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Photo by Cebile Ntuli. Train to Tembisa, Johannesburg, South Africa 2017

In collaboration with:


Lekgetho Makola
Guest Editor

Photo by Gomolemo Majabe

ZEKE magazine announces call for documentary projects from African photographers working in Africa today

Winning projects will be featured in the spring 2020 issue of ZEKE magazine.

The spring 2020 issue of ZEKE magazine will be a special Africa issue guest-edited by Lekgetho Makola, Head of Market Photo Workshop in Johannesburg, South Africa.


This issue of ZEKE seeks to present compelling works of documentary photography by photographers from Africa who are working in Africa today. It will also including critical writing on African photography by African writers.


Please see below for guidelines or click here to submit to this Call for Entries.

There is no fee to enter.

Deadline for work to be considered for this issue is January 28, 2020.


Please note that all work submitted to this Call for Entries will also be viewable to the public for one year on the SDN website*.


Click here for more information on ZEKE magazine.

Click here to see the last special issue of ZEKE magazine featuring the global Roma and Traveller communities.


*Once your exhibit is created, you can either hide or delete your exhibit at any time. If you choose either of these options, your exhibit will not be viewable for selection for ZEKE magazine.

How to Enter


Standard Method

The standard method to submit you documentary projects to AFRICA 2020 is identical to creating an exhibit on the SDN website, except that it is flagged as an entry to this program. Click here for details on how to prepare and submit your work to SDN. When you are ready to enter, click the Enter Now button, or click here.

Alternate Method (for slow or unreliable internet)
If you are unable to connect to the SDN website, or if your internet connection is slow or unreliable, you can choose this method, allowing you to send your materials via The deadline for entries with this method is January 28, 2020.



Entries must be by photographers who consider themselves African, are working in Africa today, and the subject of the work must address the African continent in some way. 


SDN staff, volunteers, advisory committee members, judges, and their families are not eligible to enter. Previous SDN Call for Entries first-place winners in the past five years are not eligible to enter. There is no restriction for honorable mention winners from prior years.

Entry Fees

There is no fee to enter this Call for Entries. 

Entry Requirements

Entries must be documentary. We define this broadly, but an important quality is that the intent is to tell a visual story about the subject of your photographs. If the work is more about you as an artist, then it would not be appropriate for SDN or ZEKE magazine. Composited photographs (photo collages) are not accepted.

All entries must have between 6 and 30 photographs related to a specific theme. The submission may also have a multimedia component to supplement the still images. Submissions must have an abstract to provide context (180 words maximum) and captions to accompany the photographs.

Additional text about the situation being documented may also be entered, as well as a bio of the photographer, information on organizations working with affected communities, and other relevant information. Photographs must have been taken after January 1, 2010 unless the work is part of a long-term project that began prior to 2010 and continues to the present.

All work must be submitted via the Social Documentary Network website. For specific image specifications, click here. Images must be a minimum of 1500 pixels in one dimension.

All entries are automatically and simultaneously submitted for exhibition on the Social Documentary Network website and must follow all rules and regulations regarding exhibits on SDN.

Exhibits on need to be approved before going live (click here for more information). In the event that an entry to the Call for Entries is not accepted for the SDN website, the photographer may make changes to their exhibit and re-submit, up until the entry deadline. Greater than 90% of all exhibits submitted to SDN are approved.


Photographers may submit more than one entry.


All submissions will be viewable to the public on the SDN website. Once your exhibit is accepted, it will remain live on the SDN website for one year. You may choose to hide your entry from the public, but if you hide your entry prior to the completion of judging, you will also hide your site from the jurors.​​

Important Dates

  • Begin accepting submissions on the SDN website: October 15, 2019

  • Submission deadline for standard entry: January 15, 2020

  • Submission deadline for alternate entry method: January 10, 2020

  • Photographers notified: January 22, 2020

  • AFRICA 2020 issue of ZEKE magazine published: April 2020

Use Rights

All entrants and winners retain copyright of their work. By submission to the SDN website, photographers grant SDN a royalty-free license to use their images for the purpose of subsequent display on the SDN site, in SDN promotional materials, and in ZEKE magazine and ZEKE magazine promotional materials. Entries grant SDN the right to use their name for promotion in any medium including radio, newspapers, publications, television, videotape, and/or distribution over the internet. Samples of the winning work will be released to the press for promotional purposes. Photographers grant use of their images as stated without further contact or compensation from SDN other than the prizes listed above. Photographer’s credit will be provided with all use.


Entrant acknowledges that SDN may not be held liable for any loss, damages, or injury associated with this contest. Entrant agrees to indemnify SDN for all costs, damages and attorney fees resulting from any third party claims, including copyright infringement, arising from entrant’s participation. Entrant must have rights to publish images.


SDN reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to disqualify any entrant that fails to comply with contest and website rules and guidelines.

About SDN

Social Documentary Network (SDN) uses the power of photography to promote global awareness. SDN members include photographers, editors, NGOs, journalists, curators, and students who create and explore documentary websites investigating critical issues facing the world today. Recent exhibits have explored oil workers in the Niger River Delta, male sex workers in India, Central American immigrant women during their journey north, and Iraqi and Afghan refugees in Greece.


Regarding eligibility requirements:

Regarding technical issues:

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