Easily embed advanced galleries to the Customizr theme with the NextGEN Gallery plugin

The Customizr WordPress theme includes out-of-the-box a  simple yet cool design for your picture galleries. If you need additional features and designs for your galleries, you'll really want to have a look at NextGen Gallery free WordPress plugin.

This quick guide will help you to get started with this really popular gallery plugin for WordPress.

The NextGEN Gallery Plugin

NextGEN is one of the most popular gallery plugin for WordPress. It comes in both free and premium versions.

It is a powerful and versatile plugin for managing galleries of images, with the ability to batch upload, add/delete/rearrange/sort images, group galleries into albums and many more features. It also provides different front-end display styles with a wide array of options.

If you plan to add images to your site, go ahead and install it. For a quick start with this plugin, watch this video:

Installation

Installation of the plugin is as usual. Login into your WordPress site as admin. From the dashboard, click on Plugins> Add New. Type nextgen gallery in the search box and from the results click on Install Now next to the NextGEN Gallery. After installation, activate the plugin.

Adding Images and Galleries

Start with adding images and creating galleries. Click on Gallery-> Add Gallery/Images from the WordPress admin dashboard to get started. There are three ways to add images. But, before you add images, a word of caution. Always, always optimize your images for the web - compress and resize them - so that your website's performance is not affected. Refer to this article on how to do it for the Customizr theme.

Upload images

Type in the name of a new gallery and Add Files to the gallery.

Once you have selected the image files from your local system, click on Start Upload button.

On successful upload, you get a message and the gallery is created.

At this point, you can add more images (manage gallery) or create more galleries.

Import from WordPress Media Library

Alternately, you can add images from the WordPress Media Library. The procedure is the same except that the images are in the media library.

Import folder

This last method looks in your server for folders containing images in your WordPress installation and shows them. You can create a gallery in one-click by asking for the entire folder to be imported.

Managing Your Galleries

Click on Gallery-> Manage Galleries from the WordPress admin dashboard to edit your galleries. You get a list of galleries created. Click on a gallery name and you will see the images in the gallery and a series of settings for configuring it.

The first section here is Gallery Settings. Here you can configure basic settings such as title, description etc.

In the second section, you can do a multitude of things on one or more images (in bulk).

Some of the actions that you can do are listed below:

Set Watermark

Setting watermark to all your images is so easy. Choose all the images or select images and click on this action according to configurable settings.

Resize images

Simply choose the images, specify the width and height and click on ok. All the chosen images get resized.

Create new thumbnails

Simply choose the images, specify the max. width and max. height and click on ok. New thumbnails are created. That is a breeze!

Copy images

Copy images from one gallery to another, again in a matter of seconds.

Add new tags

Add new tags to the images, in bulk. Is it handy?

You can do many more things. Check those options in the dropdown box. They make handling images a no-brainer.

Managing your Albums

An album is a collection of galleries. Click on Gallery-> Manage Albums from the WordPress admin dashboard to create/manage albums.

To add a new album you enter the title and click Add. Now this new album appears under Select Album. In addition, the album created appears on the left. Drag galleries and drop them under the new album.

Click on Update to save the album. You can create more albums. An album can be a collection of other albums as well.

That is how you can organize your images using galleries and albums.

Overview of the Gallery Settings

The Gallery Settings can be accessed by clicking on Gallery->Gallery Settings from the WordPress admin dashboard. Here you can set up the options for the 7 different viewing formats - Thumbnails, Slideshow, ImageBrowser, SinglePic, and TagCloud for Galleries; Compact Album and Extended Album for albums.

Thumbnails

You can configure many options for the thumbnails format including the number of images per page and the number of columns so as to decide on the layout of your gallery.

Slideshow

You can decide on options for slideshow, including maximum dimensions for the slides, the transition effect and the sliding interval.

ImageBrowser

You can configure the options for the ImageBrowser format.

SinglePic

Configure the options for the SinglePic format, including thumbnail dimensions, image quality and whether to display watermark.

TagCloud

Decide on the options for the TagCloud format including the maximum number of tags to be used for the tag cloud and the display type.

Compact Album

Choose the settings for displaying albums in Compact Album format, including items per page, and galleries display type.

Extended Album

You can also set the options for viewing albums in the Extended Album format. This includes galleries display type and items per page.

Other Options

Apart from the options for viewing formats, there are other options too. Access them by clicking on Gallery->Other Options from the WordPress admin dashboard.

Image Options

The first section is the Image Options. Decide on where to store the galleries, whether to automatically resize images after upload and many other choices related to the images.

Thumbnail options

Decide on the dimensions for the thumbnails and default sizes.

Lightbox Effects

Choose from the five lightbox effects - Fancybox, Shutter, Shutter Reloaded, Thickbox and Custom - or none.

Watermarks

Choose from the multitude of options for creating watermarks on your images. Will you use text or image? Imagine the image to be guided by a 3x3 grid and where do you want to place the watermark? What is the offset in this section? What is the text to be used, its opacity and font style? Wow, what a variety of options! Look at the preview before your finalize. After setting this up, you can do a bulk edit of images from Manage Galleries as mentioned above.

Styles

Do you want to set up a different style using a custom stylesheet. Set it up here.

Roles & Capabilities

Who or what roles have access to what capabilities of the plugin? Set it up here so as to have absolute control over the images on your site.

Miscellaneous

Other miscellaneous options can be set here.

Reset Options

A one-click reset of all the customization you did with the above options.

How to insert your galleries in posts and pages ?

Okay, now that you have organized your images and prepared them for display, how do you add them to your posts/pages.

Go to your post/page. On your editor, you will find a tiny green square button. Click on it to add a gallery to your post/page.

On clicking it, you get an options screen. First you can select one of the display types.

Next, choose the galleries or albums you want to display. You can choose more than one.

You can customize the display settings here as well and finally look at the preview. Here, you can sort the images by various parameters and even exclude certain images from display.

Once you are done, Save and then publish the post/page. Visit this post/page to see the galleries/albums.

This is how galleries/albums in various formats appear with Customizr theme.

1. Thumbnails

2. SlideShow

3. ImageBrowser

4. Compact Album

Click on one of the albums to view the galleries in the album.

5. Extended Album

Now, you will agree that with the NextGEN plugin, managing, organizing and displaying images on your WordPress site is very easy. So, why don't you capture those moments and show them off?

For more information, refer to the official and complete documentation.