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Move Over Photo Albums

Here Come the Books

by Sue Barthelow

Remember the days of the photo album? You'd get your film processed, buy an album and then spend hours collating your photos and adding them to its pages. Maybe you still print and collect your photos in an album. Having moved on to a digital camera, I've found that my images seem to stay forever inside my computer. Here's a solution that lets digital images out of their cells (pun intended).

Today, technology lets you collect your photos digitally and use your computer to create a book of photos. If your photos are digital, the cost of creating a photo book may be significantly less than that of printing your images and buying a photo album. If you have printed photos and have access to a photo scanner, you can include the prints in your photo book after turning them into digital images.

There are several book-making companies on the Internet. With some, all you need to do is download the company's free software to your computer. That software helps create your book. When the book is ready, you upload it to the company over the Internet and have it printed and shipped.

Some companies are better for photos than others. I use Blurb (www.blurb.com) because they're well suited for photo books. Check out their web site for samples and to see what they offer. Read a PC Magazine review online at www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2310968,00.asp. Blurb offers books in sizes 7x7 inches, 10x8 inches, 8x10 inches and 13x11 inches. A 7x7 inch softcover book of up to 39 pages costs about $13. A 7x7 hardcover book comes to about $23 with a dust jacket over a plain cover or to about $25 with an image printed on the book's cover. Prices for a 10x8 book start at about $20. A 13x11 book starts at about $55. Each block of up to 40 additional pages costs a little more as does printing on premium paper.

These books work especially well for vacation photos and for theme-based collections. Download the software and give it a try. It costs you nothing until you upload and order your book.

Caution - you may become addicted


 

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