This is the "KEY RESOURCES" page of the "DIGITAL IMAGES" guide.
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Last Updated: Jun 1, 2015 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts



  • ARTstor  Icon
    ARTStor is a library of digital images, associated information, and software tools designed to enhance teaching, learning and scholarship. It contains a searchable database of hundreds of thousands of digital images, covers many time periods and cultures, and documents the fields of architecture, painting, sculpture, photography, decorative arts, and design, as well as many other forms of visual culture.

    For off-campus access, first register with ARTstor from a computer on campus. Then, you may login from off campus with your ARTstor ID by going directly to Or, you may use the Client VPN or the Proxy Server.


  • Copyright [via University of California]
    "As both creators and users of copyrighted and public domain materials, members of the UC academic community should understand and responsibly exercise the rights accorded them under U.S. copyright law.

    The information provided on this site is intended as a guide to copyright at the University of California, and should not be taken as legal advice."
  • Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts [via College Art Association]
    "This Code of Best Practices provides visual-arts professionals with a set of principles addressing best practices in the fair use of copyrighted materials. It describes how fair use can be invoked and implemented when using copyrighted materials in scholarship, teaching, museums, archives, and in the creation of art."
  • Copyright Term and the Public Domain in the United States [via Cornell University]
    An excellent summary of when copyrighted works enter the public domain. Author: Peter B. Hirtle
  • Digital Image Rights Computator (DIRC) [via the Visual Resources Association]
    The DIRC is an interactive decision tree program to help you determine what you need to do to legally use a specific image for a specific purpose. At each stage it has a brief description of the issue at hand as well as links for more detailed discussions of those issues.
  • Copyright, Museums, and Licensing of Art Images [Columbia University]
    Kenneth Crews, director of the Columbia University Copyright Advisory Office and Melissa A. Brown recently (June, 2011)published a series of studies on this subject. Topics include:

    “Control of Museum Art Images: The Reach and Limits of Copyright and Licensing”
    “Art Image Copyright and Licensing: Compilation and Summary of Museum Policies”
    “Art Image Copyright and Licensing: Terms and Conditions Governing Reproduction and Distribution”
    “Art Image Copyright and Licensing: Terms and Conditions Governing Appearance and Composition of Images”
    “Art Image Copyright and Licensing: Terms and Conditions Governing Third Party Rights”
    “Art Image Copyright and Licensing: Bibliography”

    This work was funded by a grant from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation.


  • Luna Commons
    A free site hosting high quality images from Art and Historical collections held by many educational institutions. Browse the collections list to see what's available in areas including, fine arts, cartography, architecture, history, photography and more.
  • Flickr Commons
    A free public collection of photographs from major photography archives. Contributors include the Library of Congress, the Smithsonian Institution, the Biblioteca de Arte-Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian (Portugal),the Bibliothèque de Toulouse, and many others.
  • Shared Shelf Commons [via ARTstor]
    "Shared Shelf Commons is a free, open-access library of images." Images are contributed by a growing number of academic institutions and cover a range of topics from Art, to historic maps to biodiversity.
  • Calisphere [via the University of California]
    "Calisphere is the University of California's free public gateway to a world of primary sources. More than 150,000 digitized items -- including photographs, documents, newspaper pages, political cartoons, works of art, diaries, transcribed oral histories, advertising, and other unique cultural artifacts -- reveal the diverse history and culture of California and its role in national and world history. Calisphere's content has been selected from the libraries and museums of the UC campuses, and from a variety of cultural heritage organizations."
  • Europeana: Europe's Digital Library
    Direct access to several million digital objects: film,photos, paintings, sound recordings, maps, manuscripts, books,newspapers and archival papers.Selected from already digitized resources available in Europe's museums, libraries, archives and audio-visual collections. French and German cultural institutions are particularly well-represented.
  • Online Archive of California (OAC) [via California Digital Library]
    The OAC includes searchable finding aids for archival collections held in more than 200 California institutions, including museums, historical societies, and archives. It also includes scanned images and documents from these collections.
  • Academic Search Complete [via EBSCO]  
    Primarily a multidisciplinary article index, Academic Search Complete also includes a sizable collection of miscellaneous images. In order to search the image collection in this database, click "More" in the top toolbar and select "Images"


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