Guidelines for photography Guidelines for photography

These guidelines provide a briefing on several aspects of photography and outline our approach to image selection. Commissioned or sourced photography should be contemporary and high quality, inspiring, engaging and full of impact.


This is evocative imagery that creates a certain feeling:

  • Engaging - bright, welcoming and upbeat
  • Active - show actions and capture the moment
  • Narrative - tell a story and are unique


These are images that give a sense of a place and the people within them:

  • Place - showcase our unique buildings and natual surroundings
  • People - our location and our students bring out the best in each other
  • Context - depict the University as a fun and inspiration place


This is imagery sourced from a third party. It could be a rare photo or a scientific diagram.

  • Cost - agree a price and copyright terms
  • Permission - make sure you have the rights to use the image
  • Credit - give credit rights to the owner of the image


Themes - decide on a theme before your shoot takes place by refering back to the three types of photography. Remember: seasons, weather, lighting, access, busy periods and filming permissions may influence your photoshoot.

General composition - try to shoot generic photography in both portrait and landscape. Where an image is to be used across a spread ensure that the composition is asymmetrical so that the main point of focus will not be lost in the fold. By shooting a larger area gives greater scope for positioning and cropping and is particularly important when shooting multi-use photography where a good mix of different focal lengths is preferred.

Logo space - ensure there is adequate clear space in some of your images for the placing of logos and headings eg cover shots.

People shots - we should refrain from having images with people looking at camera (unless an individual staff head shot is required) and these should appear natural and not staged where possible.

A person's appearance is important so ensure subjects are not wearing anything the target audience may find offensive (eg short sleeved shirts or skirts). Sending your subject some guidelines on dress and other suggestions like props beforehand would be beneficial.

Use strong, dynamic images to illustrate teaching and research. Students need to look enthusiastic and engaged. 

Special effects and subjective camera angles - special effects should be kept to a minimum. Camera angles of people taken from very low levels or from above their heads can be powerful but should be used sparingly.

Briefing photographers - when commissioning a photographer it is useful to provide a brief detailing what you wish to achieve and convey through your images. If a specific style is required ensure that this is clearly communicated and finding examples would be beneficial.

For event photography provide an itinerary together with a list of desired shots. If you are concerned that a location is poorly lit, you should ask the photographer to take a look before the planned shoot, so that they bring the appropriate lighting/equipment.• Images must be supplied as high quality JPEGs or TIFs, 300dpi. 

  • Minimum image resolution is 1600 x 1200
  • Pictures should be supplied without watermarks or logos
  • Pictures should be supplied with neutral saturation and contrast
  • Pictures should be supplied in their correct orientation
  • Please do not apply any artistic filters or effects unless briefed to do so
  • Please use descriptive filenames, detailing the subject and date eg ug-med-2018-01.jpg

Model Release - when taking images of people they must sign a photographic model release form. Where photographing groups, and it is not possible to obtain model release from people in the background, it is possible to display notices informing those in a location of photography. Download a model release form from our Asset Bank, or ask people to complete the online model release consent form.

For any enquiries about photography for publications please contact the marketing team.