Taking pictures for memories
Praise be to Allaah.
The basic principle concerning making pictures of any animate being, whether it is a human or any animal, is that it is haraam, whether the pictures are three-dimensional or are drawn on paper, cloth or walls, etc., or are photographs (taken with a camera), because of the reports in the saheeh ahaadeeth which state that that is not allowed, and threaten the one who does that with a painful torment, and because they may lead to shirk in the form of standing respectfully before them, humbling oneself before them, drawing close to them and venerating them in a manner that is only befitting for Allaah. They are also forbidden because this is a kind of trying to match the creation of Allaah, and because of the temptation inherent in some of them, such as pictures of actresses and naked women, and so-called beauty queens.
Among the ahaadeeth which state that this is haraam and that it is a major sin is the hadeeth of Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased with him), who said, “I heard the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say: ‘Whoever makes an image in this world will be told to breathe the soul into it on the Day of Resurrection, and he will never be able to do that.’” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari and Muslim). He [Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased with him)] also narrated that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Every image-maker will be in the Fire, and every image that he made will be made to appear to him and will torment him in Hell.” Ibn ‘Abbaas said: “If you must do that, then make trees and things that have no soul.” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari and Muslim). The general meaning of the ahaadeeth is that it is absolutely forbidden to make images of anything that has a soul.
Fataawa al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah, 1/456-457
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen said, when he was asked about pictures: making pictures for this purpose is haraam and is not permitted. That is because making pictures for memories is haraam, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, “The angels do not enter any house in which there is an image,” (narrated by al-Bukhaari, Bid’ al-Khalq, 2986), and whatever the angels do not enter had no goodness in it.
Fataawa Manaar al-Islam, 3/759