I Built My Photography Website with Lightroom and TTG

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As much as I love using Adobe Muse CC to create websites like macgroup.org, I have one website that was better to build using Lightroom 5 and the NEW CE4 Web Publishing Suite from The Turning Gate. My terrywhitephotography.com site is built 100% from Lightroom and the plug-ins from The Turning Gate. While I can certainly have a more customized site using Adobe Muse CC, the one thing that makes it better to do this site in Lightroom is the ease of updating it when I have new photos and videos.

It starts with Collections

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Each of my Portfolios are Collections in Lightroom and from there I can sort images, add, and remove images at any time. My website has a slideshow on the home page and again that’s simply controlled by another collection that I can change at any time. One of the BEST features of the CE4 Web Publishing Suite is the “Publisher” plug-in. Once you set this up all you have to do to update your website is add/remove images from the Collection and hit the Publish button. Behind the scenes the images are uploaded to your hosting provider and put right into your galleries. I can’t believe how easy and fast it is to update my website at any time. This is the main reason why I prefer Lightroom for this site instead of Muse. I’m constantly changing my “Recent Work” gallery and it’s so easy to do it with the collection in Lightroom and hit the Publish button as opposed to manually exporting the images and having to update a slideshow in Muse. Again I LOVE Adobe Muse CC, but this workflow rocks in Lightroom!

 

Yep it’s Responsive

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All of the modules/plug-ins used in the CE4 Web Publishing Suite use modern web technologies such as Responsive web design/CSS that looks good on desktops, tablets and mobile phones. This way I know that visitors to my site will see my work the way I intend them to no matter what device they view it on. My photos and videos playback great on all platforms. Even my landscapes will show the location where they were shot if the use taps/clicks on the location icon.

 

It works with Videos too

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The CEW Web Publishing Suite supports HTML 5 video that you host on your site or videos from YouTube and Vimeo. You can even mix them as I have some in HTML 5 and one from YouTube. Again using the Publisher plug-in I can add new videos with ease.

Watch me do a LIVE update to my site in this short clip

 

A GREAT Client Response Gallery

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Although it’s not a part of my main site, another one of The Turning Gate plug-ins that I couldn’t imagine life without is the Client Response Gallery. This is the one that I use when I want to send a client their proofs and have them make their choices/selections on the web and send them back to me from the site. Even if you’re not going to build your website with the CE4 Web Publishing Suite, you should still check out the Client Response Gallery Plug-in for Lightroom.

 

The Bottom Line

My photography is my hobby and my way to express my creativity. Since I don’t have a staff or web team I have to do everything myself. The CE4 Web Publishing Suite from The Turning Gate makes my life so much easier and as I always say, “If a website is easy to update you will update it more often, if it’s not you won’t!” My photography website is always up to date because I manage all my photos with Lightroom and updating my website is as easy as clicking a button.

Learn more about The Turning Gate CE4 Web Publishing Suite here.

 

Great hosting matters too

I’m going to do a separate post on my recent move to Bluehost.com, but they totally ROCK! I moved all my main sites there and haven’t had a single problem. It’s such a relief knowing that my sites are UP and that if there is a problem they have 24/7 phone support with people located here in the U.S. Highly Recommended!






  • http://blog.duanepandorf.com/ Duane Pandorf

    How do you deal with sales through your website Terry?

    • terryleewhite
      • http://blog.duanepandorf.com/ Duane Pandorf

        Thanks Terry, I set up hosting a while back on Bluehost but have been reluctant to move my blog from WordPress.com to self managed .org as I have over 800 followers that I don’t think I can move.

        I also have my www site hosted by Smugmug but like what you’re doing straight out of LR. I may have to rethink my current setup.

        Thanks again for the quick follow up!

        • mjcampagna

          Hi Duane, just so you know, we also have a WordPress theme. It’s a Lightroom plugin, so you customize the look and behavior of the theme in Lightroom’s Web module, then export and upload as you would any other WordPress theme for a self-hosted WordPress.ORG blog. You should be able to migrate from WordPress.COM or .ORG if you so choose.

          You don’t have to use our blog theme if you don’t want to, but it does help to tie everything together.

          • http://blog.duanepandorf.com/ Duane Pandorf

            I was on your site this morning and saw that you do have a blog interface. It’s just a big jump that I need to sit down and really think about. This is a hobby for me too.

  • Robert Bernstein

    Thanks for showing how easy it is to update your website…I am new to setting up a web site, how easy is it to set up and upload the very 1st time. I currently have my site hosted by Network Solutions and just use their templates. I would rather have the control of Lightroom and the plugin. Thanks :)

  • GoCat

    I’m very excited about this set of plugins, and I’m about to make my purchase, but I find the product pages a little confusing. Perhaps the addition of a chart of some kind would help make it clearer as to how the bundles compare, what they include, and what they leave out.

    For example, it appears that some plugins are only available separately, is that correct? I’m leaning toward the blog and galleries bundle, but I can envision wanting to build HTML pages also, or e-commerce … I suppose I’d purchase those individually?

    • mjcampagna

      Some plugins are only available separately. The only difference in the bundles is that one includes CE4 Pages as a base, while the other swaps it for our WordPress theme. If you want to blog, then go with the CE4 Blog & Galleries Bundle; if you’re not interested in blogging, then do the Web Publishing Bundle. For users wanting to run their entire site from our plugins, either bundle gives you everything you need to build a complete site. Other plugins provide optional, extended functionality.

      • GoCat

        Purchasing today.

        Although I trust Terry’s recommendation a great deal, I did a lot of research, and discovered that these tools really do seem to be the best option available … at least for me. Yes, these plugins require a bit more work than some others … but those other add-ons are far less flexible, and not nearly as powerful, as CE4.

        I’m going with CE4 Blog & Galleries Bundle, adding the ecommerce and proofing gallery components. I’m looking forward to getting started!

        • mjcampagna

          Glad to hear that your research backs up our claims. ;-)

          Good luck with getting started, and if you hit any snags in the process, be sure to let us know in our community forum.