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Monoslideshow Template For Lightroom

In: 
Published: 19/09/2007
By: larry


I've been looking for a nice clean design to use for my Flash slide-shows. My criteria is: I want to be able to control the image size, speed and all other parameters, have the slide-show run automatically if the viewer does nothing yet have a clean simple control that allows the viewer to see thumbnails of all the photos in the show and go to any particular one, go forward or backward. Another part of my criteria was that I was hoping not to have to hack HTML and XML to create slide-shows, rather I was expecting to generate them with Lightroom.

I'd seen the free Simpleviewer Flash slide-show and thought it might be the closest I was going to get to my criteria. In the process of installing the gallery template for Simpleviewer I noticed the Monoslideshow gallery at turninggate.net and decided to use it instead of Simpleviewer. It turns out Monoslideshow is everything I was looking for in a Flash slide-show and more! To see my sample Lightroom generated Monoslideshow gallery either click here or on the photo above.

There are two components you need to download to create this kind of slide-show in Lightroom: 1. The free turninggate.net part that integrates the control of the slide-show into Lightroom and 2. the Monoslideshow.com part ($19.95) which is the Flash slide-show part. Turninggate.net has a number of Lightroom gallery templates but Monoslideshow is my favorite.

On my example slide-show the navigation control is initially visible to reveal it's existence. Then if you don't click or hover over it, it goes away and hides until you hover over the bottom center of the slide-show (you can make it visible all the time but I like it's hidden behavior). The navigation control allows you to see thumbnails go forward and back etc. The other thing I like about Monoslideshow is you can choose to use (or not) "Ken Burns" panning. You also have control 5 different parameters of the "Ken Burns" effects. You can also control virtually every aspect of the slide show including all the details of the navigation control all from within the Web module of Lightroom. I think Monoslideshow makes a great gallery to integrate into a website or if you are willing to do a little HTML hacking you could easily create a custom branded version of a Monoslideshow for clients. I'm impressed with Monoslideshow and am going to be using it for most of my slide-shows.

By the way, I think this "Ken Burns" approach to video is far more effective for real estate marketing than using real video. The video effect in this slide-show is turned on with a couple of clicks in Lightroom.

16 comments on “Monoslideshow Template For Lightroom”

  1. It's nice slideshow Larry but I only managed to figure out the controls half way through the presentation by moving the mouse to the bottom of the image

  2. It's funny how sometimes "simple" can be so effective. I really like the layout of that slideshow and the large view. Of course your pics were great as well!

    The only thing I take issue with is the comment about "Ken Burns"ing stills is more effective than video. Its true that video has its limitation, and most of us would agree it's still in its infancy as it pertains to real estate, but done correctly it adds an element of "realness" that pics just can't deliver. For starters, the ability to film while moving forward or backward and at the same time moving left to right gives the viewer a sense of what the eye sees as they walk through the room. Granted you don't need this in every shot but just a little here and there makes for a great effect. Secondly, showing some aspects of a home or property simply can not be done justice with just a picture. Case in point, the waterfeature. Having a steadicam shot leading up to a waterfall with the sound of the running water and nature in the background is more effective than a still shot of the waterfall.

    For better or worse, video still has a way to go before the average user can pick it up and create something professional looking. It seems like a lot of the criticism for video all falls back on two things: the videographers skills with the camera and editing software and how well you compress the video so that it streams without taking 20 minutes to buffer/download. The people that are a lot further along in these two categories can produce a very compelling piece of marketing. Nothing that can completely replace great still photography, mind you, but compelling nonetheless. Hey, why not use them both? Thanks for sharing this Larry.

  3. I really didn't know that there were so many options available for building slideshows. I searched for months to try to find something that would work for me. I've spent loads and loads of money trying to find the perfect option, and to know that there are so many things out there that are either free or very inexpensive...it makes me sooooooooo frustrated. Larry, I wish you would have found this sooner! But, I'm glad that you found it, to say the least! Its pretty cool. Now I just have to find a way to brand it, and life wil be perfect! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Cherie,
    There is a little HTML template that lives in the monoslideshow template directory that is used to create the slideshow. My belief is that if you just brand this HTML it will end up on the slideshow... haven't tried it yet but I will.

    I've thought of putting the branding on after Lightroom creates the slideshow but that is a last resort, I think there is an easier way.

  5. This is killer -- I've been using Lightroom for creating flash galleries/slideshows but was frustrated with it's limitations. If this product works from within Lightroom, it may be my solution. I wonder if you can add a soundtrack??

    I bought ProShow Gold and I have to say it was a complete waste of money. Hopefully this one will work better.

  6. Scott,
    According to the documentation Monoslideshow is capable of doing audio but that feature isn't controllable from within Lightroom. One would have to edit the XML file after Lightroom generated the slideshow to add audio. I'll see if I can add some audio to my example.

  7. Larry--This is as nice when you described before you went on vacation. You certainly put it together quickly. The look is so much cleaner than the "tour software" (perpetual fee ASP websites) that are being pushed by the national virtual tour companies. This type of easy-on-the-eyes, "non-busy" view with perhaps a few simple tabs to navigate to details, a Google Map, PDF brochure download would be such a step forward, at least in my marketplace in Chicago.

    @Scott--Your experience with buying a package (or engaging a developer) to build something, only to burn time, money or both has been something which I've heard very frequently as to why many people seem to have settled for postage stamp sized photos in clunky tour presentations.

    Great work Larry. Will be in touch about this.

  8. Scott,
    Yes. monoslideshow supports background music. All you have to do is add a term in the XML file after Lightroom generates the slideshow. The term looks like this: backgroundMusic="URL" where URL is a pointer to an MP3 file you want to play as backgroundmusic.

  9. Larry, just ran across a website with a fantastic Flash slideshow. It uses the XML file, much like Monoslideshow. And, it looks like a combination of Simpleviewer and Monoslideshow. I wish that there were a Lightroom template for it, nd I haven't had much time to look into it further. Check it out at http://www.flashrelief.com The ThumbGallery is pretty cool, and again it is completely customizable.

  10. While this is an old thread, I wanted to mention that I've gotten the audio soundtrack feature working by tweaking the XML file generated by Lightroom when I uploaded it to my server for a single-property website. An example of is at http://425WGrant.com

    Doug

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