I wish I had weighed the pros and cons of starting a blog on WordPress.com or WordPress.org before I began my blogging journey. As a complete novice with little idea about where to start and with a lack of thorough research, I ended up choosing WordPress.com. It is not like the end of the world or anything, it just offers way less customizing options and it bums me out to not be able to add a basic feature that I might have seen on other popular blogs. One particular feature that I miss having in WordPress.com is the ability to link a gallery images to a post or page. While you can provide the link in the description or caption box, visually speaking, as a user, I would rather have a direct link from the image itself.
I have found a way around here, but as a beginner it was not easy to decipher and after many hits and misses, I finally found my way. It is a bit lengthy(not difficult) and I am not sure whether there is a shorter way possible, but this is how I did it and I would love to share.
Start the way you begin any blog post and refer to the below image with the numbers as steps to follow.
1. After selecting Add Media in you draft post or page, click on Create Gallery.
2. Upload Files you want in the gallery or choose from your Media Library, here I chose four.
3. Click Create a new Gallery.
4. Simultaneously in a new tab start a new post, so you should have two draft posts open, one with the gallery and another one where we will create the link.
5. After Step 3 you will see the window above, just select any image and set the Link to option as none(shown below).
6. Open the draft post from step 4 and type in the caption you want this image to carry, for example “Check out the project gallery”, select it and then click Insert/edit link icon(shown below).
7. In the Insert/edit Link window just scroll down and select the page you want to link, check Open link in a new tab and then click Add Link.
8. Now that your text is linked, click on the HTML tab.
9. Select the text you see and copy it.
10. Coming back to Edit gallery window in the other tab (from step 5), paste the Code in the Caption box for the concerned image. Now, for multiple images you have to individually repeat the above steps(from 6 to 10).After you are done with all of the images finish with clicking Insert Gallery.
11. Do not be freaked by what you see in the draft post, just click on View Post (below) and preview what it would actually look like.
12. I did not mention Size and Type of the images in Step 5 because I believe they are better explained after the links are established. You can edit the gallery by selecting it in the draft and clicking on the pencil icon, then in the Edit Gallery window if you select TYPE as Tiled Mosaic and click Update Gallery, your gallery page/post would look like the image shown below, the caption would only show when you hover over the image.
13. If you select Type as Thumbnail grid, the Gallery would look like the image below, with the caption displayed underneath. So work out some combinations and see what suits you and your blog the best.
Tip: It helps if you size your gallery images to be identical, 260 px by 200 px is a good size for thumbnail grid and also choose images with either horizontal or vertical orientations, which is not the case above and it looks uneven.