• Cathal Bowe

The Portrait Masters!

Updated: Mar 22

In November 2019, I joined Sue Bryce Education (SBE) because I wanted to dramatically improve my portrait photography. Sue Bryce Education consists of 1000s of education videos for photographers with the aim to improve a person's photography skills as well as create a successful business model. Not only were you getting all the useful videos but you were also getting networking opportunities and a Facebook community that are eager to help and teach each other. As part of the SBE, members are allowed to submitted their work to a bi-annual competition known as the "Portrait Masters" and their images are then assessed and evaluated by five Master Level Photographers which award Bronze, Silver and Gold Merits to the images. The competition is a real boost to a person's confidence and self-belief that they are producing beautiful work.

Award Merits

So five independent judges get to see your submitted images and they give your image a score based posing, lighting, composition, connection with subject, post-production, presentation. A Bronze Merit is award to images that score between 70-79, which reach a high professional standard. Silvers are award to images that score between 80-89 and display exemplary execution of technique and visual presentation and Gold are award to images above 90 that excel in all technical fields with outstanding creative communication and narrative. I have yet to achieve a Silver or Gold but perhaps at my next shoot I can create something special.


SBE have a portrait accreditation program to honour and acknowledge the the high quality and professional work submitted by its members to the Portrait Masters competition. Each Bronze is award 0.5pts towards a person's accreditation program, Silver are 1pt and Golds are 2pts. Once a person gets to 25pts they are awarded the status of Associate. Reaching 50pts you become a Master and at 100pts you are a Fellow.

Currently I have 20.5pts and I hope to reach 25pt or higher at the next competition.

Once I achieve 25pts and am awarded my Associate level, I will be added to the SBE world maps of portrait photographers

#sbe #theportraitmasters

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