The British Society of Underwater Photographers (BSoUP)
Inspiring and informing underwater photographers since 1967

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BSoUP's Sponsors

Kungkungan Bay Resort

SS Thistlegorm

Winning Imaes by Paul Colley


Brtish Divers Marine Life Rescue - Sponsors of BSoUP / DIVER Print Competition 2017



Mike's No 1 Dive Cameras

O'Three - Sponsor of the BIUPC 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018

Underwater World Stony Cove

Diver Magazine - Sponsor of the Annual Beginners Portfolio Competition and the BSoUP/DIVER Print Competition

DiveQuest - Sponsor of the Underwater Excellence

Annual Beginners Portfolio Competition

Sponsored by Diver Magazine

First prize: the DIVER Trophy


The Annual Beginners Portfolio Competition is held in November and is open to members & non-members alike, provided that they have not come first, second or third in a national or international competition, such as BSoUP's Open and Beginners Portfolio Competitions, Image, U/W Photographer of the Year, Wildlife Photographer of the Year, Marine Conservation Society, Antibes festival of underwater images, Dive Magazine’s British Underwater Image Festival etc.

The objective of the Beginners’ Portfolio competition is to identify photographers who can demonstrate a range of skills in underwater photography. The overall impression of the portfolio should communicate variety, not necessarily of subject, but certainly of approach and technique. 

A portfolio of 3 individual images for photographers that have not won or been placed in a major competition. The images can be of any subject matter.

All entries will be projected on the night.  The nominated judge will have seen them in advance and have chosen the winners.  At the meeting, the judge will explain the process and rationale for choosing the top three, why the next three didn't quite make it, and possibly select one or two other entries to comment on.  Not forgetting the desire to keep the audience involved, there will be an opportunity for questions.  Those present will still be able to see whether their favourite images were selected by the judge and, if not, hopefully understand more about why.

The judge’s comments on the winning images and any others shortlisted will be made available to Members only - after the meeting.

Many of the past Beginners competition winning entries are reproduced in our Gallery. You might like to browse through them and read the linked pages on how the photographs were taken and/or chosen to gain an insight into what makes a winner. There is also an article on choosing slides for a winning portfolio by Colin Doeg called Six of the best which you might like to read before preparing your portfolio.

The sponsor of the competition reserves the right to publish the winning portfolios.

Winner 2019 © Charlotte Moseley

RULES - Portfolio


1. Members of the British Society of Underwater Photographers and those who participate in the Society’s competitions are expected to observe the Underwater Photographers Code of Conduct

2. All entries must have been taken underwater.

3. The entrant must be the photographer.

4. Swimming pool and aquarium shots are not eligible.

5. Images entered must not have come first, second or third in a national or international competition, such as the British and Irish Underwater Photography Championship, the St Abbs Splash-In, BSoUP/ Diver Print Competition, Image, U/W Photographer of the Year, Wildlife Photographer of the Year, Marine Conservation Society, Antibes festival of underwater images, etc. Within BSoUP competitions, images that have won any competition cannot be re-used in subsequent BSoUP competitions.  However, individual images in any BSoUP portfolio that did not win may be re-entered in Focus On. Similarly, individual images that haven’t previously won a Focus On competition may be entered as part of a subsequent portfolio. Bear in mind the judge may be looking for new images.

6. The competition is judged anonymously so please do not include your name on the image, but feel free to include your copyright information in the file metadata.

7. All entries for competitions at the monthly BSoUP meetings must be received by one minute to midnight on the Sunday 9 days before the event.

8. Digital images must be submitted as attachments to an email addressed to includes details of subject, location camera make, mode,l lens,and camera settings in the body of the email.

9. The sponsor of the competition reserves the right to publish the winning portfolios.

10. Since the competition is judged anonymously you shouldn't include your name on the image. We recommend you include copyright information (and more) in File Info without it appearing in the image. If you use Photoshop or Lightroom open the file and click on File and then select File Info from the drop down menu. You will see a tabbed dialogue box. The first tab includes Copyright Status with a drop down – select Copyrighted. In the Copyright Notice include your name (and other details if you wish). Then click on the OK button.

Format of competition entries

11. Entries must be in JPG format. PowerPoint and other formats will be not be accepted.

12. The portfolio must comprise three complete images.

13. See the 'Re-sizing Images for Competitions' for more details but please NOTE that individual image sizes given are for guidance only - you may wish to include images of different sizes to those quoted. This is acceptable provided that the entry has two rows of three images that are identifiable as complete photographs and not extracts from a photograph.

14. It is advisable to convert the image to sRGB, which is a better profile for projections.

15. File names should include your name (e.g. John_Smith.jpg). Please capitalise the first letter of your given and family names as this is how your name will appear as a caption in the competition slideshow archive. DO NOT include the subject or any other details except your name in the image file name.


Copyright in all images remains with the photographer. However, BSoUP reserves the right to use any or all of the images submitted to its competitions, on its website, in its magazine 'in focus', and in press releases in connection with its competitions. All images will be credited to the photographer.

Images submitted to BSoUP competitions will NOT be passed on to a third party, except to the sponsor of a competition as set out in the competition rules.

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