Judges' Rules and Compensation

The Gateway International Painting Competition is always interested in qualified guest Judges to help with judging paintings in any of our three categories: Representational Professional, Abstract Professional, and Novice/For the Love of Painting. When guest judges are not available, our in-house team selects winners and writes comments (PaintingContest.Org Panel of Art Professionals).

If you are a qualified art professional and interested in serving as a monthly Judge, please let us know. See below for what we look for in a judge, and how we can help support your efforts as well, whether it be promoting your workshops, events, or publications. Email us: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and include the link to your website to help us learn more about you.



Judges at PaintingContest.Org are art professionals with significant accomplishments, experience and/or credentials. They may exhibit and sell in fine art galleries or offer workshops, demonstration videos, are recipient of awards, or have authored or are featured in art-related publications. Qualified judges bring their expertise to our painting competition through evaluation and selection of winning paintings along with written commentary.


  • Special dedicated publicity page with link to judge's website, online for the duration of the annual competition. See Judges section here.
  • Banner promotion of the judge's offerings such as upcoming workshops, videos or other publications.
  • $15 coupon/credit to be used for special promoted painting entry or toward annual membership.
  • Promotion in social media.

JUDGING CRITERIA: Judging of paintings is entirely subjective and dependent upon the expertise and opinion of the Judge. However, professional artist Judges typically look for excellence in the following areas: knowledge of color, values, balance/composition, brushwork, ability to strike a distinctive mood, originality and creativity. In addition to overall execution/presentation, drawing competence, perspective drawing, skill in rendering, and manipulation of edges is also considered when judging representational works.


1) The Judge shall select UP TO 6 Finalist paintings per assigned category, but they may, at their discretion, rule that fewer than 6 paintings qualify.

2) Only one Best in Show is named among the up to 6 Finalists selected in the same monthly competition/category*.

3) Please — only one painting by the same artist designated Best in Show or Finalist in the same monthly competition/category.* However, Judge may recognize other painting entries by same artist with "Honorable Mention."

4) Judge may recognize additional paintings beyond the 6 Best in Show and Finalists as "Honorable Mention."

5) Judge shall provide a short written comment for each Best in Show painting selected; comments for Finalist paintings are optional.

6) Judge's selections must not include photography, digital art or painted-over photos. A check of the artist's website or instagram page is helpful in determining this. If evaluating an artist's painting and it appears to be very different from their body of work (for example, if a single painting under consideration appears unusually rendered or realistic when compared with the artist's other work), it could be an example of painted-over or photo-effects digital art.

7) Painting entries by a professional artist serving as a Judge are ineligible for competition only in the same month the artist is serving as Judge. However, in any other month, artists who served as a Judge are free and eligible to enter paintings, compete in the monthly competitions, and win awards.


* Judging Categories are: Representational Professional, Abstract Professional, and Novice/For the Love of Painting.



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