- Although I did start my 2012 book using BookSmart, I'm just more comfortable in Photoshop so I am going to do it using my own spread layouts. That said, I found the Blurb Booksmart quite easy to use, and I would imagine most people would be happier using this. What can I say, I live in Photoshop and it works for me.
- I created around 15 spread layouts (a spread being two pages) plus cover and inside pages. I've made these very simple and classic, each with a different amount and sizes of openings. These form the basis of the book although I can tweak these as necessary. Regardless of whether you are doing this in Photoshop or Booksmart it's a good idea to create these pages and save them (you can do this in BookSmart too and save them into "My Layouts")
- I would recommend not having too many layouts as you want the book to look cohesive. Better to have around 15 spreads and use them throughout the book. However, try to ensure you don't have two spreads the same one after the other to give a bit of variety. I also like to have a break from multi-spread layouts by having a single picture spread every so often, and I try to mix black and white and color spreads.
- Multi-aperture spreads are great for lifestyle images - this is where are your detail shots come in very handy!
- This year, I've included a page that gives a very brief rundown on what happened that month - big things and little things. It's just a few lines as I didn't want too much text so hopefully this will work out fine.
- At the end of the year I will do my end pages with my favorite images from the year.
- It is, without question, easier to do this each month as you go along rather than trying to do this at the end of each year. I tried to do this for a lot of last year, but started late then just really fell behind. I'm pretty determined to do it this year though!
- Having your images ready to go and filed in order (as per my previous post) makes life so much easier to too. You just need to go to your "Print" file, and there is your images all ready and waiting! I did my January spreads in around an hour because everything was just ready to slot in.
- I have/will also back up each months spreads to my Amazon Cloud Drive - you get 5GB free which is more than enough. That way if my computer crashes I haven't lost all the work I have done so far.
That's it! I'm really pleased with how January has turned out so I'm hoping to do exactly the same each month so there is no scramble to get images and get the book finished. Fingers crossed!