How to Reference a Picture on a PowerPoint Slide

by Elle Smith

The Internet is plethora of resources in which to find PowerPoint images that can be used to jazz up your presentation. But just because you can copy or download an image for free from a website doesn't mean you should incorporate someone else's work into your slide without proper acknowledgement. You must give credit where credit is due; failure to do so may result in a violation of a copyright or plagiarism. You can credit the source material for a PowerPoint presentation under each image.


Acknowledge the "Copyright and Fair Use" guidelines as outlined on the website or CD where you retrieved your image. Use the image within the guidelines listed.


Get permission from the copyright holder to use the image. When approved for use, use phrasing such as "Permission to use photograph granted by _(name of copyright holder) "


Place your picture, photograph, illustration or other image on the slide.


Type your source and copyright information directly underneath the image on the slide. Make sure it is a type size that is legible, at least 18 point type. Use wording to include "source, name, title of image and copyright date."


Create a link on the slide to the copyright holder's original image, which is helpful when distributing the presentation as a handout.

About the Author

Elle Smith has been an advertising professional for more than 25 years. Her work for ABC, CBS and Sony Pictures Television has appeared on radio, on air, in print and outdoors. In addition, Smith has more than 20 years experience in marketing, graphic arts, commercial photography and print production, and is a licensed real estate agent with property management certification in California.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera John Foxx/Stockbyte/Getty Images