Thanks to all off you who commented, especially Chris_T for finding the typo (now corrected!) Regarding thumbnails, I hear what you all are saying but will be sticking without them for now. Not having them was a personal design decision by me based on that I do not find them useful on most personal portfolio sites due to their being just too small to really see what you are looking at. Also, I think they can be a distracting element when looking at a photograph online. I have really tried to remove as many distracting elements as possible and still be functional.
As for the other design elements, color, text size/color, flash vs html, etc. Some of it is limited by design elements, such as the size of caption text in the white frame. It just can't be any larger. But I am always concerned if people say the design is deterring them from looking at my photography. That's really what I care about. The web design should just be simple and not get in the way.
I saw a lot of photographers using flash on their personal sites and I thought Autoviewer would accomplish what I wanted. It seemed pretty straight forward, you open a gallery and the slide show just auto-starts. If you want to stop or skip, you just click the forward or back buttons (actually, you can click anywhere to the left or right of the image) to move around. So you can quickly click your way through a group of photos and linger as long or as little as you choose on any one image. But, again, if people say it's still not simple enough, then I will look at other design options at some point.