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Finding Images and Video


The internet can be a great source of images, from online databases,  special collections, Museums, Galleries, photostock sources etc.  However, you need to use good research skills and judgement to discover and evaluate the images that you find online. 

Remember,  just because an image or a film clip is posted on a website it doesn't mean that it has been put there by the original owner of the image or that the information posted with it is accurate.

Look at the image quality and resolution; does it meet your needs?

Don't just rely on Google images and remember that not everything is available online.  Printed sources are often the best place to source a specific image that you need.

Top tips

You should always choose your images with care and remember they are not always free to use.  Look at the page on Copyright from the left hand menu for more information.   You may often find images which have been digitally altered in some way and do not really reflect the original version.   You will need to check who has posted these pictures and whether or not they have been posted to the internet with permission and with the right for you to use them too.

If you are looking for art images you may need to think about image quality.  Reproductions of images on the internet can vary in quality and definition and do not always capture the true colour of the original painting.  You may need to compare many copies of an image before you decide to use it in your work.

If you want to use images on the internet, there is full informaton about Copyright on the Government website linked below.

If you are looking for photographs and still images for your assignments or presentations you can use subscription databases which the University pays for.  More information about those collections can be found on the page Using subscription databases in the left hand menu

Alternatively, you can look for sites which use Creative Commons Licences such as Flickr or Google images. (you may need to filter your results to select just those posted with a Creative Commons Licence)

 Always check a web site's terms and conditions before you download images, particularly if you intend to re-use them in assignments, presentations or course resources.

There are many sources of moving images on the internet.  Most people use YouTube to view short film clips posted by individuals and organisations across a vast range of subjects and interest levels. Once again, it is always best to check who has posted the clip and whether they have had permission to do so before you re-use any clips you may find there.  The University has it's own YouTube site here.

The University Library also gives you access to a range of sites which have Copyright cleared movie clips which you can either stream or download to use in presentations or class work.  See the page about Subscription databases for more information about these.