Frequently Asked Questions

When are the finalists announced? When are the Top 50 announced?
The finalists will be announced early September. The Top 50 will be announced in October. (Critical Mass 2016 TOP 50 is posted here!)

Can I submit the same body of work that I’ve submitted in a previous year?
Yes. But only two images may be from a previous submission. In other words, you may submit the same series, but there must be at least eight new images.

I don’t have 10 images that I would like to submit. Can I enter Critical Mass with fewer than 10 images?
Yes. But please know that this could put you at a disadvantage. We ask that you submit a minimum of seven images. We will disqualify all submissions with less than seven images. These submissions will not be forwarded to the pre-screeners. The registration fee will be forfeited.

I entered and paid, but I didn’t receive a link to the page to upload my images. What do I do?
If you did not receive an email with a link to your entry page, there are three steps you can take to resolve the issue:
1. Check your spam box. The registration confirmation email with your entry page link in it is automatically generated, so it sometimes winds up in spam.
2. If the registration confirmation email is not in your spam box, go here to have the email resent to you.
3. If your resend request doesn’t work, it means you did not click the “confirm registration” button to return to Photolucida’s site when you registered and paid via Stripe. This final step verifies your registration in Photolucida’s system. If you run into this problem, please contact and it will be sorted out easily. Registration help is available Monday-Friday.

Can I submit more than one body of work?
No. You may only enter Critical Mass once. You may only submit one body of work per submission.

Is there a time limit on work submitted? That is, does the work have to have been made within the past year or so?
No. You may submit work from any time period.

Can I enter if I’m a student?
Of course!

Can I submit multimedia work?
Yes – as long as it is photo based. Photography must be one of the mediums used in your work.

Is Critical Mass open to collaborative projects (more than one artist)?
Yes. You may make note of artistic collaborations on the entry form.

Do I have to list prices for my work?
No, but we recommend it. Please see the Entry Guidelines for information on pricing your work.

I’m confused about sizing my images. If I make my images 1000 pixels x 750 pixels, it distorts them. What do I do?
Our Entry Guidelines specify that images should be no more than 1000 pixels wide and no more than 750 pixels high – not both. Imagine that your images have to fit within a box that is 1000 pixels wide and 750 high. This does mean that vertical images need to be smaller than horizontal images and that square images need to be 750×750.

If I sell work as a result of Critical Mass, does Photolucida charge a commission?
Absolutely not. We consider ourselves a matchmaking service, not a broker. Our funding comes from donations, grants, and sponsorships as well as through entry fees for our programs.

Do I have to list edition numbers for my work?
No. That is at the photographer’s discretion. Please see the Entry Guidelines for information on editioning your work.

I’ve uploaded my images and text and I’m done making changes. Where’s the submit button?
There is no submit button. If you can see your images and text and it looks good to you, you’re done. We close the system on the deadline at noon Pacific Time and immediately begin loading all of the entered images and text into the pre-screening program. You may make changes to your page at any time during the registration window. 

I made a mistake in my submission. Can I change it even though the registration period has closed?
No. As soon as registration closes,  all text and images are uploaded for the pre-screening period. We cannot change a submission after registration closes.

If I don’t make it to the finalist round, can I withdraw my submission?
No. All submissions are made available to all entrants of Critical Mass after the voting is completed. 
We do not allow the withdrawal of submissions.