How to Give Photo Credit on Instagram

how to give photo credit on instagram banner

Being a portrait photographer, many clients have asked me if they could post the photos I took of them to social media and how to give photo credit on Instagram.

In case you were wondering how to properly do it, it is very easy:

 If you want to give photo credit on Instagram, simply comment their Instagram profile in the caption with “@username” or tag their Instagram profile within the image. You can also do a combination of both!
When I first started out in photography and started my photography Instagram, I was not sure what “giving photo credits” was or the importance of giving photo credit on Instagram.
how to give photo credit on instagram

Here’s a short story about what happened the first time a client of mine wanted to post a photo I took of them online.

The first time I was asked this question by a client, I did not think about the importance of photo credits and just told them “you don’t have to credit me” and “credit me if you want.”

Looking back on those conversations and what unfolded afterward, it would have been a lot easier if I just told the client to credit me and how I would have liked to have been credited.

Here’s a quick rundown of what happened when they posted my photo without credits to me.

The photo was posted on social media (Instagram) during its early days. Many of their friends and family loved the photo and commented on how they thought it was a great photo.

Multiple comments were posted all basically stating the same thing, “Nice photo! Who took it?” or “Did you take this photo?”

Another photographer follower of theirs even commented on how she should give credit to the photographer next time.

It was rough. I felt bad for her!

My client then had to comment and reply back to each of the commenters with my name and Instagram profile. I left a comment on the post saying how much I enjoyed shooting with her just to show to everyone that yes, I knew she posted it.

After I left the comment, one of her followers actually reached out to me and wanted to book a photo shoot.

It was at that moment I realized why it’s best to always just give photo credit on Instagram and what could happen if you didn’t. But what is giving photo credit exactly?

What is Giving Photo Credit on Instagram:


Giving photo credit is simply mentioning the photographer, hair and makeup artist, model, or anybody else who helped create the image a quick little shout out or a sign of acknowledgment.

“Giving credit where credit is due” is a common expression away from the digital world of social media, but it is also just as important to remember this expression on social media.

It’s okay if you have reposted a photo on social media before without giving proper credit to the original poster. I’m sure everyone has done this at least one point in their life. The important part is that we start crediting from now on!

In this post, I’m going to cover why it is important to give photo credit on Instagram, some of the benefits of giving credit, what different crediting styles can look like, and how it can be detrimental to any artist when proper credit is not given.

Let’s dive in:

Why It’s Important to Give Photo Credit on Instagram:

Based on personal experience and from what I have seen, there are 2 reasons why it’s important to give photo credit on Instagram.

1. To Avoid Being Reported

If you repost a photo or post a photo without permission, you can actually be reported. While you may not have had intentions of “stealing” someone’s work, it can still be seen as “stealing” to some users and within the community of artists/creators.

how to give photo credit on instagram to avoid being report

This can result in numerous people reporting your post and could even lead to people commenting nasty and negative remarks on your profile if followers of the original poster see that you have reposted something without giving credit.

It’s a nasty situation and can lead to users even commenting mean remarks or DM’ing you unnecessary messages — even if you did not do it on purpose!

In order to avoid this nasty situation altogether, it’s best to just always credit the original poster. If you don’t know their Instagram profile, at least comment their name or tag their name in the photo.

2. It’s an Unsung Rule

The second reason why it’s important to give photo credits on Instagram is that it is an unsung rule.
What do I mean by this?
Within the community of creators/artists, we love sharing each other’s work. We share each other’s work either because we enjoyed it or because it inspired us so much that we felt the need to hopefully share that feeling of inspiration with others who have not yet seen it.
When we share each other’s work, however, we always make it a point to ensure that our audience knows that it is not our work that we are sharing.
Why is this?
Because that photo/piece of art/creation is not ours. We know that someone planned, shot, edited and most likely spent a great amount of time towards that piece. Some could even say they poured their hearts into that creation. 
A lot of work and time goes into creating content, a photograph, a drawing, etc., and those responsible for its creation should be credited — it’s the unsung rule among creators.

 What a Proper Photo Credit on Instagram Could Look Like

There is no one, right way to give proper photo credits on Instagram. 
Here is the way I like to give proper photo credit and how I see most of my followers give credit as well.
You simply comment the name of the creator within the caption and you tag them within the photo.
The comment can be accompanied by a camera emoji if they are a photographer and can be stylized within your caption:
how to give photo credit on instagram
 The commenting within the caption allows users to see instantly who created the piece, and the tagging within the photo is beneficial to the original creator because it will show up in the tagged section of their profile:
example showing how to give photo credit on instagram
If you used multiple artists or creators within the image, you can also credit all of them just like in this example by Elizabeth Anne Designs:
how to give photo credit on instagram different example
 As you can see, there are many ways you can incorporate your own aesthetic and style into the photo credits that you give. You can create separate paragraphs such as in the example above or you can continue to keep it simple with just a simple line and an emoji:
how to give photo credit on instagram

You can even just outright comment their name without any emojis or extra “fluff.” As long as you are giving credit either through commenting their IG profile or name within the caption or tagging them within the photo, then you have properly given photo credit on Instagram!

It’s really easy and when people or clients ask me how I would like to be credited, this is now what I tell them.

Benefits of Giving Photo Credit on Instagram

One of the biggest benefits of giving photo credit on Instagram is because of networking.

Instagram is a platform built for sharing and a sense of community. With all the cat videos and memes that have flooded our feeds, I believe it is easy to forget this! (don’t get me wrong I love those cat videos)

This is especially true if you were the subject in a photograph taken by a photographer.
You tag them, the photographer will tag you back and maybe even give you a shout out on their Instagram story.

Your followers will see the photographer and the photographer’s followers will see you. This could open up new connections and new followers that you may have never realized! It’s a win-win for all.

Instagram is a community. Continue to add to that sense of community that you fell in love with — the one that made you download Instagram in the first place.

I hope all these tips and reasons behind why it’s important and how to give photo credit on Instagram helped you!

Now I’d like to hear from you.

Have you seen people or friends post something that was not theirs?

Or maybe I didn’t mention another important reason why creators should be credited.

Either way, let me know by leaving a comment below right now.

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