Google Image Search
While it’s easy to find images using Google searches, you rarely get the context or details you need to cite the image correctly. You can’t cite a Google search as a source so you’ll need to track down the website that houses the image. Even if you click through to the website that houses the image, it is likely to be Wikipedia, Pinterest, Flickr, DeviantArt, Imgur or a social media website like Reddit and Facebook. These are not credible information sources and should not be cited in college-level work. Citing an image on Pinterest is the real-world equivalent of citing something you saw posted on a bulletin board.
Image sharing and social media websites can have some good leads but you need to track down and verify the source of the image to make sure you have the context and accurate information about the work of art.
Working With Wikipedia
If you find artwork on a Wikipedia entry, make sure to identify the name of the work and the author or other words that are included that help describes that piece of art.
Instead of citing Wikipedia as your image source, you can Google your way to the museum or academic repository that houses that work of art or artifact. Just enter the name of the painting, sculpture, or piece of art into a Google search along with the author’s name, country or even the materials that it is made out of.
That increases your chances of finding the image at a museum website or academic repository, and those are much better sources to cite in academic work.
Remember that you must cite images, as you do all other sources. Some of the library’s image databases provide built-in citation tools. Here are examples of citation formats for images you find on the Web.
Bearden, Romare. The Train. 1975. MOMA, www.moma.org/collection/works/65232?locale=en.
Wolff, M (2010, November 15). Mussels in a creamy garlic sauce [Photograph]. Retrieved from http://www.whatsforlunchhoney.net
CS or CN:
Northeastern United States. West Nile virus: wild bird cases [demographic map on the Internet]. Washington (DC): Department of the Interior (US); 2014 Jun 1 [cited 2005 Jun 22]; [1 screen]; color. Available from: http://nationalatlas.gov/printable/wnv.html
Northeastern United States. ). 2001 Jun 1. West Nile virus: wild bird cases [demographic map on the Internet]. Washington (DC): Department of the Interior (US). [cited 2014 Jun 22]; [1 screen]; color. Available from: http://nationalatlas.gov/printable/wnv.html