Watermark photos

Updated -

If you have a Portfolio or Business account, you can protect your photos with custom watermarks.

No worries, watermarks won’t appear on prints ordered through SmugMug. And we don't watermark your originals since they’re what we use to create your gorgeous prints!

FYI: Watermarks won’t appear on photos less than 800 pixels on the longest side. The default proof watermark will apply to the Large display size and photos larger than 801 pixels on the longest side. Custom watermarks can be set to apply to any size down to the Thumb display size.

Having trouble watermarking existing photos? Check out the "Apply a watermark" section below.

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Create a watermark

Text-based
You can create text-based watermarks directly in SmugMug’s watermark tool! Navigate to the Business > Branding tab in your Account Settings. Click Manage in the Watermarks section to open the watermark options menu.

Select Create and then change the Type of watermark to Text in the dropdown menu.

Type in whatever you want your watermark to say, then tweak it until it’s perfect. Settings you can tweak include the following:

  • Font type, size, and color.
  • Background color.
  • The smallest size image you want your watermark applied to (the default is Large).
  • Where you want the watermark to appear on your photos.
  • How transparent or “faded” you want your watermark to be.

Custom image
First open an external design program like Photoshop or Illustrator to create your watermark and save it as a JPEG, GIF, or PNG. (Check out this step-by-step tutorial for creating a transparent image watermark.)

On your SmugMug site, navigate to the Business > Branding tab in your Account Settings. Click Manage in the Watermarks section to open the watermark options menu.

Select Create and then click the Image icon. Choose Upload New Photo to find and upload the watermark you created in your external design program, or select Choose from SmugMug to choose an image you’ve already uploaded to your SmugMug site.

Once you select your image, you can tweak the watermark settings and watch it update in real time on the sample preview image.

Settings you can tweak include the following:

  • The smallest size image you want your watermark applied to (the default is Large).
  • Where you want the watermark to appear on your photos.
  • How transparent or “faded” you want your watermark to be.

Save a watermark
Once you’re happy with how your text-based or custom-image watermark looks, name it and click Create. Make sure you give your watermark a descriptive name! This will help you identify and choose the right one when you're applying watermarks to your photos later.

Gotcha: Check that your gallery image-display setting matches your watermark size setting, otherwise your watermark may not appear. For example, if your watermark is set to apply to Large images and up but your gallery is set to display images at a maximum size of Medium, your watermark won't appear. upload it to a SmugMug gallery.

We use your watermark image every time you apply it to your photos, so don't delete or hide it. This will break things you don’t want broken.

Click Done to save your changes.

To see how your watermark appears on landscape versus portrait photos, select the Change Sample button.

Tip: You can also access the watermark menu through your gallery settings. In any gallery, click Customize > Gallery Settings > Photo Protection > Apply Watermark.

From here you can select one of your existing watermarks or choose to create a new watermark, which will launch the watermark creator above.

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Apply a watermark

Want watermarks to be applied automatically while you're uploading photos? Go to your gallery settings, choose ON for Apply Watermark, and choose which watermark you'd like applied. From now on, photos you upload to this gallery will automatically get watermarked.

To apply watermarks to a single photo already in a gallery, click the wrench button to access the editor tools. Select Open in Editor and then Watermark.

Or you can go to the Organizer and select an entire gallery you want to watermark. Click Select All to select all photos in the gallery, then click the wrench icon > Watermarks.

Select the watermark you want to apply from the dropdown menu, then click Save.

As you browse your gallery or click refresh while viewing it, your newly watermarked photos will gradually replace those that are currently there. (Don't worry: your originals are never replaced and will stay safe for print!)

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Remove a watermark

Change your mind? You can remove watermarks from many or all photos in a gallery.

Go to the Organizer and select the photos you want to remove a watermark from. Click the wrench icon > Watermarks. Then select your thumbnails, choose Remove, and Save.

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Edit or delete a watermark

After you create a custom watermark, you'll find you can tweak or delete watermarks in your Account Settings. Click the Account Settings button on your SmugMug homepage and look for the Business tab, then Branding. Click Manage to edit (wrench icon) or delete (trashcan icon) watermarks.

Changes will only affect photos you watermark in the future, not photos you've already watermarked.

If you want the changes to take effect on existing photos, just apply the updated watermark following the "Apply a watermark" section above.

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