a one-year Ocean Geographic E edition with benefits valued at A$20
8.    Competitors must register as a competitor at CelebratetheSea.com
9.    Competitors must set their internal camera clocks to the correct date and time in Manado before commencing their competition dives.
10.    A one-time, non-refundable registration fee of USD$50.00 is required from each entrant, allowing them to submit up to 10 images or one video. Payment must be made online using PAYPAL or a credit card (via paypal).
11.    Upgrade Entry – a competitor may choose to purchase an upgrade for $35 to upload eight (8) additional images.
12.    Submission is open on Tuesday, 3 April from 5 p.m. (17:00) to 9 p.m. (21:00)
13.    The organiser will be not be responsible for submissions that do not arrive. Competitors are encouraged to email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to confirm submission.
14.    Early Bird Registration – register to compete by 1 December 2017 and enjoy a 20% discount.


Small Exotic Animals, Seascapes, Portraits, Compact Cameras, Black and White

Special Category - Environment - (to qualify for the top award, the ‘Master of the Competition’ with $5,000 prize money, your submission must have an image of this description)

*all competition pictures must be captured with EITHER a compact camera OR a DSLR/ mirrorless – it cannot be a combination.

You do not need to select categories for submission. Your submission of 10 pictures Or 18 pictures (if you have purchased the upgrade) can be a mix of any category or a single category.

1.    Entries must be digital files. Scans of transparencies and negatives are not accepted.
2.    Submission: images must be submitted as JPEGs at a maximum resolution of 10 (eg 10 in Photoshop, Adobe (1998) colour space) and must be 1,920 pixels on the longest dimension.
3.    Competitors must also supply camera the RAW file or original jpeg. Image Exif data must remain intact in jpeg and RAW submissions.You must deliver RAW (e.g. NEF for Nikon) files with image EXIF data intact in person to the Mercure Tateli Beach Resort lobby by 12 noon (12:00) on Wednesday, 4 April. Ask for the CTS Shoot-out Competition Officer.
4.    Digital processing is permitted but the final image must remain truthful to the original capture. The image must not misrepresent the reality of the ocean. Editing is limited to cropping (no more than 25% of the original image), levels, contrast adjustment and sharpening. The RAW/original files of the images must also be included in the final submission. The judges will refer to the original or RAW files for verification. The following digital adjustments are permitted: removal of sensor dust spots, saturation in moderation, sharpening in moderation, neutral density gradient in moderation and removing lens vignetting. The following is strictly prohibited: composite or sandwich shots, removal of animals, plants, people and distraction.
5.    Submission is open on Tuesday, 3 April from 5 p.m. (17:00) to 9 p.m. (21:00). You must finish your submission upload by 9 pm latest (21:00) on Tuesday, 3 April 2018 using Wetransfer. No entries will be accepted after this time.

Important Rules

1.   Competitors must be mindful of protecting the ocean environment and heedful not to injure or cause distress to any animals or damage or destroy their habitats in their attempt to procure the picture.
2.   Finalists must supply a complete caption for each image, the location and how the image was shot in a separate word file document.

Copyright and Reproduction
1.    The copyright for all work submitted to the Shoot-Out Competition remains with the copyright holder who will be credited in accordance with the competition’s guidelines.
2.    By entering the Shoot-Out Competition, the competitor grants to Ocean Geographic / the organiser a non-exclusive, irrevocable licence to reproduce, publish and communicate to the public by any means and exhibit their awarded work(s) and copies of their awarded work(s) in all media throughout the world in relation to the Shoot-Out Competition and Pictures of the Year Exhibition.
3.    Winning images will be used by the organiser for promotion of the competition and the marine heritage of Manado for a period of eighteen (36) months from announcements and thereafter the organiser will archive the work for future reference.
4.    Non-winning pictures will be deleted immediately after the announcement of the winners.
5.    Proof of electronic submission is not proof of receipt by the organisers.



1.    The final round will be judged by Honouree Judges on 4 April 2018.
2.    Awarded images in each Category will (subject to Rule 5 below) comprise an Award of Outstanding Achievement (Winner), Runner-up, Highly Commended and Special Mention.
3.    In the instance that any single Category is without a picture of sufficient merit to win the award, the organiser / judges reserve the right not to nominate an Award of Outstanding Achievement or Runner-up winner.
4.    Judging Ethics – judges may be called upon to excuse themselves from voting if the judge happens to have, in any way, helped with the creation of that image or production.
5.    If the judging committee suspects that digital editing standards have been breached, the committee holds sole discretion to disqualify the entry.

Competition prizes

1.    The Awards Ceremony is scheduled for 4 April 2018 in Manado Megamall.
2.    Commemorative certificates or medals may be awarded for each category.
3.    All winners will be published in Ocean Geographic magazine and/or at www.ogsociety.org.
4.    The category winner will each be awarded a cash prize of 25,000,000 IDR (about USD 2,000).
5.    Runners Up will each get 10,000,000 IDR (about USD 800).
6.    The prize for 'Master of the Competition' - the overall winner - is 66,000,000 IDR (about USD 5,000)
7.    There will be prizes for Highly Commended and Special Mention.
8.    Holiday prizes, equipment and cash may be part of the prize package.
9.    All competitors agree that if their picture is awarded, they will participate in related promotions and allow the use of their winning images for the purposes of advertisement, promotion and publicity for the Shoot-Out Competition and Pictures of the Year Exhibition without additional compensation.
10.    All competitors agree that if their winning picture is commissioned for commercial and merchandising purposes, their permission will be sought, and terms and conditions agreed in advance.