Frequently asked questions

FAQs for entrants to the Insight Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition.

How do I enter the competition?

Please enter via our online entry site:

Do I need to register?

If you’ve entered in the last two years you’re already registered with us so simply sign in with your registered email address and password. If you are new to the competition, you’ll need to register and set up a competition account.

Are there any age restrictions?

The Adult Competition is open to anyone aged 16 or over on the closing date of the exhibition, and the Young Competition is open to anyone aged under 16. Please note that you can only enter the Best Newcomer Prize if you have been practicing astrophotography since 1 January 2018.

Do I have to pay to enter?


How many entries can I submit?

You may submit a total of 10 images.

How many images can I submit per category?

You may enter up to 10 images in all categories.

Can the same image be entered into more than one category?


How do I know if my submissions have been received?

Once your files have been uploaded and saved, they are automatically included in the competition. You can see the images you’ve entered by clicking on your ‘Entries’ tab on the dashboard.

Can I change my selection of entries once they have been uploaded?

Yes, you’re able to sign in, delete or add new files right up until the competition closes.

Is there a time limit on when images must have been taken?

All images must have been taken since 1 January 2018. If the image uses data collected over multiple years more than 50% of it must have been collected since 1 January 2017.

Can I enter an image that has been previously published?

You can enter images posted on social media or on sites such as APOD or the ESA.

Photos that have been submitted to or picked up by a news agency, picture agency or any media outlet are not eligible for the competition. This includes both images published in print (e.g. magazines) or online.

Images that have been reprocessed since submission to a media outlet are only eligible if they use less than 50% of the original data.

Images that have won prizes in other competitions are eligible as long as the image has not been published. If you have entered your image into a competition which might publish it and are waiting for the results please do not enter it into this competition – it is not eligible. Examples of these competitions include TWAN, BBC Sky at Night magazine, Sky and Telescope magazine, etc.

What size do the images need to be?

We have removed the high res upload period so please upload the largest file possible. Images should be suitable to be reproduced at a minimum of 300 dpi and 30cm along its longest edge. We understand that it is not possible to meet this size requirement for some types of photography, but please be aware that if we have to resize your image for printing or display this may lead to a reduction in quality.

We prefer high res images to be TIFF files but we also accept JPEGs. We do not require RAW files but may contact shortlisted entrants during a data checking period to confirm details and ensure authenticity.

Can I update the image text after the competition closes?

No further editing is possible after the competition closes so please make sure that your text is suitable for use in the publication and exhibition. 

Please check your image details as autofilled details may be misleading. We may contact you about any blank fields so instead of leaving them intentionally blank please write ‘N/A’.

Do remember to use full measurements rather than symbols and spell out any acronyms. This will help prevent any errors being made if your image is used in the publication or press releases.

Remember that including your name in the image description is a rules breach and you may be disqualified. You are responsible for the accuracy of the image details and for keeping to the competition rules.

Can images include watermarks?

No. Images containing watermarks or other identifying features will be disqualified from the competition.

Do I need to gain consent from individuals in my images?

Yes, you will need to receive consent from every individual in your image in order to enter it in the competition. We will not ask you to prove this on image submission, but please be aware we may have to ask you later.

What do I get if my image is shortlisted?

All shortlisted entrants are invited to the awards ceremony and a VIP brunch the following morning to meet the judges. Your image will be included in the book and you will receive a complimentary copy (either by post or at the VIP brunch). Your image will feature in the exhibition on either a lightbox or a large scale production. 

When can I tell people my image has been shortlisted or won a prize?

After the shortlist press release goes out in July/August you are free to tell everyone your image has been shortlisted – please spread the word! If you are one of the prize-winners please keep this under wraps until the awards ceremony in October.

What images are displayed in the exhibition?

All the winning images and most of the shortlisted images are displayed on lightboxes. The entire shortlist can also be viewed on a large scale projection.

You don’t sell all the images in the shop. How do I get hold of prints?

Contact and we will put you in touch with the photographer.