Photography is one of 10 artistic disciplines in YoungArts’ national competition. This discipline accepts all forms of photography including: documentary, conceptual, portrait, environment, color, black and white, alternative processes, digital, and mixed media. 

Photography winner photographing during YoungArts LA | Photography winner exhibiting work during National YoungArts Week

Competition Eligibility

To be eligible, you must be able to answer ”Yes“ to these statements:

  • I am either a citizen of the United States, a permanent resident/green card recipient, or I can demonstrate that I am legally able to receive taxable income in the United States.  
  • I am in grades 10–12 or 15–18 years of age on December 1 of the year I am applying. 
  • If I’m selected as an award winner with distinction, this would be my first time attending National YoungArts Week.

Application Requirements

Strong portfolios demonstrate a mastery of the ability to take risks, develop an idea through a series of images, showcase a range of experimentation, and clearly articulate visual and conceptual ideas.

Requirements are for reference only and will be updated in June 2024.

The 2025 YoungArts application opens in June 2024. 


Tips and Testimonials from Winners and Guest Artists

Application tips | Phillip Toledano & Corinne May Botz (1995 Photography & U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts), Guest Artists

Application tips | Michelle Dunn Marsh, Photography Guest Artist

2023 Application Photography Info Session

View select works from winners here.

See our FAQ for answers to common questions about the competition and application.

Headshot of Alyvia Luong (2021 Photography)

Getting to experience a week surrounded by individuals who shared my interests and creative passion was something I’ve never experienced before. I am so inspired to pursue art for the rest of my life.”

— Alyvia Luong (2021 Photography)