My Piwigo Online Gallery

Announcing my new Online Art Gallery

I tried to create my own gallery page in this web site and I quickly realized that it was as unmaintainable as it was unusable. I tried a few different things but I finally found piwigo, which is an open-source system for managing online libraries of images. It's all web-based and it is easy to use. I installed it on the linux server that hosts most of my web sites ( It uses PHP5 and MySQL behind the scenes. I think it took 10 minutes to set up total, but full disclosure, I have a lot of experience installing open source software on linux servers. offers hosted solutions so you can pay by the month if you don’t have access to and experience with a linux server. I am not associated with them and haven’t used their service, but in the spirit of supporting open source software in general I feel it is important to promote those who help us all by providing free-to-own software. They still need to survive and marketing is expensive.

Piwigo allowed me to upload my images and place them into albums. A given image can be in any number of albums. It also lets me create keywords and associate them with images. Any image can have any number of keywords.

Albums appear on the front page of the gallery, but you can see a word map of keywords in font sizes that reflect how often the keyword is used. When you click one of those it works like an album:

It’s also possible to see recent images, and you can choose how large the images are on each page. You can provide feedback on images and much more. I doubt many people will take advantage of those features, but they come for free with the software and I don’t have to worry about it.

I take three photos of every painting:
  • One in white light
  • One in black and white light
  • One in black light

I usually post all three images unless the painting has no blacklight sensitive paint in it. I rotate and crop each one but I don’t make any other kinds of adjustments. I use 5K white fluorescent lights and some LED black lights. I use a Canon Powershot SD 800 IS in “Underwater Scene” mode with no flash.

Uploading the photos to piwigo is drag and drop easy, and editing them to put them into albums and assign keywords is as easy as point and click.

Piwigo has literally hundreds of plugins available to extend the site, but I use very little in the way of extension. I just use one to ensure I can put a copyright notice at the bottom of every page, which believe it or not doesn’t come out of the box with piwigo. It should. My copyright link points here.

Piwigo has solved a huge problem for me and it has been headache free. Kudos and thanks to the folks who made it.