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I'm developing a photo gallery WP site. I would like to add "ul" list of images that are randomly picked from the gallery.

How would I randomly pick a number of images from the media library.

Any pointers would be greatly appreciated.

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Adding the following to your theme's functions.php file will let you use a shortcode ( [wpse73055-random-images] ) with an optional num parameter (i.e. [wpse73055-random-images num=5] to display 5 random images).

function wpse73055_get_random_images( $atts ) {
    extract( shortcode_atts( array(
        'num' => 10
    ), $atts ) );

    $args = array(
        'post_type' => 'attachment',
        'post_mime_type' =>'image',
        'post_status' => 'inherit',
        'posts_per_page' => $num,
        'orderby' => 'rand'
    $images_query = new WP_Query( $args );

    $images = $images_query->posts;

    $output = '<ul>';
    foreach ( $images as $image ) {
        $output .= '<li>' . wp_get_attachment_link( $image->ID ) . '</li>';
    $output .= '</ul>';

    return $output;
add_shortcode( 'wpse73055-random-images', 'wpse73055_get_random_images' );
share|improve this answer
Querying for all posts is risky (simply put - what if there is million of images? instantly fried server). Would be better to 'orderby' => 'rand' to fetch limited randomized set at database stage. – Rarst Nov 18 '12 at 18:01
That was a bit daft indeed. Edited. Would not have minded, had you done so in the first place. – Johannes Pille Nov 18 '12 at 18:09
Some evenings I am like immaterial ghost that barely has enough left in it to wail at mortals so they fix their stuff. :) – Rarst Nov 18 '12 at 18:14
I've added the above code to the functions.php and used [wpse73055-random-images] where I would like the images. I'm not getting any images - is there anything else I should be doing. – user668499 Nov 18 '12 at 22:25
Got it working now put the images are low quaintly. How would I control which size image is used? – user668499 Nov 19 '12 at 10:41

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