I really hope that you had a fun week. I realize that there was lots of information to wade through this week. I will feel successful if I have demystified the photobook process for you and helped you to understand how you can successfully create a book that suits your needs AND your design aesthetic.
We have just a handful of things left to finish our books. My list still has: Introduction/dedication page, parting shot page, the cover, and the spine. Before we get there, though, I promised to talk to you about layers. When you have your page assembled, you have the option to reorder the layers. All you need to do is drag the layers up or down and they will reorder themselves accordingly. This is also a good time to add a drop shadow to a layer or two to give it a bit of depth.
Lastly, when your page is totally done, flatten it. This means you can no longer edit the layers, so I might suggest you save this differently than you have the layered version. If you have been saving your layered versions as PSDs then as you flatten, save it as a JPEG and you will automatically have both versions.
Intro Page/Title Page
I like to begin my books with a little letter of introduction. A "why this was important enough to me to actually make it" explanation. For books like the cousins book, where the purpose is clear, I opt for a title page, which, for continuity's sake is usually a variation on the cover.
Parting Shot Page
Many magazines nowadays finish with an awesome photo and a related quote. (Sort of like our end of week/Sunday posts! Shameless plug!) I really love this kind of finish. In fact, I am planning one for the pool book. For the cousins books, rather than a one photo finish, they will end as many pages as I can fill with photo of their time together over that year, if they get any.
In a similar vein, the house book will end with a shot of something that we take to every house, no matter what the address. And perhaps a quote about home being where you are. You know, something schmoozy!!
Lastly, the I Love This book will end with a patterned paper. Nothing more. It will be the best fit for the design. For me, fancy isn't always required, and some rules are made to be broken. (Shh! Don't tell my kids!!)
For some, the thought of designing a cover would be overwhelming. But we are scrapbookers! It is what we do! So for us, it's really just a matter of proper dimensions.
Shutterfly's dimensions are here. Just like with the inside pages, be sure to not put anything of visual importance on the very edge.
VioVio has two options. You can wrap your photo around the book, or you can choose their two image option. No matter, they have this page with dimensions and instructions. Read through it. There are lots of good thoughts.
For hardcover Shutterfly books, you will need to also create a spine image. The dimensions are here. My only advice it to be careful about the orientation of your title. In the United States, our titles begin at the top and run downward. In France, I believe they go from the bottom up. The first time I made a book, I didn't even think about it and when my book arrived, I realized I had done it the French way. Which is fine, except on the shelf it looks upsidedown. So my books sits on the shelf upsidedown to make up for the difference.(Though I have considered moving it to be with my French books so it fits in!)
UPLOADING YOUR PAGES AND FINISHING YOUR BOOK
Before you can assemble the book, you must first upload your pages. I will separate out the two publishers that we have been using this week and do them one at a time.
1. login to your account.
2. click on "add pictures" (right below the my account button). This box will pop up.
3. select "create new album" for part 2, and then go ahead and choose your files to upload. You will be asked if you want to share the photos to a site or keep going. Make your selection.
4. Once your files are loaded you will end up at My Shutterfly. Look about midway down for the button that says, Start a Photobook. Click the button. Mine was blue.
5. now you have the option between simple path and custom path. choose custom.
6. select your size. don't go to the themes: that's for the premade templates.
7. choose your size, choose your cover (you may change your mind later) and click, "get started"
8. for your style, click on "classic white" and then "next"
9. this is the next screen.
10. Select the album you need.
11. This should open your albums, showing you all the photos in the album. You may now select one by one, or click select all.
12. After you have selected the photos, go to the top of the page. In the top right hand corner there will be a button that says "Add to Photobook" (mine was orange). Click that.
13. Now a box will pop up asking if you need additional pictures. If you are good, click no. Now comes the fun.
14. We are now back at the photobook building screen. It will look remarkably like the screenshot above, except now you have thumbnail photos in the bottom section.
With the pages tab highlighted, you are ready to go. See the row of little boxes that started with one that looks like an open book? That is your album being built. You can skip from page to page by clicking on any of those little boxes. The open book signifies the page we are on. (Right now it is the opening page, not the cover. The cover comes at the end.)
Before you drag a photo up, you need to select the proper page type. See the layout options to the left? See how the fifth one down in the first column is highlighted? That is the one you need. It is the full photo page. And because we have designed each of our pages from top to bottom, left to right, we are adding them like full photos. Once you highlight that grey page, like in our example, you will get the same screen as above, which has a large grey page that reads drop photo here. Now you are ready. Click and drag.
15. Once your opening page has popped into the frame, click the arrow or click on the next set of pages, and repeat the above steps.
First row, fifth down, click.
Click and drag photo.
Repeat for next page.
Click on arrow.
Repeat until all your pages have been filled in.
16. Now you can preview your book to make sure everything is there, nothing got cut off, nothing is out of order, nothing has been forgotten. Check check and recheck.
17. Next, move to the Cover tab. Once there, add in your cover and spine.
18. Now, click on the Preview tab, sit back and get ready to oogle!
Here is Shutterfly's Upload How-To's in case I happened to confuse you.
For VioVio, once you create your account, you will need to upload your photos. From the dashboard, go to the drop down menu, find photos, and then on that drop down menu, click on upload images. Before you get going, get a drink and be sure you are comfy as you have to upload one.at.a.time. Seriously. I know, I know. I agree.
Once your photos are uploaded, go back to the dashboard, go to books & products, and then book designer. Now, fill out the title, pick your size (you don't have to pick the exact size, just the proportion), and number of pages. Click create.
Adding photos to the pages is super easy now. Click on the grey boxes to the left. Drag a photo off the the slide gallery across the top and drop it into the square that used to say image 1 and now says, gun play.
As soon as you are done adding all your pages, click on the "Design Cover" just to the right of that big white number 2 up in the right hand corner. It will take you to the Cover page.
Once you have finished your cover, click on #3, Webstore Options where you will be prompted for payment. And there is also where you find the order button. For when someone wants an extra. You just hop on back and press order. It's so fun. You are going to love it!
A FEW PARTING WORDS
Thank you. For spending your time with me this week. I love teaching and only wish I could do this in person so that I could see your confused face when I skip over something or conversely, to see your delight when you have your a-ha moments.
I will post a link in the Flickr gallery when I get my books finished. I look forward to seeing yours there as well. Whenever you finish. And please know I am available for questions when you have them.
I hope you love your photobook and that you get a chance to hit that reorder button sometime. Don't be afraid to load your book and wait for a coupon! Or type in Shutterfly coupon to google and see if you can find one.
Thanks again! I appreciate you!