How to Build a Photo Gallery Web Site

Want to build a photo gallery Web site? Whether you're a professional photographer looking to show off your portfolio, or simply someone who wants to share photos with friends and family, you've got several options to add photo images to your Web site.

Use tools to create thumbnails and HTML.
One of the easiest ways to add a photo gallery to your existing Web site or to create a new photo gallery Web site is to use one of the many tools available to create thumbnails and HTML for a photo gallery. These tools usually come in the form of software that you download and install on your computer. Once the software is installed, launch it, and browse to the folder that contains the photos you want to include in your gallery. You may want to use photo editing software ahead of time to enhance the color and reduce the sizes of your images for optimal display on the Web.

Different pieces of software give you different options for how you want to arrange the photos; you may have limited control over how they appear, or you may be able to arrange them exactly how you want them, down to minute detail. Depending on which software you use, you'll then follow instructions to generate the HTML you need to create your photo gallery Web site based on the way you've arranged the pictures. From there, you need to upload your HTML and photo images to a Web host, and your photo gallery Web site is ready to go.

Use CSS to build a photo gallery Web site.
If you're a bit more Web-savvy, you can use CSS to build a beautiful photo gallery Web site, or customize an existing gallery to fit within your existing Web site. To do this, you'll need a basic understanding of CSS and the willingness to play around until you get what you want. Start by uploading your photo images.

Create a basic page, and see how long it takes to pre-load the images you want to use. You may find that you need to use fewer images to reduce the load time. From there, you'll want to specify image sizes; 370 pixels by 240 pixels will enable you to fit several images in a row neatly on the page without scrolling. Thumbnail images should be roughly 90 pixels by 60 pixels.

Select the XHTML style you want to use for your page. Style your page, and use :hover over links to display your images over thumbnails. Specify your container size and remove bullets, if your Web site is styled for them, to display the gallery optimally.

Install software to manage the process for you.
If dealing with generating HTML is too stressful for you, or you want to upload your photos and create a gallery directly from your browser, you can choose a provider that offers the software that can manage the process for you. You can do this in some blogging platforms, such as WordPress, by using themes and add-ons. You can also do this in custom photo gallery sites, like Shutterfly, which offer built-in capabilities so all you have to do is drag the photos around and click some buttons to choose how you want to display them. You'll pay more for software hosted by your provider, but it can be worthwhile to avoid the headaches of doing it manually.

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