One of the very nice features in Lightroom is the ability to create web galleries directly from RAW images. It is as simple as selecting a group of images in the Library module and clicking on “Web” in the upper right corner of Lightroom. Once in the Web module, there are a plethora of choices for how to layout your web gallery. I really like the fact that one can customize the page with a logo or type face, add an email, even your website and make these hot links so all one has to do is click on the email to contact the photographer or go to your website.
Below is one of the provided FLASH templates by Adobe. There are many templates to choose from and many options to customize the formatting of the web gallery. I won’t go into all of the options as playing with it for just a few minutes will teach you all that you need to know. Isn’t Lightroom intuitive!?
I use the Lightroom web gallery feature when clients need an online lightbox right away. The only downside to the Lightroom web galleries is that no sharpening is applied to the large previews. In Photoshop, when I build web galleries I go through and run actions on the images to size them, convert to sRGB color space and sharpen the jpegs as well so they look really snappy when submitted to clients. In comparison, the Lightroom web galleries are super fancy but the images just look a little soft - not bad - but just a bit softer than I’d prefer. Maybe I’m just a perfectionist but hopefully a sharpening slider will be added to the right hand panel at some point.
If you don’t really like any of the preset web templates that come with Lightroom there are a few others that you can download from Lightroom Galleries, a website online at http://www.lightroomgalleries.com/. These folks have put together some pretty cool new templates for the Web Module in Lightroom. And best of all they are completely free! Here are a few samples…
TTG Simple Viewer Gallery 1.4
Large Flash Slide Strip v1.0
After you download the web template it is easy enough to install it so you can use it in Lightroom. For Mac users place the downloaded folder in Lightroom’s Web Galleries folder:
Users/Username/Library/Application Support/Adobe/Lightroom/Web Galleries/
For PC users place the downloaded folder in Lightroom’s Web Galleries folder like so:
C:\Documents and Settings/username/Application Data/Adobe/Lightroom/Web Galleries
Last but not least, Lightroom smartly incorporated an FTP program within the Web module so you can upload your newly built web gallery from within Lightroom. Setting it up is as easy as typing in your FTP info and clicking upload. And as with all Lightroom operations, once you click upload you can move onto other work, as Lightroom will finish the upload in the background as you work on other images.
That’s it for this week.
Adios, Michael Clark