- Imagery should be vibrant, engaging and relevant – it is important to look through the letters of the UCL banner and see something interesting.
- Images should convey a sense of exploration and discovery, of looking at things differently and making an impact.
- Choose images that match your tone and appeals to your target audience
- Apply caution when using close-ups of people unless you are sure you have their consent if they are not in a public place.
- In most cases it is more interesting to show people engaged in an activity than posing for the camera. This is especially true if the activity is relevant to their work or studies.
- It’s better to not use an image than use a poor quality one
- Always use high quality and vibrant images
- Don’t use pixelated images avoid images that are completely out of focus
- Avoid dull, dark muddy images as they may not reproduce well on screen or in print
- For the web images should be a minimum of 72dpi* at the size used
- For print images should be a minimum of 300dpi* at the size used
*dpi stands for dots per inch, and is also sometimes expressed as ppi (pixels per inch)
Do not include an image on your website or in print unless you are sure you have permission to use it. Most images in print and on the internet are protected by copyright law and you must seek permissions from the copyright holder/rights owner (usually the photographer or an image library) before using them and credit as required.
If you are given an image by an individual to use on the UCL website or in print, it’s your responsibility to check the provenance before using it.
If you have commissioned photographs, check the conditions of your license and do not circulate the images beyond UCL without contacting the copyright holder first (usually the photographer).
If you are using stock photography, check whether it is royalty-free or right managed
You can read more information about copyright at UCL here:
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) prescribes that images and video recordings of individuals constitute personal data, and therefore falls within the GDPR; however, determining whether personal data is in images is not always clear-cut.
Further guidance for UCL staff can be found here:
Obtain written consent. It is good practice to have the persons being photographed sign our consent form.
You can complete the UCL Filming and Photography Consent Form here:
- You can crop into an image to give it a different look
- If you can’t find a good image, then it’s better not to use one and try colour or typography instead.
- Ensure you have permission to use the image
- Credit the origin when appropriate or required
- Try to only include images of people that you would be happy to see of yourself
- Use stock images as a last resort