How does Dad easily show his paintings online?
May 24, 2006 12:41 PM   Subscribe

My father is looking for an easy way to showcase his paintings online. I'm thinking photo blog.

My father is looking for an easy way to showcase his paintings for friends online. Right now he been playing around with Google's Googlepages but, while it's dead easy, it may not be quite enough.

Googlepages gives him a free site but only allows up to 100mb of space and 100 files total. We think he's going to run over this quite soon. Plus, I think it would be cool for him to have things like keywords and an "all of my paintings" thumbnail page (perhaps in chronological order). Although he's leaning towards a MacBook as his next laptop, until probably next year he's running Windows XP on Gateway laptop.

Here's what he'd like as far as blog features go:

- a reasonably simple-looking template (right now he uses the default Googlepages theme as it allows the focus to be his work, not the cool template)
- an easy web interface where he can enter a title, perhaps a description, choose the image, click "publish" and have it be online a few seconds later—keywords would also be a plus
- all of the standard links built in (next, previous, home, about, etc)
- more space (I'm thinking that 500mb would be fine)
- the ability (if possible) to find and delete files that are not (or no longer) linked to anything—files just taking up space for no reason.
- the ability to add comments might be nice if there was a way to preemptively weed out comment-spam. Maybe something where posted comments were emailed to him to be OK'ed before being posted?
- clicking on an image shows a larger version, but without any stuff like Flash or Java taking over
- no advertising
- in a nutshell, a simple to use, pretty plain-Jane photo blog site

He registered a domain a few years back but no longer has a host for it. If he signed up with a photo blog service could he have his pages hosted by them, but accessed through this already-registered domain?

One last request: if you recommend a blog-provider could you also mention the suggested plan name and pricing. Thank you very much in advance.
posted by blueberry to Computers & Internet (10 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
How about using Flickr for the thumbnails and then providing a link to the huge images in comments? It's great for simple photo/image management.
posted by junesix at 12:56 PM on May 24, 2006

I've been quite pleased with Flickr (which I've been using recently for photos) - it does have flash for creating sets and looking at slide shows, but it doesn't seem to use flash for basic display. I don't think that there is any storage limit - instead there is a monthly upload minute, but I would confirm this. (I've just started using it). A pay account has more than a free account (which is what I'm using).

What I do like is that they have a tools which lets you publish groups of images to flickr as a batch; the WinXP one piggy backs on MSN's publish to the web wizard. It's much easier than loading each image individually.

This doesn't let you customise your webpage -- but I think you can store on Flickr and link to it from somewhere else.
posted by jb at 12:58 PM on May 24, 2006

DreamHost gives you the Gallery Image Album as a one-click install that, once it's set up, is very very easy to roll with. It came up a very close second to my slightly chunkier Blogger-driven version that I've chosen for my photoblog.

If you use my promo code BKEVIN01, you get a year's robust hosting for less than $60. I've got over 1,000 visitors a day on my main website, post lots of MP3s and images and have yet to get anywhere close to their limits.
posted by beaucoupkevin at 1:00 PM on May 24, 2006

Response by poster: Well, I think he wants it pretty basic. Just like the painting's title, an image of the painting, maybe a description, and then a few internal links.

What I've seen of Flickr is that it's a bit busier with about two-dozen links (to other users, MyYahoo and such) that the people coming to see his paintings might get sidetracked by. Flickr seems great for community-building and sharing and searching through photos, but not quite what he's looking for. I'm thinking more like if FisherPrice made a web site—something that is simple and, for the uninitiated user, almost impossible to click on the wrong thing.

posted by blueberry at 1:17 PM on May 24, 2006

The first page I get when I go to Flickr is a bit complicated, but my photos (self link, obviously) page is pretty simple - showing no one else's photos. The rest of the links are quite discreet at the bottom, somewhat Google like.
posted by jb at 1:33 PM on May 24, 2006

Your father might give the brand-new site Tabblo a try. It lets you upload photos, with a focus on gallery-like pages. Here's an example.
posted by adrian_h at 3:27 PM on May 24, 2006

Consider also FastMail's Easy Photo Gallery.
posted by yclipse at 5:47 PM on May 24, 2006

You may be asking for a lot for free (especially the no advertising thing, since a site providing a service has to support itself somehow)..

If you can bend on the no advertising thing, or are willing to pay a small fee, DeviantArt was made exactly for this sort of thing.
posted by twiggy at 9:14 PM on May 24, 2006

If he's willing to pay : Projekt 30 offers hosting specifically for artists. It's easy to set up, easy to navigate, and very elegant.

I'm a photographer/collage artist and I have a page hosted with them and it's been really good. I don't know if your dad is looking to plug his art at all, but people have been known to contact me through my website and it's been good networking. (No sales as of yet, but you can't have everything!)

For an example of how the site works, my page can be found here.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:14 PM on May 24, 2006

I'd recommend using PhotoGallery with Movable Type on Yahoo's Small Business web hosting which has 5GB of disk space for 8 bucks a month on the web hosting starter plan. PhotoGallery is free and makes beautiful results, and Movable Type has a built-in junk filter for comments.

I just wrote about a great Movable Type-powered photoblog, which I like almost as much as the one by our own Mr. Metafilter.

Even simpler is photo albums on TypePad, which are available on the basic plan that's $4.95 a month.

I work for the company that makes both MT and TypePad, but I also use all of the stuff above for my own photos when I want to publish albums.
posted by anildash at 10:43 PM on May 25, 2006

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