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Images: Image Formats

Identify photographs, graphics, and art images to add a visual dimension to teaching, presentations, and writings.

File Formats

Formats likely to be accessible in the future are:

  • Non-proprietary
  • Open, with documented standards
  • In common usage by the research community
  • Using standard character encodings (i.e., ASCII, UTF-8)
  • Uncompressed (space permitting)

Files should be unencrypted and uncompressed.

Type of Data Recommended Formats AVOID These Formats
Plain text .txt, .xml, .html .docx, .doc, .rtf
Tabular text / Excel .csv, .tsv .xlsx, .xls
Image .tiff, .jpg2, .png, .gif .jpg, .psd
Documents .pdf/a, .epub .azw
Archiving .zip .rar
Storage Cloud CD-ROM, USB drive
Databases .xml, .csv  
Audio .wav, .mp3, .aif, .aiff  
Video .mp4 .mov
Presentations .pdf/a, .epub .ppt, .pptx

Printing Images

Non-digital Images

Print Format


Though there's no shortage of digital images, unique images can still be found in print format at Auraria Library. 


Search our online catalog Skyline for books with pictures using these methods: 

  • A book record will tell you if the text has illustrations or photographs. Look for these abbreviations in the record that indicate the book has images:
    • ill. (illustrations)
    • col. ill (color illustrations)
    • maps
  • Using the phrase 'pictorial works' in a search in Skyline. This subject term is used to describe books comprised primarily of images. Some examples of subject searches you could do to find picture-filled books include: 
    • United States pictorial works
    • flowers pictorial works
    • Colorado pictorial works
    • airplanes pictorial works
  • Doing a search using the word 'photograph' or 'photographs' combined with keyword(s) can also retrieve image heavy materials. Examples:
    • Denver photograph
    • art deco photographs
  • Encyclopedias will often be image-rich.  To identify both print and online encyclopedias in a library collection, choose an appropriate keyword or keywords to combine with the word "encyclopedias" when searching the library's catalog. For example:
    • China encyclopedias
    • insects encyclopedias
  • Art Books.  Books dedicated to painting, sculpture, photography, drawing, graphic arts, design, architecture and their attendant creators will also contain images.