Flickr is a world-wide community for sharing photos on the internet. You can post your photos, follow friends and other photographers whom you admire, and find groups that interest you, such as the Lancaster Camera Club.
As a Flickr member, you can see other people’s photos and leave comments, mark the image as a “favorite”, or curate your own galleries of other people’s images. Everyone can see everyone else’s comments and favorites around an image.
You can upload and organize your own images into Sets or Collections any way you’d like to present them. Additionally, you should add keywords, called tags, to your image to help people find them when they search.
To help you find and keep up with photographers you know and admire, and for them to keep up with you, Flickr keeps track of your Flickr Contacts. Every time you look at the site, you’ll see a little box with thumbnails of images from your contacts.
Adding a contact is easy — If you’ve already found one of their images, just click on their name and click Add as Contact. You can also click your Contacts tab and search for people. You can find me as jflinchbaugh.
To promote your photos, to discuss images, and otherwise share with like-minded photographers, click the Groups tab and search for some groups around your interests. You can find groups for macro photography, toys, Lancaster Camera Club (go join now!), or any other topic. When you join a group, Flickr remembers that you’re a member and allows you to post messages to discussions, send photos to your groups, and it’ll periodically highlight new images in each group on your home page.
Create Your Free Account
If you’ve not yet used Flickr, you’ll be presented with its welcome screen allowing you to search images or to create a free account with Your Yahoo ID. If you don’t have a Yahoo ID, you can create that too.
Setup Your Flickr Profile
Once you’re logged in (and maybe as you’re creating your account), you’ll want to first visit your accounts page by clicking your name at he upper-right of the screen. Here, you can tell the world a bit about yourself on the Personal Information tab, what people can do and see with your images on the Permissions and Privacy tab, and how you want to be notified of new activity on the Emails and Notification tab.
On the Permissions and Privacy tab, you can control who can see your information and how they can use your photos on Flickr: including in galleries, downloading copies, even seeing them in the first place. Most importantly, you can read about the licenses you can use with your images and pick a default — this setting starts at “All Rights Reserved”, but I chose Creative Commons Non-Commercial Share-Alike. (A tip: You can upload smaller versions of your images, if you never want people to be able to download high-resolution copies.)
Notifications allow you to receive email when people add you as a contact or leave you a comment on one of your photos. You can also choose to not get these emails, or only get them once a day or once a week.
Post Your Images
Click the Post Your Photos & Videos link on your Flick home page, and pick a photo from your computer to upload. You’ll have a chance to put a title, a description, and tags on each image. Tags in particular are very important to add to your image, because they describe your image in keywords, and help other Flickr users to find your images. You can add more tags to your images later as well, as you think of them. Congratulations, you’re sharing your photos!
When you get more images and start seeing themes, you can start creating and adding Sets or Collections to organize your images.
Reload, Reload, Reload
Once you’ve created your account, added a few contacts, and joined a few groups, you’ll probably find yourself visiting Flickr very regularly (daily or more) to see what’s new!