General Information

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Most Magnum photographers are available to the editorial, commercial and cultural worlds for assignment. Please contact the appropriate Magnum office for more information. To view portfolios of individual and group work, go to the Photographers’ pages and view the portfolios as either a slideshow or as thumbnails.


Online Search

  • The online search selects from over 500,000 photographs that have been digitally scanned into the database. The four Magnum offices maintain a physical archive of over a million images dating from the 1930s until today, which can be accessed in person by researchers by official appointment. Please call the appropriate Magnum office for more information.

  • To search the archive, all users must register their company details and be approved by Magnum or the agents. The search facility is for use only by the photo licensing and buying. Magnum Photos may require extra information regarding the activities of you or your company before an account can be confirmed. If your interest in Magnum Photos is of an educational or vocational nature, then you are still free to browse the information pages, books, features, photographer biographies and portfolios.

  • The 'Image Search' searches through all the images within the digital database (around 350,000 images). There are two search types within this search and a number of extra filter options within the 'Image Search' screen. To see all the available options, click on 'Show' for the Advanced Criteria, the 'Sort Order', the 'Assisted Keywords' and 'Exclude'. For more information on the language, click on 'Help' on the search pages.

  • The 'Search Features' search engine looks through the Magnum database at all the Magnum features or stories, books and exhibitions since 1997 with a selection of features from pre-1997, and offers a selection of narrative feature packages rather than single images. For more information on the language, click on 'Help' on the search pages.

  • If you cannot find the image you require, call your nearest Magnum office or agent (see 'Contact Us') and a Magnum representative will search for you. There may be a service fee charge for an assisted search, which will be notified to you before the search commences.


    Picture Licensing

  • All usage agreements are subject to a 'license to reproduce' a given image, which will be subject to an appropriate fee. Before Magnum or an agent can authorize an image to be downloaded, the license fee must be agreed upon beforehand. Please see the terms and conditions for more information.

  • Magnum reserves the right to deny consent to reproduce any given image in a particular context. Contact the appropriate Magnum office or agent with your enquiry about reproducing a photograph. Please note that most images are not model-released unless stated at the image screen level.


    Software Compatibility

    On a PC, this web site is viewed best using Internet Explorer version 6 or above, Firefox version 4 or above, Chrome version 4 or above or Flock version 2 or above.

    On a Macintosh, use Safari version 2 or above or Firefox version 4 or above.

    America Online browsers are not fully compatible with the site.

    Cookies are used to remember your user ID and password details, but problems may be encountered if your computer does not accept these, or your system may be behind a server firewall which can make accessing secure servers difficult. Please contact the Magnum offices if you encounter any problems.


    All downloaded images from this web site are scanned as RGB or Grayscale digital files, compressed to 80% (Photoshop compression at 7 or above). The average file size for an A3 or Double Spread file is between 2 and 4MB. All digital files are minimally sharpened in order to retain the quality of the file. If you prefer to receive a digital file scanned or saved in a different format (for example an 80MB Tiff file saved onto a CD), please call the appropriate Magnum office or agent. There may be a charge for this extra service, which you will be notified of before the order is processed. You will need to note the image number (found on the enlarged image screen – e.g. PAR1234) before ordering.

    Only registered users who have entered a mailing and billing profile and have been approved by either Magnum or an agent have access to non-watermarked comps.

    Caption, copyright and licensing information can be found in the IPTC fields in every scan. If you would prefer to receive either a print, transparency instead of a digital file, please call the appropriate Magnum office or agent. There may be a charge for this extra service, which you will be notified of before the order is processed. You will need to note the image number (found on the enlarged image screen – e.g. PAR1234) before ordering.

    Images from Magnum Photos are only available for professional licensing users. If you would like more information about prints for personal use please visit our Print Sales page.


    Magnum Membership

    Magnum Photos is a co-operative owned and run by its member photographers. The photographers meet once a year, during the last weekend in June, in New York, Paris or London, to discuss Magnum's affairs. One day at this meeting is set aside for considering and voting on potential new members' portfolios. Successful applicants will be invited to become a 'Nominee Member' of Magnum, a category of membership which presents an opportunity for Magnum and the individual to get to know each other, but where there are no binding commitments on either side. In each of the last 5 years, between zero and four new nominees have been selected from among the many portfolios presented.

    After two years of Nominee membership, photographers then present another portfolio if they wish to apply for 'Associate Membership'. If successful, the photographer then becomes bound by all the rules of the agency, and enjoys all the facilities of its offices and worldwide representation. The only difference between an Associate Member and a full Member is that an Associate Member is not a Director of the Company and does not have voting rights in its corporate decision making. Finally, after another two years, an Associate member wishing to apply for full membership presents a further portfolio of work for consideration by the members. Once elected as a full member, this effectively confers membership of Magnum for life or for as long as the photographer chooses. No member photographer of Magnum has ever been asked to leave.

    For more information on applying for membership please visit our submission page.