Planning a big family vacation, attending a family reunion, or going to a special event like a wedding or birthday party this summer? Chances are you will be capturing those special memories with photos. This year, instead of keeping the pictures locked away in your camera or computer, or sharing one-offs via Facebook, why not do something creative with them – something that you can share with grandma and grandpa or preserve for generations?
Here are a few tips to help you create a beautiful summer photo book for family memories that last a lifetime:
1. Think, but don’t over think – photo books can truly tell a story about an event or vacation but over thinking it takes the fun away from the experience. Let the story unfold naturally. Think about how you want to capture the experience but don’t worry too much about the detail. It’s more important to live in the moment and organize later; just make sure your camera has plenty of batteries and memory space.
2. Capture the memories – take a lot of pictures so you have ample content to choose from to tell a complete story. You’ll be surprised at how photos you thought had less value take on more significance when placed alongside others later on. Thanks to digital technology, taking more photos doesn’t mean additional cost. So don’t be afraid, snap away!
3. Represent and be present – you might have a plan or want specific photos taken at a party of the kids enjoying the cake or the great big lake on your hike, but the goal is to represent memories in the most meaningful way. Always be present and balance it out with candid moments shared among family and friends. Make sure your photos aren’t just of the beautiful landscape and scenery but of family members too.
4. Don’t edit or delete those photos (yet!) – most of us are guilty of over analyzing our images especially when taking pictures of people-- your eyes were closed, oh, that pose looked weird, dad is missing from this shot, etc. Well, don’t worry about it! Don’t be pre-occupied with taking “pretty” photos or having everyone pose for shots. Sometimes, those candid shots make the best photo stories. And remember that capturing every memory is what’s most important and you can always edit or delete later.
5. Organize and create the book the way you want it – now that you’ve removed the constraints on creativity and have taken amazing photos, let the story come to light in the best way for you and the ones you will share it with. You might have so many photos that sorting through them seems like a big task. Before uploading the images to a computer or a tablet, think about the story you want to tell. Do you want to do it chronologically or is it by “themes” (“outdoor shots” or “just the cousins,” etc.). By sorting the albums or folders by date, event name, location, etc., it will make it easier to sift through the photos and create your own special photo book.
While the idea of putting images together in a book may seem like a daunting task, in this age of digital photography, e-book creation has become easy and affordable. Apps like Pholium allow the easy creation of high-quality, customized digital photo books directly on the iPad that can be given to others. Once you complete your summer photo book, you’ll be happy to always look back and remember the good times you had with friends and family.