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Scholarly Waiver

As part of its on-going commitment to support scholarship and encourage research into the nation’s collection of Old Master paintings, the National Gallery, London is pleased to be able to waive image reproduction charges for scholarly publications including academic books and journals,  student theses and academic presentations or lectures. We hope that this assistance will remove some of the financial pressure from scholars and result in wider research and knowledge of our collection.

This waiver is intended for Art Historical projects in which the scholar is personally responsible for paying reproduction fees and is not available to commercial organisations or for exhibition catalogues. We consider a project to be scholarly when its primary intention is to broaden knowledge and when it is based on original research.

Free Access to High Quality Images

Images of the National Gallery collection are captured to the very highest colour and tonal standards and represent the paintings in the collection as closely as possible. Each image has been individually checked at capture to ensure consistency.

The image files that are provided as part of this scheme are derived from fully colour-calibrated digital image files created by the National Gallery. The colour is therefore consistent across all images in the collection; image users can make informed comparisons about colour, tone and brightness, and be assured of consistent colour reproduction through to print.

Image sizes that will be made available to scholars will depend on its intended usage e.g. 72dpi for PowerPoint lectures, study use and student thesis use, A5 print resolution for material for reproduction. 

Apply Online

Both new and existing customers are eligible to receive the scholarly  waiver. If you already hold a National Gallery Picture Library account then please log-in; alternatively, if you are a new customer, please register. Where possible, apply using an email address from a recognised university or educational institution. You may be asked to submit texts or other evidence as proof of scholarly identity.

Exclusions - the following uses are NOT eligible

·         Cover use,

·         E-books or Online uses

·         Print runs over 1,500 for books and 2,500 for journals (first editions)

·         Reprints or 2nd Editions etc

·         New work (e.g. required image files do not exist or from archive)

Log-in | Register for an account

Currently all Scholarly Discount applications must be submitted online. The process is fairly simple and occurs in three parts:

A.    Image selection and application (Applicant)

B.    Application approval (National Gallery Company Limited)

C.    Checkout and download image (Applicant)

You may want to print this page as a step-by-step guide through the online process.

Image selection and Submitting your application

You will need to register and/or log into the Picture Library before you are able to submit an application. When you have found an image(s) you want …

1.   Click ‘add to cart’ as if buying for commercial purposes.

2.   Click the ‘calculate the price’ button. The price that appears is the commercial rate for this use; it will be waived in full if the project is approved.

3.   Select usage option titled ‘Scholarly Use’ (from the top of the menu that has appeared) and select ‘for reproduction’ or ‘not for reproduction’ as appropriate.

4.   Select the most appropriate usage for your project from the options given (if the usage or print run you require is not listed, unfortunately, you would not be eligible for the discount).

NOTE: Complete steps 1–4 for each image to be included in your project


5.   In your cart, click the option to ‘Apply for Scholarly Waiver’ (next to the checkout button)

6.   Complete the form providing general information on your project; please provide as much detail as you can – this will expedite the approval of your application significantly.

7.   Accept the terms and conditions by ticking the box and click the submit button to send your application.

Application Approval

The National Gallery will assess eligibility for Scholarly Waivers and in the event that we require more information about your project, we will contact you.



You will be notified by email when your discount has been approved and you will be given a unique promotion code.

Checkout and download image file(s)

1.    Log back in to the website and select "checkout" from your cart. (Your images will still be in the cart if you have not made any purchases since applying for the discount – if you have made purchases you will need to re-select your images).

2.    Enter your unique promotion code at the bottom of the screen and your cart will be discounted. Please note you cannot checkout images for both commercial and academic use in a single transaction – if you have a mix of uses in your cart, you will need to remove commercially priced images by selecting "remove from checkout". The unique promotion code will only be applied to the images approved in the application.

3.    Click "proceed", confirm your project details and accept the terms and conditions – if there is no balance to be paid (e.g. CDs, match prints etc.) you can now download your images.

If you have any questions about the Scholarly Waiver process, please feel free to contact us.


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