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Citation Styles and Tools: Citing Images

How to construct citations in MLA, Chicago, APA, ACS, and ASA, and tools that can help you

Image citations can be very dependent on context; an image that is a key source might need more information than something used for aesthetic purposes (though you should still properly cite and credit those images). Below is some guidance for the main citation styles for citing images, but their style manuals might need to be referenced for more information.


The CMOS advises citations for works of art may be in-text and not necessitate a note or bibliography entry. if you do want to include them in these places this is the general format of the note:

Note: FirstName LastName, Title, date, medium, location of work (museum name for example), URL.

Bibliography: LastName, FirstName. Title. Date. Medium. location of work (museum name for example), URL.

Example: Matisse, Henri. Still Life with Aubergines. 1911. Louise Reinhardt Smith Bequest.

The Chicago guidelines are largely directed towards artwork, however, if you are using an image from website, book, article, etc., the citation will be based on that main source, with a final reference to the specific illustration, figure, or table, for example an image found in a book would be cited thus:

FirstName LastName, Book Title (Publication location: Publisher, date), page number, table/figure/illustration number. [you will include "figure" or "illustration"]

Chicago Style Guide


MLA has changed their format so that every type of source has the same structure, and you will just have to be thoughtful about how your source is described by the different elements:

Author. Title of Source. Title of Container, Contributor, Version, Number, Publisher, Publication Date, Location.

So for instance, an image you get from ArtStor could be cited like this:

Matisse, Henri. Still Life with Aubergines. 1911. Louise Reinhardt Smith Bequest, ARTstor,

A photo you found in a book would be cited as the page like you would a quotation you cited.

MLA Style Guide


LastName, FirstName M. Date created. "Title of Image." From Site Title. Retrieved Date (URL).

ex. Matisse, Henri. 1911. Still Life with Aubergines. From ArtStor. December 1, 2021 (

ASA Style Guide (in print)

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