Notes on using Flickr

Flickr is my favorite photo-sharing site and where I publish my photos. When sending photos to others I usually send a link to the index page of an album, which is a collection of photos on a common theme or event.  For example, here is a link to the set of photos I took at the New York Maker Faire several years ago:

The user interface to Flickr can be a bit intimidating at first and often provides several paths to the same end. Here is one, and probably the easiest, way to view and download photos for printing.

The Flickr user interface has gone through several iterations and during a transition period had two different flavors. The description below is for the interface as of July, 2015.


  • Click on any photo in the album index for a larger view and information panel below the photo.
  • View other photos in the album by clicking on the forward and back arrows on the sides of the larger photo or thumbnail strip in the panel.
  • Return back to the index page by clicking on Back to album at the bottom-left of the image.


You can get to the original, full-sized image, the one to use for printing…

  • Click on any photo on the index page.
  • You will see an icon consisting of down-arrow and horizontal line at the bottom-right of the image.
  • Click on the down-arrow to view a menu.
  • Click View all sizes for a larger view of the photo and a list of all sizes above the photo. Click on Original to view the photo in the original size, the one best for printing.
  • Click Download the Original size of this photo in the text just above the list of sizes to download and save the photo.


I recommend Costco to people who are already members. The quality is excellent; professional photographers use them; and if you are really picky about image quality you can even download store and printer-specific color-management profiles from Dry Creek Photo. If you are not a member of Costco then Winkflash is another good choice. I have been pleased with the results of work I have sent there and they also offer photo books and more. I do not recommend printing at your local pharmacy. I have never been happy with the results from Walgreens. Despite this, I still use them in a pinch as they are convenient. Flickr offers printing through Snapfish (Actions->Order prints and more). It looks like it would be convenient but I have never used Snapfish and can offer no opinion.

Download, Verbose

Here is the download information in a little more detail. Try this if the above doesn’t work for you.

  • Click on the link that you received via email. This will take you to the album index. Large albums are paginated into groups of 100 images with navigation icons on the bottom.
  • Click on an image in the album index. This will show a larger version of the image.
  • From here you can navigate through the album using the arrow icons on the left and right side of the image. You will also find four icons on the bottom-right of the screen. The right-most icon is a down-arrow above a horizontal line, the download icon.
  • Click on the download icon at the bottom-right of the screen, the down-arrow over a line. This will present a pop-up menu of popular sizes and a last entry of View all sizes.
  • Click on View all sizes. This will show an even larger version of the image, a download link, and a menu of all available sizes above the image. The download link is on the second line, below License and above the menu of sizes.
  • Click on Original. This will show the original, largest size of the image. Above the image is the same download link and menu as before.
  • Click on the download link to download the image. On some browsers you may also be able to download from the right-click context menu. On Chrome right-click and select Save image as….

Updated 19 July 2015 to reflect latest Flickr user interface and add the verbose instructions.


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