Good photographers are hard to find, luckily photography grants are not that difficult to find. From grants given out by individual colleges and universities or awards that are given out by private organizations and photography competitions, there are lots of monies to choose from. While individual photography grants may not amount to much individually, by putting in for several you can make a good sized dent in your educational expenses.
What’s more, many of these grants are not just available to individuals who are studying photography, they are also available to professional photographers who are researching specific kinds of issues and who are working with specific areas of social injustice or conflict.
What Kinds of Grants Are There?
When it comes to photography there are two basic kinds of grants to be found. First, there are the grants and scholarships that come from the college or university that you may be attending. Second, there are grants that are available in the form of photography competitions and awards. Shall we take a look at some of the types of grants and awards that are out there?
Examples of Photography Grants and Awards
The Paris Photo-aperture Foundation Photobook Awards. This foundation holds an annual competition. The winners must have published their photography in a book (either self-published or traditionally published). The top award is $10,000. For more information on this competition, please visit: Aperture Awards Engine
The Manuel Rivera-Ortiz Foundation Grant. This grant is available to a social documentary photographer. There are no requirements for citizenship and the grant is in the amount of $5,000. For more information, please visit: MRO Foundation
The Dorothea Lange-Paul Taylor Price. This prize comes in the amount of $10,000 and is given to documentary photographers working in collaboration with documentary writers in order to addresses social issues. For more information visit: Documentary Studies Awards
Maine Media Workshops. Maine Media Workshops offers grants to qualified photography students who are working on media arts degrees or in fields directly related. For more information, please visit: Maine Media
The Aftermath Project. This organization holds annual grant competitions for those photographers covering the aftermath of conflicts around the globe. For more information on the competition and the amount of the awards available, please visit: The Aftermath Project
The Pulitzer Center. The Pulitzer Center offers travel grants to photographers who are focusing on under-reported systemic crises. This well-known and highly respected organization has some pretty specific qualifications. For more information on how to obtain a grant from the Pulitzer Center, please visit: Pulitzer Center
The Magnum Expression Award. This award is given in order to raise awareness and to inspire change by funding photographers. You can find more information about this award by going to: Magnum Expression Award
The Emerging Photographer Fund. This fund gives out grants for photographer’s personal projects. The work should be journalistic or purely artistic. For more information on this award, please visit: Burn Magazine Photographer Grant
While there are more photography awards out there, this should give you a good idea of where to get started in looking for grant money that will help you to achieve your artistic dreams as a photographer. With a little time and effort you can most likely put together enough award money to help defray some of your college or professional expenses, and who knows, you might very well land a contract with a newspaper or magazine in the process!