University Library Resources:
ARTstor is a collection of over half a million images from a variety of sources. The University Library subscribes to the service. The images in ARTstor are contributed by image collections or museums, so they typically are of good quality. There are some size limits on some exported images.
LUNA at UMass Amherst - This is the image database for the UMass Art & Art History Department. While this collection is new and still growing, other national collections are available through the system. The system is not only a database but can serve as a presentation tool.
SCUA Image Galleries - The Department of Special Collections and University Archives has digitized over 13,000 photographs and other works of art from its collections documenting the history of the University of Massachusetts Amherst community, and thousands more depicting individuals, organizations, and localities within its broader collecting scope.
Non-Commercial Internet Resources:
Art History Resources on the Web - Assembled by Prof. Chris Witcombe at Sweetbriar College, this site is among the most complete sources for finding images on the web. The site provides many links to other sites. These links are arranged in a variety of ways.
- Good points: The thoroughness of the site is impressive.
- Bad points: The site is so large you might not spot all the places to look for what you need.
Artcyclopedia - Another site that collects links, Artcyclopedia allows searching by artist, title, or museum.
- Good points: It is particularly good at delivering you to decent images.
- Bad points: There are also many ads for poster and art repro sites, so be ready to deal with those.
New York Public Library Digital Gallery - The Digital Gallery provides free and open access to over 700,000 images digitized from The New York Public Library's vast collections.
- Good points: There is an incredible selection of historic photographs, prints, manuscripts, and other documents. Easily searchable and browseable.
- Bad points: The image files are of an average size, not too small, just big enough to use in presentations.
Wikimedia Commons - While you should use caution with Wikipedia as a source for information, Wikimedia can be a pretty good source for images.
- Good points: Many images are at a good size and are good quality. Coverage for some artists is very good.
- Bad points: Searching can be tricky because it’s hard to know if you found everything that is available. The organization can be a little complicated.
Google Images - Google is the first stop for most people. Finding a particular image can be difficult, but it is possible to find some good images there. The process is just like a regular Google search. For more precise searching, go to the Advanced Image Search option.
- Good points: Lots of hits, displays size of image in results.
- Bad points: Lots of hits (without specific search terms), images can be too small, commercial sites with pop-ups, potential for viruses.
Altavista Images - Generally the same as Google. It’s another search engine, so you may see different results. The basic search screen allows for more precise searching.
Flickr - Flickr has lots and lots of images at many different sizes. Searching for something specific can be challenging, so be as precise as you can with your terms.
- Good points: Can find really obscure things, many are at good sizes, organization of the site can lead to other finds.
- Bad points: Might have to sort through lots of unusable things, quality varies considerably.
Commercial Internet Resources:
There is a growing number of image brokers who license or sell images. The offerings are typically stock photos and cover a wide variety of subjects. The prices can vary dramatically depending on the vendor, the artist, and the intended use.
It should also be stated that the ICL does not endorse any of these vendors over another. We offer these references in order to provide the widest range of sources.
Browse the UMass Libraries Video Database List for video collections available to the UMass Amherst community.
Last Edited: 27 September 2013