Images play a powerful role in the impact of print publications, websites and other marketing vehicles. Photography, artwork, graphs, maps and illustrations are an integral part of communications and branding efforts. You can acquire images a few different ways: take your own photos, request coverage from a College of Arts and Sciences photographer, hire a professional photographer, use free photo sites or purchase images.
College of Arts and Sciences’ Photo Gallery
The College of Arts and Sciences’ online image gallery includes faculty headshots, classroom images and campus photos. We also maintain an online event photos archive. The university also provides a comprehensive photo archive. If you need a photographer for an event taking place during weekday business hours, we may be able to help. College of Arts and Sciences faculty and staff are invited to fill out this online photography request form. Requests should be submitted at least two weeks in advance. Please note that filling out the form does not guarantee a staff or student photographer will be able to fulfill your request. We will determine if we can accommodate the request, depending on staff and student intern availability. We can also recommend freelance photographers.
Using an Outside Photographer
If a college photographer is unavailable and high-quality photography is necessary, you may want to use an outside professional photographer. In this case, contact a professional university-approved photographer. Before hiring a photographer, you should:
- Negotiate having all rights to the photographs taken
- Discuss photo credit requirements
- Be specific on what images you want to have taken (e.g. speaker at the podium, groups at a reception or candid photos)
Media Release Forms/Permission from Subjects
A model release is a legal release typically signed by the subject of a photograph granting permission to publish the photograph on the web or in print. The legal rights of the signatories in reference to the material are thereafter subject to the allowances and restrictions stated in the release.
Publishing an identifiable photo of a person without a model release signed by that person can result in civil liability for whoever publishes the photograph. Photographs used in news articles do not need to have model releases from the subjects. Download a university model release form.
Doing Your Own Photography
If you want to take your own photos, use a good camera. We recommend a Digital Single-Lens Reflex (DSLR) camera. Most newer DSLR cameras are easy to use with automatic settings and take high-quality photographs. If you do not have one at your disposal, visit the Freedman Center at Kelvin Smith Library to check one out free of charge.
Always set your camera to take high-resolution photographs. Even if you only plan to use them on the web, you may later want to use them in print, which requires larger images. If you are downsizing your images to use for a website, be sure to keep your full resolution versions in a separate folder.
If you would like some help improving your photography skills, consider taking a CaseLearns class in Digital Imaging I, II and III.
Creative Commons (CC) is a non-profit organization headquartered in California. The organization has released several copyright licenses known as Creative Commons licenses free of charge to the public. These licenses allow creators to communicate which rights they reserve and which rights they waive for the benefit of recipients or other creators. Included is an easy-to-understand one-page explanation of rights, with associated visual symbols, that explains the specifics of each Creative Commons license. You can search for these images on the web or on Flickr, which has millions of CC licensed photos.
You may need images that you cannot create for yourself. Sources for imagery include archives, libraries, special collections and commercial stock companies. Remember that just because you can obtain images off the web, they are not necessarily free for you to use in your web or print work. The term “royalty-free” means that once the content is licensed under a set of guidelines, the licensee is free to use it in perpetuity without paying additional royalty charges. Permissions may also be obtained with rights-managed licenses, which usually allow buyers to use the content in very specific ways, with restrictions placed on things like period of time used, geographic region, industry, size published and extent of circulation.
- The Library of Congress has an online database of prints and photographs of historic events, people and places. Copyrights and fees vary – some images are in the public domain with “no known restrictions,” while others require payment for publication fees.
- The Getty Images collections have an online database of royalty-free images and rights-managed images.
- Stock photography and illustration can often be purchased at various prices. Low resolution images for web applications are usually less expensive than higher resolution images intended for printed materials. Often, the number of total downloads of each image will be a factor of the pricing, as well as image resolution and intended usage.
Understanding Copyright Issues
Visit the United States Copyright Office‘s website for more details. There is also a Case Learns class available called Copyright Demystified: The Basics to Help You Determine What Rights and Exemptions Apply. View the schedule and sign up here. For questions and more information, email email@example.com.