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I am experiencing an issue where multiple 7MB image with 4000px on widest side in a photo gallery crashes a wordpress page -- or the page becomes non-respondant.

I use smush to size my images.

any ideas other than smaller images? or less images?

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    don't use smush or don't use such a big images. Sep 16, 2018 at 4:38

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I suggest using a gallery plugin that will show thumbnail images and then load the large image after the thumbnail is clicked. I've seen this one used.

Also, in most cases, 4000px images are not needed if your goal is only to let people see your photography. 1200px wide is plenty large enough. I would also suggest making them .jpg images and compressing them to about 70% in photoshop, instead of using smush - if quality is a concern.

Downloading 14+ MB of files just to show the webpage is a very expensive process.

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