Choosing the right photo

Images can take our university collateral from ordinary to outstanding.

While it takes time and resources to find appropriate, high-quality photos to support our content, the results speak for themselves. Take a look below at some of the things you should look for and keep in mind when selecting a photo to represent your upcoming event, use in a sales presentation or anything in-between those two.

Three things to consider when selecting good photography

 A female Davenport University student in red scrubs.


Our images should feel bright and inspirational, using natural light whenever possible. Avoid images that appear dark or use an abundance of artificial lighting.


The color and tone of a photograph can have a major impact on the look and feel. Images that are too warm can appear to be dated, while too cool can feel cold or over- processed.

Always try to find images that have natural feeling color. Outdoor photos will always feel a little warmer, and indoor, or classroom photos will always feel a little cooler.

Davenport students playing tug-of-war
A male student in red Davenport University scrubs with a stethoscope around his neck.


Images should be captured in a photo- journalistic style, free of clutter with a clear and narrow focus. A shallow depth of field is encouraged to add interest and direct the viewers focus.

Avoid images with a complex background, that are over-complicated, or cluttered.

Other things to keep in mind as you search for your next photo


When using images of campus, we should always use images that represent the latest and greatest in Davenport University facilities. This is particularly important for interior images.

Light and color are very important for exterior images and should be reflective of the seasons, while still appearing bright, expansive, and awe inspiring.

Interior of a building at Davenport. Large video screens are overhead.


People are a large part of our photography story, and we should always aim to use images that feel spontaneous, while still capturing real interactions, genuine expressions, and natural smiles.

For instances when staged or portrait photography is necessary, images should still follow the same guidelines and never appear fake or forced.

A shallow depth of field focused on the subject is also important to our images of people.

A female student in a crowd, laughing


Sometimes the smallest details can have the biggest impact. For this reason, it’s important to pay special attention to ALL of the details within a photograph.

In addition to everything that has already been mentioned, we should always keep an eye on what subjects are wearing or holding. Avoid any recognizable logos, including those of other universities or prominent business’.

Stock photography

Stock photography is not only acceptable, but often times encouraged.

The images should still fit within all of our other brand guidelines and should not obviously be recognized as a stock image.