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Images: finding, using, and citing them: Citing Images

Citation vs. attribution

When to Cite

When to provide Attribution

Any images you plan to use in a scholarly work (from print or web) should be cited according to required format style (APA, MLA, etc.)

You may attribute an image/visual media source for presentations, papers, or other formats that do not require a specific publication style.

Quick reference

Example  (MLA) image from the web

Example (APA) image from the web

Example attributed image from the web


Example (Chicago Manual of Style) image from the web





Blake, William. The Ghost of a Flea. 1918. Tempera heightened with gold on mahogany. Tate Britain, London. Art Project. Google. Web. 15 Feb. 2011


Lastname, Firstname. Title of Work. Year. Medium. Institution housing work: Location of Institution. Website name. Website sponsor. Web. Date of retrieval.

Carvaggio, M. (1606). Death of the Virgin. [Painting]. Retrieved from






Lastname, A. A. (Year of composition).  Title of Work. [Format]. Place work resides

Praying Mantis by Elizabeth Swider (2010) (CC-BY 3.0)







Try to include the following information:

  • Provide the creator of the work
  • the title
  • year(s) when it was composed/completed
  • materials involved in creating the work
  • institution that houses the work
  • date the work was retrieved
  • the website from which the work was retrieved (a hyperlink if the format allows).


Smithson, Robert.  Spiral Jetty,  mud, precipitated salt crystals, rocks, water, in Rozel Point, Great Salt Lake, Utah, 1970.  (Collection of DIA Center for the Arts, New York, NY).  http://www.robertsmithson.



Artist’s last name, first name. Title of art work,  medium, date of art work. (Institution where art work is housed (if known), city where housed if not already named). URL.