asp images of distinction competition

American Society of Photographers (ASP) has announced their second annual image competition. Images of Distinction (IOD) was wildly successful in it’s inaugural year. Using the same criteria for judging, and Professional Photographers of America jurors the event is a great way to get feedback on your photographic imagery. Check out the rules at  And get start getting your images ready.

ASP Images of Distinction February 25-26, 2022

What’s different?

IOD uses scores on the first day of judging. The following day there is image commentary for all makers who wish to receive feedback on their work. This is an invaluable part of the learning process to get your images ready for Professional Photographers of America’s (PPA) International Photographic Competition (IPC). Kristy Steeves shares her thoughts on how the process helped her achieve Diamond status in the Artist category and Platinum in the Open categories at PPA’s IPC.

I interview Kristy about last years ASP – IOD success and why you’ll benefit from entering.
Yours in Creative Photography,        Bob

international photographic competition results

international photographic competition results

Professional Photographers of America (PPA) hold the International Photographic Competition (IPC) each year. My results.

The Jury

A panel of 36 eminent jurors from across the United States selected the top photographs from over 5,000 total submitted entries at PPA headquarters in Atlanta. Judged against a standard of excellence, 1,706 images were selected for the General Collection and 865 (roughly 17 percent) were selected for the esteemed Loan Collection—the best of the best. The Loan Collection images will all be published in the much-anticipated “Loan Collection” book by Marathon Press.

“I’m thankful that these challenges exist through PPA. Having your work reviewed and judged by top industry professionals helps keep my image making from becoming static. I get feedback on new techniques which is priceless in keeping me growing my image creation skills.”

‘Another World’ was captured at the Toadstools in Southern Utah.

‘Great Blue’ was captured in Page Springs, AZ at the Bubbling Ponds.

Loan Collection

Three of my images were accepted into the Loan Collection.

‘Orange Outburst’ is a water droplet photo.


Another water droplet capture in the PPA Loan Collection.

Two were made of experimental photography involving falling water droplets. Orange Outburst and Twice Nice show the result of specialty lighting of three water drops crashing at intervals which are done by very specific timing of the drops, plus a bit of endurance. Many images need to be captured to find some that create these patterns. The other Loan image was from a composite image titled ‘Blessing Place. Bob worked with images of animals photographed at the Phoenix Zoo some northern Arizona landscape features and and clouds photographed from above. 

In addition two more photographs were named to the General Collection. I rendered a watercolor of a great blue heron in flight over the Bubbling Ponds in Page Springs. ‘Another World’ was a night sky photograph of the Milky Way made while in Southern Utah of the Toadstools. It has a very prehistoric feel.

‘Blessing Place’ is a bit of a departure from my normal work.

Images will be in the International Photographic Exhibition alongside other top photographic works from the competition and traveling and special invitational displays. These images constitute one of the world’s largest annual exhibits of professional photography gathered simultaneously in one place.

About PPA

Founded in 1868, Professional Photographers of America (PPA) is the largest and longest-standing nonprofit photography trade association. It currently helps 30,000 professionals elevate their craft and grow their business with resources, protection, and education, all under PPA’s core guiding principle of bridging the gap between photographers and consumers. See more of my artwork at or at the Gallery of Modern Masters in Hillside, Sedona, AZ.

Coming soon

Above you can see the images that were favored by the judges. Soon I’ll share those that did not make it into the General Collection.

Yours in Creative Photography,        Bob

ppa image competition district

ppa image competition district

Coming Soon PPA’s IPC District Competitionppa image competition logo

IPC. Stands for International Photographic Competition from Professional Photographers of America. (PPA) If you are a PPA member it’s time to finish creating those images and get them printed and/or uploaded.

I am a huge fan of PPA’s Imaging Competition. I believe that it had a strong indfluence on me becoming the image maker I am today. My growth as a photographer and artist was accelerated and continues to keep my skills moving forward. I highly encourage you to get in. Remember that you are not getting into image competition to compete with others. It is to compete with yourself.

I’ll be helping to judge the District Competitions at PPA Headquarters in Atlanta from the 5th through 7th of June. Judging will start on the 2nd of June and you can tune in to hear it live. This link will be valid once IPC starts. You do not need to be a PPA member to watch and learn. If you a PPA member and are in the Atlanta area come on by to see the competition live. This is the warm ups to the IPC in August. IMages that do well in Districts automatically earn a Merit at IPC.

Here are some links to some of my past IPC results.

PPA Artist entries 2018

PPA Open entries 2018

Kinda cool that PPA choose one of my images in the PPA Loan Collection to help promote the 12 elements!

Learn about the twelve elements of a Merit image

You have a little over a month from today to complete your registration. Here are the details…


  • $129.00 for PPA members registered by 5:00pm EST May 8, 2019. (non‐members: $65 additional)
  • Please note, any PPA member that entered a district competition will pay a reduced case fee for IPC of $50.00 for PPA members registered by 5:00pm EST, July 18, 2019
  • $164.00 for PPA members registering May 8, 2019 after 5:00pm through May 22, 2019 at 5:00 pm EST No registrations accepted after May 22, 2019 at 5:00 pm EST
  • $39.00 per case for image critiques. Please allow 4 weeks following the completion of the competition. Critiques will be posted in your “My PPA” account
  • Physical print entry cases must be received by May 29, 2019

    Best of luck to you in your quest to become a better photographer and image creator!

    Yours in Creative Photography,      Bob

elite photographer

elite photographer

Elite Photographer Designation

I have been fortunate to receive the Professional Photographers Association Elite Photographer again for 2019. I also received a 25 – Plus bar signifying an additional 25 Merits earned.

So what are these ‘merits’?

They’re essentially a way for a photographer to learn and grow professionally while becoming more active in the industry. You can earn different kinds of merits, all of which are guaranteed to make you a more well-rounded professional photographer! merits are earned through image competition, teaching and service to the industry

elite photographer ppaElite Certificate and 25 – Plus Merit bar

There’s a reason this is such a prestigious level of PPA membership. It requires a lot of hard work and professional accomplishments. It cannot be requested or bought. One automatically qualifies for Elite status when all of the requirements are met by December 31st of each year:

  • Certified Professional Photographer
  • Master of Photography or Master Artist degree
  • Scored four for four on images from a single case from the most recent IPC (bronze, silver, gold, platinum, or diamond)
  • Earned two non-photographic merits that year
  • And be a PPA member in good standing

    Proud to be a PPA member. If you have any questions about the benefits and reasons to be a member get in touch.

    Yours in Creative Photography,     Bob

tuesday painterly art – michelle parsley part two

tuesday painterly art – michelle parsley part two

Tuesday Painterly Art – Part Two
Michelle Parsley – M.Photog, M. Artist, Cr., CPP

I had the pleasure of taking a Michelle Parsley full day Pre-Con class at Imaging USA this year. I was extremely impressed with her attention to detail and classroom style. If you ever get the opportunity to learn from Michelle, I highly recommend it. BTW you can also work with Michelle online. Check out links to her education at the bottom ot the post.

Hear again from Michelle as she continues her talk about her work and producing images for PPA’s International Photographic Competition

michelle parsley image

“Another glimpse into my imagination would be “Get off my lawn!”. Who hasn’t thought of
finding a Leprechaun? Just me?? Oh, ok… ;)

I absolutely love history. You can see the influence of times gone by in images like, “Secret
Admirer”, “Patchwork”, “Waiting for Papa”, and “All in a Day’s Work”. These were some of my
favorite images I’ve ever created — partly because of the historical context, but also because I
built the “sets” in scale miniature and composited my subjects into the scenes. None of those
rooms are more than 12 inches tall!

michelle parsley image“Secret Admirer”

michelle parsley image “Patchwork”

michelle parsley image“Waiting for Papa”

michelle parsley image




“Source of Wisdom”

Easily one of the craziest things I have ever done for print competition was “The Source of
Wisdom”. This print really has to be seen in person to appreciate it. I knew by adding 3D
elements to the print, I was risking being disqualified — but it was something I just had to try. I
have an absurd amount of time in both building the set (I made over 300 books the size of my
thumbnail!!), compositing over 50 frames together, and then adding the miniature books to the
face of the print to give the final piece a 3D feel. At one point I found myself VACUUMING the
print to be 100% sure none of my elements would damage anyone else’s entry. Thankfully –
the judging panel really understood the story and rewarded me with a loan. One word of
caution — if you ever attempt a 3D print, ALL of the 3D elements must be below the face of the
mat or you could potentially be DQ’d for damaging other entries. Proceed with caution!”

Michelle Parsley, M.Photog, M. Artist, Cr., CPP

Behind every artist there is a story and Michelle’s story began as a child when she would draw or paint with anything she could find (which got her in trouble on more than one occasion!). She has been creating hand drawn and hand
painted art for clients for nearly 20 years. Michelle is mostly self-taught in all the mediums she uses to express
her creativity. By combining her love of both digital and organic mediums, Michelle is uniquely equipped to both create and teach art. Michelle earned her Certified Professional Photographer (CPP) designation from Professional
Photographers of America (PPA) in 2009 which led her to enter her first International
Photographic Competition in 2010.

She has since earned the Master of Photography michelle parsley head shot art
and Master Artist degrees in 2014, diamond artist of the year in 2012, the
Imaging Excellence Award in 2015, Photographic Craftsman in 2017, Double diamond and the Imaging Excellence Bar in 2018.

When Michelle is not teaching, photographing, or painting, she enjoys a great cup of coffee, dark chocolate, and working on the family farm in rural Tennessee where she lives with her husband of over 25 years, their four children, four dogs, and an ever changing host of farm animals.

The class I took from Michelle – Photoshop Clone Painting

More Clone Painting Classes – All Clone Painting Classes

General Teaching site – Elevate Your Art