Flickr is arguably the most widely used photo sharing website around, with hundreds of thousands of photos hosted online and a fantastic API resulting in many third party apps.
Today we will look at Flickery, a Mac desktop client which pretty much does it all, from managing your account to searching the Flickr photo library. Flickery has been developed by Eternal Storms Software who also brought us Hierarchical Dock and GimmeSomeTune.
Managing your Account
When opening Flickery for the first time you are required to link it to your Flickr account so that you can starting uploading and tagging photos. This is an incredibly simple process and takes only a minute to complete. You can use Flickery without a Flickr account, however you will get prompted every now and then to link up with Flickr.
The app itself features an attractive interface with a main window to display photos and toolbars along the top, left and bottom sides. Upon opening Flickery (after linking your account), you are presented with the photos you have currently uploaded. Here you can view any new comments, or edit and remove photos from your account.
Flickery gives you all the options you would expect when uploading a photo to Flickr . Clicking on the Upload button on the left-hand toolbar brings up the Upload folder to which you can then add photos, record/take photo with your webcam or take a screenshot of your desktop to upload. When taking a screenshot of your desktop you can define the area to be captured and the photo automatically saves into the upload folder. This is a great trick if you want to quickly email someone a screenshot.
When you have selected the photo to upload you can set the title, description, content type, safety level, license and visibility (i.e. public, family, friends etc) of the photo. If you feel that the colour balance or exposure of the image needs to be adjusted, or if you want to crop or rotate the image, then you can do so within Flickery.
And of course, it wouldn’t be a very good Flickr app if you couldn’t tag the photos. This is where I find Flickery to be a great time saver. Not only does it store all your previously used tags so you can quickly select them (great for doing batch jobs), but it also extracts the EXIF tags from the photo so you can easily tag camera model, lens, date taken etc.
When you’ve finished adding photos to the Upload folder you can upload them to your account. It’s reasonably quick and you can just leave it going through the folder without any further prompting. The loading screen of your image coming further into focus as the upload progresses is a nice effect.
Flickery also allows you to search Flickr for photos and save them to your favourites to be used at a later date or download them to your Mac. Standard search is by title, tags and/or user or you can go advanced and search by media type, license or even date uploaded. You can also right-click on any photo and “Find Similar Photos” which scours Flickr for all images sharing your chosen image’s tags.
An added bonus of Flickery is the ability to share any image from Flickr, whether it’s your own or someone else’s. Selecting an image and clicking the share button on the bottom toolbar brings up a choice of sending the link via email, generating the HTML to embed into a website or sharing with iChat Theatre. My personal favourite though is the ability to Tweet the photo directly from Flickery (including automatic URL shortening).
Flickery does appear to be quite buggy. There are two buttons at the bottom of My Photos section labelled “Add to Set” and “Add to Group” however neither worked despite clearly being active and responding to being clicked on. According to the video tutorials, they should allow you to organise photos into sets.
Another problem I encountered was saving photos to favourites. I found clicking and dragging to the Favourites folder faster than right-clicking and “Add to Favourites”, however this threw up a bug whereby the newly added image appears to replace an existing image (normally the first one in the list). You can see in the photo below there are 4 saved pictures yet the toolbar at the bottom says 1-4 (of 10) with no way of seeing the rest.
I have a feeling these could both be due to the fact Flickery is designed for Leopard and I am using Snow Leopard so they could be in the process of being fixed.
If you’re just looking for a way to upload to Flickr without having to use their website, then you are better off using the free Flickr Uploadr, although it is limited to just uploading photos. The closest alternative to Flickery you could use is Photonic however there are none of the helpful features of Flickery, such as remembering tags or being able to edit photos before upload. The price tag of $25 is also a turn off considering the limited functionality
Overall then Flickery is a solid app for arranging photos (if the bug is fixed) and uploading them to Flickr. At just $19.20 it really is a steal and can save plenty of time sorting through and editing photos. As a photographer it’s definitely an app I could find a use for and will be in touch with the developers regarding the bugs I found. You can get a 15-day free trial and try it out for yourself.