Words and Pictures Competition

Calling all aspiring artists, writers, film-makers and anyone interested in the environment!

Climate Connections Words and Pictures Competition


Send us your words, pictures or video about our changing environment
Describe your observations, concerns or inspiration and you could win £50
Be part of a digital exhibition in libraries and online, support the fight against climate change
Deadline: Friday 14th May at 1pm

Climate Connections is a new project looking to get more people aware and active about climate change.
How do our lives here in the UK connect with climate change?
Who’s responsible, how are we affected and what can we do about it?

Climate Connections Words and Pictures Competition

The environmental movement needs people from ordinary lives sharing ideas and speaking out. You can write a poem, a report on a situation, a set of questions, a possible solution, or anything you like – written or spoken. You can take a photo, draw a picture, create a slideshow or a short video.
This Words and Pictures Competition is looking for simple ideas and messages that can work well on social media. Use your own pictures and words, or try our image resources to help your ideas get going. Do also check out the competition guidelines.

Winners will be announced on Wednesday 19th May at a special online event
Prizes: 1st £50  / 2nd £30 / 3rd £20 / Three runners up £10 / Special Mention awards
All prizes are gift cards – choose the one you prefer!
No experience necessary, all ages 10 – 110 years old are welcome

Send us your entries via Email or WhatsApp. If the file size is too large then use WeTransfer.com or any similar service.
If you have any questions contact us at competition@crossingfootprints.com . Full details on how to enter below.

The exhibition will be online as a gallery as well as shown digitally at Oldham, Bolton and Manchester libraries. We also aim to create a short compilation film which can be shared widely via social media, possibly with a special screening leading up to COP 26.  We’re linking up with organisations such as Climate Outreach who along with our project partners (including some in Germany – see below) will help the entries get seen.

The Climate Connections Words and Pictures Competition is a project for people who live, work or study in Oldham. We especially want to reach people and communities who aren’t so involved as yet in the climate movement. If you’re a school, college or community group we can offer a free workshop in creative media production about climate change and ecocide, and also answer any questions about the competition.

If we get plenty of interest, we’ll expand the project and keep expanding it until it becomes hard to ignore. So if you have an idea, send it in!
Not in Oldham? You won’t be eligible for the competition but you can still add your voice if you are in the Greater Manchester or nearby region. Just send something in and we will profile it for use on social media and the exhibition.

This is a project by Crossing Footprints for Oldham Libraries, in partnership with Community Arts North West. A parallel competition is taking place with libraries in Bremen and Hamburg in Germany. The results will be presented together along with the chance to connect with people from Germany.

Additional partners in the project are Greater Manchester Libraries of Sanctuary. Financially supported by Arts Council England and CILIP.

To keep in touch with news and updates, you can follow us on social media (click the icons at the top or bottom of this page) or subscribe by email to our newsletter.

Words and Pictures Competition Guidelines

What are we looking for?

The simple answer is anything that makes people think about climate change, even just your worries like how do we keep jobs and decent wages, but hopefully something to get people doing something about it – change our own behaviour, getting involved in activities, educating others, pushing governments and big business to change and so on. It can be a direct and simple message, or it can be poetic or creative in any way you like. We have provided you with over 100 images you can use but we’d love to see some of your own ones, for example photos you have taken yourself.

Simply send us some text in your own words!

Feel like contributing your thoughts but don’t know where to start? Try answering the following and just type it into the entry form, then click ‘Send’. You’re done, thanks and good luck!

  1. What makes you worried or inspired about our increasing environmental problems, that you’d like others to know about?
  2. Who is this important for and why? Maybe make this personal – do you know someone or some people who will be affected? How will it matter to them?
  3. What changes or difference would you like to see happening, or is there a question you want to leave people with?

A few things worth bearing in mind:

  • Images of destruction by climate change can be powerful, but research shows that on their own they are not effective unless given an extra angle such as a personal story or an experience we can identify with.
  • Possibly one of the biggest problems we have is connecting our immediate activities and lives with climate change. Do we think of the rainforests being destroyed for beef farming when eating a delicious burger? Or the increasing wildfires and floods across the world when we put petrol in our beloved cars?
  • It’s good to have a positive message like things people can support,  do or get involved with rather than simply show problems that can be depressing to watch.
  • Anything that includes your own personal experience and thoughts are better than something that looks like a standard social media message that we might regularly see.

Special focus

We are especially interested in stories and messages that connect with anything to do with Oldham – such as local businesses, communities, recycling, pollution or other issues, wildlife and parks (including the Northern Roots project the UK’s largest urban farm and eco-park in the heart of Oldham).

Guidelines if you’re making a slideshow style video

  • There are a number of video creation tips and tools to help you, and also a library of images you can use at https://crossingfootprints.com/climate-connections/image-resources/
  • If you have a great idea but can’t figure out how to create the video, send it to us anyway and we might be able to get it made.
  • We really like videos but if your idea is a simple graphic or other visual message or story please send it in. As we say it’s the ideas that count.
  • Feel free to use your own images according to the image size and copyright guidelines below.
  • Keep the total length of your video short, under 1 minutes long.
  • If your idea is good and it needs a longer time then fine, we won’t disqualify it.
  • The resources and guidelines will be updated around the time the competition officially launches on Thursday 15th April 2021.
Climate Connections Words and Pictures Competition

How to enter / upload / send in

Fill in your name, email and age below, then ‘Select File’, then ‘Upload File’.
Check your emails for a confirmation (including your ‘spam’ or ‘junk’).

Click 'Select File' below, choose your file then click 'Upload File'

Ideally fill in the form lower down below as well, but if not then include the same information in your message or at least include your name and age, then we’ll get back in touch if we need more information.

First, check the following:

  • If it’s a video, the file type is best created as an mp4 file (encoded as H264), but don’t worry we can accept almost any file type that looks like it’s a reasonable quality.
  • The resolution of any video, photo, graphic or other image should ideally be HD at least 720×1280 if possible. The larger the better.
  • By entering this competition, you automatically give us permission to re-use your work in any and all media and we agree to credit you wherever possible.

…then, send us your file:

  1. Please fill in and ‘Send’ the following form – remember to tick the Data Privacy Agreement at the end.
  2. Then send us your entry either
    (a) via email to competition@crossingfootprints.com (file must be less than 10 megabytes), or
    (b) via WhatsApp to 07423 402727 (or if you prefer via Signal ), or
    (c) if it’s a large file (eg. high quality video) use https://wetransfer.com (or any similar service) and send it to competition@crossingfootprints.com

Monitoring – please also answer the following:

Where do you live, work or study?(required)

Your Age (if you are below 18 we will adjust the level we are expecting so you have a fair chance of winning a prize) (required)


Please read our Privacy Policy and confirm below that you agree to the following:


Once we check your file we will email you back to confirm it has been received and reads / looks / plays ok. We will also send you details of the awards event.
THANK YOU for entering this competition.

wind power - Words and Pictures Competition

Finding pictures

We have got a wide range of images you can use for the Words and Pictures Competition at https://crossingfootprints.com/climate-connections/image-resources/

If you want to find some other images, try to always use pictures that are a large size, at least 800 pixels on the shortest side.

Also try and use pictures that are creative commons or public domain, so there are no copyright problems in using them. You can set your image searches for this option. Here are some good places to search:




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