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Top 8 Locations for UCR Graduation Photos

Hello upcoming UCR Graduates! With graduation season coming up, I wanted to share a few of my favorite locations to take graduation photos at UCR. The campus is fairly compact, so thankfully it doesn't take much walking to get from location to location on this list.

1. Rivera Arches

In the few years I've been taking photos at UCR, the Rivera Arches has been the most popular spot. Definitely for good reason. It's long enough where two individuals can be taking photos simultaneously, the lighting is always pretty good, and it's just satisfyingly symmetric.

2. Bell Tower

One of the most notable landmarks at UCR is the bell tower. Naturally, it just makes sense to include it in your grad photos. Because it's such a tall structure, it can sometimes be a challenge to fit the entire thing in frame. Tip: Just take a few steps back until the entire structure fits in frame, this also minimizes the people in the background making it look like you have the whole campus to yourself.

P.S. if you're using confetti - please use the biodegradable kind. (:

3. UCR Sign

Of all the campuses in SoCal, I think UCR probably has the best sign for photos. Easily accessible, nice background, and reasonably sized. There are many other campus signs that are either too large or too small, but thankfully UCR doesn't have that problem. Just be mindful that if you're taking graduation photos in late May / early June, there may be a line.

4. Scotty's Bench

Scotty the Highlander's bench is a great spot to take photos before/after taking photos at the UCR sign since it's just adjacent to it. You can even take photos here while in line for the UCR sign without bothering those taking photos with the sign.

5. The Hub

There are a couple different locations for photos at The Hub. This balcony and the staircase are the usual options. Both provide a nice alternative view to the bell tower.

6. Trees Walkway (Next to Bell Tower Lawn)

One of the most underrated areas for photos at UCR. During golden hour especially - the lighting in this area is just lovely.

7. Pink Flowers

If you're walking North towards the Bell Tower/The Hub, this area will be directly on your left. It's adjacent to the Department of Sociology. While not necessarily a UCR landmark, it's still a great spot for photos especially when the rest of campus is crowded.

8. Purple Tree (Near Rivera Library)

This tree usually looks best later in May and I personally prefer to photograph this location in the morning. Be mindful - after 10AM, the lighting can get a bit challenging in this area.

Hope you found this list useful! And congratulations again on your upcoming graduation! :)


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