coffee table books...supplier?

Discussion in 'The Professional Gallery' started by emogirl, Jan 14, 2007.

  1. emogirl

    emogirl TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2006
    Messages:
    622
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Lindsay, Ontario
    Hi All..i'm looking for a reliable supplier, Canadian, of coffeetable books. Also, which do you prefer, the heavy cardboard pages, like a child's chunky book, or regular book pages??? I've had lots of people ask for these and want to offer them this year, but a reliable supplier is key.
     
  2. seanberry

    seanberry TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2006
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    0
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    The photo club that I am a member of had a discussion of this the other night. One lady recently shot a wedding and used these people:

    http://www.blurb.com/

    They aren't Canadian, but I must say the book was very good looking. All you do is download their software, arrange the book (up to 440 pages) and send it off to them for printing. It's worth a look, I plan on getting one with pictures I'll be taking in Italy in March.
     
  3. emogirl

    emogirl TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2006
    Messages:
    622
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Lindsay, Ontario
    Sean, I really like this sight over most of the ones I've checked out. Thanks!
     
  4. Jazz

    Jazz TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2006
    Messages:
    147
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    NYC
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    emogirl -

    (I sure hope this is the kind of “coffee table” book you’re talking about, or else I’ll feel pretty silly posting all this crap if you meant something else.) :mrgreen:

    I recently received an offer for a free photo book from Shutterfly. They are a major photo host site and supplier of prints and photo books. I thought, why not? It was free and I was curious about these remarkably cheap books. Well, you get what you pay for. My book looked terrible. :( I called Shutterfly and eventually got to the head of their quality control, who was extremely helpful. These are the problems I had with Shutterfly, but many of these places probably have the same issues.

    1. I prepared the images in AdobeRGB color space, and he admitted that their conversion from AdobeRGB to sRGB is problematic. I should have prepared the images in sRGB.
    Lesson #1 – Do the conversion to sRGB yourself. Do not rely on anyone else to make the conversion work.

    2. He said that since most of their growth comes from parents sending photos of the kids, their system is set up to automatically make major attempts at color correcting our images, unless we turn OFF their color correcting efforts in their software, kinda like color managing in PS and also in the printer driver at the same time. Their QC guy says that their auto-correction system works for most of their customers, but agrees it does not work for anyone who wants low key (dark) or high key (light) photos, or anyone who uses PS for critical work. In other words, when I sent a low key photo, their system tried hard to open it up to middle grey, and it was awful.

    3. All of my sepia images and my b&w images were ruined, because of both #1 and #2. Their system, it turns out, can’t handle seeing sepia. It appears to their system as a color cast, and the efforts to correct it, as you can imagine, are not effective. Also, he mentioned that if you’re sending b&w, make sure to tell their software that it’s supposed to be b&w. Then they won’t apply their algorithms to “fix” it.
    Lesson #2 – Turn off their default auto correction efforts.

    4. Why are they so cheap compared to traditional printing? Here’s why. Shutterfly, and many of the suppliers of these “coffee table photo books”, print on an HP Indigo digital press. The problem is the Indigo inks are flat. Blacks are bad. The prints will not compare well to inkjet. Shutterfly’s business is booming. They started with 3 of these presses and now have 22. They’re outgrowing the Indigo presses and are switching over (2007) to a Xerox system which uses, he said, more reflective inks. We’ll see.

    5. On the bright side, the paper they use is good and the binding is good. Delivery was very fast. :mrgreen::mrgreen:

    Because they screwed up my photos so badly, the QC guy generously gave me a free reprint credit, and responded openly and honestly to my questions. But the quality of their printing is so bad, I won’t be using them again. The guy told me their business is mostly casual shooters who want photos of their kids bound into a book for cheap. That is where their growth is, and most of those people don’t consider the quality to be a big deal. Well, just so you know my perspective, my friends tell me I’m a ridiculous freak when it comes to quality. (Nice friends huh? ;))

    These books are a really good deal, pricewise. You get a bound photo book of your own photos for under $100, or thereabouts. If they were printed on a traditional printing press, they’d cost thousands. Just don’t go looking for high quality printing. If you prepare in sRGB, turn off their auto-correction routines, and don’t mind the inks being on the flat side, everything should be fine.

    I’m only familiar with Shutterfly, but here are some other suppliers I’ve heard of:
    Blurb
    Picaboo
    Asuka
    Photoworks
    Snapfish
    SharedInk

    [FONT=&quot]Hope this helps.[/FONT]
     
  5. photogoddess

    photogoddess TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2004
    Messages:
    6,253
    Likes Received:
    34
    Location:
    Lala Land
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    VisionArt books are AWESOME!
     
  6. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2003
    Messages:
    33,822
    Likes Received:
    1,811
    Location:
    Edmonton
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    Some friends of ours had some made at Black's...the quality and finish of the books was pretty good...not fantastic...but pretty good. I don't know how much she paid for them.

    The one thing that I've heard people complain about is that Black's is too prevalent in the book...the last page, for example, is just a big Black's logo...and I don' think that you can choose to omit that.
     
  7. mavrik

    mavrik TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2003
    Messages:
    205
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Melbourne, AU
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    www.apollo-imagizing.com

    along with asukabooks, apollos are about the most "professional" of the soft page coffee table non flushmount books. :)
     
  8. seanberry

    seanberry TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2006
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    0
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Sounds like a fun experience Jazz :confused:. Although I don't know what the original images looked like in blurb book, the output looked pretty nice. Nothing felt cheap, but a 5 minute scan probably wasn't enough to determine that. The last page has a small blurb.com logo (maybe an inch by inch) but otherwise unobtrusive. I'm not sure if they have some similar "auto correct" but I would hope you would be able to turn it off.
     
  9. mavrik

    mavrik TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2003
    Messages:
    205
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Melbourne, AU
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    btw the apollo books do NOT have an apollo imagizing logo printed in or on them.
     
  10. zaramuni

    zaramuni TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    May 16, 2006
    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    0
    I used Photoworks and got they have really nice coffe table books. Price wise though, I understand they are more expensive from others. Shoppers (easypix) and Loblaws seem to be offering these types of books to. Haven;t tried them out yet.
     
  11. harkain

    harkain TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2007
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    0
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
  12. KaraM

    KaraM TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2007
    Messages:
    54
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Texas
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Can I add my opinion as a recent bride and not as a photographer? I absolutely LOVE our album from GraphiStudio! Everyone has commented on the cover (which is polished metal). As a matter of fact, the album was one of the main reasons we went with the photographer we did.
     

Share This Page