Blog | April 29, 2011

Feature in Focus: Lightbox

by Leigh Ann Ledford in Digital Asset Management, Webdam Updates

Allow me to show you the Lightbox!

Lightboxes are the solution to so many distribution challenges, for several reasons, but most importantly, Lightboxes save you time! No more cumbersome downloading, burning images onto a CD, and overnighting disks that may not even be the ones the recipient was hoping for… Or worse, getting lost in the mailroom shuffle!

In my past life in publishing, this would happen time and time again.  The photographer would overnight a CD of high resolution images for review… only for our photo editor to say, “I can’t use any of these! Do they have anymore they can send?” Should this happen once and sometimes twice (as it often did), you’ve eaten up a week up precious production time!

I’m sure you have many similar stories springing to mind right now… Your boss is on vacation and needs you to review and select images to use in a brochure to send to production on a tight deadline. Your PR manager needs high-resolution photos of the company’s latest product ASAP.  And so on.

For those of you who have not used the Lightbox yet, it’s easy to get started. First, some basics!  A Lightbox is simply a way to group files within Webdam.  While logged in with your Webdam user account, you can create and manage an unlimited number of Lightboxes, a huge time saver when working on simultaneous projects!

To add assets to a Lightbox, simply click the Lightbox icon underneath any thumbnail.  The asset will be added to your active Lightbox instantly.  Your active Lightbox (the one you are currently adding to) can be changed at any time using the Lightbox toolbar at the bottom of your browser.  From here, you can also create a new Lightbox.  To view your Lightboxes, click on Lightbox within the navigation links near the top of your account.

Note: Your individual Webdam account may have a custom name for the Lightbox feature such as Favorites or Selections. Contact your system administrator if you are unable to locate the Lightbox.

So, let’s talk distribution.

One of the key benefits to using the Lightbox for distribution is that you can share a collection of images and other types of files with someone who normally wouldn’t have access.  For instance, let’s say you need to send a press representative several high-res product shots.  You can simply add the files to a Lightbox and utilize the Lightbox distribution features to provide access.

There are two ways to distribute assets from the Lightbox. You can email a download invite or FTP the files directly to an FTP server.

Emailing a download invite:

  1. From the Lightbox page, select Email a download invite from the Lightbox Downloads menu on the left.
  2. Complete the form on the next page, and click on Send Email.
  3. The recipient will get an email with an invitation to download.
  4. They simply need to click on the link provided in the email to access the download.

Sending via FTP:

  1. From the Lightbox page, click on FTP assets to another computer from the Lightbox Downloads menu on the left.
  2. Complete the form on the next page with the recipient’s server address, username, and password, and click on FTP images.
  3. At this point, the recipient can retrieve the files from their FTP server.

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I know what you’re thinking. I have just one image to send. Do I really have to go through all of these steps for just one image? Absolutely not!

You can send a download invite right from the Asset Preview Page! Just click on Send Download and complete the email download form.

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Distribution tools are just one component of the Lightbox. In an upcoming post, we will address collaboration challenges and how to use the Lightbox to be even more effective in these efforts. Stay tuned!