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Visual Literacy: Image and Media Citations

A guide to help you locate and cite images & media, and understand copyright & fair use.

Image and Media Citations

Why Cite Images and Media?

Cite images and media to give credit to artists, and to allow others to locate the source of the image or media.

For information on how to format citations:

AAU Library MLA Citation Guide

Purdue University's Online Writing Lab (OWL)

In-text Citations in MLA Style

  • For in-text citations, use the author/artist’s last name followed by the page number in parentheses: (Author 23)

  • If no artist is listed, use the title of the work in quotation marks: (“Title” 23)

  • If there is no title, use whatever comes first in the works cited list

  • For images found online, do not use a page number

  • Each in-text citation should correspond to an entry in the works cited list

 

Brown, Nicole E. et al. Visual Literacy for Libraries: A Practical, Standards-Based Guide. eScholarship, University of California, 2016. eScholarship UC Berkeley. https://escholarship.org/uc/item/5210p2nx

Works Cited List in MLA Style

General Format for Images in the Works Cited List:

Creator, Creator. Title of Material. Year of Composition. Holding Entity. Title of Website or Database. Medium. Date of Access.

 

Image Found on the Web

Nunley, Donnie. Big Fish. 2012. Flickr. Web. 31 July 2014.

Image from a Database

Motherwell, Robert. Africa Suite: Number 2. 1970. Artstor. Web. 21 Aug. 2014.

Image from a Book

Cézanne, Paul. Mont Sainte-Victoire. 1904–6. Writing about Art. 6th ed. Henry M. Sayre.

Upper Saddle River: Pearson Prentice Hall, 2009. 53. Print.

Image from a Museum

Miró, Joan. Woman Addressing the Public: Project for a Monument. 1980–81. Bronze. Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth.

 

Brown, Nicole E. et al. Visual Literacy for Libraries: A Practical, Standards-Based Guide. eScholarship, University of California, 2016. eScholarship UC Berkeley. https://escholarship.org/uc/item/5210p2nx

MLA Handbook

Figures and Captions in MLA Style

  • Images are called figures in MLA style

  • Figures are labeled as Fig. 1, Fig. 2, etc.

  • When referred to in text, use lowercase letters: (see fig. 1)

  • Figures are placed near their reference in the text

  • Labels and captions go below the image

  • It is not necessary to include the figure in a works cited list if the caption contains complete source information, and the image is not referred to elsewhere in the text

  • Exceptions: Tables are labeled as Table, and musical illustrations are labeled as Example, abbreviated Ex.

 

General Format for Figure Captions:

Fig. 1. Author First Name Last Name, Title of Work, Museum and/or Publication Information.

 

Example image with caption:

Fig. 5. Takahashi Hiroaki, Cat with Tomato Plant, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 1941, https://collections.lacma.org/node/190539.

 

Brown, Nicole E. et al. Visual Literacy for Libraries: A Practical, Standards-Based Guide. eScholarship, University of California, 2016. eScholarship UC Berkeley. https://escholarship.org/uc/item/5210p2nx

How to Add a Caption in Microsoft Word

There are two ways to add a caption below an image in Microsoft Word:

Click the References tab at the top of the page and select Insert Caption

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Or right-click the image and select Insert Caption

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Type your caption into the caption field in the box and click OK. The text of the caption can still be changed in the document later.

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