Flickr not Behance

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I was asked to teach a class this year that I had done last year. The professor wants to have the students take photos and video for a group project.  Last year, I showed them Glossom, which I still believe has some great features.  This year though, I thought perhaps I should use Behance since that is the way Adobe is going.  I’d played with Behance briefly last year and didn’t like the features (or lack there of , I should say), so I went back to get a more in depth view of it.

After a few hours of playing with it I knew I couldn’t possibly promote this to a class of students. Behance is designed for users to promote and sell their work.  And there’s nothing wrong with that per se, but for a class of students working on a project, it’s just not appropriate mostly because of it’s lack of group features. In Behance your photos are either completely public to the world, or private only to the user.  Their is no privacy function for sharing any images with just a small group of people.  I was willing to overlook their terrible portfolio formatting (one long scroll of photo with no way to put two side-by-side), but the lack of group work was a deal breaker. In other words, Behance was made for the professional, not really with education in mind.  Which is kind of shame since I’ll have Adobe CC in my lab soon, but still no easy solution to the student portfolio question.

So this year I’m just going to recommend Flickr. Despite Glossom having amazing features, Flickr is still better known and has it’s own useful features.  Here is a bullet list of why I’ve decided on the Yahoo program.  Glossom does have some of these features, but I think my tipping point was really the ability for the Flickr app to upload pictures into the account.  Glossom should think about improving their mobile app.

  • Group Settings
  • Privacy Settings
  • User retains rights
  • Mobile app
  • Optional Creative Common settings
  • Good Metadata options
  • Geo-tagging
  • Knows what type of camera was used for pic
  • Easy to use
  • connects to social media
  • Commenting feature
  • Large storage space
  • ability to upload video


It’s a question that’s been passed around a bit this semester so I went online and found myself a few online portfolio websites to try out.

I started with a list of parameters of what I wanted based on what my faculty was telling me:

  1. Free
  2. Easy
  3. Privacy Settings
  4. Website does not own rights to your work
  5. users must be able to comment

This was about as difficult as I imagined.  Number five on my list was especially hard to find.  Most of the online portfolio sites have really beautiful layout options, are free, and don’t generally have a huge limitation on storage space.  However, privacy is a very big deal over here on my campus.  I get that most of these sites are made with the idea of promoting the artists.  A lot of them have ways to sell your work from their sites. But for us, any website that didn’t hide the images behind some privacy settings was officially off my recommendation list. I’ve heard too many stories of artists online work getting ripped off by someone.

So I’ll start with my favorite which was Glossom.  It met all of the above requirements.  It had some variety in presentation of photographs, but was limited to the look of the website. The other site I found, Behance, also met the above requirements, but has greater restriction on how the images can be placed. Both have comments enabled, but Glossom allows for comments on combined image sets as well as individual images. Both have privacy settings allowing viewability only to specific users signed up with the website. Behance has a prosite for a price, so I didn’t bother to look at it.

I was looking really for a place to have an online portfolio of photographs.  I was also focused on the architecture department. I mention this because Glossom has terms of service prohibiting work that might be offensive or pornographic.  Behance, on the other hand, warns that you might find this stuff on their site.  Not that I found any porn, but I’m sure that when you have a website for art photography there are going to be a few nude images around.

I didn’t try every website in the list of recommended 15 I linked to at the top of this blog post, but i think I have enough for a good recommendation.  If neither Glossom nor Behance seem to meet the needs of my faculty, I’ll probably look into the others.

glossom  behance