My photo book project: The Story

Rio Paria in Huaraz
Rio Paria in Huaraz

This blog brings all the pieces that were discussed in previous blogs on this topic together. First, I discussed the photo book platform Blurb, followed by a discussion about the role of (Graphical) Design and Storytelling with pictures. Now, I show you how I implemented these ideas in Blurb using Lightroom.
Based on what I learned about telling a story with pictures I decided to have another look at the pictures I took. Just looking at the ones that were accepted by Dreamstime would lead to a boring story. I decided to focus on a stroll my family made along Rio Paria in Huaraz in Peru. The pictures I took during this walk were of the type Street Photography. They show the river and the people around it doing their regular activities, telling the story of daily rural life in Peru.
The story with pictures takes you along various activities nearby the river. They are representative for many rural areas. These activities consist of:

  • Transport Peru is an enormous country with few airports and railway station because  of the Andes, so most transportation is done by bus or truck.
  • Construction Most buildings are continuously under construction. So, everywhere you find places where they make clay bricks.
  • Playing Children play everywhere, both in playgrounds and on dirt roads.
  • Gardening Peruvians are very fond of flowers and green grass, even though in the desert climate along the coast this requires a lot of effort.
  • Washing clothes Clothes need to be washed even if you don’t have running water at home.

In the two PDFs at the bottom you see the resulting Blurb photo book: the first one is the cover (front and rear) and the second one is the content of the photo book. As you can see, I chose a simple graphical design: white background, all pictures white framed, few pictures per page. Hope you enjoy it. Please let me know whether you enjoyed My photo book project. 
For me this is just a first step to create a photo book of my last trip to Peru. The walk along Rio Paria will be just a  section in the chapter Huaraz, which will also include my Dreamstime pictures.
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After finishing this blog, I will continue working on my photo book of Peru. Here you may find the latest version.

My photo book project: Blurb

Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu
Machu Picchu and Huayna Picchu

As a computer scientist I have published quite a bit in journals and conference proceedings, however, I never published a book that was completely written by myself, except for my PhD thesis, of course.  Probably unconsciously I am still looking for a way to publish a book.
Looking back at the trip to Peru, I realize that there is a lot of material waiting for an audience. Out of the more than 600 pictures I took, I selected 50 to submit to Dreamstime, all of which were accepted. By now, quite a few were sold.
Also, I wrote 10+ photoblogs about the places we visited in Peru and about the photographical aspects. On the whole, there is a lot of material available. So, the question is what are the steps to create a photo book.
The first step is to find out what I want to achieve. I would like:

  • to share the things that make me enthusiastic about Peru
  • to share my creativity and the techniques I use for making pictures
  • to reach both an audience that likes traditional photo books as well as an audience that prefers digital versions
  • to gain experience in making both a real photo book and an ebook for an iPad

Because I already have the raw material, pictures and photoblogs, my first step is to find the right platform to produce the photo book. After looking for some time on the internet I found this interesting website; it describes eight of these platforms: Artifact Uprising, Shutterfly, Blurb, Lulu, Mpix, Photobucket, Picaboo, and Snapfish.
Although not based on serious research I choose Blurb because it allows me to make both a hardcopy and a digital version of the book, it has a bookstore based on on-demand printing, and Blurb software is integrated in Adobe Lightroom (see this YouTube tutorial). Furthermore, a friend of mine has positive experiences with Blurb.
In the upcoming blogs I keep you informed about the progession of my photo book projects and the experiences I have with Blurb.
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