You might wonder what the lightbox feature on most stock photography websites is, right? Well, this is pretty easy to answer. A lightbox is a way of taking a closer, or second look at the images you saved during your image search
It is also a way of saving images during your photo search so that you can look at them later without having to search again. And finally, it is a method of creating a helpful gallery on a stock agency’s site so you are able to compare images and decide which works best for you or your client.
Think of it as a ‘shopping cart’ feature that lets you save the photos you want so you can come back to see if you still want to purchase it later.
In the digital age, the principle is not much different from its film counterpart, except it is more of a digital asset management (DAM) tool. It is used to create and store a list of images on a stock photo site that can be viewed, referenced, compared, and purchased at a later time.
It is an overlay on top of the image search result pages that gives you a closer look at a selected image. Lightboxes are also used to place the photo you are interested in above a solid background, often black, to enhance the features of the particular image and filter out what other images may take away.
The lightbox also allows you to review images that you saved earlier and lets you compare the images and examine them thoroughly before deciding. It also allows you to separate the ones you are interested in from those you don't. Basically, you can think of as a ‘shopping cart’ feature.
Another use is being able to send the lightbox gallery to a client so that they can choose the images they want. Along the same lines, if you work remotely with other coworkers, you could compile a contact sheet and share an image gallery via email.
Using a lightbox is quite easy. We’ve put together a quick video for you on how to make one for Stock Photo Secrets.
1. Search an image and you can click directly on the “bulb” icon to save that image of your choice to your default lightbox folder.
2. You can also click a specific image and then click the Add to Lightbox button below the image to save it in your lightbox folder.
3. You access your Lightbox by clicking the link at the upper right hand.
4. On the left side of the page, you will see some Actions on what you can do to a Lightbox.
5. You can click on the “New Lightbox” and then enter the desired name of your lightbox.
6. You can then move some of your images from default Lightbox to the new Lightbox that you created.
Simply put, a stock photo agency lightbox will help you organize images into different folders (or ‘lightboxes’) so that you can take a look at all the images you saved during an image search.
It is also great to use one to save your image selections instead of just purchasing the first image you see. When you save a folder full of images you can go back and delete the ones you want, and pick which one you think is the best by comparing all the images together.
To learn more about how to do a thorough image search, read our ‘Top 5 Tips Helping You Waste Less Time Finding Stock Photos.’