The books I create are complications of images taken at a specific event or series of events. My intent in putting them together is to capture memories and build something that is a worthy keepsake for the participants in the event.
Photo books allow me to utilize images that would otherwise end up in a shoebox or just sit on a disk drive into something that I am proud to share with people who may be interested in where I have visited and/or seen.
Some of the books are intended for any/all participants in a group trip, such as the Grove City Alumni travels that Linda and I enjoy participating in. So far, I’ve produced three such books, with one more slated for June/July of 2018:
- National Parks of the High Plains, June 2015
- Galapagos, January 2017
- Machu Picchu, January 2017
- National Parks of the South West, June 2018
I have been blessed with cooperation and collaboration in the creation of the books and I hope that will continue. I am happy to give photo credits to others who share their images for use in my books. I typically publish my books at AdoramaPix where they are available, direct from the publisher at AdoramaPix prices (I don’t make anything from selling the books).
The books are substantial. AdoramaPix creates lay flat books with stiff pages and high grade photo paper pages. They are not the type of book available through typical retailers, such as Walmart or Costco. With high quality comes a price tag. My typical book has about 100 pages and AdoramaPix charges about $210 (assuming not on sale), which is a non-trivial price tag. I think it’s well worth paying their premium for a keepsake that can keep memories of travel or other events crisp for many years.
Putting one of these books together is a fairly substantial process. I’ll outline what my typical process, for the curious and volunteers!
- Before the trip, create a page on my SmugMug site that will ultimately hold a link to the finished book and highlight images. For sometime during and after the trip, it will have an upload section where participants can share images from the trip.
- Early in the trip, let everyone know what I am planning on doing and ask for names/email addresses of anyone who may want to view or purchase the book.
- During the trip, take lots of pictures. I will be trying to get some of all participants so they can be included in the book. If anyone doesn’t want to be in the pictures, I am hoping they will speak up.
- Begin sorting, editing and post processing of images so that I can see the images that I have to work with.
- After the trip, finalize an outline of the book and share it with participants who expressed interest for feedback and comments.
- Post selected images to the web site to allow participants to see pictures that are likely to be used.
- Ask questions, typically by email, of participants to fill in holes in my memory so that I can properly caption the images.
- Continue working on book creation until I am satisfied it is about complete.
- Share links or preview copies with anyone who wanted to see the draft and solicit comments.
- Order my first copy of the book so I can see it in print for one more review.
- Update the web site with final copies of images and a link to the book.
- Finalize the book and announce it’s availability.
The whole process is, well, it is pretty involved; but, I enjoy doing it and I think the results are absolutely worth the effort. I’ve yet to hear anything but praise from a purchaser.
Access to the Images
I do make the images that I use available to participants. Hardcopies can be easily ordered through SmugMug. If soft copy is desired, I can arrange that as well, but only in response to a direct request. I don’t want the images wondering too far in the Internet.
Other BarrettPhoto Books
I put together books for all of my family’s vacations and travels. The process is similar, though, it doesn’t explicitly include other trip participants. If you look around my web site or family room, you may find quite a few of the “family” books. There are more of them than group trip books, the audience is just much smaller.