Everything in the post may not be new to most of you, but I thought I would share my experience in putting together a website. I'm computer literate but not a geek. I don't speak html and don't care to learn, and don't have the time to master any of the web authoring software.
I've had several goes at a website - I put together a .mac site some time ago. It's slow and not very flexible, and of course as of July is no longer supported by Apple. I hired a professional developer to deal with some of my images which are organized as triptychs and have captions. She solved these problems but her design was otherwise lackluster - I've never gone live with it. And of course I've experimented with flickr and other similar sites, but layouts are noisy and there is not a path to develop a more personal or personalized approach.
I had subscribed to hosting service a few years ago; got my own domain (www.woodycampbell.com) and a number of similar domains; but I couldn't really figure out how put a website on it. So I set up a redirect at woodycampbell.com to my .mac home page. That's how it worked up until a few days ago.
I spent the last couple of days working with a Lightroom add on called The Turning Gate which permits you to develop a home page and galleries all within Lightroom. It's extremely flexible, which contributes to a steep learning curve and in the end you have to figure out what the file structure is on your server and how the various modules inter-relate, all pretty much on your own. (The "Websites for Dummies" types of books don't go into these basics; the help function on my web hosting service was very rudimentary).
The payoff having mastered it is that I can upload new galleries from Lightroom and they are automatically integrated into my site, with no incremental effort over the effort involved in editing the images in the first place.
The author of The Turning Gate recently reported that he would be off line for a bit because he was graduating from college and is moving. Go figure.
Over the next few weeks I'll add some fairly extensive text and work on some behind the scenes stuff to make the site easier to find.
Now the point of this post: have any of you had any experience, good or bad, with Lightroom web add-ins? Now that I have some idea of how it works I'd very much like to push the site up to the next level.
Finally, to our moderators, I put this post here out of affection for our Leica shooters and respect for their judgment - if there is a better place please feel free to move it.
You can find the new site by clicking through the link below my signature.