9 Great Places to Take Graduation Photos

Graduation photos are a rite of passage for every graduating student at UC Davis. And lucky for us, our campus is blessed with picture-perfect locations and iconic statues that will make any grad photo album a living memory of what it's like to be a UC Davis student.

So grab your stole, some friends, and a photographer with a keen eye and check out these graduation photo spots!

1. The Arboretum 

The arboretum, of course, makes for a picture-perfect backdrop and has great spots for grad photos. You can strike a pose at the lock bridge, sit down by the edge of the lake, or lean against luscious trees.

2. Flower fields by Mondavi

A little further away from the main campus, Mondavi features a less-known fields with diverse flora. With the glass architecture of the Manetti Shrem peeking in the background, your photos at Mondavi will be the epitome of class and excellence.

3. Cow barn

A riskier spot, but one that is sure to leave you with hilarious photos, the cow barn behind the Tercero dorms is home to several photo-ready cows. Be careful of dirt and mud while you’re over there when you lean against the gate and take selfies with the cows.

Image source: UC Davis Photo Shelter

4. The Centennial Walkway

The Centennial Walkway is that long strip that separates the East and West quad, and in the center of the strip is a circle that makes for a great photo spot. You'll be able to capture one of hearts of campus, with you right in the middle of it.

5. Road in front of Wellman Hall

This road captures a great view of Shields Library peeking in the back and if you're lucky, you might be able to catch a student biking as a detail in the background of your photo.

6. The Death Star

If you manage not to get lost, the Death Star (Social Sciences and Humanities building) is a great location for photos because of the unique architecture and interesting angles.

Image source: UC Davis Photo Shelter

7. Egg Heads

The Egg Heads are the most iconic Davis landmarks scattered throughout campus, each one with a unique face. The best one to take photos with is the one in front of Mrak hall and the one in front of Shields Library. You can sit on top of the Egg, place your grad cap on top of it, or lean against it.

8. UC Davis Sign

There are two UC Davis signs that are great for individual or group shots. Check out the brick sign behind Dutton Hall and the concrete where Howard Way intersects with the Memorial Union parking lot.

9. Telephone booth

The telephone is a gem on campus that serves no purpose other than to be a prop in photos. You can stand inside the booth and poke our head out while a friend does the same behind the booth.

Image source: UC Davis Photo Shelter

Many students and alumni offer their services for graduation photos and advertise on the Free & For Sale or Grad Photos Facebook pages. But if you're looking a cheaper venue, you can bring your own camera and ask a friend to take them for you. Also consider lighting, as some of the best times for photos on campus are around 11 a.m. and then later in the day around 5 p.m.

Since there may be lines of students waiting to take photos in the same spots as you, reroute your photo journey and visit another spot. You'll be doing a lot of walking so bring an extra pair of comfortable shoes. And like always, don't forget to bring a smile!