05 September 2009

Blurb-a-licious

Yesterday when I arrived home from work I had the urge to take photos in black/white of the barns on our farm but I needed to take a nap before heading out to see Sarah and a few other friends. I hate putting off creativity for taking photos so I told myself I would definitely do it today.

The light was amazing this afternoon so I headed outside to use up the color film in my camera. I currently have 4 rolls of film from the past few months that are waiting for development. After climbing up into the loft of the barn I took 4 shots before my film was out. So in went the black/white film for more fun!

I found some glass bottles with lids (will take photos of them for you as soon as they are cleaned up) before heading over to take more photos of a barn that is half collapsed. I pet a few of the cows & then climbed over the fence to get up close to the barn. I am really interested to see how my up close photos of the barn come out. The cows followed me around and seemed to be interested in what I was doing which was pretty funny! After having blown up and framed photos for friends I have finally gotten around to creating a photo book with my favorites.

This is where my Blurb book comes in. After setting it up last week it arrived yesterday. It's really nice! I am sort of stunned by having my photos in a book, even one I created myself. It's hardcover with a slipcover as well. Pretty interesting to say the least. I showed it to my friends last night and Sarah was showing everyone the photos I blew up and framed for her. Once the batteries are charged I will add photos of the book so you can see. Thanks to Blurb and BlogHer09! I received a free coupon for a $36.50 book so I chose a Standard Landscape size which is 8 1/2 x 10 in landscape format (longer across then top to bottom)

Creating the book started off somewhat easy. You can create your own book in PDF formatting or use BookSmart, which is provided by Blurb. I first signed up on the Blurb website and then proceeded to download a program to create the book with. I created my book with BookSmart. While I used this program there were features about it that need to be a bit more intuitive. For example I used Ctrl + X to Undo or remove the photos I picked if I didn't like them since I wasn't sure if I hit delete that the photo would completely delete the photo from my choices of photos to use. I also didn't think it was very easy to edit the size of the box I was going to place the photo into. Sometimes I'd put a photo in the photo box and the box would be too big. I'd then have to edit the whole page in a grey grid area and not be able to see the photo to see if I was going to small or big. It took a lot of time as well as going between edit to know if the photo box was the right size. Another thing I didn't like was that the help button took me to the website which didn't really offer any help. I ended up having to email Blurb to get a few answers to my questions which is not as timely as being able to use a built in help screen.

Anyway, you start off by choosing your size and you can either upload photos or work alongside a photo program online. The programs include Flickr, Picasa, SmugMug and TypePad. I use Flickr so I linked to my Flickr account and chose photos that I was most interested in using. There is even a function that shows hides photos if you have used them as well as grouping them by date, tag, or name of set. You can also choose background colors, as well as preset photo pages. They have customizable book templates for easier creating as well. The choices include cookbooks, journals, comics and graphic novels, poetry, wedding and history books. So your book doesn't need to be as specific as mine was with only photos. Check out the amazing books that you can purchase at the Blurb Bookstore. And if you want to support me you can purchase my book too! I only make $5 off the sale but it's a great coffee table book :)

Thanks again to Blurb as well as the Shutter Sisters for hosting Blurb and Aurora in their suite at BlogHer09!

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