Meet Plain Skin

Over the years, as jAlbum evolved, we have added more and more features to our bundled skins, and finally – I must admit – many of them became as complex as a NASA mission control room. I see how this can be intimidating to newcomers. Most people just want a simple album with no bells no whistles, and it's only the Minimal skin that has left for those seeking this simplicity. But Minimal skin was based on the separate slide page design, which does not allow for functionality today as basic as swipe gesture handling.

David came up with the idea, that we should introduce a new simple skin, that is natural and smooth to handle on mobiles. He stumbled upon a gallery on, which used the well-known PhotoSwipe lightbox of Dmytro Semenov.

Sample album here →

Thumbnail layout

In this skin, you can have a traditional, grid-like thumbnail section - fixed-shape or uncropped - and the skin is also capable of justifying the thumbnails horizontally to the available space. You can select the preferred thumbnail layout on the Settings / Plain / Thumbnails panel. You can also control the gap, the line border, and the caption here.

Plain skin's thumbnail layouts
Fixed grid (on the left), non-fixed (proportional) grid, and justified layouts

This skin also allows you to split the index page into chunks, so visitors don't have to scroll down. Just use anything but “0” on the Settings / Pages / Rows box.

Folder placement possibilities

Regarding the folders it wildly varies which placement fits best for a particular album. In a complex album, a separate folder tree could help in finding the deeper-level folders, while an album with just a few folders could look better with folders enhanced with large thumbnails and placed above the thumbnail section. And some prefer having the folders mixed with ordinary thumbnails. Plain skin offers all of these. You can find the related settings on the Settings / Plain / Site panel.

Plain skin's thumbnail layouts
Separate folder tree (on the left), placed above the thumbnails and mixed within them

Lightbox features

The lightbox can trigger full screen mode automatically when you click a thumbnail, albeit I prefer using this functionality on mobiles only, which is also an option. See Settings / Plain / Lightbox!

Photo data support is also available, where you not only can pick and arrange the data fields to show but can also customize their labels – just like in Jeff Tucker's skins.

Another popular feature of jAlbum skins is showing the geolocation with the help of Google Maps, which was also made into the initial version.

The skin is also capable of handling image variants, so you can offer extreme zooming in the lightbox. Visitors can also use the pinch-zoom gesture of mobiles for zooming into images.

Give Plain skin a test drive! →

... and let us know what do you think! (


Sign in to post
Add your comment
Post comment