Playing with Flickr

This weekend I revisited some photos I took last year. I'm really pleased with my winter photography so far, but I decided to liven up my Flickr account with some more colourful photos. If you do go visiting my photostream, do have a look back at the snowy shots from Poland too, I'm really proud of them.

Floral carpet Summer's gone Daffodil on black

Another reason for the flower photos is that I've been reading a book called Photographing Plants and Flowers. It's a nice book about techniques for capturing flowers. Among many other interesting topics, it talks about changing backgrounds digitally, so I've tried a couple with plain coloured backgrounds as an experiment.

As I've blogged before, my RAW package of choice is RawShooter Premium. The image manipulation software I use is The Gimp, which is free and generally very good… However, in creating the plain background versions of my old photos, I did encounter a problem. I needed to create a large (3000px, 300dpi) image. On Windows, this caused The Gimp to hang up 3 times, each of which required a reboot. I tried playing around with the cache and memory settings, but to no avail.

In the end, I switched to my Linux workstation. I had multiple applications running, and The Gimp still flew. Admittedly that box does have twice the memory of the laptop, but I was still amazed. What it doesn't have is any kind of application for uploading photos to Flickr, so I went looking for some. The first option was some scripts for Nautilus in GNOME, but I wanted something a little more sophisticated. I found Glimmr, an application written using Mono. It is small, and looks good – but unfortunately hasn't been updated since the Flickr API changed in the middle of last year, so doesn't actually work. The project looked dead, but then I found the author's blog where he talks about resurrecting the application. Not sure if or when that will happen.

I know that F-Spot supports Flickr upload, but I've never really enjoyed the user experience – although I do know that I need a good photo browser / tagging / cataloguing application. See the Introduction to F-Spot article in GNOME Journal.

Finally I found jUploadr. This is written in Java, based on SWT, and is cross-platform. It could be the perfect application. I'll be giving it a try over the coming week. Initial indications are that it is very nice indeed – and it works.

In terms of GNOME integration, there is also Gnickr – making Flickr a virtual filesystem in GNOME. I've not tried it yet. I found mention of it on this interesting page of Flickr tools – too many to look at in one day.

Whilst I'm recording interesting Flickr articles, I should also mention that I found one about making Flickr work with Gmail and Picasa; tips for beginners on Flickr; and basic guidelines for tagging on Flickr. All worth a look.

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2 thoughts on “Playing with Flickr”

  1. I usually just mail the photos to flickr. Drag and dropping images from Gthumb into Thunderbird is simplicity itself 🙂

  2. I’ve not used the mail option. Does that allow you to add description, tags etc., or do you have to do that yourself later? jUploadr lets you make all those changes at upload time, and then just hit the big button 🙂

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