The IPFL – your stepping stone to a larger audience!

Submission for participation in the International Photo Festival Leiden 2020 is now closed.

Read how six of our photographers experienced the previous edition of IPFL:

During the International Photo Festival Leiden 2018, 21 photographers (including one duo) presented their work. We contacted them again and asked what the festival has meant for them.

Many photographers see the IPFL as a stepping stone for bringing their work to the attention of a larger audience. Sander du Floo, who participated in 2018 with his Red Landscape series, said that he had mainly signed up for IPFL to “profile” himself as a photographer and to “seek publicity.” For Tim Meijer, it was an opportunity to showcase his graduation work, created for the AKV | St. Joost in Breda, in as many places as possible.

The welcoming atmosphere during the festival also contributed to its success. Several photographers mentioned the friendly and thorough support they received from our volunteers, and also the rich fringe program was much appreciated. Ko Hage, for example, informed us that he really enjoyed the festival and had found the collaboration with Leiden University particularly interesting. As part of this project, students from the master program Film and Photographic Studies wrote essays about the work of the participating photographers. “It was interesting to read how philosophers interpret your work”, said Hage. Annabel Miedema, who participated with her series The Weather is for Free, was especially enthusiastic about the collaboration with  Photoville New York. For her, the additional promotion in New York was somewhat “unexpected”, but also “very cool”. 

We were of course also curious to hear what the International Photo Festival Leiden can mean for the career of young-and-upcoming photographers. The answers were different, but virtually all photographers highlighted that the festival attracted many people, both photography professionals and interested passers-by, who had all seen their work. According to Ko Hage, his participation also strengthened his self-confidence as a photographer. The IPFL clearly generated good publicity for Patricia Nauta: “It was a very successful year for me – thanks in part to the IPFL. It increases your prominence.” The winner of the jury award, Saskia Aukema, said in an earlier interview with us that she is still in contact with many of the people she met during the photo festival. Patricia Nauta found the festival to be a definite “enrichment, also in a non-professional sense”. 

When asked whether these photographers would advise other young image creators to participate in the International Photo Festival Leiden, they answered with a resounding “yes”. For Tim Meijer, the encounters with other photographers are probably the festival’s biggest asset. But also seeing your own work printed in a large format and shown at multiple festivals is a reason to register for IPFL. Annabel Miedema mentions the chance to exhibit your photographic work in public space and together with other international photographers as an important motivation for submission. In short, the photographers of the previous edition of the IPFL are enthusiastic about the Leiden Photo Festival and definitely recommend a participation. Are you a photographer and have you graduated from a photographic study program within the last five years? Then do not hesitate to register for the IPFL 2020. Or, in the words of Saskia Aukema: “Just submit. The Photo Festival Leiden is fun!”

Please note: Registration for the International Photo Festival Leiden 2020 is possible until 30 November 2019 via this link. 

Find more information about the interviewed photographers and their work here

The photographers with whom we talked about the IPFL 2018 are: Annabel Miedema,  Ko Hage, Patricia Nauta, Sander du Floo, Saskia Aukema, Tim Meijer.