15 Online Sources for Images

by Alexandra Janvey, Head Editor, INALJ Iowa

15 Online Sources for Images


  1. accessCeramics (http://accessceramics.org/) – A growing collection of contemporary ceramic images by recognized artists that is designed to enhance ceramics education worldwide. It is designed for use by artists, art educators, scholars, and the general public and fills a void in contemporary ceramics digital image collections on the web.
  2. Artsy (http://artsy.net/feature/artsy-education) – provides one of the largest collections of contemporary art available online with more than 25,000 images. Artsy’s mission is to make all the world’s art accessible to anyone with an Internet connection. Downloadable images on Artsy are those that are believed to be in the public domain.
  3. California State University IMAGE Project (http://worldimages.sjsu.edu/) – This internationally recognized WorldImages database provides access to approximately 100,000 images, is global in coverage and includes all areas of imagery.
  4. Getty Open Content Program (http://search.getty.edu/gateway/search?q=&cat=highlight&f=%22Open+Content+Images%22&rows=10&srt=a&dir=s&pg=1)High resolution images of works from the Getty Museum and Getty Research Institute that are in the public domain and may be used freely.
  5. Historical Photographs of China (http://hpc.vcea.net/Database/Images?CF=8) – A collaboration between scholars at the University of Bristol, University of London and the Institut d’Asie Orientale. This project aims to locate, archive, and disseminate photographs from the substantial holdings of images of modern China held mostly in private hands overseas.
  6. Library of Congress Prints & Photographs (http://www.loc.gov/pictures/) – Contains catalog records and digital images representing a rich cross-section of still pictures held by various units of the Library of Congress. Collections include photographs, fine and popular prints and drawings, posters, and architectural and engineering drawings. The collections are particularly rich in materials that are produced in, or document the history of the U.S. and the lives, interests and achievements of the American people
  7. LIFE Photo Archive (http://images.google.com/hosted/life) – Millions of photographs from the LIFE photo archive (1750s – present) are available on this site.
  8. National Gallery of Art NGA Images (https://images.nga.gov/en/page/show_home_page.html) – A repository of digital images from the National Gallery. More than 32,000 open access digital images up to 3000 pixels each are available free of charge for download and use.
  9. NYPL Digital Gallery (http://digitalgallery.nypl.org/nypldigital/index.cfm) – Provides free and open access to over 800,000 images digitized from the New York Public Library’s vast collections, including illuminated manuscripts, historical maps, vintage posters, rare prints, photographs and more.
  10. SepiaTown (http://sepiatown.com/index)A website that lets you search, view, and upload historical images by location.
  11. Smithsonian Institution Collections Search Center (http://www.collections.si.edu/search/index.htm) – Searchable database that contains over 8.52 million records with 963,000 images, video and sound files, electronic journals and other online resources. Images on this site may be used freely for non-commercial purposes.
  12. The Digital Scriptorium (http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/digitalscriptorium/) – A growing image database of medieval and renaissance manuscripts that unites scattered resources from many institutions.
  13. Visual Arts Data Service (VADS) (http://www.vads.ac.uk/index.php) – The online resource for visual arts that has built up a considerable portfolio of visual art collections comprising over 100,000 images that are freely available and copyright cleared for use in learning, teaching and research in the UK.
  14. Web Gallery of Art (http://www.wga.hu/index.html) – The Web Gallery of Art is a virtual museum and searchable database of European painting and sculpture of the Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, Neoclassicism, Romanticism periods (1000-1850), currently containing over 29,000 reproductions.
  15. Yale University Digital Collections (http://digitalcollections.library.yale.edu/) – This cross-collection search retrieves results from over 500,000 images in selected Yale library Digital Collections. These collections include the Yale Visual Resource Collection, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library Digital Images Online and the Yale Department of Classics Collection.


Naomi House

Naomi House, MLIS, is the founder and publisher of the popular LIS jobs resource INALJ.com (formerly I Need a Library Job). Founded in October 2010 with the assistance of her fellow Rutgers classmate, Elizabeth Leonard, INALJ’s social media presence has grown to include Facebook (retired in 2016), Twitter and a LinkedIn group, in addition to the interviews, articles and jobs found on INALJ.com. INALJ has had over 20 Million page views and helped thousands of librarians and LIS folk find employment! Through grassroots marketing, word of mouth and a real focus on exploring unconventional resources for job leads, INALJ grew from a subscription base of 20 friends to a website with over 500,000 visits in a month. Naomi believes that well-sourced quantity is quality in this narrow job market and INALJ reflects this many new jobs published daily. She was a 2013 Library Journal Mover & Shaker and has served on the University of Maryland iSchool Board from 2014-2017. Naomi was a Reference, Marketing and Acquisitions Librarian for a contractor at a federal library outside Washington, DC, and now lives part time in Western NY and Budapest, Hungary. She has heard of spare time but hasn’t encountered it lately. She pronounces INALJ as eye-na-elle-jay. 


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