About 6 months ago I got married and a little while later I was given about 600 images from my photographer. Of course, it was just an overwhelming amount of photos, but I wanted to create something that could be shared easily as well as highlight a few of my favorite moments. I decided I should do a book for my mom and T's mom for Christmas. I knew I wanted something that was simple, beautiful and worked well with my images, so I turned to Artifact Uprising. Although the overall website was pretty easy to work with, I thought I would share how to really make a book your own.
The first couple of steps are pretty easy, but are the most crucial because it sets up the format of the book for the whole process.
1. To begin with, you have an option to go with hardcover, softcover or instagram friendly. I went with the hardcover book because it was for my wedding, but I think the softcover book could be great for vacations or even just a family book of pictures.
2. Then you must decide whether you want it vertical, square or horizontal and how many pages you need. The page count can be adjusted later, but it is a bit of a price jump between each and I felt like it would be good to start with a limit so you don't end up putting every image you have into the book.
3. The dust jacket is next, and you have 2 options. Either a full jacket or half dust jacket. I went with the half dust jacket so that you had images on the front, but you also got to see the pretty linen book itself. Above, I show the first 4 options, but they actually have quite a few to pick from. Just keep in mind what images you have and what you want to show on the cover.
4. Next, choose your linen color. This step is actually asked again at the end, but I believe it is to make sure the color works with your images. I went with the darker linen because it matched the guys' suits, but I also thought it would stay clean and fresh longer. They have quite a few colors including a few bolder colors like red and green.
5. Finally, you can start working on putting the whole book together. Start with going through all your images and making a folder of ones that are actually contenders. As I said earlier, I started with 600 images, but I narrowed that down to 200 that were possible. I think it is always good to have a few more photos than what you are really going to use, because depending on the story some images may be better. Once you have narrowed it down upload all your images! This may take a while, but it makes it a bit easier later.
6. Then you begin laying it out. Some may want the book just to be filled with images at random, but I wanted to make sure the book had a rough outline of a story. At the beginning the pages are blank, but you just drag one of the optional layouts from below to start. Once you drag the layouts into the spread start dropping images. You can change this as many times as you wish. Once I did a few, I had some personal favorites and stuck with about 6 layout options throughout the whole book.
7. Step 6 takes a while for sure, much longer than you think actually, but I suggest getting as much of it done as possible before you start moving pages around. However, you can easily move or add pages into the mix if you think something is out of order. However, I do wish that you could add a page wherever you are in the book instead of the page going to the very end of the book. This part is pretty easy, but I wouldn't advise trying to shift too much because it may become confusing pretty fast.
8. To the left of the page, there are a few helpful tools including zoom, undo and preview. They also have the option of adding text, however I didn't actually use any text except for my dust jacket. Although again it is quite simple and gives you options on font, size, location and opacity.
After all those steps, I went through the book a few more times to make sure that everything was just as I wanted. I then purchased the book, and it was at my door in no time. Online it says that it takes up to 8 days to print and 3-5 business days to ship, but I swear it was much faster. Overall it was a great experience and had some great features including the ability to duplicate a project so that you could make changes to it without starting over. I also like that you can create an account so that you can go back to your projects later if you need to and everything will still be there. It really was great and both Moms seemed to love the books, now I just need to go back and make one for myself! Do you have any special memories you want to share?
Images via screenshot on Artifact Uprising