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What To Do With All Your Photos–Part 1–Digital Photo Books
Photography Ideas

I am guilty of taking tons of pictures and then allowing them to live on my computer. One of my goals this year was to get those pictures off my computer.

I have posted a couple of times about photo wall ideas. Since we can’t cover every inch of our walls with photos we need to figure out something else to do with those photos.

Something I have been working on for the past year and am finally started to get serious about is digital photo books. I used to scrapbook but soon realized I didn’t have the time or space to keep out all my material. I found there are several websites out there that have easy lay outs for you to just drop and drag your photos.

My favorite company I have found so far is Blurb. They are reasonably prices and great quality. On top of that they have great customer service which is hard to find these days.

Digital Photo Books Ideas:

  • 365 photos
  • Year in review
  • Baby’s first year
  • Vacations
  • Publish your blog

What I do:

I thought I would want to do a photo book for each of my kids first year.  Of course, I had this idea when Kate was just born.  I soon realized I probably wouldn’t have the time or dedication to do it for each kid.  Since I have middle child syndrome (just made that up) I knew I didn’t want to do something like that for the first if I wasn’t able to do it for each of my kiddos.  I decided the best idea for me was to create a book for each year.  It would include all our photos and stories from that year.  In 2008 I made my first book for 2007.  Unfortunately, I have dropped the ball since then.  I do have 2009 and 2010 books in the works through Blurb’s booksmart program.  I have yet to sit down and finish them.  I will finish both of these books before the year is over (I figure if I put it out there for you guys than I have to do it :O).

A few weeks back I finally decided to sit down and finish my book on my Project 365 for 2010.  I have one photo on each page with what I posted on my blog about that day. (excuse my non-creative cover :O)

Since Blurb has a great option where you can turn your blog into a book it was very easy to get the pictures and text into the book. I’m very particular about stuff and I didn’t like the layout it chose. All I had to do was copy the text and paste it into a layout I like. So much easier than jumping back from the program to the blog. I upload all my photo in web size versions so when they were loaded into the book they were not always the right size. The great thing is since the photo was already on the page I knew exactly what photo I was looking for. I just uploaded the photos from my computer and dropped and dragged them onto the page. It was SUPER easy!!

I realize not everyone has a blog to document all your daily activities. I have a family blog but after I started this blog and another 365 project that family blog fell by the waste side. I finally decided to quit stressing about not keeping it up to date. I informed my family I was not going to keep it up for the rest of the year. I didn’t want to lose out on the daily diary of our family so I decided that instead of posting to the blog I would post weekly to the Blurb book. In theory, at the end of the year my book will be ready to print.

I was super excited when I got my Project 365 for 2010 book in the mail last week! It is wonderful! Even Ian was really excited to see it!! The girls loved sitting on the couch flipping through each page. What a special gift I can share with my family!!!

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20 Comments
  • June 21, 2011 at 12:44 PM

    I’m right there with you. I’m just wrapping up my 2009 Blurb book! Eek. So behind. If only I weren’t so picky about the layouts. . .

    Maybe I’ll finish in time to use your code! Thanks!

    • June 21, 2011 at 2:11 PM

      The layouts are tough!! You can do it!!! I PROMISE it is worth all the hard work! I will nag you about it if you nag me about mine :O)

  • Trisha
    June 21, 2011 at 12:53 PM

    Thanks for featuring us!!! That is one of my favorite pictures & can you believe you took it almost a year ago exactly??

    • June 21, 2011 at 2:10 PM

      Yes, it is one of my favorites as well!!! I can’t believe it has been a year!!

  • June 21, 2011 at 8:16 PM

    I really have to and want to start doing this.

  • June 21, 2011 at 11:34 PM

    Love it! I just downloaded blurb book maker and I am going to do the first year for Julianna as well (since she just turned one) – I have been thinking about doing that but now I am going to DO it! :)

    • June 21, 2011 at 11:40 PM

      Yay!!! If you need someone to nag encourage you let me know!! I know I need all the “encouragement” I can get to finish my books :O) Would love to see a picture of the finished product!!! Be sure to use the coupon code!!!

      • June 23, 2011 at 10:15 PM

        Courtney – I am going to blog about this idea in my next post … whenever i get a few minutes to write it…. I’m going to link to your post here about the blog book :) Hope that’s ok!! Have a nice day
        p.s. I already created & started editing my blog book … it’s actually a lot of fun but time consuming! Cant wait to publish it for julianna to read later in life :)
        Skye

  • Karin
    June 22, 2011 at 4:38 AM

    Courtney, this is wonderful, thank you for sharing! I’ve been planning to do such a book, and haven’t been sure which company to go with:)

    How exciting that you got your book – from what I can see, it looks wonderful!

  • June 23, 2011 at 10:07 AM

    I love the ideas. So cool.

  • Laura
    June 26, 2011 at 12:31 PM

    Ive done one of these for each year we have been married. Each year starts on our anniversary and I do a 12×12 version on shutterfly. I will have to check blurb out because I havent started this years! I think Im also going to do a 1st year book for each kid. Then after that all photos will just be in the yearbook. It os so mich easier and cheaper than traditional scrapbooking!!

  • July 13, 2011 at 6:16 PM

    Hi Courtney, thank for the post, I will try it too. But hope you have heard of SmugMug, its also a great photo sharing website, you can get smugmug coupons here

  • Leanne
    January 31, 2012 at 5:29 PM

    Hi Courtney. I have been following along on your blog for a while – definately been a huge part of my inspiration to get into photography and been very helpful to speed along my learning. Thanks, you have a great blog! I am super excited about finding this post while I was rummaging around tonight. We are a New Zealand family of six and we are spending the year travelling – mainly in Canada. I wanted to use a blog to document our journey, to share with those close to us, and then turn it into a book at the end of the year. But I had a big question. “what about the web resolution that you post to on a blog, versus the resolution needed to print?” So are you telling me, you change all the photo’s over when you go to make your book? Do you do something special with your organization so you can do that more easily? And are you serious?!! Is it really not too time consuming?

    • February 2, 2012 at 5:43 PM

      First off, thanks for your kind words! I’m so thrilled to hear you have found some inspiration here! How fun you get to spend the year traveling!! Very cool!!!

      Yes, I had to change all my pictures to get the print size since I had uploaded them web size for my blog. Yes, it was a pain in the rear but I wanted my images to be a little bigger and the web size wouldn’t print that big. Yes, I do organize my photos so I know how to find them. Have you read this post – http://www.clickitupanotch.com/2011/05/organizing-your-photos/

      Unfortunately, I am serious :O) It is time consuming. However, if you upload your images to the blog not web size I bet you would not need to resize them. Mmm…I don’t know. Sorry!!

  • April 15, 2012 at 9:16 PM

    I love this idea!! I used to scrapbook all the time. I loved it! I was obsessed and creative. now? notsomuch. I miss having all the pictures in an album, but I don’t have that desire to scrapbook. This is perfect!

    • Courtney
      April 20, 2012 at 10:26 AM

      Yes, I feel the same way about the lack of desire to scrapbook anymore! I hope you can get some pictures in albums. It really is such a nice feeling!

  • February 9, 2014 at 9:42 PM

    I’ve used My Publisher forever (my first book was pre-digital – I mailed in prints). I do a book for each child from birthday to birthday. I used Blurb once, for a book that documented an 80th birthday vacation for each of the families. I prefer MyPublisher pricing, their standard layouts, and overall quality. I expect Blurb is perhaps more flexible if you’re designing yourself, as well as the ability to showcase and sell your finished books, and certainly the ability to automate the book from your blog is a big timesaver. I’ve been very impressed with MyPublisher tech support and customer service. Whichever program you use, it’s such a treasured gift – I regularly find the kids going through their various books, especially when they have friends over.

  • February 10, 2014 at 2:50 PM

    I have converted to digital scrapbooking and am working on several books right now. I hope to have my oldest son’s 1st year book done by his second birthday.

    I’ve used Blurb in the past and love them (and how many pages you can fit in one book!), but I wish they offered an 8X8 size. Now I’m debating between them and Shutterfly.

  • Jessica
    May 2, 2016 at 1:47 PM

    Can I ask how much your 365 books end up costing? I like the idea but would like to know approx. cost for a book that size before I get too invested in the process.

    Thanks :)

    • May 3, 2016 at 4:39 PM

      Honestly, I don’t remember. You can check on the Blurb site to see how much a book the size you want with the amount of pages you want will cost :)

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