Photobooks – that’s what keeps me going with photography. I am starting at the end with my photography posts so you can see where we are going and why learning something complicated can be worth your efforts.
I have a pretty decent collection so far, but when my kids are grown, I hope to have piles and piles. These are the stories of our happy little family. I want to tell those stories with beautiful photos printed out on paper, not in my Facebook feed.
My system has evolved into this – three to four books per year including one album per kid when they get into school, one album for our annual beach trip, and one family album. I have done various kid albums for different activities in the past, but in the future I’m just going to do one book per year. Here is my little stack of kid books including covers I made. I’ll let you know how you can make covers in another post.
Here is my little stack of “beach books.” We have been to the same beach eight years in a row and while I don’t have all years in a book yet, I will.
The family album includes all my favorite pictures from the entire year. I exclude most of the beach pictures and kids at school pictures because they get their own books. I gather all of my favorite photos for a year and edit them together. I mix black and white and color photos. I include people and pets, but I don’t include write ups. I figure a picture is worth a thousand words, right? Also, I always manage to mess up somewhere with a misspelled word or bad spacing. I’m just happier looking a photos than reading explanations. I think it’s cleaner looking and allows the photos to shine.
So far I only have three years done, but I’m very close to completing another year. As you can guess, these take some time to put together. At 12″ x 12″ these books are the largest.
The pictures are in chronological order and grouped by event. If a picture of me exists, I try to include it so my children know I was around. That’s another post, however – how to take a self-portrait. Here is a slide show of the 2012 book. It’s jpegs, so you don’t get the real feeling you get when you touch and feel a book, but you can see the layout. This book is 40 pages and has 353 photos.
I love it when I have a whole year of great photography, but I don’t make that my criteria for including a photo. I want to make sure I get all of the memories and special moments included even if my photography wasn’t the best.
I haven’t been doing these books in order of the year. In fact, I believe I did 2013, 2014, and then 2012. Some years I have more taken more photos than others, but I include the same number of pages and approximately the same number of photos each year.
I’m currently working on 2015 and I found that lots of important moments were captured on my phone and not on my camera. This was a bummer for me. I felt the memories were important, though and I imported my favorite phone pictures into Lightroom. I edited them like my other photos. I’m in the process of laying the photos out in the book, so I don’t know exactly how it will look. This did make me more dedicated to my camera. I never regret a good picture.
So, that’s a look at what drives me to take my camera places and to learn about things such as composition, lighting, and shooting in manual mode. It’s all about the photobooks full of memories. What drives you?