Exhibbit - Your own 3-D gallery space online. There is much chatter about online galleries and portfolios - many of the really great ones are tested and listed here on WeLikeArtists, but this one is a little different.Exhibbit gives you a virtual gallery which looks and acts like a three-dimensional interior visible in your web browser. Download a small piece of software to your computer (the unity web player) and visit one of the galleries. It took us 2 mins to download and install, and you only have to do this when you start using the site. Once set up, you can ‘visit’ a variety of gallery spaces all populated with wall based art.
As each gallery loads there is an introduction screen about the artist while you wait for the content to load - this took around 1 min 40 sec on our broadband connection, which is acceptable and worth the wait. The online visual presentation allows you to ‘stand’ in the gallery and move round the space. The interior architecture shifts and reacts as if you were ‘walking’ through the building. Paintings and prints ‘hang’ on the virtual walls and you can ‘walk’ up to them to take a closer look, or ‘stand’ back to see how one piece relates in size and content to its neighbours.
Keyboard arrows let you move left, right, backwards and forwards, or you can simply click on a work which interests you and ‘fly’ straight over to it. If you have a multi-button mouse, it can also be used to navigate. The movement is convincing and even the wooden gallery floor reflects work on the walls, giving that extra impression of ‘being there’.
Most people will view the gallery in their browser but you can select a full screen view which is more immersive.
Put your cursor over a particular work and a window with more details pops open. You can take a prearranged tour around the show, which places you in front of each work without you having to do anything. There are help icons on the right of the screen to run the tour, obtain extra information, email the artist, change the colour of the walls and switch the rather lovely transparent people, who are with you in the gallery, on and off!
Changing the gallery wall colour is a curious option - let's face it, you would not expect to walk into the Tate and change the wall colour, but this is clearly there to help you decide if a particular work of art might fit into your domestic interior.
Exhibbit is a clever and easy to use presentation tool which can help set you apart from the crowd. The basic version only costs $5 per month including full hosting of the gallery and images. You ‘rent’ the gallery space for as long as you need. Once set up, even though people can visit your gallery through the Exhibbit website, you can also embed it in your own site.
Take a look at Exhibbit here: www.exhibbit.com
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