As a hobbyist level photographer and web developer I found SlideShowPro to provide a reasonable level of re-use and customization to present my works. It was not perfect, but it provided a professional presentation, had decent WordPress integration, and good-enough stand-alone options for manual web-site integration.
Transition to Koken
The past several years the SSP innovation tapered off and when I revisited the photography CMS options in December of 2013 I was pleased to see what the creative peoples behind SSP had been working on; a new Content Management System (CMS) called Koken. I describe Koken as a refactored SSP suite of tools presented as a CMS designed for photographers that addresses usability & photo management issues of SSP Director and WordPress. Koken is a joy to use and while its Beta versions are not perfect, I look forward to using them.
While I installed and used Koken for a few private portfolio’s, I have yet to transition my public Steven Berke Photography portfolio over. So until then, you can experience the live Koken Theme Gallery.
How I weight my decision to use Koken
A few parting words on features I value in a photography CMS so you can better assess my evaluation. Features in rough priority order:
- Free Installation
- Installation requires minimal manual steps
- Free Upgrades
- Turn-Key Upgrade
- Lightroom integration
- Strong developer base
- Ability to re-use photograph assets across albums (with positive User Experience (UX))
- Out-of-the box widgets and styling features
- Strong user base
- Ability to apply free customizations to website
- Framework to develop custom extensions