If I submit images with the wrong sports discipline, will these images be disqualified?

The decision to accept and judge the images will be at the discretion of Red Bull Illume judges. The Red Bull Illume judges’ decision is final. Please always keep the requirements for submission in mind!

If one of my images gets disqualified, will I be able to submit a replacement?

No. You may submit ten images per category and these cannot be replaced after submission. Please choose your images carefully and consider rules and requirements for submission.

If I submit images to the wrong category, will these images be disqualified?

No. It is up to you to decide if an image meets the requirements of a category or not. Please consider that images that do not fit into a particular category might not be judged well.

Can I use the login from the last Red Bull Illume Image Quest?

No. You are not able to use your previous login due to a system, rules and terms and conditions change.

Do I have to be a Red Bull Photographer to be able to submit my images?

No. Any professional or amateur photographer can submit his or her images to Red Bull Illume Image Quest.

Does the photograph need to be Red Bull branded?

No. It does not have to be Red Bull branded. Any adventure and action sports image, as explained in the rules, can be submitted.

What is an inappropriate submission?

Images of a political nature, pornographic images, full frontal nudity and sexually explicit images of any kind.

What is a Mobile Device?

Any portable computing device such as a smartphone or tablet computer.

How many megapixels should my image have?

At least 12 megapixels. To determine the megapixels of your image, simply multiply the vertical and horizontal number of pixels and divide by one million, e.g. 12.2 mega pixels (2848 pixels x 4288 pixels = 12,212,224). You can also check your megapixel file size in Photoshop by opening the image and pressing Apple+Alt+I (Mac) or Ctrl+Alt+I (PC).

What is the difference between file size and picture size?

The image size of a graphic file is given in pixels (see above example calculating megapixels). File size measures the weight of a computer file. The file size can be reduced by compressing data using lossy compression encoding methods like JPG: For submitting your images, you need to save your image with a reduced file size (Less than 15 Mega Bytes) without reducing your megapixel count. We ask you to submit your images in JPG compression, so you can reduce the file size to about a tenth of its original data volume and still retain good picture quality. (Please be aware that you must keep your original RAW file and Final processed image in TIFF or JPEG).

I used a 12 megapixels or higher camera, but the resolution is still too small. Why?

If the resolution of your image is not sufficient, please check your camera settings:

  • Even if you are using an 12+ megapixel camera you must also ensure that you are shooting at the highest possible resolution (e.g. JPG high, TIFF, RAW).
  • Also, be aware that photo cropping in post-production may alter the size of your image and result in a final picture size of fewer than 12 megapixels.
  • Submitted images that fail to comply with the requested picture size will be disqualified.

My images aren't 12 megapixels. Can I submit them anyway? Can I increase the megapixels in Photoshop in order to meet the requirements?

No. Images with less than 12 megapixels will be disqualified. It is true that Photoshop allows you to add pixels to your images by using rendering intents. Unfortunately, this procedure does not raise image quality to the required level and is therefore unacceptable.

Can I submit RAW files?

No. RAW files (and other formats) must be converted to JPG and meet all other submission criteria. All images must be available for re-submission in their original size. All semi-finalists will be required to re-submit the originals in RAW or tiff format at 300dpi. For mobile images the image will be requested in its original format with no adaptions.

How can I convert a RAW file into a JPG?

You can convert your file by using you default camera software or similar RAW conversion software such as Adobe Photoshop.

Take the following steps:

  • Open your RAW file(s) and select:
  • Color Space: Adobe RGB
  • Bit-depth: 8bit
  • Size: choose a size between 12-24.5MP, e.g. 2731 x 4096 (11.2MP)
  • Save your file as JPG with the maximum file size of 15MB

Can I submit analogue images?

No. All film prints and transparencies need to be drum scanned at high resolution and delivered digitally. Scan your images at 300dpi and check their actual megapixel sizes before uploading. Please note that your images must have more than 12 megapixels to be accepted. No prints will be accepted.

What type of images can be submitted to the RAW category?

The RAW category is for images that are ‘straight out of the camera’ – no post-processing done whatsoever, including cropping, adjustments to white balance or exposure, color correction, or other typical image editing techniques. This category is designed to challenge your skills as a photographer and get the best shot you can, on the spot! The format for your submission needs to be JPG. If your image makes it to the semi-finals we will then ask you for the RAW file of the image.

What does “no filter” mean in connection to the RAW category?

No digital filters are allowed for the RAW category, such as filters applied in the editing process or even special filters already integrated in the camera. Only standard camera filters such as B&W or Sepia are allowed. No change towards unnatural color temperature is permitted.

Am I allowed to submit images to other categories than Emerging even if I am under 25 years old?

Yes. The only restriction is against content creators older than age 25 submitting to the Emerging category. Content creators under the age of 25 may submit to any category.

Why am I unable to upload my image(s)?

If you can’t upload your image(s) please check the format and file size of your image.

  • You can only upload JPGs. JPG is a compression format that reduces file size. You cannot submit TIFFs, RAWs or similar.
  • Please make sure not to exceed the maximum file size of 15 Megabytes.

If you still can’t submit, the file might be damaged. Try to open it on your computer and see if any errors occur.

I have already submitted ten images to a category but would like to add another one. Can I exchange images?

No. Once a photograph has been submitted, it is final and may not be replaced by another photograph or moved to a different category.

Is image editing allowed?

Basic image editing and color corrections are allowed, i.e. brightness, contrast, sharpening, mood and white balance. If any other alternations have been made, the image must be submitted to the Creative category.

If I make color corrections, can I only submit my image to the Creative category?

If only basic image editing or color corrections have been made and the image is not manipulated, you can submit to the other categories too.

Can I edit images I have shot on a smartphone?

If you manipulate your mobile image you can only submit it to the Creative category. For the other categories only basic image editing or color corrections are allowed. The same applies to mobile images. The decision to accept your image will be at the discretion of the Red Bull Illume judges. Their decision is final. For the RAW category, no image editing may be done whatsoever.

How can I submit an image to the Best of Instagram by Lenovo category?

Upload a photo or a moving image up to 60 seconds on your public Instagram profile. If you use Instagram filters, make sure you save the final image on your phone. In addition to this, please also keep the original photo as we need to check that as well. Add the hashtag #rbi21submission and tag @redbullillume.

How do I save all versions of an image including Instagram filters?

Go to your Instagram Profile -> Click on the menu icon in the top right corner -> Click on “Settings” -> Click on “Account” -> Click on “Original Photos / Posts” and activate “Save Original Photos / Posts”.

What is a moving image?

A moving image is a video clip, GIF or image sequence that can be up to 60 seconds in length. Files must be submitted in MP4 format in Full HD, with a recommended file size between 15 and 150 Megabytes. Acceptable formats are 16:9, 4:3, 1:1, 4:5 (e.g. 1920 x 1080 pixel). Audio for moving images is allowed. Creator must own all rights. Stylized clips, such as stop motions, hyperlapses, slow motion, rewinds, superzooms and boomerangs are allowed. Basic editing, such as subtle color corrections, transitions or overlays are allowed. Stories, reels and any other format available on Instagram are not allowed. Instagram Filters are allowed. By using them we may request all versions of the image.

Can I submit the same photo to the Best of Instagram by Lenovo category and to a category from the main contest?

Yes, content creators may submit the same photo to a maximum of 2 categories. Best of Instagram by Lenovo is one of the ten categories from the Red Bull Illume Image Quest 2021. If you submitted your photo to this category you can submit this image to 1 other category from the main contest on between March 1 until July 31, 2021.

How many images can I enter to the Best of Instagram by Lenovo category each month?

You can submit ten images per month.

Can I enter the same image to the Best of Instagram by Lenovo category in 2 different months?

If you submitted an image to one month it is still in the image pool for the next month so it is not necessary to submit it twice.

If I convert my image to black and white, does it mean that I must submit my image to the Creative category?

No. This is basic color correction. Black and white images can be submitted to any category.

How can I submit Sequence images with original metadata when they are made up of multiple original files?

Submit the sequence image as you have composed it, but keep all the original files with the correct metadata. At some point we may request to see all original files and check the metadata. Sequence images can be submitted to every category.

Can I submit images under more than one account?

No. It is against the rules and will lead to disqualification.

What images can be submitted to the Photo Story category?

Your best adventure and action sports images combined in one slideshow. These images need to have a specific topic, for example “The beauty of blue hour light”, which tells us your story behind a photo shoot.

What is a slideshow?

As a slideshow, we define photos that are strung together in a mp4 video format with a length from 30 seconds up to 3 minutes.

Can I submit video sequences to the Photo Story category?

No, we only accept photos, that are strung together to a video format. However, overlays, text and video transition effects are allowed.

Can I use music in my submission to the Photo Story category?

Yes, audio is allowed but you must own all rights.

Is there a specific time window in which the submission(s) for the Image Quest 2021 must have been captured?

Yes, all imagery must have been captured after July 31, 2019.

Judging and Winners

How can you be sure that judges aren’t partial or unfair?

In order to maintain impartiality, all images will be made anonymous before the judges receive them.

What happens when two images have the exact same amount of votes?

In this case the Red Bull Illume judges will cast a determining vote.

If there is a tie in round two, the previous results will be considered and the image with the most votes in round one will advance.

Will I know how many votes my image received?

No. The number of votes will not be made public.

Will I get notified when my image makes it into the next round?

All 276 semi-finalists will be informed about their progress into the next round. The 56 finalists will be announced in public and invited to the unveiling event where the 11 category winners and the overall winner will be honored.

Red Bull Illume 2021 Photobook - Limited Edition

This limited-edition photobook features the top 256 images of the Image Quest 2021, handpicked by the Red Bull Illume jury who reviewed a total of 41,447 submissions.
Be the first to see those inspiring images printed and pre-order your exclusive copy now! 

Red Bull Illume 2021 Photobook - Limited Edition

This limited-edition photobook features the top 256 images of the Image Quest 2021, handpicked by the Red Bull Illume jury who reviewed a total of 41,447 submissions.
Be the first to see those inspiring images printed and pre-order your exclusive copy now! 

RBIL21 Mockup outside pixelated