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Digital Images

This guide has been designed as a starting point for locating and using online images.


The use of images for teaching and scholarly research generally falls under the category of "fair use." The terms of fair use states that, in an educational context, the payment of fees or permission is not required from copyright owners.

For more information, the Visual Resources Association (VRA) has published a Statement on Fair Use of Images for Teaching, Research, and Study. This statement is a guideline and should not be considered a legal document.

There are different rules for publishing images. If you are using images for publication, you must determine if they are in the public domain, or are protected by copyright.

The Visual Resources Association have also developed a Digital Image Rights Computator (DIRC) to help users assess the intellectural property status of a particular image so they can make informed decisions about the intended educational use of an image.

Image from an Electronic Source

Images, diagrams and artistic works should be cited as any other type of workGive as much information as possible about the image used, including these basics:

  • creator's name (author, artist, photographer etc.)

  • date the work was published or created

  • title of the work

  • place of publication

  • publisher

  • type of material (for photographs, charts, online images)

  • website address and access date

  • name of the institution or museum where the work is located (for artworks and museum exhibits)

  • dimensions of the work (for artworks)

Rousseau's Ship in the Storm

Ship in a Storm, by Henri Rousseau, Circa 1896, oil on canvas, 1844-1910, 54x65 cm.

Ship in a Storm, by Henri Rousseau, Circa 1896, oil on canvas, 1844-1910, 54x65 cm.

The Ship in the Storm by Henri Rousseau

Credit: Peter Willi

Creative #: 91610889

France, Paris, Musee del' Orangerie

Collection: SuperStock
Max file size: 5,857 x 4,776 px (19.52 x 15.92 in) - 300 dpi - 18.2 MB
Release info: No release required


Tutoring & Paper Writing Help in the Jenkins Center in Davis Library

Adam Hollingshead.

Adam Hollingshead at the Jenkins Academic Center on the Ground Floor of Davis Library.

The Jenkins Academic Center offers assistance with writing and citing: Much of which may be done online.

Email papers to