Brief & Application Procedure
Your submission must include a synopsis of your project, a proposal, your bio, a résumé/CV and a body of work. Stories may be in progress or planned. Only one application per person will be accepted per year. The submission fee is $50 for professionals and free to students. Entries are judged as much on the strength of the proposal as on the applicant’s visual skills. What storytellers address and what they say about life on the planet is more important than the genre chosen to address that topic.
You must have a Visura.co account to apply.
New to Visura: You will be prompted to create a free account when you begin your entry.
Existing Visura members: If you are already logged in, skip this next step. If you are not logged in, please do so, then select Network at the top of your account page > Active open calls > The Alexia Grants 2023.
The buttons at the bottom of this page will take you to the appropriate submissions page (professional or student), where you will do the following:
STEP 1: CONFIRM YOUR ACCOUNT
Here, you will first create an account if you don't already have one and answer a few required questions.
STEP 2: CREATE AN ENTRY
Here, you will upload your content. All fields, including captions, are required. You will have the ability to save a draft and return to the entry when you're ready to continue. Here, you also will be prompted to read and accept terms and conditions.
STEP 3: PAY THE FEE
Submission is $50 for professionals; it is free for students. Paypal and credit cards are accepted. A limited number of fee waivers are available through partner organizations; see below for details.
STEP 4: SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY
You will receive a confirmation email if the entry was completed correctly.
IMPORTANT: Even after you have paid for and completed your entry, you will be able to edit it until the submission window closes on Feb. 9. If you begin the submission process and would like to save your entry before completing it, select SAVE A DRAFT.
CONTENT TO UPLOAD
Synopsis: A short paragraph (2-4 sentences) that succinctly summarizes your project and gives a general overview of the work you are proposing to do. Reading this should give someone a complete understanding of and context for images they’ll be seeing in your submission. Think of this as your "elevator pitch" for the project.
Proposal: A more complete project description of 400–500 words. Start by clearly stating what the project is about, then explain why the topic is important, how you will continue to work on the project, and what tangible outcomes (exhibit, book, film, website, etc.) will result from the work. Make note of any partnerships you’ve developed for the project that could enhance the impact of the work. Do not put your name or other identifying information on your proposal. All applications will be judged anonymously.
Bio/about statement: An up to 300-word description that provides a picture of who you are as a visual communicator, including any relevant accomplishments and other information.
Résumé/CV: This much longer document formally outlines your professional experience to date (jobs held, responsibilities/skills, timeframes, clients, etc.) and also includes your email address, phone number and mailing address along with the names, titles and phone numbers of three professional references. Do not include any letters of recommendation.
Submit a body of work consisting of up to 20 photographs and/or two videos. Do not feel compelled to submit 20 images; previous grant recipients have submitted as few as 12. Select only your best photos and arrange them in a compelling sequence that reflects your vision and visual narrative. If you have not yet begun working on the project, you may submit photos/videos made within the past three years that reflect your vision for the proposed project. In your written proposal, make sure to note that this work is from a different project. There is no time limit on photos/videos made specifically for your proposed project.
Photo submissions: Digital photo files must be formatted as medium-quality JPEG images at 6000 pixels for the longest dimension at 300 dpi, using the sRGB profile. Each image must have a caption in the file’s metadata/exif caption field. Do not include your name in captions or exif fields.
Video submissions: You may provide up to two videos. They must represent your proposed project directly or an approach similar to the one you plan to tackle. Either way, it must be your own work. Please keep videos to roughly six minutes or shorter. If your video is significantly longer, create a six-minute compilation or trailer, or select a six-minute segment for the judges to review. Your video(s) should be at least 1920 x 1080 (1080p) and uploaded to Vimeo or YouTube. You will then copy and paste the embed code into your entry. Please also upload a poster/thumbnail image and a brief written description of the film. Your project should be subtitled in English if the language is otherwise.
The Alexia follows ethical photojournalistic standards as set forth by organizations such as World Press Photo, Pictures of the Year International and the National Press Photographers Association. Images may not be altered to change the structural integrity of photographed scenes unless they are clearly illustrative in nature. Toning of images — saturation, contrast, vignetting, dynamic range, etc. — must be within reasonable limits, as determined by the judges. We reserve the right to request raw files or untoned .jpg files of submitted images from entrants selected as finalists, with the goal of ensuring the integrity of those images. If you cannot provide raw or untoned files, you might be ineligible to receive an Alexia grant.
All applicants understand that The Alexia will comply with all applicable U.S. export control and economic sanctions laws and regulations, including the screening of applicants and/or grant recipients against lists of export control-restricted parties to ensure compliance with sanctions regulations.
Professionals: Grant applicants who are employed full time must ensure they have any necessary permissions from their employer to allow time to complete their project within one year.
Students: Students must be fully engaged in academic pursuit at a college, university, community college or center of photography at the time of their submission or have graduated in 2022. For most students, that means they’re enrolled full-time and taking courses; others might be on an internship before completing their degree or working on their master’s project or thesis as part of an advanced degree. Ph.D. students are eligible if they are actively pursuing their degree. You will be prompted to provide proof of current enrollment or recent graduation (in the form of a PDF or .jpg) during the submission process.
JUDGING CRITERIA AND PROCESS
The two grants will go to visual storytellers who have the potential to produce significant projects that share The Alexia’s mission (to help promote world peace and cultural understanding) and who demonstrate the ability to accomplish their projects. Applications will be judged by a three-member jury in two phases based on the topic and the strength of the submitted materials — both visuals and the proposal itself. The jury will review all submissions before the judging weekend (March 31–April 1) and advance selected entries for reassessment during the judging weekend, at the end of which they’ll choose a grant recipient, a runner-up and award of excellence honorees in each category (student and professional).
The recipient of the professional grant will receive $20,000 to produce their proposed project. The recipient of the student grant will receive a $1,000 stipend to advance their proposed project, a fellowship for tuition and fees to enroll in three courses during a semester at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University in New York, and a paid position to serve as a research assistant to The Alexia chair. If the jury recognizes additional proposed projects as finalists, they will be featured on The Alexia website alongside the winners.
EXPECTATIONS OF GRANT RECIPIENTS
Professional grant recipients are expected to produce a substantial body of work on the project they proposed — usually clocking in about one to three months of field time — within one year of signing the grant agreement. These recipients will then submit 60 high-resolution images or a high-resolution digital file of their film to The Alexia chair. Student grant recipients are expected to make meaningful progress on their project within one year of signing the grant agreement. These recipients will then submit at least 20 high-resolution images or a high-resolution digital file of their film to The Alexia chair.
All grant recipients working with still photography will consider images made during the entirety of their project in choosing the final images and will consult with The Alexia chair to create the selection. The goal is to reflect the full scope of the project, including any worthy imagery made before the grant was awarded. All images must have captions. All grant recipients working on a film also will consider footage shot during the entirety of their project and will consult with The Alexia chair at least three times: at the rough-cut stage, midway and just before the final cut.
All recipients also must submit at the end of that year a thorough document that 1) outlines how they completed/advanced the project, 2) lists any publication or public presentation of the work, and 3) elaborates on challenges, triumphs and lessons learned. Lastly, all grant recipients will credit The Alexia at Newhouse/Syracuse University if their project (in part or in its entirety) is published or screened during production or within a year of completion.
GRANT OF RIGHTS
All applicants understand, acknowledge and agree that should they be awarded an Alexia grant, the recipient retains the copyright to their work and explicitly grants The Alexia, its licensees, affiliates and their designees an irrevocable, non-exclusive perpetual royalty-free license to use, copy, publish, distribute, screen and display those photographs, photo stories, picture essays, multimedia, films or photo-documentary projects, written content, in any and all manner, form/medium/media now known or hereafter created, and in any publication, advertising, marketing, venue or program sponsored or authorized by The Alexia for the advancement of its mission and goals, including but not limited to educational, promotional and fundraising purposes at The Alexia’s sole discretion, without additional permission or consideration, or notification to the grant recipient or any third party.
The Alexia chair may also use submitted materials and completed projects in their educational responsibilities.
Each applicant warrants and represents that every photograph/film submitted with their entry is their own original work and that they have the unrestricted right to grant The Alexia the license described above.
Alexia grants will be awarded subject to these additional terms: The license granted herein by the applicant to The Alexia for use of photographs/films submitted with the applicant’s Alexia grant application shall be extended in all its terms to all works created by the applicant in the course of any project funded in any part by the applicant’s Alexia grant. Each applicant shall be deemed to have consented to the use of their name, portrait and/or picture by The Alexia in promotional and public relations materials or for any other purpose related to The Alexia. Each applicant shall agree to reasonable requests by The Alexia to present such applicant’s work and/or represent The Alexia at photography workshops, seminars and/or conventions, provided that any necessary expense associated with such presentations is paid by The Alexia. Each applicant shall be responsible for determining his or her own tax liability arising from acceptance of the Alexia grant, and for satisfaction of any such liability.
Through a partnership with African Women in Photography, The Authority Collective, Black Women Photographers, Diversify Photo, The Everyday Projects, Femgrafía, Foto Feminas, Indigenous Photograph, Magnum Foundation, VII Foundation, Visura and Women Photograph, The Alexia is offering a limited number of submission fee waivers. Photographers/filmmakers who cannot afford the submission fee and are members of one of the partner organizations listed above can apply for a waiver from their organization beginning Jan. 9, 2023. Given that there are a limited number of waivers, we recommend you apply for one as soon as possible.
How to apply: Begin your grant competition entry. If you are not already a Visura member, you will be prompted to create an account at the beginning of the grant submission process. Next, follow these steps:
1. Create an entry.
2. Save the entry as a draft. (You will be allowed to return to edit your submission until the closing deadline.)
3. Click the Preview button, then copy the URL of that preview page.
4. Share that URL via email with your partner organization for their review ALONG WITH YOUR PROJECT SYNOPSIS (a short paragraph of 2-4 sentences that succinctly summarizes your project and gives a general overview of the concept).
5. If your waiver request is accepted, your organization will email you a unique code to use in the payment step of the submission process.
Note: We do not require that you justify your request, but we do operate on an honor code and trust that if you are asking for a fee waiver it is because you need it.