Sunday 21 August 2022

By Pol Syrett

Gina McGauley was staggered, I think, by the outstanding response to this workshop, which resulted in a record 20 people turning up to learn how to make photobooks and to share their experiences producing a variety of books. There were lots of them to look at, from a number of providers.  ‘Momento’ was one of the most popular, with others including Blurb, Shutterfly, Vistaprint, Photobook New Zealand, Mixbook, Diamond Photo, and Snapfish. 

Everyone wanted to get to the nitty gritty of: Which website to use? How much does it cost? How long does it take? etc., but Gina encouraged us to discuss initially things like: Who is the book intended for? What will it be about? How to lay it out? In addition, if there is text: How to present it? As captions or blocks of writing? How much white space? Or coloured space, pages don’t need to be black or white (and can be both in the same book). Books can be hand-made, too. Scope for endless creativity.

Although the books on display served a variety of purposes, the most popular was probably a more sophisticated successor to the photo album, often travel related, recording anything from an NPSNZ field trip to a once-in-a-lifetime overseas adventure. The books are expensive, so people recommended looking out for the substantial discounts offered frequently by most websites.  Besides travel and weddings, think anything related to your photography: flowers, birds, images that are mainly white, a life story, a birthday party, a sporting event. Then make it into a story to interest your audience.

Thanks, Gina, and all the attendees, for a very stimulating afternoon.