For photographers & film makers

The State Library collects documentary images and film depicting the social, political, economic and cultural history of Western Australia.  Material is selected to provide an understanding of, and support research into, the people, place, customs and traditions of WA.   

Images will be considered on a wide range of topics, but we’re particularly interested in those that reflect:  

  • Daily life in rural areas and regional viewpoints 
  • Cultural diversity 
  • Social change 
  • Protests and demonstrations 
  • Current events  

One off donations as well as large collections may be accepted and will be assessed in accordance with the State Library’s Collection Development Framework.  After our assessment has been completed we’ll let you know whether your material has been accepted and discuss the next steps. In most cases only a sample will be chosen which reflects the style and work of the creator and the topic.   


Copyright and rights management will be negotiated on a case-by-case basis.  As a general principle, the Library prefers that no unnecessary restrictions on access are imposed.  Material provided will be made available to the public through the Library’s online catalogue and may be used for in-house presentations, exhibitions, newsletters and other online communication activities.  Where relevant, creators should be able to demonstrate consent from the subjects of their material so they may be made publicly assessable. 


We encourage you to provide detailed description or an item list with any material you provide as this will assist our assessment (e.g., name of the photographer/film maker, where and when it was taken, names of people, description of activity etc).  If this isn’t provided, it may affect our ability to accept your material as this information is used to determine whether it fits our collecting priorities and is used to provide meaningful catalogue descriptions for researchers.   


In general, our preference is to accept images and film in the formats outlined below, however, other types will be considered: 

  • Digital images: uncompressed tifs 
  • Film:  Preservation preferences are for lossless formats such as .WAV files for audio and .MOV files for video. 
  • Audio: Standard archival practice is that audio should be recorded at a bit depth of 24 and sample rate of 48khz, or even higher, 96khz. 


Digital files can be sent by FTP methods such as WeTransfer or Send-it, sent in by post on USB or alternatively for large collections you can bring in an external hard drive.  


If you are seeking remuneration, please contact the Collection Liaison team at the Library.  Material will only be purchased if it is a fair and reasonable market value and it meets our selection criteria.