2024 AOP Open Award

Entries open to all AOP Member and Non-Members.

Championing exquisite imagery. 

© Alex Macro, GOLD Winner 2023 AOP Open Award

  ”The Open Award is open to everyone – both professional and amateur – and are about championing exquisite imagery. There are no categories or restrictions in the Open Award, the image is the star, and exciting and innovative work is encouraged.” 

The AOP Open Award is run by the Association of Photographers and is an exciting opportunity  for professionals and amateurs to compete on equal terms, with still and moving images created by a person, during what is our prestigious Annual Awards season. 

Not to be confused with our AOP Projects Programme which features a rolling calendar of partnered projects, the AOP Open Award aims to bring together professional and amateurs in a high profile way.

Featured Image: © Alex Macro, Carmargue camouflage. 2023 Gold Winner


Entry information

The Open Award is a popular competition that has been running for 15 years, and each year has attracted approximately 1,500 entries from around the world.  

Finalists will be exhibited alongside 38th AOP Photography Award Finalists at the official AOP Awards Showcase in September 2024 with Gold and Silver Winners for the 38th AOP Awards, including the Open Award being announced live at the event.

AOP Open Award Finalists will also feature in the highly collectable 39th AOP Awards Book. 

There are no categories or themes in this competition, so the choice of work submitted is entirely up to the photographer. 

As in previous years, stills, moving image & innovation are accepted.
All images must have been created on or after 1 January 2022.
  • You can enter a single or series (2-5) of images, created by a person.
  • Images submitted online should be RGB and in JPEG format. They should be no larger than 3500 pixels on the longest edge. Your final file size must not exceed 10 megabytes
  • You can enter a piece of moving imagery up to 7 minutes in length, demonstrating your understanding and skills within the medium. All moving image entries must reference whether the work is a collaboration with another artist be it a director, editor, colour grader, musician etc. or whether it’s the independent work of the photographer. You may wish to illustrate the creative use of technologies for example AR, VR, CGI or an other technique, created by a person.
  • You can enter works of innovation with an example of excellence that illustrates the creative use of technologies and innovations in the production of still images. This can be AR, VR, CGI or any other technique, created by a person.
  • You can enter commissioned or personal work.
  • You can win Gold and Silver.

For Full Image Specifications please see points 7 & 8 in the 2024 AOP Open Awards Terms and Conditions here

Gold and Silver Winners will each receive a complimentary
AOP Associate Membership*.

AOP Associate Member Limited Benefits include:

  • Exclusive cover under our group Professional Indemnity Insurance Policy* (see below)
  • Listing in the AOP Find a Service directory including contact details and up to 4 galleries of 15 images each
  • Access to our Business & Legal advice team on a charge-per-session basis (£50 inc. VAT for a 30-minute session)
  • Opportunity to pay for direct mailings to all Photographer members as well as advertorial copy in the newsletter (for an additional fee – please contact us to discuss.)
  • Free buy/sell advertisements on the AOP’s website
  • * Introductory insurance policy through Williamson Carson
  • All benefits and discounts of the Associate membership (listed here)

Entries for the AOP Open Awards 2024 open Tuesday 7 May 2024

Entry Fees (all prices include VAT @20%)

Members – £15.00
Non-members – £20.00
Members – £25.00
Non-members – £35.00

AOP Members receive a discounted entry fee.
Gold and Silver winners, along with finalists, may also appear in a final Awards showcase event and also feature in the 39th AOP Photography Awards book.


© Owen Harvey, Silver Winner 2023 AOP Open Award

© Paul Winter, Ruth, Seaford Mermaids

Judged by

Francis Augusto

AOP Accredited Photographer

Francis Augusto’s (b. 1993, Angola) practice draws inspiration from his childhood, his experience as a former youth worker, and his sociology degree. With an observational approach to image-making, Francis candidly chronicles everyday life, capturing the moments that reflect our shared humanity. His major work, “Songs of Love & Loss,” recently exhibited and supported by the British Arts Council, explores the complexities of romantic relationships.

Francis has been recognised throughout his career for his portraiture and social documentary work, winning the British Journal of Photography’s Portrait of Britain award or runner-up in Photo Oxford. His works mainly focus on themes of interaction, mundanity, and joy, employing an ethnographic approach that invites viewers into the lives of the subjects. This approach is visible in his commercial and editorial work for Fuji, Nike, and Bloomberg.

Francis is also available for lecturing, mentoring & critiquing opportunities.


Zoe Norfolk

AOP Accredited Photographer

Zoë has established herself as an expert in lifestyle and portrait photography. She has a passion for photographing people and their environments, creating moments that give an added depth within a picture. She loves capturing great light, faces and colours.

After gaining an honours degree in photography at Staffordshire University she worked as a photographer in Miami before moving back to London where she managed Linda McCartney’s image archive while encouraged to build her own career.

Alongside her professional work, Zoe always has numerous personal projects on the go. Ranging from portraits of 80 households in her local community in Muswell Hill from behind their windows, during lockdown, to following a vintage steam fairs last ever UK tour before it was sold off.

In 2023 – she won a Silver award from The Association of Photographers, for her long-term project “Every Year I take a Photo.” An ongoing project of self portraits taken with her son, on his birthday every year.

This year she was a winner of The British Journal of Photography’s Portrait of Britain award with her image of “Gracie in Frinton”.

Instagram @zoenorfolk 


Waldo Wilkinson

MD / Agent / producer, Morgan Lockyer

Waldo Wilkinson has been an agent for 16 years, specialising in Advertising and Commercial photography for the last 12. The journey of appreciation for visual language and communication started with phenomenal art teachers in school, incredible tutors on the St Martins Fashion degree and a wonderful editor at Esquire magazine. Since then he has worked across TVC Production, then evolving into Photography, where he was fortunate enough to be mentored by the inimitable Charlote Morgan.

He paints and plays pinball on the weekends. 

This is your chance to be seen by leading commissioners and names withing the photographic industry and see how your work stands amongst renowned professionals and industry names. 

Become an AOP Member

AOP members enjoy discounted entry to the AOP Awards and Open Projects programme, if you would like to become an AOP member, please  click here.

Previous AOP Open Award Winners

2023 AOP Open Award Winners

Congratulations to Alex Macro – GOLD winner in the 2023 AOP Open Award

Camargue camouflage.

The ancient white horses of the Camargue are as wild as their surroundings. Catching one, literally and photographically, can be challenging. This one very graciously and coyly paused in the reeds for a second while I caught this shot.

© Alex Macro

Accepted on behalf of GOLD Winner, Alex Macro by Leah Mitchell. Presented by AOP President Tim Flach

Congratulations to Owen Harvey – SILVER winner of the 2023 AOP Open Award

The Matadors.

Bullfighting is a huge part of the Spanish identity and history, with origins as early as 711 AD.
With growing division in the opinion of whether the killing of an animal should continue for entertainment, I went to Spain in search of the next generation of young hopeful matadors.
I found young men who felt they’d learnt respect, courage and discipline from the teachings of bullfighting. Some were from generations of bullfighters and the culture around this performance of strength, movement and machoism was their life in and outside of the arena.

© Owen Harvey

SILVER Winner - Owen Harvery receiving his award from AOP Chair Hamish Crooks

Event Images: © Gurdev Singh

Meet the Finalists of the AOP Open Award 2023

“Once again, the judges and the AOP team have been blown away by the quality of the Open Award finalist entries. Captivating and considered work, with a range of entries that have compelling human stories to share. Plus, lots of new names to discover, making this another exciting year for photography indeed.”
Isabelle Doran
“…a really compelling set of entries I thought. It was quite a tricky challenge judging single images, series of images and also the film entries, as obviously it’s not like for like, so that was a challenge. But I think between all of us there were some obviously clear standouts… Overall great work from everyone”
Nic Renn
Creative Director & Art Director
“It was a real pleasure the judge the AOP Open Awards this year. I think the diversity in the work across lots of different genres was excellent and the quality throughout was high. The winners themselves were certainly deserving of their places and I certainly look forward to seeing more of their photography in the future, so congratulations to all.”
Levon Biss

2021 - 2022 Open Award Winners

© Sujata Setia, GOLD Winner
Found plastic toys
© Meredith Andrews, SILVER Winner

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See Interview with 2021/2022 GOLD Winner Sujata Setia here:

AOP Open Award 2023 Entries Open: Wednesday 3 May 2023

View our submission guide here

© Christopher Lindhorst, Chloe Watkins, Sound Support

AOP Photography Awards

The AOP Photography Awards are known as the ‘Oscars’ of the photography world. They celebrate excellence in the creative photography and image-making industry.
This is your chance to be seen by leading commissioners and names within the photographic industry.
Find out more about our 39th AOP Awards…