Photo Books · Workshops

Books, Books and more Books!

These last few weeks have been very focused on photo books for me! There’s so much work that has to go into creating a photo book – it’s so much more than people probably realise! It’s definitely not just a case of putting some images into an online template, sending it off, then waiting for it to arrives on your doorstep!

I’ve recently realised the true importance of image sequencing and how it can either make or break a book. If the images are good but don’t fit together in the right order then the whole book will feel all over the place and it just won’t work. There needs to be a reason why images are put together, whether that’s because they are telling a story in a certain order or because they have a similar colour theme so they fit well on the same page – as long as it’s a genuine reason why they are there!

Aside from image sequencing it is also important to get the cover just right so people are attracted to your book – the cover is the first thing people will see so it needs to be effective. This doesn’t necessarily mean it has to have an image on it (it’s actually becoming quite popular to have plain covers) but it needs to be attractive and intriguing to potential readers.

We got together this week to look at some examples of photo books and discuss what it is that makes each one so effective…

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There was such a variety of books to look at! Some work great with images on the cover whereas others had plain coloured linen covers, sometimes with a small image on the front but sometimes just with text. I love the look of the linen covers and this is something I’m really interested in for my own book.

We also talked about scale and what size will work the best for our individual projects. Liam showed us a book he made in 2 different sizes which he said really helped him with the final edit…

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He explained how at first he wanted to print in quite a large landscape format to make the most out of the images, but after trying out a small square format just out of interest he found that it was the smaller one that he preferred. This is a great example of how it is so important to try different things as you might like something different to your initial idea but you’ll never know unless you try it!

I think my plan is to continue designing my book using Blurb’s software called Bookify – it seems easy enough and I’m enjoying using it so far as you can really personalise it and create your own page layouts etc. I have planned to order my book through Blurb once I have got my layout and sequence pretty much sorted, then maybe take this book to a local printers as an example of what I am after but maybe have the final one slightly different or better quality depending on what they can offer me that Blurb can’t.

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