Identifying and Finding Images 15 metadata and smaller scope than that of the Web, can also be less over- whelming for students to explore and much easier to cite. ARTstor is one of the more popular databases, and for good reason with a subscription, you and your students have access to a diverse collection of over 2.5 million, high-quality images.1 The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation started ARTstor in the 1990s, when universities and other academic institu- tions began the process of migrating their image collections from physical slides to digital images. ARTstor works with a variety of institutions and uses the metadata that’s provided to them.2 While ARTstor has a strong collection of fine arts images, such as paintings and sculptures, it’s also a great place to get some historical and popular cul- ture images. Like other databases, ARTstor also has a series of powerful tools that allow you to both search for images and use them with ease. The Advanced Search function is specifically tailored for image searching, allow- ing you to search in fields like “material” and “style or period.” If you’d pre- fer to browse images rather than use the search functions, the collections are set up in an easy-to-use manner. The classifications make sense for an image database and allow you to browse categories like “maps, charts, and graphs” and “fashion, costume, and jewelry.” It also has a citation tool, much like other databases, allowing students to get a head start on formulating cita- tions with the click of a button. Unfortunately, ARTstor isn’t a free resource, and like most databases, a yearly subscription doesn’t come cheaply. Plan to budget for this resource, should you decide to acquire it for your institution. Bridgeman Education is another common image database. Unlike ARTstor, Bridgeman began not purely as a digital venture, but as the Bridgeman Art Library.3 At 1.2 million images, Bridgeman has fewer images than ARTstor, but it’s still a very useful collection. Bridgeman has a number of other helpful database tools. One of Bridge- man’s strengths is its metadata. This collection’s strong metadata allows for ease of browsing—it feels very much like a digital museum, rather than just a database. There are some interesting collections to browse in the Subjects section of Bridgman, including Conceptual Images, which is a great source for illustrative images. There are other, more specific, library database subscriptions that you can invest in, depending on what kind of programs your institution has. If your college has a fashion program or a strong interest in curating a popular cul- ture collection, ProQuest’s Vogue Archive is an incredible resource. The Vogue Archive is a digitized collection of every issue of American Vogue. It includes all of the images, ads, and text of each issue. The Image Details search func- tion is a powerful tool that allows you to search not just by image-tailored fields like color and material. Statista is a powerful market data and statistics
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