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26.5.09 Photobooks

About a year ago I was wondering if there might be some way to turn a blog into a bound book--words and pictures all together.  I thought it might be a good gift to give a few friends and relatives.  So I did one of my 'stab in the dark' google searches--"turn blog into book"--and lo and behold came up.  I lost steam on turning my own blog into a book--partly (and I'm hoping they improve this) because of issues with text-wrapping from one page to the next. But I remembered being impressed by their layouts, and by the overall aesthetic of their website, so when my family got back from a week in Guatemala, I decided to use their site to make a photobook, rather than one of the popular photobook sites (that I still have a certain amount of devotion to, so I won't mention them here).  I just decided to go hog-wild and I chose their most expensive library-image-wrap-hard-cover binding, and their premium paper.  My book was over 80 pages long.  And the whole thing ended up costing less than $55.00.  (Which is also LESS than the other more famous site I've been using).  I love this book!  The layouts take some getting used to, partly because they aren't sized for 4x6 photos--but once I got the hang of zooming in, and layering photos, I found the flexibility I needed.  The site does warn you that a little bit of the edges of the pages will be cropped, and it doesn't (yet) show you a little imaginary line where the cropping will occur, so I ended up with a few instances where one of my photos got sheared in a way, but on my next book (India!) I was able to take that into account and was, again, very pleased with the results.  My second book had about twenty more pages than my first, and cost the same amount--seems I was in the 80-110 page price range (or something like that).  Books that have much fewer pages would cost much less.