Getting Started on Affar Images Photo Agency

Affar Images

Quick Guide to Getting Started


This document will introduce you to some of the core features on the site

It will show you how to:

  • Upload via FTP
  • Upload, view and manage files in your archive

  • View and edit file info

  • Use basic tools to manage your archive (including folder management and publishing files)
  • Create, edit and publish galleries.

For further information contact


If you haven’t already registered you can do so by visiting:

Click the ‘register’ link (among the menu options at the top of the homepage) and fill in the online form, being careful to select ‘contributor’ so you can upload files to the system.


  • Drag and Drop Upload

Log in and browse to the Manage Archive page which can be accessed under the “My Account” menu.


To upload directly into your currently selected folder:


  • Simply drag file(s) into the Manage Archive panel and watch your upload’s progress in the panel on the right.


        Click on the red ‘upload’ icon in the bottom right of your screen.

  • Browse your folders and select the files you wish to upload.
  • Once you’ve selected your files click ‘open’ to launch the upload.
  • Watch the progress of your uploads in panel on the right of your screen.


Upload into a target folder (new feature):

  • Click on the ‘upload’ icon in the toolbar panel on the left of your screen.
  • Click on the ‘choose folder’ button in the upload management panel on the right of your screen
  • Choose a target folder or create a new folder to which you’d like to upload (your selection is highlighted in blue)
  • Click on the ‘Upload to Selected’ button at the bottom of the pop-up
  • Watch the progress of your uploads…

File Uploader (this panel opens whenever you launch an upload or click on the upload icon in the toolbar)

  • You can resume interrupted or incomplete uploads by re-adding them to your upload queue. 

•The file upload panel (on the right of your screen) will display the status of your uploads as per these screenshots.


You can locate your uploads in your archive by clicking on the preview icon as shown below:


2. FTP Upload

We recommend using FTP for ‘high volume’ or ‘large file’ uploads. FTP uploads are more stable and don’t require an Internet browser to function.

Follow the ‘How to” instructions on the FTP upload page which is accessible under the main menu (you’ll need to exit the Manage Archive page to access the main menu again). Do this by clicking on the logo in the top left corner of the tool panel which will take you back to the homepage. You will then be able to access the ‘FTP Upload’ page by clicking on the link under the main menu option My Account as shown below:

If you don’t already have FTP software the “How to upload using FTP software” instructions on the FTP download page include a link to a free and reliable FTP solution called ‘Filezilla’.

Your uploaded files will be automatically imported to your FTP Import folder in your archive:

3. Archive Management

Key tasks you can perform here include uploads (as explained above), folder management and gallery management. You can also edit file info, publish, delete, share, rotate and apply access filters to your files.

Following are some screenshots to help familiarise you with the basic features available on the archive management page.

a) Advanced Search filter, metadata icons and toolbar panel

Note: Always check to see if filters have been applied in advanced search. A red exclamation mark will appear beside the filter icon (as shown below) to indicate that default settings have been changed. Click on the filter icon and then the ‘reset’ button to return to default settings.

 Advanced search filter alert looks like this:

b. Publish/unpublish switch, selecting files, actions, published file indicator, access filter icon and folder path.

c. Toolbar

Click on the hamburger icon () in the top left of your screen to open the tool bar or click directly on any of the icons in the tool bar – clicking on the logo at the top will take you to your home page.


4. Creating folders and Folder Management (new interface)

Click on the folder icon ( ) to open the folder management panel. You can move files from one folder to another by dragging thumbnails from the archive panel into any folder. Alternatively select one or more files (click + shift or ‘multi select’) and click on the ‘Move’ option also in the tool bar. Select a destination folder into which you wish to move your files.

 Note that when you click to select a folder (as shown by the blue highlighted folder in the screenshot above) its contents will display in the archive panel ONLY when the search mode is set to ‘selected folder’, its default setting. If you have applied a search filter such as ‘selected and sub folders’ or ‘All folders’ the content displayed in the archive panel will vary accordingly.

5. Viewing and Editing File Info

Click on the Edit File Info icon () to open the ‘Edit File Info’ panel.

 Select one or more files (click + shift or ‘multi select’) to display existing file information. Note that existing file info will automatically be displayed and can be edited. This provides the option of entering file info using a third party program offline before uploading your files.

The edit file info panel is comprised of three tabs:


The Basic’ tab comprises the 5 recommended metadata fields which also correspond to the five file info icons under each thumbnail in the archive panel.

These are:

  • Description
  • keywords/tags
  • Copyright/Credit
  • Country
  • Date

The ‘License tab’ features options which will allow you to indicate if your file is ‘under license’ or ‘wholly owned’, if there is a consent form associated with the file and the file has been ‘digitally manipulated’.

The ‘Advanced’ tab comprises a number of other standard metadata fields which you are free to edit and where you will see any existing info.

Rating Files

Click on the ‘golden’ stars to rate your files. This feature enables you to sort files by their ranking and view your ‘best’ files first. Rating also works with multiple files. To remove ratings click on the first (left) star twice).


Keywords/tags make files findable (default searches are performed on keywords and location fields). You only need enter a few relevant keywords/tags (ALWAYS COMMA SEPARATED). Include names of people and any words that describe the core meaning/content of the file.

Test the relevance of your keywords by putting yourself in the place of a user searching for a file – would they be pleased to find your file if they searched using one of the keywords you just added?


KEYWORDS MUST BE ON THE ISTOCK STYLE. For achieving that, you must use this tool: . Please install it on your computer, upload any image, type three keywords related to the real image that you are keywording. Then, from the suggestions eliminate those that don't apply. Copy the rest and paste it on the file that you have in our site.

Then, introduce any other keyword that is particular to your image and that don't appear in the group. You must not introduce the country and city on the keywords. The fields with that info are searchable. 

File info makes files ‘visible’

File info is essential to creating a searchable archive. By including description, location, copyright info, a date and keywords, you give a file meaning and make it findable. Watch the visibility meter improve as you complete recommended fields.

5. Publishing Files (Admins Only)

Publishing a file means it becomes visible/searchable to users browsing the ‘front end’ of your site. Published files are identified by a green frame around the thumbnail.

 Note that you can also publish selected files in the gallery content editor…of which more below.

Setting access filters…

Publishing a file doesn't always mean it will be visible to everyone.

You can set access to selected files so that even if they’re published they can only be seen and/or downloaded by logged in users to whom you have granted corresponding viewing rights/download rights.

To set access:

  • Select one or more files
  • Click on the ‘actions’ drop down
  • Select “Set Access”
  • Choose the access filter you would like to apply (as per screenshot below)
  • Click ‘Save’


Files to which access filters have been applied are displayed with a padlock icon in the top left corner like this (the green frame indicates that these files have been ‘published’ and the green ticks indicate recommended file info is complete:

Creating and Publishing a Gallery

‘Galleries’ is the term we use to describe collections of files that correspond to a theme, story or event.

They are displayed in a separate ‘Galleries’ area on the front of the site. Galleries can be categorised and annotated with a title, a credit, an extensive text, keywords (so you can search the galleries as opposed to files), and a brief explanatory description.

Creating a gallery

Click on the Gallery Editor icon () to open the ‘Gallery Editor’.

Click on the blue ‘New Gallery’ button to create a new gallery. Give your new gallery a name and click the blue ‘Create Gallery’ button. Your new gallery will be added to the Gallery editor panel on the right of the screen.

Editing Gallery Details…

Click on the gallery thumbnail to edit its details and add content.

The ‘Details’ panel will be displayed first:


In the Details tab you can edit the title, credit and description of your gallery and add a full text as well as some relevant keywords so people can search for specific galleries on the front end of your site.

Admin users can publish galleries here by clicking on the ‘Publish Gallery’ switch.

Before publishing a gallery you should check to see that all its member files are published (and will therefore be visible when the gallery is ‘live’). If access filters have been applied to some or all files this may limit the visibility of your published gallery.

Note: only admins can publish galleries and edit gallery categories. Admins also have the option to add or delete gallery categories and they can change the order of the gallery categories, for example they might wish to add a ‘Latest News’ category to the category list and have it appear as the first category on the Galleries page on the front end of the site.

Adding and Managing Gallery Content…

Click on the ‘Content’ tab to view and manage the content of your gallery.

You can add content to a gallery in three ways:

  • Drag selected thumbnails from the archive panel directly onto a gallery thumbnail in the Gallery Editor (when viewing all galleries prior to selecting one)
  • Drag selected thumbnails from the archive panel into the ‘content’ panel of a selected gallery in the Gallery Editor

  • Select one or more files and click ‘Add to Gallery’ in the menu bar at the top of the screen

You can also drag files within the content panel to change the order of files in your gallery. You should also select a cover file which will be displayed on the front of the site.

 That should get you started.

Don’t hesitate to be in touch if you have any questions or queries.