Hitting the Flickr Reset Button

Laptop in ParadiseI’ve been a big fan of the photo sharing site Flickr for going on three years now. In fact, I was using Flickr before I knew what Twitter was, had a Facebook account, or even before I put together my original Maui website.

Yup, Flickr and I go way back, even before they hit their 500 millionth photo (we’re talking pre-iPhone photos, people). For grins, I went back and checked and my first photo uploaded to Flickr back then was a shot of me reading a book on a cruise back in Feb’ 07. Wait, a book?!? That can’t be right. There’s not a technical diagram or code listing on those pages. Must have been some vacation. 🙂

Nevermind. When I first started using Flickr, I was mostly in shoot-and-share mode, where I would just unload a memory card, pick out the bad ones and basically upload the rest as-is. For example, my first photoset was of the images I shot at the Sheraton Maui Resort on our first visit to Maui. At the moment, that set now has over 100 photos in it. Of just one resort.

But that’s how I started with Flickr, not knowing much about anything.

The Mess

My Evil LairOkay, maybe mess is a harsh word, but I feel know that with over 4,500 photos filed away in over 100 photosets, this has gotten a little harder to manage. Especially now that I’ve taken a more focused approach to my photography, editting, sharing, and promotion. As I network and met other photographers on Flickr and elsewhere, it’s hard for them to find my best stuff buried in everything. Even if I had a photoset named MY BEST STUFF in all caps, that still sits with all the others already there.

This has come in super handy in terms of archiving, tracking my travels, and even hosting photos for my different websites. Not to mention the neat things I’ve done with the Flickr API, like Daily Maui Photo, some custom site integration work, even the daily photos here on the home page. That stuff has really been a blast to work with.

But alas, it’s time for me to get serious with this and hand-pick the best of my photos, and share and promote the separately from the rest in my archives. Hence…

The Reset

While my original Flickr account will be untouched, I decided to create a new photonelly account on Flickr. The new account, as mentioned, will be home to my very best works, both straight photographs and some other creative techniques I’m working with now.

This is certainly going to take a lot of time and effort until I’m satisfied that everything I want to move over is ready for prime time. After all, I have to go through all those archives and a few “keeper” photosets I’ve stashed my favorites in to dust them off, apply the latest post-production skills I’ve picked up in the last year, and upload/add them to the new account.

To give you an idea of what that’s going to take, I put together a little graphic with the ones I’ve done so far.

My Reset on Flickr


So, what will the magic number be when (or if) I ever finish? Who knows. Maybe 60, 100, possibly 120. There’s definitely going to be a balance between shooting and editing new photos vs. going back and edit older ones, that’s for sure. The goal is clear, though. Make sure the images I’m really, truly proud of are easy to share and can be found by as many current and future friends that I make along the way.


Whatcha think? Am I crazy for trying to take this on, or just crazy for letting it get this bad in the first place (you know my vote). If you have any ideas, tips, or feedback on this type of move, or did something similar yourself, I’d love to hear about it.

– Kris

This entry was posted in Flickr and tagged .


  1. Danny ta November 17, 2009 at 1:28 pm #

    nahhhhhhh not too crazy. Some things just have to be done 🙂

  2. Peter Liu November 17, 2009 at 2:05 pm #

    It’s the right direction. I actually went the other way—started posting from my professional portfolio first – http://flickr.com/photos/peterliuphoto – then started other accounts for snapshots, friends, family, etc. You definitely need to keep them separate. I don’t envy you the transition though.

  3. Anonymous November 17, 2009 at 2:09 pm #

    I’ve been trying to do the same with my FB albums. I could not believe I have over 70 albums of 150+ pics each! Most of the time I just upload them all without really picking the ones I really really like. Then you have those pics where people have left comments and you don’t want to lose that.

    Good luck! Let me know how it goes.

  4. Andy Beal November 17, 2009 at 4:18 pm #

    Good luck with that! One of the best secrets I learned is that many great photographers take crappy photos too–they just don’t post them to Flickr! Over the past year, I’ve been much more selective about the photos I post to Flickr and I’m getting better feedback that way!

  5. Kris November 18, 2009 at 1:28 pm #

    Thanks everyone for the feedback.

    Peter – interesting comparison on your end. Hadn’t thought about it as a starting a point of a pro shooter than switching to a more less formal collection. Definitely starting to agree keeping them separate is the way to go.

    Anonymous – Funny you mentioned Facebook. I’ve been meaning to bring over more photos there, too, since not all my friends are tech savvy and frequent Flickr. Fun to get that feedback from friends and family, and FB seems to be the number one spot for that these days (at least in my circle).

    Andy – You’re dead on with being selective, something I’m learning to do more and more each time I shoot. I still battle from time to time with having to choose between a few shots of the same scene or location, and every now and then trying not to fall victim to rule about being emotionally attached to your photos. Obviously some of these are going to mean more to me than others viewing them.

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