Duke University Photography is committed to providing the highest-quality photographic images to a wide range of constituents, from Duke’s myriad academic programs to the athletics department, from the local, regional and national media to Duke’s alumni and friends. Our award-winning photographers cover the University and beyond, capturing compelling images that tell Duke’s stories.

The Duke Photowalk Flickr feed is a good place for finding beautiful stock photography. Photos from the Community Photos section of Duke Photography’s website are also available for free download within the Duke Community only, for those logged in with an email address. You can also contribute to the gallery.

When choosing photography for your project, a combination of thematic stock photos and custom photoshoots should be able to provide all necessary images. When choosing (and shooting) images, look for:

  • interesting, asymmetric compositions
  • “white” or negative space
  • utilize close crops
  • diversity of subjects both in race and gender
  • subject matter of off-campus images should be topical

Avoid excessive shots of campus architecture. Instead, choose classrooms, students, or natural elements (plants, sky, etc.). When applicable, incorporate current event images to convey a theme or topic. Look for editorial images instead of banal “stock” images. Lastly, use global images as much as possible. Try not to limit industry/initiative images to a U.S. focus.


Portraits should be forward-facing with the following attributes:

  • quiet composition
  • personal
  • looking toward camera

Please contact University Photography for portrait work of Duke administration, faculty and staff.

Alumni portraits should be off-campus (to illustrate our impact in the real world) and, when at all possible, include props from their industry. When portraits occur on campus, choose interesting backgrounds such as artwork or the natural world.

Other things to consider:

Create a point of focus such that the background blurs a bit, but avoid the image getting too “soft.”

Can be anything, really. Just try and capture your subject at ease, with their most natural expression.

Be creative, look for backgrounds that are graphic, quiet, or artful.

Try the extremes; either really close or really far can be unusual and wonderful.


University Photo Release Form