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Decorative graphic for Imagery

Imagery is the sum of all the visuals that represent Virginia Tech's brand identity. The images that make up Virginia Tech's brand imagery can appear in all forms, from billboards to Instagram, websites to print ads. These images convey an emotion in the viewer. Brand imagery can be an opportunity to visually communicate with our audience.


Our photography shows members of the Virginia Tech community in their element. When crafting communications, we look to create a balance between the various photo styles in our toolkit, so that the result is vibrant and captivating.

Our photographic language consists of seven different styles:

Distance shot example

Detail Shots

Closely cropped detail images should pair with and support the rest of the photo library. They focus on the many things—subtle, small, and overlooked—that make our story unique.

TIP: Always capture the pieces and the parts that make up the bigger scene. This could be a single gear in an airplane turbine or a leaf in a forest of trees.

Point of view shot example

Point of View Shots

Point-of-view images capture the setting or action from the subject’s vantage point. Viewers must be able to quickly transport themselves into the shoes of a Hokie. These shots can represent the subject’s experiences in the field, the equipment our faculty and students use, the intricate details of what they do, and the settings they work in. The goal is to convey what it’s like to see things from a Hokie point of view.

TIP: Point-of-view images can be captured by shooting over the shoulder or with a GoPro camera, at any angle that feels like a first-person perspective.

Portrait shot example

Portrait Shots

The setting for a portrait photo should be appropriate to the subject’s major, program, or area of interest. Contextual elements (such as tools, machinery, or accessories that relate to the topic at hand) can be helpful in building a realistic image, even if they’re in the background or out of focus.

TIP:The photographer should use a short depth of field and natural lighting when it’s available. Eye contact isn’t mandatory for portraits, but it does help make an emotional connection with viewers. Be cautious of overly distracting backgrounds.

Sense of place shot example

Sense of Place

We want to showcase our campus in its best light, but creating a sense of place also goes beyond campus. In addition to Blacksburg campus photos, we want to represent the university in Roanoke, the D.C. area, and beyond to showcase all of the opportunities that are available to Hokies.

TIP: Photos should be composed to give an accurate representation of scale and proportions. Photos should also have a strong focal point and feel balanced.

Color Treatment

Photographs should always feel bright, with a warm tone. If needed, boost the image’s contrast and saturation settings. A warm photo filter may also be applied from 5-15% depending on the photo.

Image Treatment Example - After
Image Treatment Example - Before

TIP: Keep in mind that you may need to adjust the saturation, contrast, and filter differently for each photo, based on the lighting and conditions in which it was taken.