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The Coventry University Guide to Referencing in Harvard Style: Visual Sources

How to reference visual sources

General guidance on referencing visual sources


If you incorporate information from visual sources into your text, you must provide both an in-text citation and matching entry in your end List of References. These two components are referenced differently for different types of visual sources.

Take a look at our general guidelines for examples of referencing most types of visual sources.

You can also find guidance on specific types of visual sources by clicking on the relevant tab above.


  • When you want to reproduce a work of art from either a printed or an online source, there is usually a copyright issue. This will be stated on the image itself or in the introductory material. Follow the guidelines given in your source.
  • Often reproduction for use in academic assignments which are not formally published is acceptable. If in doubt, ask your module tutor.
  • Be prepared to use your own judgment when referencing unusual visual sources.
  • Make sure you give the art or exhibit type in square brackets where applicable, and if appropriate the place of publication of the book, magazine or catalogue and the publisher or else the exhibition.
  • Be consistent throughout your paper.

General guidelines on referencing visual sources


In-text citation

 

Example

Figure 3 shows what the old Coventry Cathedral looked like in 1880 (Historic Coventry 2017).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Figure 3: St. Michael's - Coventry's Old Cathedral (Historic Coventry 2017)


Components

Label your image as a Figure, and include the following in your citation:

  • Surname of the artist (or name of organisation if no author is available).
  • Year.

If your figure is from a printed source (or an electronic source with page numbers):

  • A colon.
  • Page number.

In addition:

  • Explain who the artist is in your text if possible, providing the full in-text citation.
  • Discuss the significance of the Figure in full.
  • Include a List of Figures at the beginning of your document, if required.

List of References entry

 

Example

Historic Coventry (2001) St. Michael's - The Old Cathedral [online] available from <https://www.historiccoventry.co.uk/cathedrals/oldcathedral.php?pg=oldcathedral> [24 August 2017]

Components

  • The full end reference in the format required for the kind of source the image was from (take a look at the different source types outlined by the tabs at the top of the page). For example, the reference above follows the format required by a website.

An image or an art figure in a magazine, book or catalogue


In-text citation
 

Example

The LG advertisement in Vanity Fair (Life Tastes Good 2009) catches the readers’ imagination.

Components

  • Name of the advertisement in italics.
  • Year of publication.

List of References entry
 

Example

Life Tastes Good (2009) in Vanity Fair. 12 August, 16

Components

  • Name of the advertisement in italics.
  • Year of publication in brackets.
  • The word 'in', followed by the hosting magazine or newspaper and a full stop.
  • Issue date, followed by a comma.
  • Page number where the advert is located.

​A work of art, photograph, illustration or another item in an exhibition or exhibition stand


In-text citation
 

Example

Tet, 1958 (Louis 2009) was exhibited at the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Components

  • Surname and initial(s) of the artist(s) or producer(s) of the artwork or exhibit item.
  • Year of publication.

List of References entry
 

Example

Louis, M. (2009) Tet, 1958 [painting] ‘Synthetic’ exhibition. New York: The Whitney Museum of American Art, 22 January-19 April

Components

  • Surname and initial(s) of the artist(s) or producer(s) of the artwork or exhibit item.
  • Year of exhibition in brackets.
  • Title of the work in italics, followed by a comma.
  • Year of its original production in italics.
  • Art or exhibit type in square brackets.
  • Exhibition or exhibition stand within single quotation marks.
  • Type of event, i.e. 'exhibition' or 'display', followed by a full stop.
  • Place of the exhibition, followed by a colon.
  • Museum, gallery or exhibiting institution, followed by a comma.
  • Exhibition date(s). (See date format in the example above).

​An exhibition catalogue or art book


In-text citation
 

Example

This essay focuses on Gale et al.'s (2008) exhibition illustrating the influence of Salvador Dali on contemporary film.

Components

  • Surname of the artist(s). If appropriate, use 'et al.'.
  • Year of publication.

List of References entry
 

Example

Gale, M., Ades, D., Aguer, M. and Fanes, F. (2008) Dali & Film. New York: The MoMA

Components

  • Surname and initial(s) of the artist(s).
  • Publication date in brackets.
  • Title of the exhibition catalogue or art book in italics, followed by a full stop.
  • Place, followed by a colon.
  • Gallery or place of publication.

​An advertisement in a printed magazine or newspaper


In-text citation
 
Example
 
The LG advertisement in Vanity Fair (Life Tastes Good 2009) catches the readers’ imagination.

Components

  • Name of the advertisement in italics.
  • Year of publication.

List of References entry
 

Example

Life Tastes Good (2009) in Vanity Fair. 12 August, 16

 

Components

  • Name of the advertisement in italics.
  • Year of publication.
  • The word 'in' and the name of the hosting magazine or newspaper, followed by a full stop.
  • Issue date, followed by a comma.
  • Page number where the advert is located.

​An advertisement in an electronic magazine or newspaper


In-text citation
 
Example
The LG advertisement in Vanity Fair (Life Tastes Good 2009) catches the readers’ imagination.

Components

  • Name of the advertisement in italics.
  • Year of publication.

List of References entry
 

Example 1

Life Tastes Good (2009) in Vanity Fair [online] 12 August. available from <http://www.vanityfair.com/> [12 August 2009] 

Components 

  • Title of the advertisement in italics.
  • Year of publication in brackets.
  • The word 'in', followed by the name of the hosting magazine or newspaper.
  • The word 'online' in square brackets.
  • Issue date, followed by a full stop.
  • The word 'available from'.
  • Full URL within chevrons, i.e. < >
  • Date of access in square brackets. (See date format in example above).

Example 2 (If the advert is located on a website as an image or a video)

Transformers: Revenge of the Former LG Commercial (2009) [online] available from <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sLUnwCJV0IA> [13
August 2009]

Components

  • Title of the advertisement in italics.
  • Year of release in brackets.
  • The word 'online' in square brackets.
  • The words 'available from'.
  • Full URL within chevrons, i.e. < >
  • Date of access in square brackets. (See date format in example above).

​An artwork or image in a magazine accessed electronically


In-text citation

 

Example

Fig.1 represents an image published in The New Yorker (Niemann 2009).

Components

  • Surname of the artist.
  • Year of publication.

List of References entry
 

Example

Niemann, C. (2009) 'Sorry, but I get all the stuff I don’t need on the Internet'. The New Yorker [online] 10 August. available from
<http://www.newyorker.com/talk/financial/2009/08/10/090810ta_talk_surowiecki> [13 August 2009]

Components

  • Surname(s) and initial(s) of the artist(s), 
  • Year of publication in brackets.
  • Yitle/caption of the image or artwork within single quotation marks, followed by a full stop. 
  • Name of the magazine in italics
  • The word ‘online’ in square brackets.
  • Issue date.
  • The words ‘available from’.
  • Full URL within chevrons, i.e. < >
  • Date of access in square brackets. (See date format in the example above).

An Ordnance Survey map


In-text citation
 

Example

All distances are provided with reference to the Coventry City Centre map (Ordnance Survey 1990).

Components

  • The words 'Ordnance Survey' (as author).
  • Year of publication.

List of References entry
 

Example

Ordnance Survey (1990) Coventry City Centre. Sheet 55. 1:500000, Warwickshire Series

Components

  • The words 'Ordnance Survey' (as author).
  • Year of publication in brackets.
  • Title in italics, followed by a full stop.
  • Sheet number, followed by a full stop.
  • Scale of the map, followed by a comma.
  • Series.

A map


In-text citation
 

Example

The Coventry Cycle Paths map (Elms 2005) is very useful for those considering cycling to work.

Components

  • Surname of the cartographer, compiler, editor (this can be a corporate author as well), copier, or engraver.
  • Year when the map was published.

List of References entry

 

Example

Elms, J. (2005) Coventry Cycle Paths. 1:40000. Coventry: Warwickshire Guides

Components

  • Surname(s) and initial(s) of the cartographer(s), compiler(s), editor(s) (this can be a corporate author as well), copier(s), or engraver(s).
  • Year in brackets.
  • Title in italics, followed by a full stop.
  • Scale of the map (where available), followed by a full stop.
  • Place of publication, followed by a colon.
  • Publisher.

A leaflet or poster


In-text citation
 

Example

This effective leaflet (NHS 2009) promotes 3 easy steps to reduce the spread of germs.
The poster for the latest Iron Man film is very compelling (Iron Man 3 2013).

 

Components

  • Surname of the author(s) or corporate author. If the author is not apparent, write the title of the leaflet or of the poster.
  • Year in brackets. 

List of References entry
 

Example 1 (If the author or corporate author is clear)

National Health Service (2009) Catch It, Bin It, Kill It. Leaflet. Coventry: Walsgrave Hospital

 

Components

  • Surname and initials of author(s) or name of corporate author.
  • Year in brackets. 
  • Title of the leaflet in italics and title case, followed by a full stop.
  • Type of document, i.e. 'Leaflet' or 'Poster', followed by a full stop.
  • Place it was displayed, followed by a colon.
  • Institution where it was displayed.

Example 2 (If the author or corporate author is not apparent)

Iron Man 3 (2013) Poster. Coventry: Odeon Theatre

Components

  • Title of the leaflet, poster or event, in italics.
  • Year in brackets. 
  • Type of document, i.e. 'Leaflet' or 'Poster', followed by a full stop.
  • Place where it was displayed, followed by a colon.
  • Institution where it was displayed.
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