How to Make a Great Photo Book
By: The Blurb Team
Many people who dedicate their time to making photographs also devote time for printing those images. Photo books have always been considered the ultimate final statement when it comes to showing off one’s images. But how do we make great photo books? What are the main ingredients? What about tips or secrets?
For us, it all begins with having fun. Compiling a photo book is one of the most entertaining things you can do, but the idea of doing so can sometimes seem daunting. This thought can lower the activity’s level of fun. In this case, remember to focus on the spirit of print, even if you aren’t entirely sure about every single detail.
What Do You Want to make?
Do you want to create a travel book? A portfolio? A catalog? A cookbook? Defining your project is a quick way to establish your basic needs in terms of size, page count, design, and other aspects.
Next up is the edit. Editing is truly an art form and something that can take a good book to greater heights. Think of editing as doing a giant puzzle: Start with the edge pieces first, those images that contain critical moments or information, and gradually allow the reader to fully understand what it is you wish them to experience.
Once you have chosen the images, it’s now time to arrange them in order. Sequencing images for a photo book is the secret step that many beginner bookmakers overlook. This of this step as the construction of the roller coaster ride you are asking your readers to undertake.
Next up is the cover. But don’t feel pressured to create the cover first. Sometimes the book needs to play out a bit before what makes sense on the cover becomes apparent. and just because you have a favorite image, doesn’t mean that picture should be on the cover of your photo book. What if your favorite photograph carries more weight when placed at the end of the book?
Borders, number of images per page, image size–staying consistent with these small details allows the reader to engage with the flow of the book. You can throw in a surprise now and then, but overall consistency leads to readability.
When your masterpiece is complete, get a second opinion. Another set of eyes can save you from yourself. That image you love in your heart might not resonate with anyone else, and a trusted friend or editor can add insight and offer suggestions without damaging your feelings.
Don’t be afraid. Use a reputable printing service like Blurb so you know your photo book will be in good hands. The beauty of Blurb is that you can order ONE copy at a time, and that copy can remain private until you are ready to unleash it on the world. Now, all you have to do is wait–and trust us, there is still nothing more exciting than receiving a new book on your doorstep. Good luck making your photo book, and have fun!