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Making Watermarks Easier Than Ever for Pros

April 3, 2014 9 comments

If you haven’t already heard, we recently released some new options to the way you apply watermarks to your images, but we’ve gone ahead and taken it one step further.

In the New SmugMug, you can now create, choose, edit and apply your custom watermarks all from a single location. Gone are the days of choosing your logo image from within a gallery, then tweaking it in your Account Settings.

Your New Home Base for Watermarks

You’ll still open your Account Settings to see your watermarks alongside your other pro branding tools. But now you’ll find a gorgeous, brand-new, edge-to-edge interface with a large sample photo in center, and all your watermarks in a column down the right-hand side:

Click any of your watermark previews to try it on for size. Or click the “+ Create” button at top to select a new graphic (that you’ve already designed and uploaded) for use as a fresh new watermark.

There’s even a handy button at the bottom to change the sample image to something brighter, darker, or vertical. This is a great way to get an idea of how the orientation or brightness of a photo will affect how your watermark looks.

 

And as always, you can hit the universal wrench or trash icons under each of your existing watermarks to edit and delete them, respectively.

Check out our updated help pages to get the complete details about watermarks and how they work. You’ll also notice that we’ve changed the way you edit Printmarks in exactly the same way, since Watermarks and Printmarks are very similar features.

Watermarks, in a nutshell

New to Watermarks? Here are a few important things to know:

  • New custom watermarks default to size Large and up. You can specify a different minimum size in the settings.
  • Watermarks are nondestructive, so your prints won’t include them.
  • Watermarks will need to be re-applied to your photos to display any changes you make.
  • You can have as many different watermarks on your site as you wish.
  • Watermarks are available on Portfolio and Business accounts only.

About SmugMug’s Printmarks

And if you’ve never used our Printmarks feature and are intrigued to try it, here’s a quick rundown of what they are:

  • Printmarks are like watermarks for the physical prints you sell.
  • Although we recommend you use large graphics to ensure your Printmarks print well, they are limited to covering a small fixed percentage of the print area.
  • Printmarks are great for applying your artist signature, a team logo, or a wedding date to your prints.
  • If you change your mind, Printmarks can be removed during Proof Delay.
  • The Printmarks feature is also available on Portfolio and Business accounts only.

So if you were looking for an excuse to freshen up your Watermarks and Printmarks, now’s the time! We hope that these changes make it more enjoyable and easier to manage the nuts and bolts of your photography business.

Let us know what you think! And, as always, stay tuned because there’s always more good stuff coming down the pipes from Smuggy HQ.

Links to great pro business tips we’ve shared:

 

Release Notes: Watermark Improvements, Gallery Privacy Tweaks and In-Line Info Editing

March 25, 2014 32 comments

Wondering what’s new at SmugMug? Here’s the latest on the most important and noticeable changes you’ll see around your site.

The Privacy Name Tweak

We’ve made a small change to the names of your various gallery privacy options. Instead of “Public,” “Unlisted,” and “Private,” you’ll now see the following, designed to remind you who gets to see your gallery at each setting:

  • Public
  • Unlisted (Anyone with the link)
  • Private (Only Me)

Remember: This doesn’t affect the functionality of these privacy settings, so there’s no action needed on your part. We just wanted each setting to be crystal clear to everyone in one glance.

Limit Watermarks to Larger Sizes

If you’ve ever wanted your big, beautiful photos watermarked but don’t want your gallery’s photo tiles showing it, this one’s for you! You’ll now find a new option in your custom watermarks manager that lets you set a minimum display size onto which they will be applied.

For example: Suppose your homepage displays your photos in grid format with “Medium” sized thumbnails. If you don’t want your custom watermarks showing on them, you can set the “Smallest Size” setting for your watermark for Large and up.  Clean thumbs, FTW!

Plus, the SmugMug default “Proof” watermark will now only apply to “Large” display sizes and up.

As always, changes you make to your custom watermarks don’t automatically show up across your site. So if you want to begin using this feature, be sure to re-apply watermarks to your photos in bulk. (Hint: Your site-wide organizer can help you with this.)

Add or Change Titles, Captions, and Keywords On the Fly

You can now quickly add or edit your photo details (title, caption, and keywords) in the new SmugMug while you’re browsing your galleries, all without opening a gallery menu or the site-wide organizer. Click on the little pencil icon that appears when you mouse over the area under your pics to open a quick editor. Then type in your text.

Find it here:

When clicked, you’ll see this:

This simple text editor will appear in galleries of SmugMug and Journal styles, as well as in any Lightbox in all gallery styles.

Hot tip: This also works on mobile, so you can tidy up your site without being tied to your desk.

Other fixes and improvements:

  • Maps  now allow you to use your mouse scroll to zoom in and out.
  • We’ve combined your photo map and your photo info (EXIF) panels for a single, clean info panel.
  • We’ve dramatically sped up the amount of time it takes for us to generate custom image sizes that you request.

That’s all for now. More soon!

Packages and 3 New Products to Buy and Sell from Loxley Colour

March 11, 2014 7 comments

SmugMug Pros in the UK and beyond, we’ve just added three new gorgeous products to your Loxley catalog! We’re so excited to finally deliver some of the newer creations from one of the most highly regarded print labs in the world, and a new way to sell them to your clients.

1) Acrylic Gallery

The Acrylic Galleries feature your print mounted behind crystal clear acrylic for a razor sharp, stunning effect.

2) Single and Dual Colour Desk Frames

Perfectly portable for your home or office, this modern alternative to the traditional desk frame gives you a dark or light option to complement any decor. Additionally, your image stays durable with a protective satin heat seal.

3) Print Wraps

Loxley Colour’s Print Wraps stand proud of the wall with a uniquely padded, tactile surface that is so much more interesting than the standard print and frame. It’s lightweight and laminated for durability so you can invite your clients to touch and feel the difference.

NEW! Price and Sell Packages Through Loxley Colour

Lots of SmugMug Pros wanted to sell Packages through Loxley Colour, and now you can. Packages let you set a single price on a collection of different print products, making it easier for clients to check out. Take a look at the complete Packages help page for more info, to see the customers’ experience, and to get started.

NEW! Invoices for VAT Registered Pros

We’ve made a few changes to the way you’ll deal with VAT if you’re a VAT registered pro. We’ll begin sending you and your clients invoices, so keep an eye out for those and be sure that your account information is present and correct. We’ve sent emails about this to all pros in the EU with more details, so please refer to that if you have specific questions about collecting VAT on your SmugMug pro sales.

Will these new print products take extra time to manufacture/process?

Acrylic Prints, Print Wraps and Desk Frames take an additional 3-4 business days for manufacture and processing, so please be sure to build in enough leeway if you or your clients need their prints by a specific date. Also, don’t forget to consider shipping times, too.

How do I set my pricing again? And what are the details on getting paid the money I earn?

Remember: With a Portfolio or a Business account, you can easily set a markup over our base print prices and keep 85% of the sale. We provide step-by-step instructions on how to manage your Pricelists, as well as everything you need to do to get your profits paid to you.

I’m in the USA. Can’t you add more products from your other labs?

We’d love to! We’re always looking to update the catalog of products we offer from our labs and we’ll update this space whenever we do. Stay tuned!

Any tips for me as a pro who wants to offer these new products?

If you’re new to selling or just need some fresh ideas, here are a few of our suggestions for adding these new prints to your lineup:

  • Desk frames. You may be low on wall space, but we’re pretty sure you’ve got a desk. Because of their compact size, Desk Frames are a perfect way to brighten up even the tightest corners of any room.
  • Print Wraps. These are so unique, it’s a no-brainer opportunity to offer your customers a fun, new way to display their memories. Despite their light weight, Print Wraps are ready-to-hang without a frame so we recommend that you keep your final (pro) price consistent with other finished prints of this size.
  • Acrylic Gallery These gorgeous prints turn your photos into something truly show-worthy! They’re perfect for getting a completely upscale look for your walls. Again, if you already sell finished and framed prints to your clients, we recommend you price your Acrylic Gallery prints consistently with those.

We hope you love the new offerings through Loxley and will share your experiences with us, too.  As always, talk to our Support Heroes if you ever have any questions about buying, selling or anything you can do on SmugMug.

New! Checkout with PayPal on Print Sales

January 13, 2014 43 comments

At SmugMug, we love helping ambitious photographers grow their businesses and make their hobbies into a successful way of life. From our two pro-level accounts to the advanced pricing and marketing tools designed with your clients in mind, we try every day to help you hook more sales.

Today, you’ll find that PayPal is now a checkout option in your shopping cart, so you and your biggest fans can print more and click less.

PayPal as a second payment option

That’s right! One of the web’s most popular online payment options is now available by default in the SmugMug shopping cart. So you don’t need to get up, hunt for your wallet and pull out your credit card just to place an order.

And for pros: Your customers won’t have to hunt for their credit cards, either. Making money is that much easier.

How does it work?

Once you (or your customer) add prints and products to your shopping cart and begin the checkout process, you’ll see the option to pay via PayPal in addition to the traditional credit card method. Click the new yellow button and we’ll send you over to PayPal to log in and confirm your purchase.

Finally, PayPal will send you back to your SmugMug shopping cart so you can select a shipping method and complete the sale.

Is PayPal available on my account type?

The new PayPal button will appear in the SmugMug shopping cart across all SmugMug accounts from Basic to Business, and for all fans and clients who buy prints from your site. No action needed on your part. Period.

I’m a Pro who offers Coupons. Can my clients use them when they pay with PayPal?

Yes! If you’ve created Coupons on your SmugMug site then your clients can enter it during checkout as usual. The PayPal total will reflect their discount.

Does this mean I can pay for my SmugMug subscription with PayPal, too?

Sorry, it doesn’t. But we love this idea! If this is something you’d really like to see – or if you have any other ideas or feedback –  let us know in the comments below. Or simply write an email to our Support Heroes and we’ll tally your responses for our Product Development team.

Happy printing!

Links you’ll love:

Did Someone Order a Full-Screen Homepage Slideshow?

December 19, 2013 21 comments

Many of you told us that the full-screen homepage slideshow was essential to your website. We’ve got something new we think you’ll love: A full-screen slideshow for your pages and galleries!

How does it work?

We’ve added a brand-new background tab to your site customization, which means you can easily add a single image, a series of single images or a slideshow as the background of your homepage.

Additionally, Power, Portfolio and Business users can add unique backgrounds to other  pages on their site: Folders, Galleries and Pages. This background sits behind the other content blocks that you’ve added on the page, exactly the same way that a color, texture, or graphic added from the Theme tab currently does.

How do I get started?

1) Open up your Customization and look for the new “Background” tab in the Customize panel.

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2) Choose where your new background will show. By default, your ‘background’ will be inherited from your entire site  but you can display something across every page on your entire site, have it live just on your homepage, or make it appear on every single Folder or gallery page.

3) Choose the background type. To add a full-screen slideshow to your homepage, open up the drop down menu to choose the Slideshow option.  Be sure the “Homepage” location is selected, too:

Note: Choosing “None” will evert your background to whatever is set in your Theme.

4) Save your new goodies by Publishing your changes. That’s it!

Can I customize those slideshow options?

Of course! You can set:

  • your images
  • playback speed
  • transition type and speed
  • a splash image to be used to entertain your viewers while the full slideshow loads

What else can I do with the new Background tab?

You’re not just limited to slideshows. Choose the “Photo” option to add an edge-to-edge photo to the background. We recommend setting it so that your visitors see a new image each time they visit your site!

To do this, create a gallery of background images, or select photos from several different galleries on your site. Opting to change the photo “every visit” gives your site a fresh new look each time your fan comes back.

Tip: Be sure that your selection of images play well with your text colors!

Is there anything I should watch out for?

These background images sit behind all of the content blocks on the pages to which that you add them. They will lie under your navigation menus, Galleries Blocks, Text Blocks, and so on. To avoid a completely cluttered experience, we recommend that you remove existing content blocks from your page if the slideshow is the focus of that page.

Is it available on MY SmugMug account?

Yes! Once again, all SmugMug users will be able to add background images or slideshows to their homepage. Power, Portfolio and Business accounts (levels that include additional customization options) will also be able to change the background content on any page on their site.

Where can I learn more about the new Background options?

If you still have questions about this feature, our brand new help page is there to help you. So are our Support Heroes!

So sit back, enjoy the (slide)show, and let us know what you think in the comments below. Don’t forget to share what you’re designing, too, as part of our ongoing Show Us Your SmugMug contest. :)

Release Notes: HTML5 Uploader, Scope Your Maps and Keywords and more

December 10, 2013 31 comments

While we’re getting all wrapped up in the festivities of the season, we’ve also been hard at work on your many feature requests and feedback. Here’s a few of the most recent goodies that we’ve released!

New Updates to the Uploader

Our HTML5 uploader got an overhaul to match the rest of new SmugMug, and now shows you two columns of real-time info: the files you’ve queued and the files that we’ve successfully completed.

We’ll also check for duplicates each time you drag photos in, so you don’t have to refresh or reload the uploader for it to detect files you’ve already uploaded.

And fear not, happy draggers! The new uploader also sports an edge-to-edge drop target, which means you can drop your photos anywhere in your entire browser and they’ll get slurped safely in. More about uploading at SmugMug.

New Options for Your Map and Keywords!

SmugMug's Map content block with additional settings

We recently give you the ability to set the scope of what shows up in your Search content block, so we did the same for your Maps and your Keywords.Your Map content block settings will now display pins from the following:

  • Recent photos
  • Popular photos
  • Galleries I Choose
  • Photos I Choose
  • Keywords

This is a perfect way to showcase your favorite vacation spots, when sharing the most difficult-to-reach photo gems with fellow photographers, or for planning out locations to take your portrait clients. Don’t forget to add a location to your photos if they don’t automatically get tagged!

SmugMug's Keyword content block with more options to display

Your keywords content block now has the additional scope options:

  • Current location
  • Entire Site
  • Location I Choose

Since keywords are an integral part of search and helping your photos get found, it’s easy for your keyword cloud to mushroom out of control. Now you can use the new “Scope” option to refine what your fans see and keep it relevant to the page. More about keywords on SmugMug.

A Better Header

You may have noticed that your logged-in header looks a little different than it used to. Based on your feedback, we shuffled a few things around and moved the options to left side of the bar, for better clickability.

After all, you’re going to be hitting those pretty heavily, so why not make it perfect?

Slideshow Sweep

A few simple fixes for your Slideshows: We had a few reports about some slideshows skipping photos, which shouldn’t happen anymore.

Your visitors can now also see photos in your slideshows that are pulled from unlisted galleries. This is perfect for those times you just want to create a secret, separate gallery where you Collect or upload your best images from all over your site.

That’s it from us. As always, we’ve got more great stuff on the way so keep that feedback coming!

Camera Awesome for Android is Here

November 12, 2013 111 comments

 

We’re not kidding. It’s finally here! We originally built the original Camera Awesome app for iPhone in 2012 and received such a huge wave of responses from mobile photographers all over the world. Since then, Camera Awesome has been downloaded by over 20 million iPhone users, but Android users asked us every single day when we’d have something for them.

Today’s your lucky day, Android!

What’s the deal? Why should I use it?

Camera Awesome is your ticket to taking great photos at any moment of the day. It’s a powerful, easy-to-use camera app perfect for photographers (but easy enough for non-photographers). It’s for creative people who love capturing their everyday memories and sharing them with those who matter most.

Unlike other camera apps, Camera Awesome combines

  • a powerful, easy-to-use camera feature that helps you take fabulous photos and videos,
  • a creative suite of editing tools – including the one-tap Awesomize button
  • tons of filters, textures and frames
  • an integrated share function that lets you save or send your photos.

You don’t need a SmugMug account to use Camera Awesome. But we recommend it because we’re all about backups, archivability and peace of mind.

See what our friend, photographer, educator and Android user Colby Brown from the Giving Lens has to say about it!

Will it work on my phone?

To hit the most popular phone models of the many out there, Camera Awesome works on the following:

* Samsung Galaxy SIII, S4, Galaxy Nexus, Note 2, Note 3 (UPDATE 11/13/13: The Galaxy SIII is now available in the Google Play Store. Go wild!)
* Nexus 4, Nexus 7, Nexus 10, (Nexus 5 coming soon)
* Sony Xperia Z, HTC One, LG G2 (UPDATE 12/3/13: Support added for LG G2)
* Moto X, Motorola Droid Razr
* Kindle Fire HDX 7″, 8.9″ (UPDATE 11/27/13: Now available on Amazon Apps!)

Since each phone and tablet is a special snowflake, we’ll keep adding to the list as time goes by. You can get the most up-to-date, detailed specs on our store page right here.

Where do I get it?

Right here, baby! It’s ready and waiting for you on the Google Play store.

Wait, it’s not free?

The initial (AKA iPhone) version of Camera Awesome was free to download and use, and we got a lot of feedback from users who wanted – and eventually purchased – the many premium filters and effects. With the Android version we decided to keep it simple and bundle the goodies right into the app, resulting in an easier process for you… and lots more to play with right from the start, for $2.99.

New to smartphone-ography?

Our very own world traveler, Michael Bonocore, shares his Top 10 Travel Photography Tips with Camera Awesome .

What if I have problems?

Our support heroes are standing by to lend you a hand, as always. You can also refer to our Android help page here for a basic overview of what the different symbols mean and how you can get started.

Hey, what’s this SmugMug thing?

If you’re thinking about opening your own SmugMug account to store and archive the photos you shoot on your phone (or your DSLR), you can get started right from within the Camera Awesome app. It’s totally free for two whole weeks, and when you start your account from the app we’ll even throw in a 50% discount automagically.

Thanks to all of our Android fans who waited for this! We hope you love it as much as we do.

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