Oct 20, 2013

Making Your Own Photo Book..

You can make your own book.  The more knowledge you have in this area the better.
 Here are just few things to consider.

Bookmaking will take you a bit of time. In my opinion it is way worth the time, and you don't have to do it in a day.  If you are somewhat organized  you can cut that time down by a huge amount. One of the best ways to get organized, is to organize the photos first. 
 If you have decided to make a book, you most likely already know what your topic is going to be, so that is a good thing. So lets get started, I am assuming we are doing digital photos here. Otherwise see my post on scanning photos.
  • So the first thing I do is organize those pics that are going into the book. One of the first things I do is make a new folder, give it a name, like Wedding, vacation, whatever, drag or copy all the folders with the pics you are going to use to it. 
  • Make another folder in there named no good or not in book. go through all the pics and mark pics you don't want in your book or are no good. Mark them with a flag or star or something. After you have gone through them all, click on that star or flag, drag all those to the no good folder. I don't delete them. That should cut out a bunch of pics. so you wont have to keep going through them. Also now go back to that folder and select those pics and untag them or unmark them.
  •  Note here:  If you open them in windows or iphoto you can set your view to date and then time, it will give you smaller bunches of photos, that makes them so much easier to sort. Also if you only have one or two shots of of something special, even if they are bad you might want to use them. remember they can be printed small and still look ok. .. that is better than missing something you really want to remember.
  • Next step, Edit.. I go through the main folder and edit, check for color, to dark to light what needs to be cropped etc. If you need a editor that works really well and is free, download Picasa. I use it all the time. It has a lot of editing features. You can also add text to photos pretty easy. 
  • Note here:  I also use Photoshop Elements for removing unwanted things in photos, among other hard to edit photos that I want to do. This is not a requirement by any means. Picasa will do most of the editing you need, and again its free. 
  • Do you want to make your books online or use software. Several photo companies have free software. I have made many books both ways, I by far prefer using software. This is my preference, because you don't have to wait for pages to keep reloading, worry about loosing all that you have worked on, which I have done! If you don't get right back to it, you don't take a chance on loosing all your hard work. You don't have to be worried about passwords and logging in, transferring photos to someone else's site. It's not my thing. But if your prefer it, buy all means go for it! LOL.  It is much easier to upload the whole book when done. You have everything right on your computer. Any you can save your book-file to a jump drive etc. This is my preference by far.
  • Most of you know just by looking around I prefer using Blurb Publishing! Blurb's free software, Booksmart,  is excellent for a beginner or a Pro. I love that you have a bookstore, super simple to reorder, you have a multitude of ordering options, even ibook, and PDF. 
  • Ok you have all that done, start putting all those great photos in that new book! When I am making a book, I do NOT add ALL my photos at once, it is to many to work with, I open my Booksmart, and Picasa and I drag and drop into my layouts. This automatically adds them to booksmart. Here are a few tips I use consistently. In booksmart, where it says my photos, set that to show unused, then when you delete a photo you have dragged onto your book, then deleted it, it will show unused photos. Also I most always work in two page spread. You will learn the software pretty quick. In Picasa.. when I drag a photo (or just before) I put a star on it. When I go back to look for more pics, I can automatically see what is already in the book, from the stared photos. After I am finished the whole book, I will click at the top select all stars in the main file and create a my book file, drag them all to it. Or copy them. there you will have all the photos in your book in a separate file.
  • You will need to create a Blurb account before uploading your book. Once you do one, you will be hooked forever! Especially after you get your book back!

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