Request an Image for the OtisDID

Requesting Images

We will search and buy, harvest, or scan the best images we can within the time allotted. We prefer to obtain existing digital images orĀ  scan from books, and only scan from slides when there is no other viable option. If you know of sources for the images, please let us know.

  1. Search the OtisDID for existing images necessary for your courses. Please note that the database will not (yet) contain every image you need.
  2. Prepare a list of additional images needed.
    • Identify which images are absolutely critical and which ones are representative (i.e., you need an example by an artist, period, or subject matter).
    • Identify when you need specific images, e.g. the
    • If you know of sources for the images, please let us know.
  3. Give the list to the Visual Resources Librarian by email ( or campus mail.
  4. You may also drop off books marked with image requests.
    • Please be specific, especially when there are multiple images on the two pages. Write “all” or “p. 21 top right and bottom right” on the slip.
    • We have many paper bookmarks available for you. Please do not use post-its.
  5. Allow time for processing. If you loan the VRC your personal slides to be digitized, allow at least one month for processing.

If you need images added faster, we can add 5-20 images in 24 hours, depending on staffing.

The OtisDID

The VRC supports the use of digital images in classroom instruction. We strive to provide images of high quality in high resolution. We have built our digital image database (DID) by focusing on the images needed for the survey and introductory courses. We are continually expanding the database in order to support more specialized topics, periods, and cultures, to be used in future courses. The OtisDID is available on the Web, thus allowing 24/7 access to the images by both faculty and students.

There are many advantages to using the OtisDID:

  • Faculty can prepare their lectures on any computer connected to the Web, including home computers.
  • Faculty may zoom in on a digital images, thus reducing the need for separate images of details.
  • The same image can be used in slideshows presented simultaneously by different faculty.
  • Since it is web-based, students have continuous access (24 hours a day, 7 days a week) to the slideshows.
  • Instead of placing slides on reserve for their students, faculty may create study guides of images in the OtisDID.

For an orientation to the OtisDID, please schedule an appointment with Visual Resources Librarian.

Available Collections

Images for Teaching – The largest of the collections containing over 25,000 images of art history, contemporary art, architecture, design, fashion, and historical events and personages.

Otis Faculty Gallery – A collection of about 1,000 images of work by past and present faculty of Otis. Also available in our public Otis Collections Online.

Otis Library’s Artists’ Books – A collection of over 6,000 images of artists’ books from the Library’s collection. This is a wonderful resource of contemporary art from 1960s-today. Also available in our public Otis Collections Online.

Remote Collections – Other schools have shared some of their image collections with Otis: Battles and Leaders of the Civil War, John Tenniel’s Civil War Cartoons, Sheet Music Covers from 1899-early 1920s, the James Collection of English Architecture, Historic Illustrations of Art & Architecture, James Madison University’s Art Collection, and the NASA Image eXchange.