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Marketing + Media Relations University Photography

Capturing Images that capture the spirit + history of ESU

Dustin Michelson, University Photographer

University Photography



  • Protect the safety of photographers, photo subjects and our campus community.
  • Streamline photography operations to allow for flexibility to adapt as the situation changes.
  • Dedicate resources to photos that have the most value during this time.


  • Photographers are required to follow all current university policies on social distancing and face coverings at all times when working.
  • All shared photo equipment will be wiped down with approved disinfectant before and after its use.
  • Photographers will practice very conservative social distancing of > 6 feet whenever possible.
  • During any indoor photoshoot, photographers will wear a face covering (mask covering nose and mouth and/or plastic face shield covering whole face) throughout the full photoshoot. For any outside photoshoot where other people might possibly get within 6 feet, the photographer will wear a face covering. Even when there is no obvious reason to plan for a face covering, the photographer will be prepared for unexpected demands with a face covering at the ready.
  • Photo locations: whenever possible (and where still appropriate to the story), we will try to schedule photoshoots to be outdoors instead of indoors.
  • Photos with masks, too: For all planned environmental portrait photoshoots, photographers will be sure to (also) take some portraits with the subject’s mask on, in case they prove useful / needed.
  • Explain COVID procedures: Before each photoshoot, photographers will make sure that the photo subjects and clients understand the current COVID protocols impacting the photoshoot. The photographers will provide this information and related photoshoot directives in a calm and reassuring way – just as we have always helped reduce the anxiety of our photo subjects by preparing them with what to expect during a photoshoot.


  • University Photography will consider event coverage on a case-by-case basis. Considerations will include:
    • Are there are existing photos of the event from a previous year in the photo archive?
    • What is the value that new photos may provide to Marketing & Media Relations projects?
    • Is it possible for the photographer to take high-quality photos while also adhering to current university and local safety policies?


  • Headshots/Directory Photos: The photo studio does not provide a safe environment for photographers and subjects for portraits. All studio portraits are temporarily postponed until further notice.
    • To accommodate the need for faculty and staff directory photos temporarily, users will submit a photo that will be uploaded. Once “normal” operations resume for headshots, user-submitted portraits will be removed from the directory and the employee will attend a scheduled studio portrait days to update their photo.
    • User-submitted photos will only be available to fac/staff who do not currently have a photo online. Photo restrictions apply. The following are prohibited - uploading copyrighted photos, photos with props, pets or other people.
  • Other individual portraits: Portraits for use in publications and marketing material for Marketing & Media Relations, Admissions and projects specific to a college or department will be considered on a case-by-case basis. We will likely be able to accomplish most requests that fall into this area and will work with the photo subjects to identify a location to safely conduct these photoshoots.
  • Group photos + Multiple Individual Portraits: University Photography will not be taking group photos until further notice. Likewise, University Photography will not take individual portraits of multiple people in a short window of time (e.g., headshots for department staff) .
    • Consider alternate ways to communicate the message/story through existing archive/submitted photos, individual photos, conceptual photos, graphics, etc.
    • Exceptions to this may be considered on a case-by-case basis (req by President’s office, urgent news, marketing reasons, unique location/environmental conditions that allow social distancing or masks in the photo).
  • Requirements for all portrait photoshoots:
    • Signed model releases are required for all portrait photoshoots. Photo subjects will need to download the PDF from our website, print, sign and send the model release to University Photography (Box 4060). Portraits will be released via our Photoshelter archive once this release is received in our office.
    • Arrangements for photographer to arrive for setup 15- 30 minutes before the start of the shoot. Colored gaffer’s tape will be used to mark the location for the photo subject(s) to stand. (Note: be sure to account for this when reserving or arranging locations.)
    • No reviewing photos on-set will be allowed. A gallery of photos will be sent to the photo subject once they are edited and model releases are received. If input to select a photo for publication/use is needed, a selection of photos will be sent to subject to choose their photos.

Camera Checkout

When a request cannot be fulfilled by University Photography, a checkout camera will be offered as availability allows. If you know that your event doesn’t need a photographer, but you would like to reserve a camera to capture photos of your event, please make a Camera Checkout Request.

Please be aware of the following when using the checkout cameras:

  • Checkout requires a signature by a full-time university employee within the requesting department, and the provision of an index number that can be charged for replacement in the event of loss or damage to equipment.
  • Cameras are reserved on a first-come-first-serve basis, so we recommend making your reservation as early as possible.
  • Cameras will include a memory card, spare battery, charging cable, and manual. It is the responsibility of the requestor to arrange pickup of the camera from Marketing & Media Relations with sufficient time to charge batteries before your event.
  • All photos taken with the checkout cameras are copyright of Emporia State University and will be made available for use through the university’s photo archive. A gallery link will be sent to the contact info provided at checkout once the photos are edited.


University Photography will not be conducting normal walk-in portrait days for directory portraits. If you are an ESU faculty or staff member who does not currently have a photo in the directory, you may submit a portrait of yourself using this form to be used in the university directory until portrait sessions resume. Review the photo requirements below before opening the submission form:

  • Photo should be a similar composition to other portraits on the university directory (vertical, head and shoulders, not full body)
  • Photos need to be at least 660x880 pixels or larger
  • Do not submit photos that look pixelated
  • Submitted photos should only include yourself. Photos with props, pets, or other people in them will not be approved for upload to the directory.