Developing Photo Albums/books


TPF Noob!
Feb 18, 2009
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I hope this is the right place to post.

I was at a party this past weekend, and the couple had really nice photo books from their wedding. It looks like the pictures were developed onto the hardcover book itself, I thought it was very nice. I am not even sure what you call this book actually or where/how a person would go to get this done. I have a mac at home, and also photoshop on my other pc, I am not an expert at it by no means, but thought I'd post here to get more information on where to go to get something like this done. and if there are any tips or advice you have if i wanted to do this form myself as a hobby, let me know.

I live in Alberta Canada, so there is a particular company you would recommend to goto, that would be great! Thanks for any help in advance.
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If it was from thier Photographer it could have been an Asuka Book if it was a hard cover coffee table style book or it could have been one of the albums avalible through Technicare in Edmonton.
Please remember you would need to have a pro account to order both of these.
I've made several "photo books" before using Photoshop. I had mine printed and made through Shutterfly though. They do different sizes from 4x7 "brag books" on up to 12x12 books. They have templates you can use, or make your own.. But I would recommend them. I've had no issues at all..
Yes, I think it was a coffee table style book, hardcover, the pictures were developed on the hard pages. No actual pasted photos. Do I have to designated as a professional photographer before getting a "pro account"?
There are many, many companies that make/sell these types of books.

As mentioned, Asukabook is one of them. They make nice books but if you want a nice album, like something that can lay flat, with no gutter between the pages, then you will need to find a different supplier.

Some that I know of;
Art Leather - Home Home
Finao Online - Home
Graphistudio - Home
Pro Photo Lab: Photo Prints, Press Printed, Press Books | WHCC

As with Asukabook, most of these companies will only sell to pro photographers, which is likely where your friends got theirs. Why not ask them where they got theirs.

If you are not a pro photographer, you can still order photobooks from places like London Drugs or Black's etc.

I have a mac at home,
Apple - iPhoto - Make your own photo books, calendars, and cards.
I only use Finao and I am very happy with their books. They offer covers with the image on it.. many different kinds, in fact. Check them out! Definitly worth while. Plus, you get discounted 'studio sample' albums so if you really wanted.. you could order one at a lower price to see if you liked it first before placing client orders.
Thanks for the information to everyone.

Actually, it was at a party, i don't really know the couple that own the books, I guess I could have called the people I know to ask them directly, but it was easy to post in the forum! By the way, love this website, I am getting great information from it, lots of helpful people!

I will check out the websites. I noticed the two Alberta companies only want photo professionals, and do not list prices. So I would assume they prefer to deal with smaller number of clients with higher volume.... well, i guess it is easy for photographers to "make their own price" then! I could always apply to be a pro member and see what happens! maybe i'll get lucky and get accepted!!

But I will check out the other website and see what they have. I am looking to make a few books, one is a really fancy book for my close cousins wedding. I was going to take a bunch of photos during the wedding and make it into a book for her. and then I wanted to do one as a gift to my girlfriend, she has taken alot of vacations in the past, thought it would be a great idea to put together a really nice book for her and really customize it, much like the wedding album idea.
As with Asukabook, most of these companies will only sell to pro photographers, which is likely where your friends got theirs. Why not ask them where they got theirs.

I never heard of asukabook, but I wonder how they classify someone as professional photographer or not. Do they simply take your word about it, or do you need a business license? Or do they judge your work? :)

Of that list you gave, whats the cheapest one? Ill probably take a look through them tomorrow when I have time, but I was just curious if you knew right off which one was the cheapest.
I think you have to show them your web site or some other proof that you are running a business.

I'm not sure what is cheapest...they all have different options & prices etc. One cheap way is to go with a self mount buy the album and then stick in your own photos. TAP is a popular maker of these type and they are sold from a variety of dealers.
I dont really want something thats like a normal photo album with 4x6's slid into it. Im more interested in something that is printed and binded, like a regular book, perhaps 8x10 in size. But I do want professional quality prints inside it. Im guessing shutterfly is out, or do they maintain a constant color profile?

I was thinking of getting something for the time being so I can show possible customers something that could be purchased after a session, but I didnt want to spend alot of money for it at the time, I got other things I want to spend money on, equipment wise. Eventually I would get a top quality one for display.
It appears quite a few of these websites require you to be professionals as well! Is the photobook business so good that it cannot be made to the general public??

There are quite a few good companies that do these books, I was pretty impressed with some of the samples on their website. Is it that easy to make Wedding Photobooks? it appears all you need to do is find a photobook company that you like, they have all the templates already, all you have to do is to pick the templates and upload your pictures.

Or am I not understanding this business that well?!?!
For the most part, the templates are just blank pages that conform the correct size for printing the pages. You still have to actually layout and design the pages yourself, although some of the companies will do that for you, for a price.
You could simply put one image on every page but the possibilities are endless and I've seen some really creative layout designs.
Some of them may have pre-made templates, I'm not sure.

These products are mostly sold to photographers directly, who in turn sell them to their clients. This is common for many products in all sorts of industries. You can't walk into the local grocery store and buy a 100lb bag of flour...but that's what the local bakery buys.
These album companies don't sell or even disclose their prices to the public because that wouldn't be good for the photographers they sell them to.
Part of the reason many of the premium companies only sell to pros is that they want a product that is not available to the general public.

The reason for this is that the pros typically do a higher volume and are willing to pay for a premium product. Many of the books that are available are very expensive even at cost and most consumers are not willing to pay that much.

As well pros have a higher level of technical knowledge in regards to colour correction and colour profiles used by different printers. You need to know how to work with the printers for the best possible results. Just print a book with the wrong profile and it will come out very greenish grey skin tones.

As well the templates for most higher end books are blank. You need to design each page in Photoshop. The consumer books have pre-planed templates to upload to, but typically you need to download software from the company to do this.

There are plenty of consumer level books out there. I have seen some that were very good and some that were bad. I use Asuka Book and have always been blown away with the quality of the materials and available options for size and binding types.
Have you seen/read about the changes they are making at Asuka? I'm sure you get the same e-mails I do.

I sat through one of their 'webinars' a couple weeks back.

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