The Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites welcomes photographers of all types and is pleased that our locations may provide the perfect photo backdrop for individuals, families and groups. In order to provide a safe and enjoyable experience for our visitors and for your shoot, our photo policy helps ensure the success of your sessions.
There are three types of photography covered under this policy – casual use, portrait and commercial photography. Only portrait and commercial photography shoots require permission through a request.
Casual use photography is that of visitors taking candid photos with non-professional equipment. Photos are exchanged freely, and no money changes hands for this type of photographic session. For this type of photography, no permit is required, and this type of photography is welcomed and encouraged within posted guidelines, including:
Portrait photography is a contracted service between a photographer and an individual posing for senior, family, or individual portraits. The client pays for the services of the photographer, and the photographer uses the Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites as a background, thereby constituting a commercial use of the property, which requires commercial liability insurance.
Commercial photography is a contracted service between a photographer and an advertising agency or corporate client. The Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites may be used as a backdrop for a commercial venture generally to promote or advertise a personality, product or service of the corporate client. This also constitutes a commercial use of the property, which requires commercial liability insurance. Commercial photography includes videography.
All requests for portrait and commercial photography must be approved by communication staff at the Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites. The process for applying for approval for a shoot at is outlined below.
The steps for requesting a commercial photo shoot are as follows:
- All portrait and commercial photographers and videographers must fill out two items: (1) State Buildings and Land Use Policy, Application and Agreement, and (2) Commercial Photography Agreement. Click on the 'Submit Request' button below to access these forms. Applicants must also show proof of commercial liability insurance at the time the request is submitted.
-Approved portrait and commercial photography requests at the Indianapolis museum will only grant access to public areas of the museum, not to museum galleries or experiences. Requests to shoot inside the galleries will be reviewed on a case by case basis. Access to non-public areas of the state historic sites will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
-Payment for portrait and commercial photography will be determined based on date, duration, location and staff involvement. At the time of shoot approval, a call will be set up to collect payment. At all locations:
All commercial photography requests must be submitted at least two (2) weeks in advance of the requested shoot date, and must include the request form, two completed contracts and the proof of insurance. Click the 'Submit Request' button below to find the request form and two contracts. A museum staff member will then be in touch to arrange payment and timing.
Contact ISMPhotoRequest@indianamuseum.org with questions.
The Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites Corporation reserves the right to deny permission for commercial photography depending on staff availability, space availability, or any other reason deemed appropriate by the Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites Corporation.
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