Grad season is right around the corner! As a U of I grad myself, I understand how crucial it is to choose the right locations on campus that will fit your vision for your grad photos.

After shooting with over 100 graduates over the last two years, one of the most frequent questions I get is "Where should I take my grad photos?". In the list below, I've picked out the 8 best locations (also my favorites) to shoot on campus.

If you like my photos, here's a link to my full graduation photography gallery.

1. Memorial Stadium

Most people don't know this, but the Memorial Stadium is open during graduation season for photos! There are 3 separate locations at the stadium that are worth a visit. The pillars/colonnades, the field, and the Grange Grove sign. The field is open for entry before 6 PM, and there are ramps in each corner of the stadium that takes you up to the colonnades.

2. Foellinger Auditorium

Foellinger is a U of I staple for graduation photos. Most of us have probably had a class here at some point, and it's arguably the most aesthetic building on campus. There are a few spots at this location - the stairs, the area in front of the stairs, and the grass in front of Foellinger. I really like doing the champagne pop at this location.

3. Hallene Gateway

Hallene Gateway is another hidden gem on campus. It's right next to the Alice Campbell Alumni Center on the northeast corner of campus. On top of being a really good graduation photo background, the gateway used to be the entrance to our campus.

4. Alma Mater

Alma Mater is the most classic photo spot on campus. If you haven't taken a photo here during undergrad/grad school, then there's no better time than now. I strongly recommend coming here to take photos EARLY. There will be a big line to take photos here during graduation season, so be prepared to wait anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour if you do want photos here. If you're with a group, you can also have someone come here and wait in line early before your session.

5. The Libraries

A lot of us have spent a significant amount of time studying in libraries on campus. This has made Grainger a very popular location for graduation photos. The newly renovated Main Library is also a great spot for a book-themed graduation photoshoot.

6. Your Department Building

There's no better building to help you remember your time at U of I. From Gies College of Business to the Chem Annex, these buildings hold a special place in our hearts.

7. Krannert Stairs

The white Krannert stairs are definitely a unique feature of the campus. There are not many cleaner white backgrounds, which makes the Krannert stairs an icon.

8. South Quad Bell Towers

In my opinion, South Quad is a very underrated location. The bell towers are a great background and it's usually not crowded like the main quad.