Upload To Flickr – The Smart And Easy Way

Flickr Export LogoWhat do you get when a programming guru decides that enough is enough, Flickr Lightroom users should also enjoy direct uploading to Flickr just like Aperture users.

You get Jeffrey’s “Export to Flickr” Lightroom Plugin. This is great plug in which I heatedly recommend if you are a using Adobe Lightroom and have a Flickr account. Hey, I am not affiliated with Jeffery, but after using his plugin for soooooo long, that I just had to share my joy.

What Is a Flickr Upload Plugin?

So let’s start with explaining a bit about Lightroom Plugins. Plugins are small programs that you can add to Lightroom to make it do a bit more than what it does when you take it out of the box.

Some of the great plugins allow you to create cool looking web flash galleries, add watermarks to your images and build great sideshows.

Jeffrey’s “Export to Flickr” Lightroom Plugin is such a small program that allows you to export your Lightroom images directly to Flickr. This alone is a great feature:

  • You can upload to Flickr without waiting to the “regular” Lightroom export to complete. 
  • It lets you control your images from one location using a single software and single interface.
  • You can control tons of settings like image size, sharpening and all the stuff you can control using the “regular” export in addition to tons of Flickr related settings.

Control Is The Key

After spending some time with the plugin, I could say that Jeffrey is a developer; I knew this by the way I got total control over the various upload options that the plugin provides:

Where to export the temp files? When you are dong an export, Lightroom generates temp files with your image-changes. If you would like to use the temp file for anything other then Flick, you can save them and use them, or, you can put them in a temp folder and never here about it again.

Any Action before uploading? Here you can set the file type, though 99.99% of the time, you’ll probably want it to be jpeg; decide on compression/quality; image size and weather to include metadata on your image.

How to handle images on Flickr? This is by far the best thing about the plugin – it lets you select, based on a criteria, how to actually upload the images to Flickr? Do you want them in a specific set? Do you want to upload only new images to Flickr? Do you want to send them to a group? All is possible but it gets even better.

Tagging, visibility and other settings – this is one of Jeffrey’s strokes of geniusity. If you have a huge set of images to upload, you can select attributes for each image based on your keywords. Say you were in a party, and you want some of the images to be available to the general pubic, some available to friends only, and some keep private (remember the part where you had 6 shots of Tequila and danced on the table with lipstick marking saying I LOVE NIKON)? If you keyworded each of the groups with different tags you can upload them all at once and select which get what exposure by the keyword.

Same goes for image type, safety level and enabling Flickr image search to access your images. 

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It Would Rock Even More If…

I had lots of fun with this plugin and it saved me a great deal of time. There is one thing that is both cool and a bit annoying. You can use the plugin for one month at a time, after that one month, you need to update the plugin (for free). Another month and another update.

This is cool because it enables you to use all the new features and encourages you to support Jeffrey’s efforts in making this plug in. This is just like saying thank you (which you can also do on the comments section). The good news is that you can do the update from within the plugin manager, almost automatically.

It is also a bit annoying, because you do need to update every once in a while. I had at least one instance where the software did not agree to get updated from within the plugin and I had to manually update it. Just a small inconvenience.

Wrap Up

If you are using Lightroom and Flickr, your life will change once you start using this plugin – it is fast, easy to use and saves lots of time. You can get the plugin here. Jeffrey has a nice bag of toys for Lightroom, make sure you check ‘em all out. And if you’re already there, make sure you visit Jeffrey’s photoblog he shares great news and info from Japan.

Your Turn

Know any other cool Lightroom plugins and tricks? Share them in the comments.