Posts Tagged ‘photo book’

3.[mng

A short while ago, I published this post:

Publishing Four Very Important Photo Books in 2019

Since then, I’ve completed three of the books (one person couldn’t get it together) and they’re on their way. In the process, here’s what I learned.

1. People don’t know where their photos are.
2. They don’t know how to find them when they try searching.
3. They feel overwhelmed with too many to choose from to pick 50.
4. The photo quality is variable, from low-resolution to print-resolution.
5. They’re confused with how to save and export photos.
6. Everything about it is difficult.

 

 

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This all fascinates me. We live in a technologically-advanced age and we think more is more, and we have it better than anyone ever did with so many things, photography included, and yet people can’t find their photos when they need to print them.

We really are in an age where photography is enjoyed for a second on a phone–that’s where they’re made for and consumed–and then dismissed.

You would think things would be easier now, with all the photos we’re taking, that they would automatically be instantly available. But that’s the problem with too much of anything, it just accumulates and confuses–“Where do I find the one I want among this glut of images? Those old hard drives? Laptop computers I used to use?”

Does photography as a book or a print on a wall, is that an idea from a bygone era, like the tintype, cabinet cards and daguerreotypes?

It started with a social media post. And it was an idea that would change the world.

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See, these four books for four friends are the most significant photo books I’ll publish this year. And they’re not even my photos.

Because those folks weren’t going to make photo books. They weren’t going to print any photos. And it’s true, the world will be changed by my making these photo books, because their grandchildren and great grandchildren will know who their grandparents and great grandparents are as a result.  Because of me.

By saving these 200 photos, 50 pictures per family, I’m preserving their family history–photos that would probably not have been printed and would have been lost to the digital glut, a product of the Digital Dark Age with no photos (since no one is printing) and millions of photos lost every day with broken phones, dead hard drives and any number of lost files.

“Where is that photo of grandma from 2008? Hmm…”

But these four books are more than four books. They got people talking. The ones who aren’t getting free books are also talking about the idea of photo books. And asking about how to go about making up one.

These four books are the conduit to a conversation that wasn’t happening before I posted the free offer. Sure, it’ll cost me a few bucks to create and print, but the return is well worth it if we create legacy books of family history, snapshots that tell their family’s story.

While it may even lead to some other paid orders, the truth is I’d rather show people how they can do it themselves and empower them to make their own. It’s not difficult, it’s just not in their wheelhouse, yet, but can be with just a little know-how. Something I can teach them.

So, these four books will change the world. And more than any other books I put out this year–I do have one that’s a guide to street photography, a 20-page chapbook I am offering for the holidays–these are the ones I know will make a difference in keeping family memories in photos alive.

For that, I’m grateful! What a gift to give to future generations.

Do you know someone you can offer to print a photo book? This idea grows if more people create more work as a result. Which is why I am writing about it.  It’s starting conversation, and it can continue.

Happy Holidays!

Perhaps it’s special because it feels like an event when you’re flipping pages.  Is that what makes it different?

Maybe it’s nostalgic.  Or just a wish to get away from all things digital, especially since so many of us are in front of our phones and computers all day.

Call it a resurgence.  A return to analog.  Whatever you want to call it.

But I’ve been making up small pocket-able albums of photographs for some of my clients and they tell me they love them.  When they get together with friends, they pass the album around the table to show photos and they can share them without having to pull out their phones.

I’ve had a couple dozen orders so far this year and it seems to be growing in popularity.  Any other photographers experiencing this trend?

wajda-1.jpgThe albums contain all kinds of photographs–ones I’ve made, or their own photos–pictures of family and friends that they send to me to tone and crop and I get printed for them.

And since the photos are 4×6″, they’re larger than their phone, so they look better and easy for friends to see.

I asked one client about the experience when her friends see them, what it’s like, and she said people seem to look at them longer.  They look at the photos and ask questions and talk about them.  Because it’s much slower to flip to the next one, since it’s not just a swipe away.

With the phone, it’s swipe, swipe, swipe, done.

I know it’s true when I show my work to an art director at an advertising agency.  I always bring prints.  There’s something extra special about holding a mounted 12×18″ print that just beats an iPad every time.   Art directors have even told me they prefer to look at real prints.

A few people have asked for printed books, but the majority want the simple 4×6″ albums with real photos tucked in the individual sleeves.

It’s interesting, there are old photo albums in our family, and my nephews and nieces have always loved opening them and perusing the images, looking back into the history of our family.  But why is this an old idea?  Why can’t there be new albums?

Of course there can be.

wajda-1-2

I run a monthly event for photographers to come together and show their work called Beers + Cameras: Boulder.  Most people bring digital files that we put up on a projection screen.  But occasionally, someone will bring hand-printed photographs–glorious black and white prints that they made themselves.

Those are always the highlight of the show.

I don’t believe it’s nostalgic any more than why Tom Hanks types with a typewriter.  Some things–not everything–but sometimes, the previous way worked well. And for Tom, thank you notes made on real paper are special in a way that an email is not.

I’d say that’s what’s happening with photographs now, and how people are once more valuing the simple photo album.  It’s not like there are hundreds of orders, but there weren’t half this many all of last year.

They’re easy to create.  They’re inexpensive.  If you want a hand with one, give me a ring–that’s what I do.  I can crop and tone yours to look their best.  720.982.9237

Or make one up yourself.  See if you don’t get the experience I’m seeing with my clients.

It’s great fun, and I’m glad to see prints making a resurgence, even in a small way.  Those very well may be the only photographs that survive the digital dark age.