Frequently Asked Questions


  1. What is PictureSG?

    Formerly known as SNAP (Singapore National Album of Pictures), PictureSG is a collection of pictures that provide information about the cultural, geographical, historical and sociological development of Singapore. It contains NLB's own pictures, pictures donated to NLB by respective donors and others contributed by our partners. Physical copies of the images have been digitized by the National Library Singapore to preserve and provide better access to resources located within the library to enable users to explore and discover these resources.

  2. How do I search PictureSG?

    You can search for pictures by entering the relevant search terms in the search box, select the radio button for “content” and that will locate pictures that match your requirements, according to the title and description. From the search results, click on the thumbnail to view the picture's details.

    Alternatively, you can search for pictures by the various tags people have associated the pictures with. Enter the relevant search terms and select the radio button for "tags" to do so.

    You can also browse the pictures by clicking on the subject categories.

  3. What are tags?

    Tags are descriptive keywords added to the images to facilitate their retrieval. The tags submitted on this site cannot be longer than 255 characters per tag.

  4. How do I add a tag to an image?

    You can add a tag to an image by clicking into the image details page and on the left side of the page under “Tags”, enter your desired tag into the field and press on “Add Tag”. Please note that you can only enter one tag at a time

  5. How do I remove a tag?

    You can remove a tag by clicking on the “Remove Tag” button on the image details page and click on to remove the tag from the image. You can remove several tags at one time. Once you are done, click on the button “Done” to complete the process.

  6. How do I provide more information on a particular image?

    We welcome inputs from the public to help improve our collections. You can either add a tag or if that is insufficient, please email us at ref@nlb.gov.sg.

  7. How do I acquire a high-resolution digital copy of item(s) in the library's collection?

    This service provides for the ordering of high-resolution digital copies of item(s) from the National Library's collections.

    Items in our collection come from various sources, such as donors and partners, and as such the conditions for reproduction and use can vary.

    To acquire a non-exclusive, non-sub licensable, non-transferable right to use and reproduce the images in PictureSG/BookSG, please send the National Library of Singapore a request at ref@nlb.gov.sg.

    In your request, please specify the following:

    • Item information, such as title and page number, website link etc.
    • Purpose of use, for example, exhibition, publication, video etc. Please provide as much detail as possible.

    Thereafter, we will advise on the permissions, availability of high-resolution copies, and the credit lines within 3-5 working days.

    Digital copies will be provided only upon payment of an amount consisting of an Archival and Administrative Fee. An Archival and Administrative Fee is charged in recognition of the cost of managing and preserving the items and in administering and servicing requests for copies.

    Orders for reproduction will be processed when all approvals for reproduction and use have been given and upon receipt of the applicable payment. The fee is as follows:

    ARCHIVAL AND ADMINISTRATIVE FEE (effective as of 20 February 2019)

    DescriptionUnit of ChargingGST-ExclusiveGST-Inclusive
    Type 1 - Archival and Administrative Fee for non-commercial use
    - Any other use not defined in Type 2 Administrative Fee
    Per record $18.69 $20.00
    Type 2 - Archival and Administrative Fee for commercial use
    - For use in products that generate sales and revenue with the end-beneficiary being private companies/individuals.
    - For use within advertisements for private companies/individuals.
    Per record $600.00 $642.00
  8. Any feedback or question?

    If you have any feedback or question about PictureSG, please forward it to ref@nlb.gov.sg, or submit your feedback/question via our online enquiry form Reference Point.