Screenshot of the Rutgers Digital Asset Library

Photo Resources

Strong, high-quality visual imagery in your communications projects attracts attention, conveys messages, and tells Rutgers’ many audiences that the university values quality and clarity.

Use Rutgers Photography

Whenever possible, it is preferable to use images supplied by and taken at Rutgers. If you are showing students, faculty, staff, or alumni, seek out available Rutgers images or arrange for a photo shoot if you cannot find what you need. Use real members of the Rutgers community, not commercial stock photography, when showing people.


The Rutgers Digital Asset Library, a new asset management system powered by Merlin One, contains thousands of Rutgers-related and general images and is a source for high-quality photography for use in Rutgers communications. A growing collection of video assets will also be an important component of the library. Rutgers faculty and staff have full access to the digital library by logging in with their Net ID. This self-service system allows you to:

  • Conduct general content and specific metadata field searches
  • Save searches with dynamic content results
  • Create and share collections of images for easy collaboration with colleagues within Rutgers
  • Download hi-res images

For assistance with the digital library,

Images and videos in the digital library are released for use in Rutgers communications only and may not be distributed or repurposed without permission. Any use for news media, commercial purposes, or paid advertising requires written permission.  Public users may view a UCM-curated collection of university images.  

Special Collections and University Archives

Located in the Alexander Library at Rutgers University–New Brunswick, Special Collections and University Archives houses an eclectic collection of photographs and prints numbering in excess of 200,000 images, including several thousand postcards. New Jersey scenes and people are especially well documented, as are images relating to United States history through the Civil War. There are also many images relating to Rutgers history. Faculty and staff may login to the Rutgers Digital Asset Library and view select historical images from the archives.

Hire a Photographer

For Rutgers units, the ACE (Access to Communications (and marketing) Experts) program provides easy access to suppliers, including photographers, who have master service agreements in place with the university and have been trained on Rutgers brand standards and on the university’s communications and procurement policies. UCM is happy to help you develop your Request for Quote and/or review vendor proposals.

Be sure your written estimate specifies how the images should be supplied. Ask your photographer to make sure they enter all relevant metadata with the images, e.g., including their name, copyright information, and location. Consult our Photo FAQ page for general information about photography.

Get a Photo Model Release or HIPAA Authorization

Written permission to photograph or videotape your subjects is imperative.  You or your photographer must get completed and signed model release or HIPAA Patient Authorization forms from all of your subjects. HIPAA Authorization forms are required when working with patients who disclose health information in any form.

Commercial Stock Photography

For the most generic images, such as foods, a globe, a planet, etc., you must purchase a stock photo from a commercial supplier to serve your needs. Search the internet for “stock photography” and you will find a multitude of commercial stock houses. Consult our Photo FAQ for general information about photography usage rights, copyrights, permissions, and ownership.