Creating a photo book of your images is one of these projects that you know you should do, but one that you just haven’t gotten around to yet. Jackie Ranken has a great saying that I think we should all subscribe to which is, ‘An image doesn’t truly exist unless it is printed’, so why not print it in a book context?
Here are some helpful tips to get you started when you do.
Without something that ties the images together, the work will fail to become a ‘book’ as such. Instead, it will probably just be a collection of random images bound together between two covers. So don’t just make a book, take your idea further by grouping your images together into some sort of cohesive collection, bound together by a theme.
The theme may be something abstract like colour, shape, pattern or season. When going through your archive looking for potential material, do so with a mindset to look for themes that you possibly didn’t even know you were photographing. There could be something that jumps out at you and alerts you to seeing a repetition of subject material.
Once you’ve worked out your theme, tell the reader. What’s the purpose of the book? Why you have decided to put this collection together and what you hope to achieve from it? This will help the reader better understand what they are looking
Think of it as your ‘artist’s statement’ without it being too serious or art focused. When writing in your book, don’t describe what can already be seen in the images, as these things should be obvious. Instead, write more about the ideas that underpin the images, the ethos of the work, what it means and feels to you, and why you have decided to make a book about these things.
Mike has lots of great ideas to read about in the current issue of Better Photography magazine! Not a subscriber yet? We'd love you to join - take $20 off with our coupon code IDEAS20.