Picture This: Images on the Web

To find images or reproductions, use a variety of sources, including library catalogs, web sites, databases, and search engines.

Library Resources

Digital Image Resources

ArtStor is a rich resource of digital art images. When you connect to ArtStor, make sure your pop-up blocker is disabled to view images.

Oxford Art Online includes images from Grove Art Online and Oxford art reference sources.

Academic Search Premier To search the image collection of magazines and journals, mouse over the More toolbar. A drop down menu will appear; choose the Images option.

Oxford African American Studies Center This source includes images from African American history and culture.

Images from Print Sources

Art Index/Art Index Retrospective You can limit your search results to images found in art journals and magazines.

Readers' Guide Retrospective
Points to images from popular press magazines, from 1890 to 1982

SIMON Use the catalog to find images from books. To find books which primarily contain illustrations, type your topic keywords and “pictorial works.”
To see if a book contains images, view the catalog record and check the physical description or note field for indications of illustrations, e.g., ill., plates, etc.

General Search Engines with Image Search Options

Most of the major search engines have some provision for searching images, although they fall short of the specialized tools.

Google Image Search
Use the advanced search to limit by file format, domain name, file size, or coloration.

Yahoo! Image Search

Ask Images
A site for quick keyword image searches.

Specialized Image Search Engines

In addition to the search engines listed above, you may also want to search speciality image search engines.

Selected Image Web Sites

AD*ACCESS advertisements printed in U.S. and Canadian newspapers and magazines between 1911 and 1955; five major areas covered: Radio, Television, Transportation, Beauty and Hygiene, and World War II

American Memory This Library of Congress site provides images documenting American history and the American experience.

Emergence of Advertising Art in America: 1850-1920 Find images related to the early history of advertising in the United States.

Life Photo Archive Search millions of photographs from the LIFE photo archive, stretching from the 1750s to today

NYPL Digital Gallery

Perry-Castañeda Library Map Collection - Contains images from the more than 250,000 maps in the University of Texas-Austin, covering all areas of the world.

Prints and Photographs Division of the Library of Congress A rich archive of photographs

Visible Earth (NASA)

Image Copyright & Fair Use Considerations

  • What is the character of the use? Nonprofit or commercial use?
  • What is the nature of the work to be used? Fact and published or imaginative and unpublished?
  • How much of the work will you use? Small amount or more than a small amount?
  • If this kind of use were widespread, what kind of impact would it have on the economic value of the work?


  • Use public domain material. See
  • Get a license to use image.
  • Look for the image creator's statement of permissable use.

DIRC Digital Image Rights Computator This site is intended to assist the user in assessing the intellectual property status of a specific image


Tip: Remember to cite any images you use!