Fellowships - FSPPI and FSAPI
The highest Distinction offered by The Society is the Fellowship, which is awarded for excellence and distinguished ability, combined with evidence of originality or freshness in approach. By definition, achieving the Fellowship involves a significant amount of time and effort, but it is a goal worth aiming for and it is attainable.
The award of a Fellowship confers a recognition that you are a photographer of considerable merit and expertise, and is an achievement of which to be very proud. In order to be successful, it is essential that the technical quality of your submission for the Fellowship is excellent and, if the work is interpretive, then the quality should be appropriate to the subject and intent. The presentation of your submission should be to the highest possible standard.
The assessors are looking for outstanding work that may be pushing forward the boundaries of photography in the discipline concerned or showing the very best practice in a given area. They want to see individual work with a strong personal style and a maturity of vision, both in the individual image and the presentation as a whole. They also want to be convinced that you are seeing, thinking, and working as a photographer at the highest level.
The Fellowship Board
When you apply for the Fellowship of The Society, you submit your application to one of the specialist categories. These assessments are strictly confidential and therefore not open to an audience in order to allow for a totally open debate on each submission.
The procedure is the same as for the Associateship but in the case of Fellowship, the Panel makes its recommendations to the Fellowship Board.
The purpose of the Board is to ensure that standards are maintained evenly across all categories and it is this Board that makes the final recommendations to Council.
You are kept informed of the progress of your application, but you should be aware that a recommendation to the Fellowship Board does not in any way guarantee success; submissions which do not have the unanimous support of the Panel can be referred to the Board; the reasons for this will be explained to the applicant
Categories and requirements
The categories in which you can apply for the Fellowship and the criteria are the same as for the Associateship. They are assessed, however, at a considerably higher level, as described above.
Your application will normally be in the form of stills, or time based media, or research, education and application of photography.
Depending on your choice, you will need to submit as follows:
Stills photography: 20 mounted prints 20'' x 16'' approximately
N.B. The Contemporary Panel considers a wide range and mix of formats, but check first with the Distinctions Department.
- A Statement of Intent: A statement of not more than 150 words outlining the purpose, objectives or intent of the work. This gives you the opportunity to tell the Panel about your work and explain why you took the images and what you want them to convey; it also enables the Panel to consider your work in a meaningful context. It should not describe the images or give technical details, unless you wish to highlight any special or unusual techniques employed.
Responsibly of fellows
The Fellowship is The Society's highest Distinction and, as such, makes a statement about you and your achievement. As a Fellow, you have a continuing commitment to maintain the highest level of photographic excellence as well as conducting your photography to the highest ethical standard. As a representative of The Society you are expected to play a full and meaningful role in promoting good photographic practice.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need to read the Distinctions Handbook? Yes, it is essential you read the relevant sections of this Guide
When will I hear the result of my application? All applicants will receive notification of the Panel's recommendation by e-mail.
Can I get help if I am not recommended? Yes, all unsuccessful applicants receive feedback and whenever possible are put in touch with a Panel member for further advice.
Do I have to apply for the Fellowship in the same category that I gained the Associateship? No, you may apply in any category.
Can I apply straight for the Fellowship? No.
Should prints always be mounted? Yes, for the Fellowship prints should always be mounted.
Our qualification Guidelines are in accordance with the Royal Photographic's Society (est 1853) qualifications in order to achieve industry standards. The RPS is the first Society to introduce qualifications in this manner