This is the celebrated journal of Mr. Simon Collison A.K.A Colly

Photo Sets using Gallery Script 1.9

6th June 2004

I’ve finally uploaded the first CollyLogical photo sets, featuring selected images from my first two trips to Iceland. The galleries are built using some top-notch PHP source called Gallery Script which is very intuitive and completely free.

Moon, Iceland 1998

Gallery Script features

Gallery Script from Stadtaus doesn’t need a database, but it does need a little concentration when trying to make sense of the downloaded files. However, using the default setting (images appear in a - gasp - pop-up window) allows one to swiftly match the templates to one’s site, and begin configuring look and feel. It’s then just a question of creating thumbnails and main images and uploading them to a specified image directory. The main features of Gallery Script are as follows:

  • Lists all the images in a directory
  • Layout is template driven and easy to customize
  • Automatically generated link list to every page
  • Images are sorted alphabetically or define the order by a text file in the image folder
  • Log and count image views
  • Individual text captions for each image
  • Available language files: Danish, Dutch, English, French, German, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish

Gallery detail

Configuration in a nutshell

At first it’s tricky to makes sense of all the various files, and the documentation get s a bit blurry, so I’ve tried to simplify one approach here. I’m just going to concentrate on four files and the image directories.

The system uses two main templates in the templates directory - index.html (menu for each set) and window.html (the pop-up window). These are the files to customize with any XHTML and CSS. These two templates will be called for every photo set, so it’s important to only contain generic names and titles.

Next, create an image directory to contain the thumbnails, and inside that, place another directory for the full-size images, called big perhaps.

The other key files in the root directory are index.php and window.php, which are used to control the settings for each photo set. In index.php set the path to the relevant image directory, and the path to the window.php file.  Settings for display order, thumbnails per row etc can also be adjusted. Then, in the window.php file, set the path to the big images directory.

For each new photo set, all that’s required is to create a new images directory (containing another big file), duplicate the index.php and window.php files, give them some other name, and adjust the settings as above.

Next, make the images. Each thumbnail and it’s corresponding big image have to have the same name, so save each to a different folder. Once all the images are prepared, just upload all the thumbnails to the main images folder, and all the big images to the big folder inside it.

You can then create a main menu page that links to each index.php page, where the viewer can see the full photo set they have selected.

Pop-up detail

Why use this when there are others?

I’m aware that there are many other, potentially better methods for creating photo galleries, but I like the flexibility of Gallery Script. It’s PHP, so I can be comfortable with integrating it into my management system. I only ever need to copy two very simple files with adjusted settings for each new set, and happily spend the rest of my time messing about in Photoshop. As soon as I FTP the images, Gallery Script takes care of the rest.

Download Gallery Script 1.9 here

I’ve got a lot more fiddling to do with the photo sets yet, including adding drop shadows, making the code standards compliant, and a few PHP naming tricks for the generic templates. I’ve also got thousands of old pre-digital-camera photos to scan in and bring things up to date. Still, if you’re tempted, have a look at the first two galleries. If not, maybe go to the pub instead…


# Jim W responded on 6th June 2004 with...

Thanks for this - very fortunate as I was scouring the net for exactly this kind of script. The documentation for it is very misleading when it covers templates, so you’ve helped although I want to avoid the popups.

# Andy Budd responded on 7th June 2004 with...

You’ve got some veryy nice photo’s there. I especially like the b/w church and the thermal springs pics.

# Simon Snorkeller responded on 7th June 2004 with...

You’re like the Iceland Tourist Board Mr Collison…! My favourite is the two ship’s hulls, very artful. And talking of art, how about a gallery of your painting sometime…?

# Simon Collison responded on 7th June 2004 with...

...and there are plenty more that will be appearing there soon. I’ve been tweaking the galleries over night, and each large image has it’s own description now, that are also used in the title attribute on thumbs and large images.

I may even remove the tables and stick floats in there. What do we reckon - are photo galleries tabular data?

Cheers for the feedback folks…

# the lazarus corporation responded on 7th June 2004 with...

I think removing the tables and replacing them with css floats would be the best way forward - I don’t think they quite count as tabular data, nice photos though they are.

# Jamie responded on 7th June 2004 with...

Excellent photos - snowmen rule but as the railways say, we’ve just got “the wrong type of snow” in England.  Anytime I’ve tried building them anyway.

But anyway…Iceland’s always been high up on the places I want to go.  Is it as expensive to get there (and once you get there) as everyone seems to say it is?

# Simon Collison responded on 7th June 2004 with...

Yes, most things are expensive - beer, imported foods (especially Ribena or Cornflakes), transport etc.

Each time I go I spend less money. That said, I got by for three months on 1000 quid on my first visit (not including accommodation.

Fly there with Iceland Express from Stanstead to save loads on travel. Never fly with Icelandair, although the air hostesses are hot! If ever you plan to go, email me for some shoestring tips.

# Lee Hickman responded on 8th June 2004 with...

You forgot to mention one small detail with the Iceland Express from Stanstead. Would you put your life in the hands of this Man?

# Simon Collison responded on 8th June 2004 with...

Yes, last time I flew back, Iron Maiden’s Bruce Dickinson was indeed the pilot. Very unnerving experience, especially when he failed to describe where we were over the tannoy (we were over Scotland, but he said we were over Ireland).

He might be able to fly a plane, but I don’t think he’s a navigator…

# Ralf Stadtaus responded on 9th June 2004 with...


I think you did a very good job on your gallery. The pictures are quite impressive and I like what you have done to the navigation in the pop up window.

Since I?m one of the developers of Gallery Script I?m delighted to see the script used this way. And I?m sorry that you had to struggle with the documentation.

Best regards


# Simon Collison responded on 9th June 2004 with...

Thanks Ralf. Once I worked out how to implement the scripts it was very easy to do the rest. The fact that I have to do so little to add new galleries is a real plus. Maybe when I read the documentation my brain was a bit tired - it often happens. Thanks for stopping by…

# Espen Gjelsvik responded on 3rd May 2005 with...

How did you manage to remove the “Gallery Script” Link that appear on the bottom of every page in my gallery, ive found out that it has a div called poweredby, but i cant find it in any of the files…

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