Testing Photo Galleries

Photo galleries, Photo albums, Photo collections

This page is for those who are helping me test and evaluate how to display sets of photos and documents on this website.  Thank you for helping me out!

My goal is to evaluate options for displaying photos and documents so I can determine the basic methods and structures to use on this website before uploading large amounts of material.  After exploring several options, at this point I am primarily considering links to photo albums on my OneDrive account and on Flickr.

The easiest way for your to help is to click the links to albums below.  See if they work and how you like them  Then send me an email at Walter.vomSaal@oneonta.edu and let me know whether the links worked, whether you preferred viewing photos on my OneDrive account or on Flickr, and any other comments or evaluation.  Be sure to tell me what device you were using.  I want to test these options on Windows computers, Mac computers, tablets, android phones, and iPhones.  It would also be good if you could let me know what browser you are using (Chrome, Firefox, Microsoft Edge, Safari, Internet Explorer, etc.)

If you want to spend a bit more time, look at the full set of questions below.

And if you are interested, you can look at my preliminary conclusions about the pros and cons of the different options.

Please feel free to share with me any comments, observations, or suggestions.  It will be very helpful if I can fix things now so I don’t have to go back and make lots of revisions and corrections later after I have uploaded large amounts of material.

THANK YOU AGAIN FOR YOUR HELP!

1. Links to be tested

A, B, C, and D are most important; others would be nice but not necessary

NOTE: all links should open in a new tab or new window in your web browser.

A. Worms, Germany – OneDrive folder of photos (travel photos from 2010 trip, exported from Lightroom at 3000 dpi):

https://1drv.ms/f/s!Ah7PGxESkaQcnc4cDGL9fo90fcTPIw

Alternatively, you can view the OneDrive album created from that folder.  HOWEVER, it is unlikely I will use OneDrive albums unless Microsoft fixes them, because right now they are HORRIBLE because they don’t let me organize the order of photos in the album.  However, click here to try it if you wish:
https://1drv.ms/a/s!Ah7PGxESkaQcnfki72v8R3h0G9Wx1A

B. Worms, Germany – Flickr album (travel photos from 2010 trip; 34 photos):
https://flic.kr/s/aHsjsfRHYj
(Notes: The first photo is an outside view of the full cathedral, with Description = “Worms Cathedral, Worms, Germany.  Photos taken by Walter vom Saal during our visit there in June, 2010.”  This was added by me in Flickr, and is not on the original photo that was uploaded.)

C. Towle family history test set – OneDrive folder of photos (preliminary set, 33 photos):
https://1drv.ms/f/s!Ah7PGxESkaQcne5-s6ZzJyOlpCvPKg

Alternatively, you can view the OneDrive album created from that folder.  HOWEVER, it is unlikely I will use OneDrive albums unless Microsoft fixes them, because right now they are HORRIBLE because they don’t let me organize the order of photos in the album.  However, click here to try it if you wish:
https://1drv.ms/a/s!Ah7PGxESkaQcnfkEwiMrzZv992REcg

D. Towle family history – Flickr album (preliminary set, 33 photos):
https://www.flickr.com/gp/35717187@N00/TNV57d
(Notes: when I created this link, it showed the option of “all photos, public and private.”  Then I used Batch Edit to set the safety filter to SAFE and the permissions to Public for all photos in the album.  After that, when I chose to share the album, I got the second link below, which I believe works exactly the same.)

E. Towle family history – Flickr album alternative link (preliminary set, 33 photos):
https://flic.kr/s/aHsjFECpr5

F. Individual photo on Flickr:
Here is a link to an individual photo that is set as private:
https://www.flickr.com/gp/35717187@N00/h55Vr2

G. Individual photo on OneDrive:
https://1drv.ms/u/s!Ah7PGxESkaQclEsPSZmLcfYZJ7TL

The links below are mostly for my testing.  They are tests of linking to a Flickr album with photos having different privacy settings.  The album has 6 photos.  Four are set to Friends & Family; two are set to Public.

Link created with the setting = All photos – public and private:
https://www.flickr.com/gp/35717187@N00/76h14v

Link created with the setting = Include photos marked Friends & Family:
https://www.flickr.com/gp/35717187@N00/382xNY

Link created with the setting = Public photos only:
https://flic.kr/s/aGF1NXSfMo

All three of these links show only the public photos.  I believe the other options are for Flickr users only.  I am not going to try to figure out this more now.  If I am correct, it means that Flickr albums will be most useful only for public photos (such as travel photos).

2. Full set of questions

Questions for viewers:

How easy is it to view the photos? 

How intuitive is the interface?

Do photos display well on all screen sizes?  Computer?  Tablet?  Phone?

For large photos, can they be expanded to full size.  For a photo with lots of faces, for example, can you zoom in to see individual faces and more detail?

How well does this work when viewing photos or documents on a phone?

After linking to one album or photo, is it possible to also access other photos or albums directly from the remote site (OneDrive or Flickr)?

Can photos be downloaded?  How hard is it to download individual photos, groups of photos, or entire folders?

Questions for me :

How easy is it to upload photos from Lightroom?

After initial uploading, how easy is it to change photo order or sequence?

After initial uploading, how easy is it to insert or add another photo?

Can documents such as PDF files or DOC files be displayed?

Can movies be shown?

How easy is it to link to the album from the website?

How easy is it to link to an individual photo from the website?

How easy is it to keep track of all this in Lightroom?

What are the options and limitations regarding privacy settings?

3. Preliminary evaluation and conclusions

Option 1: Create a gallery in Lightroom and upload the gallery to my website

I have pretty much decided against this option. Initial creation of the album would be nice and would integrate well with Lightroom.  However, it seems like it will be very hard to change an album once I have created it. Most likely even a small change would require uploading the entire gallery again.  Also, I have not yet figured out how to upload a gallery directly into my WordPress website. Finally, having all those photos on the WordPress website seems like it would make it very hard to see their organization and to keep them organized. The obit will be tons of documents that it will not be easy to keep them all straight.

Option 2: OneDrive

Advantages:

Easy to see all my photos.  [expand: does this mean on the website, or for me?]

Easy to see the organization.

Easy to make changes.

Easy to create a link and inserted in the website.

Can make and organize albums.

Can reorder photos in albums

Can make albums public or private

Can share private albums with selected people with a web link

Keywords on photos in Lightroom remain on photos and can be used to search for photos.

CONFIRM: is it possible to download individual photos or sets of photos or complete folders?

Disadvantages:

May be difficult to insert a new photo.

Compared to Flickr, there are fewer ways to organize photos. It is not possible to just drag a photo to a new location within an album.

Unlike Flickr, it is not possible to have one photo appear in multiple albums.

I still need to compare how well the photos display and how well they show the photo caption.

INSTRUCTIONS for me using OneDrive:

These are old instruction to me kept here as reference, but they need to be updated.  As of 3/2017: Decide on a folder name and use it as a keyword to apply to all photos and also use it as a folder name to put the folder in, inside Pictures > TEMP photos to delete.  Note that the uploaded photos will be sorted by filename, so export with revised filenames if desired.

Select all photos and export them from Lightroom using 2048 pixels on longest side.  Export to the OneDrive folder inside Pictures > TEMP copies to delete, and then move the folder into the OneDrive Photos to Share folder inside the appropriate sub-folder.  Photos will upload.  You can right-click directly in Explorer to get a link to share.  I should CHECK WHETHER this link allows editing.  You also can get a link by viewing the photos online, where it gives you options to allow editing (view only is the default).  Be sure to check that the link is to a folder, not an individual photo.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR VIEWERS using OneDrive:

All links to OneDrive photos or albums on my website should open in a new tab.  (If they don’t, I made a mistake: please let me know.)  You can view an individual photo by clicking or double-clicking on it.  Then use the arrow keys to view all the photos one at a time.  You also can move forward or backward using the links at the top right of the screen. 

To download an individual photo, view it and then click “Download” at the top of the screen.  To download the full set of photos, return to viewing the full album (press ESC or click the X at the top right of the screen) and then click on “Download” at the top of the screen.  If you download the full set, they are compressed into a ZIP file, but on most computers you just double-click on the file after it is downloaded and the ZIP file is converted back to the original files.  (this may also be called “decompress” or “extract” but it most likely will happen automatically and you shouldn’t need to do anything.  Let me know if you have any problems.)

To expand a photo in order to see more detail: View the individual photo, then click “view original” at the top of the screen.  It will open in a new tab, so you need to go back to the original tab in your browser to keep looking at the photos in the album.

Option 3: Flickr

Advantages:

Possibly easier to pass along to someone else when I stop using it.

Easier to organize photos by moving them

I may not have to export photos with a number in front of them in order to retain the desired organization.

Possibly easier to insert a new photo or document

Paying for the Flickr professional site also seems to work well with Blurb and give some discounts on Blurb books that I might actually end up using.  Check out whether the Blurb discounts will work ok if I create a Blurb book through Lightroom.

Disadvantages:

To keep the organization in Flickr synchronized with Lightroom, I will need to be very good about creating galleries in light room that parallel all of the galleries in Flickr.

Further notes on test results for viewing photos on Flickr:

  1. When I initially tested the link to the single private photo, it loaded with an error message on the first attempt and then loaded ok on the second try.
  2. The link to the single photo shows you the photo in the photo stream, so that going backward or forward from there displays photos that are not in any sensible order.
  3. From any link to Flickr, the viewer can now get access to all public albums and photos. This can be good or bad.
  4. When the photo is displayed, you do not see the photo caption (description in Flickr) unless you scroll down. It would not be obvious that the caption is there.
  5. If you click on the photo, it becomes larger and you can scroll around a bit. It is not obvious that this will happen. This was quite a nice feature when viewing the Towle photos of people.

INSTRUCTIONS for me using Flickr:

Creating Galleries

To be added later if I decide to use this option.  Add notes regarding how photo captions that are associated with the photo are uploaded as the “Description” in Flickr.

Getting links to galleries

Log on to Flickr.

Navigate to desired Album.

Click the Share icon and copy the url.

Paste the url in the appropriate location on my website.  Set the link to open in a new tab.

NOTES:

  1. To allow proper sharing, go to Batch Edit and change permissions to make all photos Public.
  2. Also set Safety Filter to SAFE for all photos. If not set to Safe, Flickr will share with other Flickr users who have set their own safety filter to allow it, but will not share with non users.
  3. If I decide to continue using Flickr, I will have to explore further whether I want to use it for any photos that are not public, and how to do that.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR VIEWERS using Flickr

All links to Flickr photos or albums on my website should open in a new tab.  (If they don’t, I made a mistake: please let me know.)  Click on any photo to view it.  Then you can move forward or backward through the album using the arrow keys, or click the icons at the left or right of your screen.

Under the photo will appear the photo Filename, and beneath that the Description.  These may not appear in the initial view on your screen so you may need to scroll down to see them.  This is initially set as the caption from the photo metadata when the photo was uploaded, although it also can be added or edited later in Flickr.

The same is true of the Tags shown in Flickr: these are the keywords assigned in Lightroom and saved in the photo metadata.

Lots of other information is available, including the camera and settings used to take the photo, etc.

To expand a photo so you can see more detail, hover your cursor over the photo until it turns into a plus sign, then click it.  Click again to return to the previous display size.