Making Memories Last: Customized Photo Books

It’s that time of the year, Father’s Day, Graduations, Anniversaries, Weddings and so many more events! It’s like a never ending flow of events, parties, pictures and trying to figure out the perfect gift to give someone. While giving money or gift cards may be practical, they sometimes seems a little too impersonal for such special occasions. Why not create something that really means something to the person or couple you are celebrating? Whether you choose to capture their love story in a book, share your favorite #TBT photos of you and your siblings for your parents, or show off some crazy memories from college – a photo book can be the perfect gift to commemorate a momentous occasion.

Here are few tips to help you get started on your photo book project with York Photo. Their new book builder makes it a breeze to create a great album with loads of personal touches.

Step 1: You’ll want to decide on the type of book you want. Hard cover? Soft cover? What makes the most sense for the person receiving the photo book? In this case, I’ve chosen a hard cover book. There’s just something so special about having a hard cover book that can become a great coffee table book for everyone to enjoy.

Then you’ll want to choose a design. If it’s for mom, maybe choose something simple and classic. If it’s for your college roommate – choose something whimsical and fun to represent all of your crazy memories together. And if it’s for your best friend getting married – then definitely choose something classy and refined. I’m celebrating an anniversary, so I thought it would be sweet to put together a book of some of our favorite moments together, it’s been quite the adventure – so I chose the “Life is an Adventure” theme.

Step 2: You’ll be prompted to either log in to your account or create a new account. It’s a fast and easy process, but what is great about having an account is that you can store your photos for future projects and save your work if you can’t finish the project all at once.

Step 3: You’ll be prompted to add photos. You can add photos from (1) your computer (2) Facebook or (3) Instagram.  Instagram upload was just recently added. That is a great feature for a person like me, who sometimes forgets to save photos and just shares them on Instagram!

I chose to upload some photos from Facebook to start. It syncs right to my account and I can search through my albums to find photos that I want to add:photo-book-1

You can select multiple photos to add which makes it a fast process. I usually upload a few extra photos, so I have a variety of options to choose from when making the book. A nice assortment of vertical and horizontal images can make creating the book a breeze!

I’ve added all the pictures from Facebook that I wanted. I’m missing some images from the beginning of our relationship, so I’m going to have to dig through my computer to upload them. But I’m going to get started on the book now and add those at a later date.  I have about 35 photos to start with and the book has space for 45, so I have space for more.photo-book-2

Step 4: York has introduced a new book builder, so when I’m ready to start my book, they offer me a quick tour on how to use the book builder. It’s pretty self-explanatory, but for a new book-builder – it’s a great tool to know what each button means and the capabilities you have. You can add text, style your text, rotate images, drag pages to change the order of the pages and so much more. The book is auto-populated with the images you selected, but it’s not permanent. You can literally drag and drop images to swap them out. So don’t worry if you don’t like the image that was selected for you.photo-book-3

Here is what the front cover, back cover, and spine look like for my book. I don’t really like that image for the cover image, so I’m going to drag a better picture in there to replace it (it will automatically re-size to fit the frame if you do it this way).photo-book-4

As you make your way through the book, you can easily customize the text to fit the images on the page. Just click on the text box and select the text tab.photo-book-5

There are about 20 pages of photos to fill up – so take your time and find the right photo to tell your story. Whether you make it a chronological story (as I attempted to do) or if you mix and match photos, it’s your book to customize.

Step 5: Before you finish your book and preview it – the builder prompts you to address any issues that your book may have. Whether there are missing images or low-quality images, you can make sure your book is perfect for printing.photo-book-6

I’m going to go back through my book and make sure I update the images, fill in any missing images or texts and then get ready to order! I realize that I need a few more photos, so I’m going to go through my Instagram and see if I can add some more photos from there.  It’s so easy, all you have to do is login and voila!photo-book-7

Okay – so I added more photos and I think I’m getting to a good place. But, before I forget – I’m going to save my work. Just in case – I’ve spent about an hour and a half setting this all up and I don’t want to lose all of my hard work.  And if I have to go back and make any edits, at least it’s there!photo-book-8

Step 6: Once you have decided that the book is ready – you’ll approve the design. You’ll accept that all of the images are sufficient, even if they are low-quality and that the information is correct. I recommend going back and checking your spelling. You don’t want to have a typo in the final book!

After that – you can add it to your cart and either continue shopping or check out. Now that it’s all ordered, I can’t wait to see the final product! Be sure to share your customized photo book on Instagram with us @YorkPhoto.

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