There’s a reason why some colleges charge an upwards of 48 thousand dollars a year and it’s not always just about the education—it’s to keep the campus beautiful and eye-catching. Here some awesome college campus backdrops to fill out the frames of your photographs.

1) Stadium or Sports Complex

Who ever said size matters? Whether it’s big or small, you can use a stadium or sports field as the perfect photo backdrop. If possible, get this photograph during a specific game and the people in the backdrop will liven up the photo even further.

2) The College’s Main Building

If you are at a major American college, the odds are you have a significant main building. I went to the wonderful Fordham University and that gorgeous campus had Keating Hall: a building filled with offices and classrooms. But you would have never guessed that from the outside—its rustic look mixed with a majestic bell tower would be a perfect backdrop for any photo. And as I previously mentioned, it is highly likely that most major campuses have a building that matches or surpasses this magnitude.

3) Theater or Performing Arts Center

© Lower Columbia College via Flickr Creative Commons – Rose Hill Center for the Arts

The theater could be a good option. Similar to the sports complex, it can be big or small. But on the other hand, if you can get in with your subject while it’s empty it would make for a much more personalized shot.


4) Library

Yale, Campus-Backdrops, library

© Paul Goyette  via Flickr Creative Commons – Beinecke Rare Books Library, Yale

This may sound like a boring backdrop—especially when the library always reminds you of all the lost hours in that place—but some colleges have the nicest libraries in America so you should most definitely take advantage.

5) The College’s Secret Locations

Most college campuses are old and have secret locations. Although most of the time they are the worst kept secrets after about two weeks of freshmen year. Are you desperate for a shot that’ different and hidden? It just might be time to do some late-night exploring, just don’t get caught and don’t blame us if you do.

Our EDU 2014 photo contest is upon us and the submissions are coming in. With judges like Brian Matiash of Google+ and NIk Software, Vice President of Content at Shuttershock Scott Braut, Principal Product Manager for Photoshop Digital Imaging Bryan O’Neil Hughes, renowned portrait photographer Peter Hurley and Pulitzer Prize winning photographer Vincent Laforet, we’ll be continually posting stories to accommodate our student audience until the contest closes. Stay tuned!