What is required for a photo website

I am concerned that the introduction of Catalina will eventually oblige me to move to 64 bit software and abandon Mojave. Let me explain, I have had a website, johnbeeching.com, for sometime that I constructed and maintain with DreamWeaver CS6 (32 bit). The actual galleries I make using LightRoom 6.14 and then link them into the site with DW. I am not a web techie, but the things I need to do I can do. I don’t want to subscribe to the current version (64 bit) of DW as it is part of a bundle that I don’t need and is expensive. So where do I go from here? I am aware that LR 6.14 will work in Catalina, but what should I do to maintain the website? RapidWeaver looks like it might be the way to go, but I gather that one has to buy plugins to get it to conveniently make photo websites, so the overall cost rises. What specific plugins are required to construct and maintain a photo website with RW?


Hey John,
good to have you with us!

Here are many photograph enthusiasts in our RW community and professional photographers as well who maintains their own site.

Jumping into RW wagon I recommend you get latest RW 8 RealMac Software + Your Head Stacks plugin that enables you yo use other plugins (that are also called stacks) + Theme or free-from Frame work. (Getting Started with Web Design using RapidWeaver and Stacks) For hosting I would recommend ChillDog Hosting http://www.chillidoghosting.com. eCommerce like Eckwid and Cartloom among others are available as well.

One way to go would be using theme like Weaver’s Kingdom’s that are directed to photographers and portfolio usage. https://www.weaverskingdom.com/themes/index.html Check also Nick Cate’s Premium RapidWeaver Themes and Stacks - Nick Cates Design and MichaelDavidDesign’s themes http://michaeldaviddesign.com. I am not sayin these are only options, just that I have experience of these products.

With free-form framework like Foundation https://foundationstacks.com and Foundry https://foundry.elixirgraphics.com you can build your site from scratch. Learning curve will be steeper but there are great tutorials, documentaries, supportive community and even tutorial courses available. Today we have several frameworks to choose from. Depends who many images you want to on your site you might want to check options for warehousing and bulk import. Some frameworks support that others does not.

Interesting options to use are also blog replacement and multi-purpose content stack called Poster stack. inStacks Software | Poster Stack - Blog and Multi-Purpose Content Stack and Depth which is combination of theme and huge collection of pre-build sections. Themes And Stacks For RapidWeaver - Falcon Design

Rapidweaver Community is the place to search stacks, themes and frameworks.

Forums to search from
https://www.weavers.space → community

Resouces to learn from

Galleries for sites that has been made with RW for inspiration

That should keep wheels turning and socks spinning for a while!
Hope you find what you are looking for.

1 Like

Hi John,

RapidWeaver 8 + Stacks 4 are pretty-much an essential buy. So call that about $100. Things typically go on sale around the end of November for ‘Black Friday’, so you may want to wait until then if you are in no immediate rush to buy and want to save a little. Not saying with 100% guarantees that WILL happen (I don’t work for either company!), but there have been similar discounts offered annually in the past.

Your current website is very simple. Frameworks IMO would be total overkill and an additional money pit / complexity for something so beautifully simple and effective. Check the themes supplied with RapidWeaver or search for others from third-parties. There are plenty out there that cost nothing or not much more than a few coffees. Plus these will also make your website mobile compatible and provide basic style and colour settings to adjust.

The Stacks plugin would be more than adequate to generate simple grids of thumbnail images. And you certainly can get free ‘lightbox’ stacks to make your images appear in popups with caption titles underneath. Perfect for a simple photography portfolio.

So to summarise - start simple and learn the basics. Don’t feel intimidated or committed into lurching straight for all the paid / affiliated / promoted addons. Set a tight budget for the absolute essentials (Stacks and RapidWeaver 8) and see where that gets you first.

Welcome, John,

You’re going to find RapidWeaver quite different than DreamWeaver. I would start slow; It’s quite easy to spend a small fortune on addons berfore you know it.

Looking at your site from the link above, RapidWeaver could easily do what you need without a ton of addons to start.

I would start of course with RapidWeaver itself. I if you aren’t sure yet and just want to check it out there’s a free trial version available at The Best Mac Website Builder - RapidWeaver Classic (right below the buy button).

RapidWeaver does require a theme to function. It comes with quite a few built-in themes that will let you build a pretty good site out of the box.

The one add-on you’ll want to checkout for sure would be thestacks plug-in. It also has a free trial version you can take for a test drive.

Once you have the stacks plug-in then there are hundreds of what are called stacks that open up all kinds of display options.

Looking at your site you probably are going to want a good Gallery stack to show those photos. Lot’s to choose from but learn the basics first.

But most important take your time. Mojave is going to be around for quite a while.

Thanks Tapio, for all this information. It does seem rather overwhelming, but I will start exporing.

Thanks Will, This is useful. I had already downloaded and tried out the trial version of RW but found it very limited and it was unclear what the potential of the full program would be. The necessity of addons is daunting and your suggestions could be useful.

1 Like

Dear Teefers, Thanks for your useful advice - I will explore. I tend not to change software or equipment until it is necessary or appropriate, so Mojave will be there for some time yet. However, I need to start exploring.

This topic was automatically closed 30 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.