With the advent of digital printing, gorgeous photography books are within reach for amateur and professional photographers alike. Photo book publishing is becoming more popular with photographers who want to create a physical resource for their artwork for personal or professional reasons. Stunning pictures along with professional information and photography details can be showcased in photo book publishing that reflects their artistic style. By following a few simple steps, photographers can begin the photo book publishing process so their photographic art will be accessible in a beautifully bound, professional quality book.
Do I Need a Hardcopy of My Photography?
Creating a photo book publishing project for your photographs is an excellent way to present your work to others since pictures are now stored primarily in a digital fashion. Professional and amateur photographers often use a physical, bound book to showcase their pictures to others for three main reasons.
- The photo book publishing can serve as a professional portfolio that can be used as a reference when seeking new job opportunities. Developing thematic books or organizing the book into categories provides a chance to spotlight a photographer’s best work.
- Often photographers want to shift their work into the retail space through a professional photo book publishing project.
- Photo books are also produced to provide a channel for compiling photographic art or hobby pictures either for gifting or for personal use.
8 Steps to Photo Book Publishing
Creating your own photography book allows you to decide what it looks like, which photos to include and what to do with the final printed books. So we have put together a list of the 8 key steps to follow that will ensure you end up with a finished product that will show off your photography skills in a book you will love.
1. Determine the Purpose of the Photo Book Publishing Project
Before you get started, think about what you are going to be using the book for once it is printed. You can develop the content in any way you want through photo book publishing but knowing why you are making the book will help guide your decisions on what to include, what the book looks like, and what you will do with the book once it is printed. Photo books that are destined for sale will look very different than books that need to act as an artist portfolio.
2. Decide on the Audience for the Photo Book Publishing Project
Similar to the purpose, the audience for the photo book publishing project is also important to pin down prior to creating the book because each type of audience will be seeking potentially different information inside the book.
- Buyers will be looking for details about each photograph and its contents as well as biographical information about the photographer.
- Friends and family that receive a gift book will want a more personal perspective on the photography, the artist, and the meaning behind the pictures.
- Photographers that create a book for their own use may want to bring together information about their subjects, locations, or other details that support their interest in photography.
- Potential employers will view portfolios as a visual resume, but they also may need to see contact information as well as a showcase of meaningful work and key client experiences.
3. Compile Photographs
You may already know the photos you want to include in your book or have mountains of photographs to sift through. But as you collect the pictures to potentially include, be sure to think about these three things.
The Focus of the Photos
Depending on the purpose and audience for the photo book publishing, choose the photos to reflect what will produce the most effective book over the pictures you love the most. If the book needs to be a comprehensive look at your photographic work, choosing photos that represent all of your skill sets is critical. Photo selection for portfolio books should focus on photography that represents the look and style that potential employers will be seeking. But if you are the primary audience of your book, you can be less restrictive and more personal with the photos you choose.
The Photo Format
Digital printing will use the CMYK (cyan-magenta-yellow-black) color profile when they are printed but camera photography usually utilizes the RGB (red-green-blue) color profile. Since the printing process will require the photography shift to the CMYK profile, it is best if you make the change yourself beforehand so you can manage any minor color alterations that occur with digital printing.
How You Group Photos
When collecting photos, begin by grouping them together to start to see patterns that will be carried out in the published book. Putting photos in categories by aesthetic, color, composition, subject, or theme can help you begin to structure your book’s contents and provide a starting point for the order of your pictures.
4. Formatting the Photo Book Publishing Project
The easiest way to format your book is to use a free book template so you don’t have to worry about things like margins, page numbers, or where to include detailed information. You will want to look at other photo books to see what you do and don’t like about how they are formatted as well to help you decide on what style and format will work best for the audience that will be viewing your photography book.
5. Start Marketing
Even before you begin printing your book, you should start the marketing process to hype up its release to potential buyers. While you may be a photographer at heart, you know your pictures and their intended audience well, so it is important to make sure that you reach them.
- Identify potential buyers and those who will find your book interesting based on your work, similar artists, the subjects of the photographs, or the themes conveyed in the pictures. Accurately identifying buyers will help you connect with them by focusing your marketing on their eyes and ears.
- Use social media to tease the upcoming release of your book and to build excitement. Consider joining photography groups or pages that have similar interests and interacting with users to build authentic connections so you can showcase your photography.
- Cultivate your personal and professional following on social media and on your own website. Encourage followers to seek out your platforms by directing attention to your website or other social media platforms to grow interest in your work and ultimately encourage book sales when you have completed the photo book publishing process.
- Contact physical and digital retailers who might be interested in carrying your upcoming book to discuss your project and how it might fit into their retail space.
6. Focus On Printing Details
Once you have formatted your book’s contents, turn your attention to the printing details that will take your book from boring to beautiful. Enlist the help of a cover design expert to suggest the most effective cover design for your book’s purpose and audience. Choose weighty paper for your book in either a matte or gloss finish to show off your photographs in style.
Select the right binding for your photo book publishing project. Perfect binding creates a book spine that looks great on a retail shelf while Plastic Coil and Wire-O bindings are sturdy and will hold up to the heavy handling required of portfolios. Less expensive Saddle Stitch binding might be the ideal choice for creators who need a lot of books with minimal costs.
- Top Tip: Consider how binding choice will impact the photo layout. Photos that span two pages look the best with Perfect binding while Plastic Coil and Wire-O bindings may create a bit of a separation between the two pages that could alter the smooth look of a two-page spread.
7. Finalize Book for Publishing
If your book will be commercially available, apply for an ISBN number and put it on the back cover of the book to help retailers sell your book. Other potential considerations might be to include testimonials or client comments about your work as well as a listing of where your work is on display to increase your credibility as a photographer.
8. Partner with a Photo Book Publishing Company
The final step in photo book publishing can be taken at any time in the book creation process, but the earlier the better. Photographers should partner with a trusted printing company like Dazzle Printing that will help them transform their digital photographs into an impressive physical book that they can be proud of for years to come.
Utilizing the latest technology in digital printing, Dazzle Printing offers photographers high-quality materials, expert support, excellent digital printing services and fast, efficient service. By teaming up with an expert printing company, both professional and casual photographers will end up with a spectacular photo book that will show off their eye for design and photo composition while presenting their work in a professional package whether they order a few books or hundreds of copies.