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Copyright for students

Referencing Images

How do I reference an artistic work?

References and citations should be complete and match the referencing style guide you are using. Creators of artistic works have a moral right to be attributed for their work.

Searching Google or Pinterest can seem easy options, but often contain copyright protected images and may not include the information you need for your reference. 

Instead try the following:

  • Check out these recommended image libraries.
  • In Google Images, use the Creative Commons filter in the search:
    • If using Chrome, search and then go to Tools > Usage rights > Creative Commons licenses
  • Try a reverse image search such as the one provided by Google.
    • if you use Chrome, it’s as simple as right-clicking an image and selecting the 'Search Google for this image' option in the drop-down menu.

Always go to the source and check for licensing and terms.

An example of a Harvard style reference:


Example of referencing


Figure 1 Destitute family in California

Source: Lange (1936, n.p.)


Reference list:

Lange, D 1936, 'Destitute peapickers in California. Mother of seven children. Age thirty-two. Nipomo, California', Library of Congress, viewed 6 September 2021, <>

An example of an APA7 style reference:

Figure 1

Destitute Family in California

Example of referencing


Note. From Destitute peapickers in California. Mother of seven children. Age thirty-two. Nipomo, California [Photograph], by Dorothea Lange, 1936, Library of Congress ( In the public domain.


Reference list:

Lange, D. (1936). Destitute peapickers in California. Mother of seven children.  Age thirty-two. Nipomo, California [Photograph]. Library of                  Congress. 

* Include hanging indent for APA


An example of a Creative Commons reference in APA7:

Figure 2

Lava the Sled Dog

Example of referencing


Note. From Lava [Photograph], by Denali National Park and Preserve, 2013, Flickr ( CC BY 2.0.


Reference list:

Denali National Park and Preserve. (2013). Lava [Photograph]. Flickr.

*Include hanging indent for APA


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