New for JPG+... The Lightbox!

Posted by Bri Hunziker — 19 Aug 2009

Have you ever looked at a photo on JPG and thought, "Yeah, that's pretty great, but I just wish I could see it on a background that wasn't so... white!"

Well, I'm happy to announce that we've just added a new feature for JPG+ members that allows your photos to be viewed in a special mode we're calling "The Lightbox" — your photo against a user-selectable background, from black through various levels of grey!

It's the sort of feature that we should have implemented long ago, because truth be told, it was pretty simple to build. :)

So how does it work? Here's a brief rundown:

If you're a JPG+ member, go to one of your photos (and make sure you're logged in). In the grey bar above your photo, there's a new button, labeled "View in Lightbox." Click this to toggle Lightbox mode on...


Black is the default background, but you have choices: Clicking on any of the swatches in the upper left side of the window will toggle the background to that color. Each one of the colors has a separate URL, too, which means you can link to your photos on whatever background you choose. Rad!

For example, I think my "Cubes" photo is much better viewed on black, to better reveal detail in the shadow areas. Here's a link to that photo on black:

On the other hand, I think "Caught Between" appears more balanced against a medium grey. I can link to that background as well:

Super neat!

Here are a few technical details, for those so inclined:

The URL for your photo in Lightbox is essentially the same format as for the standard photo page, but with /lightbox/ substituted for /photos/.

There are 6 backgrounds, from black to white, which are represented by the letters "a" through "f" from darkest to lightest. If you leave off the letter from the end of the URL, it defaults to black.

Any member can view any JPG+ member's photos in Lightbox, and if you're a JPG+ member, all your photos are now available in this mode.

We intentionally left the interactive elements — commenting, voting and the like — out of Lightbox, to avoid creating a parallel universe in terms of site interaction. To get from the Lightbox back to the standard photo page for commenting, you can either click on the photo, or use the link at the top right of the window.

I'm sure will find ways to tweak and improve this feature over time. Please don't hesitate to let us know how we might make this better. In the meantime, enjoy!

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