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Visual Media: Finding & Citing

Resources for finding images and video, evaluating licenses, and citing

Figure Captions

When you include a work of art in your paper/presentation/blog post, you'll want to include a caption. You can use a short caption and put the full citation in your Works Cite page, or you can put the full citation with the image (with commas instead of the usual punctuation) and leave it out of your Works Cited page.


For more information about how to caption images/figures and tables in MLA 8th edition visit this Owl Purdue page.

How to Cite Visual Media in MLA 8th edition

Citing Artwork
(works of art that exist in a museum or gallery somewhere)

We'll use Man Ray's Self-Portrait Assemblage as an example.  How you cite a work of art changes depending where you found it.  You include information about the artwork and then information about where you found it.  You can find information about works of art in Artstor.

Painting, Sculpture, Photograph (for example at a museum or exhibit)
Ray, Man. Self-Portrait Assemblage. 1916, gelatin silver print, The Getty Museum, Los Angeles.
Artist's name. Title of Artwork. Date of composition, the medium of the piece, Name of the institution that houses the artwork, location of the institution (city name, unless it's in the name of the institution).

 

Painting, Sculpture, Photograph found in a book (reproduction of artwork that exists in a museum)
Ray, Man. Self-Portrait Assemblage. 1916, The Getty Museum, Los Angeles. Man Ray 1910-1920, Edited by Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, Skira Editore, 1998, p. 79.
Artist's name. Title of Artwork. Date of composition, Name of the institution that houses the artwork, location of the institution (city name, unless it's in the name of the institution). Title of Book, by Author's Name (or Edited by, etc.), Publisher, Year, p. number.

 

Painting, Sculpture, Photography found on a website (reproduction of artwork that exists in a museum)
Ray, Man. Self-Portrait Assemblage. 1916. The Getty Museum, Los Angeles. The Getty, www.getty.edu/art/collection/images/I/06125210.jpg. Accessed 5 September 2016.
Artist's name. Title of Artwork. Date of composition. Name of the institution that houses the artwork, location of the institution (city name, unless it's in the name of the institution). Website Name, URL (leave out http, make it clickable if you're handing an assignment in electronically). Date accessed (optional, include it unless told not to).

 

Image Found on a Database, e.g. Artstor (reproduction of artwork that exists in a museum)
Ray, Man. Self-Portrait Assemblage. 1916. The Getty Museum, Los Angeles. Artstor. library.artstor.org.ezproxyles.flo.org/library/secure/ViewImages?id=8D1Efjk2Nj8yJiw8cy0URXorX30vfFp7&userId=iThAcw%3D%3D&zoomparams=. Accessed 5 September 2016.
Artist's name. Title of Artwork. Date of composition. Name of the institution that houses the artwork, location of the institution (city name, unless it's in the name of the institution). Database Name, URL (leave out http, make it clickable if you're handing an assignment in electronically). Date accessed (optional, include it unless told not to).

Citing Digital Images
(images that only exist digitally, and are not found in a museum somewhere)

Digital Image (clipart, stock image, etc.)
Adams, Clifton R. “People relax beside a swimming pool at a country estate near Phoenix, Arizona, 1928.” Found, National Geographic Creative, 2 June 2016, natgeofound.tumblr.com/. Accessed 5 September 2016.
Artist's name. "Title of artwork". Name of Website, Author of website or institution/organization affiliated, date the web page was created, URL. Date of access.

Digital Image on Social Media
@tombrokaw. "SC demonstrated why all the debates are the engines of this campaign." Twitter, 22 Jan. 2012, 3:06 a.m., twitter.com/tombrokaw/status/160996868971704320. Accessed 5 September 2016.
Username. "Entire text of the tweet/post/gram." Social Media Site, date of post, time of post, website. Date accessed.

Citing Video

Video Found Online
McGonigal, Jane. “Gaming and Productivity.” YouTube, uploaded by Big Think, 3 July 2012, www.youtube.com/watch?v=mkdzy9bWW3E. Accessed 5 September 2016.
Original Author/Creator. "Name of video." Site where it was found, uploaded by Username (unless it's the same as the author/creator), date posted, URL. Date accessed.

Miscellaneous

Are you trying to cite a speech, TV show, movie, etc.? Check out this Owl Purdue Guide!

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