New York Times Magazine photography critic, Teju Cole, recently penned…
Have you checked out PhotoShelter’s new Image Browser? Because it’s fundamentally changing how photographers organize images on their websites and deliver them to clients. The Image Browser is at the core of the first phase in a brand new PhotoShelter, and its power lies in your newfound ability to take care of everything related to your images on one single screen.
Below is a comprehensive overview of the new Image Browser, which outlines where you can find all your images and pro tools that you’ve used for years. Plus, some new goodies and workflow ideas that will help get your images uploaded, online, and off to clients faster.
The first thing to know about the Image Browser is that it is divided into three panes. From here on out, we’ll be referring to Pane 1 (left), Pane 2 (center), and Pane 3 (right). Each has a core function and holds the resources to carry out specific functions within your PhotoShelter account.
Pane 1 is where you will find the most organized and complete display of your collections and galleries. It’s important to note that your full Archive as it stood before the updates on March 24, 2012 is located in the Unlisted on Website section in a collection named “Archive (2012-03-24)”.
In addition to your original Archive, the Unlisted on Website section contains all collections and galleries that are not listed on your website. These might be private, unlisted galleries that you share with clients but don’t want to be publicly displayed on your website. The Listed on Website section is literally just that – a direct reflection of what is displayed on the gallery list page of your website.
For organizational purposes, a collection can hold other collections and galleries; a gallery can only contain images. To add a new collection, first decide if you want it to be on the Listed on Website section or the Unlisted on Website section. Highlight the desired section, and then click the red folder icon at the top of Pane 1. You can name the collection and set the visibility to “Everyone”, “Those with permission”, or “No one but me”. You can follow the same process for creating a new gallery.
Depending on how you set the visibility for your collections or galleries, there will be either a small lock or “no” symbol on the icon.
You can also do a search in the Image Browser for any collection or gallery, and all instances will appear in the dropdown.
Infinite gallery nesting is also available by simply creating a parent collection that sits at the root level, and adding additional collections underneath. Remember that galleries cannot live inside of other galleries – they must live inside collections. So when you want to create a deeper level of nesting, you must create a new collection.
Creating nested galleries is the best way to get organized and allow your Image Browser to run at its optimal speed. You can always create new collections and then drag-and-drop existing galleries into those collections.
Wedding photographers, for example, might want to create one collection per client, and then create sub-galleries for the engagement shoot, ceremony, reception, etc. Or if you’re a travel photographer, try creating collections based on location and then organizing them by city. If you choose to do so, you will also make it easier for people to navigate your website and easily find the images that they’re interested in.
This is by far the meat of the Image Browser and where things look super sexy. You will likely spend the most time looking in Pane 2, so let’s get started.
First, you have to know how to sort your collections/galleries and images. This is particularly important for the Listed on Website section, because how you have them sorted in the Image Browser is how they will appear on your website. Simply locate the second dropdown in Pane 2 and choose from the sorting options:
- Last modified
- Date created
You also have the option to always display your galleries first or your collections first. Once you choose a sorting option, you can use the arrows to the right of the dropdown to sort in the opposite direction (for example, A-Z vs. Z-A).
If you prefer to custom sort your collections/galleries or images, choose “Custom” and then click the small pencil icon next to the dropdown. Then you can drag-and-drop your collections/galleries into the desired order. Don’t forget to save!
If you’re finding thumbnails too bulky to work with, you can always switch between larger and smaller thumbnails at the bottom of Pane 2. Or toggle to list view for an even more streamlined perspective.
So where’s the time-saving component in all this? The Actions dropdown, which has a ton of tools and features that you can apply to the entire gallery or specific images. The best part is that you don’t have to navigate to another page or load up each individual image to get things done. That in itself should save a few unnecessary steps, and it allows you to see it happen instantly on one screen. Actions available here are:
- Make searchable
- Batch download
- Batch edit IPTC
- Add/move to another gallery
- Copy to lightbox
- Remove/delete images
When you want to get things done, come to Pane 2 – it’s the place to see all your images beautifully displayed before you. To get more specific gallery and image detail, just look over to Pane 3.
We know that even the most minute details can make or break a business, so that’s why we’re hosting all your collection, gallery, and image details in one place. Pane 3 is where you can edit your gallery names and descriptions; add image captions; and perhaps most importantly, set visibility and download permissions.
When you select a collection or gallery in Pane 1 or 2, you will automatically see the details appear in Pane 3. The first thing at the top is the collection or gallery name, and below is its direct link. You can share this link with clients even if the collection/gallery isn’t 100% ready for view, as the link always stay the same.
You can also set a cover image for your collection or gallery by dragging one of the images to the graphic under the Descriptions area. To learn how, check out this 50-second video on Setting a Cover Image.
Directly below the name and link is where you can set visibility and download permissions – arguably the most important component of making your clients happy. Click the links next to “Who can see this?” and “Who can download this?” to edit permissions. You’ll have the option to make the collection/gallery visible to:
- Everyone: publicly visible
- Those with permission: visible to specific people by making it password protected or grant access to specific people
- No one but me: not publicly visible
Once you indicate visibility permissions, you can add download access and send out email notifications. For more on visibility and access, check out this help document.
Once you have your collection or gallery set up, you can look into image specifics. Selecting an image and Pane 3 will instantly display all its information, and you can expand any given section to see the details.
For example, expand Stats to see how many times the image has been viewed on your website, or Located In for a sanity check on the collections/galleries where this image actually lives. You can also click the pencil icon next to IPTC Meta Data to edit and more specifically, to add captions to your images.
You’ll also notice some new icons under the image’s file name to help you stay organized. You can hover over the icons for their description, and when “turned on” (i.e. highlighted in green) they indicate something specific about the image:
Pane 3 is all about getting your collections, galleries, and images where you want them to be. When you start thinking about download access, captions, cover images, and other details, head over to Pane 3 – just be sure that you have the right collection/gallery or image selected in Pane 2 before you start working.
The new Image Browser is a powerful workflow tool that’s optimized to make both batch and image-specific actions faster and easier. After some initial exploring, you’ll find a way to navigate around that works best for you. For visual learners, we have 4-minute video on Image Browser Basics. Also check out our comprehensive help tutorials, particularly on finding your way in the new PhotoShelter.