New update: SPARK Photo Festival will return September 1st 2021.

Read below for more information and stay tuned to our social media (links below) and our newsletter for the latest updates.
Registration for Open Call Exhibits and the Themed Juried Exhibit are now closed.

For sponsorship opportunities, exhibit venue opportunities and enquiries, contact info@sparkphotofestival.org .


Focus on Coffee Photo Competition

SPARK Photo Festival X Sparkplug Coffee X PhotoED Magazine

We teamed up with Sparkplug Coffee and PhotoED Magazine for this fun competition.
"Coffee at Home" was the theme!

Submissions are now closed. Thanks to all who entered!

Stay tuned to Social Media for announcements of the winner.



SPARK Photo Festival Update

Update: March 12, 2021

After much consideration, the SPARK Photo Festival Board of Directors has determined it is not possible to hold the Festival this April as planned. We have decided instead to move the full Festival to September 2021. In the current pandemic environment, the health and safety of our community’s citizens, our photographers, and those working at our venues, are the most important considerations at this time.

The photographers have been preparing their exhibits and are eager to show their work! The Festival this fall will include exhibits delayed from 2020 and brand-new exhibits for 2021. There will be outdoor exhibits, and exhibits in public venues–sometimes unexpected ones–as the community has grown to expect from SPARK. two Themed Juried Exhibits: Motion and Nourish: To Eat, To Drink, To Enjoy featuring the top images as selected by our juries from submissions by photographers from across Ontario will be on display. The entire community will certainly be thrilled to see the Showcase Exhibit honouring the Peterborough Dragon Boat Festival’s 20th Anniversary celebrations.

We extend our gratitude to the exhibitors and venues, sponsors, patrons and volunteers who continue to support the SPARK Photo Festival throughout these changes.

While we eagerly wait for September, we have virtual exhibits and events planned and a fun new photography competition in partnership with Sparkplug Coffee and PhotoED Magazine. See those details above!

We look forward to sharing the talents SPARK Photo Festival with Peterborough, Northumberland and the Kawarthas in September.

Please reach out with any questions you may have. We truly appreciate your patience during this challenging time, and we wish you all well.

Jennifer MacKenzie, Festival Director, and the SPARK Board of Directors

Update October 14, 2020: The Juried Exhibit, Motion, winning images have been announced! View the video announcement by Board Member, Teresa Kaszuba, and see the winning images on our Social Media page: Click Here

The SPARK Photo Festival is a celebration of photography, and the artists, dreamers, innovators, storytellers, professionals and enthusiasts behind the camera lens. Every year, the month of April marks the arrival of numerous photographic exhibits and artists, in locations throughout the Northumberland, Peterborough, and the Kawartha Lakes regions. Technical workshops, lectures, talks, films, and other related photographic events and activities take place year-round as well as during the festival.

Pocket Guide 2020

2020 SPARK Catalogue

Open Call & Primary Exhibits

The backbone of the SPARK festival can be attributed to the depth and variety of the Open Call Exhibits by regional photographers working at every skill level - student, enthusiast, fine art, and professional. The festival features more than 35 open call exhibit venues. A list of the registration categories for open call exhibits can be found below.

SPARK organized exhibits are called primary exhibits and these exhibits include the highly competitive Juried Exhibit contest, which, based on a theme, features 25 of the best submissions from across the Province of Ontario as selected by a panel of expert judges.

For 2021, expect a few surprises as SPARK continues to evolve as a festival.

It is SPARK's inclusiveness and our celebration of the community of photographers that sets SPARK apart as a festival. That you will find photography in places where you least expect to, part of SPARK's charm.

Open Call Exhibit Categories

  • Individual
  • Small Group
  • Group
  • Community Organization
  • Student Individual
  • Student Group
  • Featured (Individual, Small Group or Group)

View the 2020 Exhibits

2021 Themed Juried Exhibit

Entries for the 2021 Themed Juried Exhibit are now closed.
Watch for the Exhibit in Downtown Peterborough in April 2021

The 2020 Juried Exhibit Theme was Motion.
Best in Show was awarded to Leap Year by Patricia. M. Calder
Visit our Juried page to see the prize winners and our Exhibits page to view the Virtual Exhibit.

2020 Motion Best in Show: Leap Year by Patricia M. Calder



Mobile-Friendly Pocket Guide

Pocket Guide 2020

New for 2021: We'll have a mobile-friendly, downloadable Pocket Guide with Maps and Catalogue so you can take the SPARK Photo Festival 2021 with you on-the-go. Check this page at the end of March to download your guide.

2020 SPARK Catalogue