Photography and Videography

Imagery is one of our strongest opportunities for creating an emotional connection. It provides a platform to engage with our audience and reflects NIU's personality traits:

  • Personalized
  • Inviting
  • Charged


To inquire about the availability of a photographer, please email A photographer will respond within two business days. In your email, please indicate how the photo(s) will be used, as well as the ideal deadline for receiving a link to the image(s) in the photo gallery.

For inquiries about video projects, please email Please note, video projects need a longer lead time in order to plan and produce, and Institutional Communications' focus is on videos that impact recruitment and retention. A team member will respond to your inquiry within five business days.

Learn more about our brand personality.

Image Libraries

Institutional Communications has a new image library from Canto. Campus partners can browse photographs and access images they need with the 'asset request' feature in Canto. An account administrator from Institutional Communications will approve the request within 2-3 business days.

We will continue to maintain the  previous image library, however no new photos will be posted there. Photographs taken since fall of 2019 will only appear in the new image library from Canto.

Additional Information

Upcoming Photobooth Events
no appointment required

Professional Headshots

We understand the importance of having a professional photo in today's digital age and are pleased to offer annual opportunities to faculty, staff and students with a photo booth at the NIU career fairs.

Photo Policies

All images taken by NIU photographers are copyrighted Board of Trustees of Northern Illinois University. As such, images taken for any client can be used by the University for other projects.

Portraits cannot be used for political purposes.

Best Practices Regarding University Photography and Personal Privacy

  • Generally speaking, it is permissible to capture university photographic images of people in public places performing public activities.
  • For staged photography set-ups in the residence halls, NIU photographers should obtain signed release forms from the subjects.
  • While shooting photographic images, NIU photographers will respect anyone's request not to be photographed. It is permissible to request that anyone not wishing to be photographed to move, within reason, to a location away from the area of photographic interest.
  • Upon request, NIU will remove any images from a university controlled social media site.
  • If a printed brochure contains objectionable images, future printings will include a replacement image, but NIU will not recall materials already printed and/or distributed.
  • Photoshop manipulation of images of people to create an artificial scene will not be permitted. Clean-up of images using photoshop is permitted, but altering the context of the photograph is not permitted.
  • To the extent possible, reasonable steps should be taken to notify people in advance that photographers will be present and working. This can be accomplished for most predictable public events utilizing signage and printing notices on the backs of tickets.

View the NIU Image Library

Talent Release Forms

Creative Services requires signed release forms from subjects who appear in its productions. However, when photographers and videographers are shooting events in public places such as in classrooms or on campus, release forms are generally not required.

Educational Productions

When we stage portraits, group shots, or interviews for instructional or promotional use, subjects who appear in the media production must sign a Talent Release Form. This form must also be signed by guest speakers who are taped for later use in a classroom or promotional setting.

Commercial Productions

When an image, sound or video segment is recorded for use in a commercial product, signatures from all recorded subjects are required on the Talent Release Form.

What to Wear to NIU Photoshoot (for students)

We're excited for you to be part of an NIU photoshoot. Dress in casual clothes. Wear an NIU shirt and bring a plain shirt, or wear a plain shirt and bring an NIU shirt. Your plain shirt should be white, gray, blue or black. It can be a button-down shirt or blouse, or a cotton T-shirt (short- or long-sleeved). Wear jeans, khakis, black pants or capris.

We use these photos for a variety of purposes, so it's best if your clothes are modest and not seasonal. Don't wear:

  • Shorts or tank tops.
  • Busy patterns.
  • Obvious brand names.
  • Other university names.

Additional tips:

  • Bring your backpack if you normally carry it to class.
  • Wear your hair or makeup the way you would when going to class.
  • Bring a brush or comb if you'd like.
  • Feel free to wear a zip-up jacket.
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