© 2010 photobookgirl

My Flush Mount Wedding Album – MyPhotoCreations Review

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BRIDES & GROOMS! Enter for a chance to win your own
FLUSH MOUNT PHOTO ALBUM
from MyPhotoCreations!

Two available plus 6 other prizes!
HURRY! Ends 11:59pm CST Monday, November 29, 2010!

Please note, if you’re looking for a review of BrideBox’s flush mount, you’re in the right place. BrideBox and MyPhotoCreations are “sister companies” and therefore the products are the same, as is the software you would use to create it.

The folks at MyPhotoCreations contacted me to see if I’d like to check out their newly launched consumer site, that just went live about a month ago.  After taking a look at the unique lineup of flush mount albums and photo books on their site, I was definitely interested in checking them out.  Although it may be a new name in photo book printing, the company behind it isn’t. MyPhotoCreations is brought to you by the same folks behind DigiLabs, a name familiar to professional photographers since 1997. MyPhotoCreations represents the recognition of a growing consumer market for high quality photo albums and books.

Since I’d never tried a flush mount album before, I was very much interested in trying out the Anza to see how it compared to the other lay flat photo books I’d tried before.

Here’s the specs:

Book size: 8 x 8 (width x height)
Cover: Hardcover – Black Leather
Pages: 20 (double-sided), Kodak E-Surface Photo Paper
Binding: Lay Flat Flush Mount Album
Price: $249.99 + $6.99 (standard shipping)Total: $256.98Provided complimentary by company
Ordered/Received: Nov 16 / Nov 19 (order expedited)

MyPhotoCreations SOFTWARE

MyPhotoCreations software is both Mac and PC compatible and is downloaded to your desktop.  What’s interesting about the book design program is you can opt to buy the software in order to print your creations from your own home printer for $39.99.  There is also an option to buy the software ($399.99) for commercial use, so that may be of particular interest to pro photographers.

Another interesting feature is that the software is available in several languages.

Unsurprisingly, I have been running out of internal hard drive space, so I liked that I was able to download and run the software from my external hard drive without a problem.

After you download the software, you choose the type of book you want to make.

A screenshot of the book designer.

I just entered MyPhotoCreations into my searchable database.  This addition makes for 29 companies!  Here’s a screenshot of the software specs:

Likes

  • Working on your book is a quick start – you don’t need to wait for a lengthy upload to begin designing;
  • You have the option of using the Photo Album Wizard to quickly design a book;
  • The “fit to page” and “fit to spread” functions allow you to instantly place a full bleed photo either onto an individual page or both across pages (the spread);
  • I’m often wary of using photo correction or editing tools within photo book programs, but I used the “Perfectly Clear” tool on a few of my photos that looked like they needed a boost and my photos printed out nicely;

  • You can multi-select the photo boxes and make changes to all the items at once which is a time-saver;
  • There are several one-click alignment tools that can be accessed by the pull down menu at the top and also by right-clicking on the photos;
  • You can save your layouts as templates to the “Page Layouts” tab at the bottom right of the workspace to reuse again;
  • You can easily swap out book styles without having to recreate the book.  (Go to “Edit” pull down menu and select, “Change Book”);
  • The coordinates, measurements and resolution of the individual photo boxes and elements are instantly visible at the bottom of the workspace when you hover over each element.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen design software which tells you the resolution of your photos and in such a convenient way.  According to the company, you can probably get away with as low as 150dpi, and somewhere between that and 300dpi is better.  For more on dpi and resolution check out my post.

The software was very easy to use and I finished my Anza relatively quickly in one evening!

Wish List

  • Although all of my computer’s fonts showed up for selection, I couldn’t get all of the fonts to work when I tried captioning;
  • The only option to cross over the spread is to use the “Fit to Spread” function which only allows you to place the photo fully across both pages of the spread.  You can’t create smaller photo boxes that cross over the page – not a huge deal, but it would be nice to have more flexibility;
  • It doesn’t appear that you can add any title to the Anza books.  The cover layout was locked so I’m pretty sure I didn’t miss the option.

PRINT QUALITY AND CONSTRUCTION

Here’s a screenshot of the Anza book specs.  All of MyPhotoCreations’ photo books are in my searchable database as well.

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The book comes wrapped in two layers of cushioned wrap.

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And encased in a black presentation box.

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Inside the box was a black cloth pouch. It’s like those Russian nesting dolls! ha ha…

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Ta-da! Finally got to the book! The Anza has a genuine leather cover.

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The spine of the Anza can’t be titled.

I found the book very well constructed – it feels very luxe and sleek.

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The inside cover of the photo album.

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The opening page of my wedding flush mount album. You can see how crisp and clear the printing is.  The image pops.

PHOTOBOOKGIRL’S TIP FOR BRIDES AND GROOMS: I like to incorporate other elements besides my photos in my photobooks.  You may have seen me scan my ticket stubs, maps, postcards etc. to add a scrapbook style element into my photo books.  A perfect example of that here is the image of the front and back of my wedding invitation. This does a perfect job of “captioning” my book – it gives all the particulars of our big day all in a neat package! Try it!

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The pages are printed on real high quality photo paper and then mounted onto a hard board surface. The pages are super-thick and unbendable.  Notice the sheen of a real photographic print.

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There is a gutter, but it’s tiny!

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Didn’t have time to set up a good lighting situation – the point is to show you how small the gutter is.

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Side view of the lay flat binding and gutter.

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The end!

SUMMARY

The Anza is a beautiful book.  The print quality is excellent and the images are crisp, vibrant and have depth.  The software was very easy to use and it was a quick start to begin designing my pages.  In terms of cost, it’s definitely an expensive book, but it is a high end album and you can’t really compare a flush mount album with a standard photo book.  I actually think paying $50.00 more for the larger 10×10 would be worth it to get more of an impact.  You may already know how I love getting a deal (who doesn’t?) so if you’re planning on making an album with MyPhotoCreations – I have a great special coupon code for Photobookgirl readers!

Get 30% 20% off all MyPhotoCreations albums – (the Anza or the Marina)!

Coupon Code: gophotobookgirl PBGIRLMPC

Deal Expires: 12/13/2010 3/31/2013

The 8×8 Anza like mine is normally $249.99 but with the 30% off is $175.00.  The 10×10 normally $299.99 at 30% off is $210.00.  At that price, I say go for the 10×10!

Hmm…so am I completely done making wedding photo books yet? I can’t promise! But we may be due for a wedding book comparison post very soon!

Happy Thanksgiving and don’t forget to enter the MyPhotoCreations Giveaway!

Photo Credit: Second Print Productions

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(UPDATE: 9/11/2012 – I am currently an affiliate of MyPhotoCreations which means if you buy a book from MyPhotoCreations via the promo codes listed at the top, I will receive a commission. As always however, my opinions remain my own and I give my honest review regardless of affiliation.)

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30 Comments

  1. Helen
    Posted November 25, 2010 at 1:56 am | #

    This album looks great! I notice you most often pick black as your background, do you do that to match with your other albums? I’m just curious to know :), love reading your blogs! Look forward to the next one!

    • photobookgirl
      Posted December 6, 2010 at 8:07 pm | #

      I like neutrals like black cause they allow your photos to stand out. I also like using other photos as background if I can find one that works well and is complementary to the photos in the layout.

  2. Posted November 25, 2010 at 5:17 pm | #

    i want it!!

  3. Sharon
    Posted November 25, 2010 at 10:23 pm | #

    Looks very nice! I’m wondering about the photopaper they use. How does it compare to Adoramapix paper? Is it similar or a higher quality?

    • photobookgirl
      Posted December 6, 2010 at 8:12 pm | #

      Good question Sharon – they are both printed on photo paper, but the finish is different. I would say MyPhotoCreations looks more like a quality photo print, but a big part of that is the hard board that it’s mounted on. I am planning to do a post comparing and contrasting all the companies that I’ve printed wedding photo books with so stay tuned!

  4. Wendy
    Posted November 26, 2010 at 5:01 pm | #

    I love the almost gutterless look. Hope I can win one!!

  5. Posted November 28, 2010 at 6:28 pm | #

    Great post! I love all the photos and your detailed description! I would like to know how it compares to AdoramaPix as well, thx!

  6. Katie
    Posted November 28, 2010 at 6:49 pm | #

    This album is beautiful! Love the flush mount. I love the black!!! It’s perfect. I WANT ONE!!!

  7. Sarah N
    Posted November 29, 2010 at 7:50 am | #

    What a beautiful album! I love your photos and layouts too!

  8. Neriza B
    Posted November 29, 2010 at 11:34 am | #

    I like the black background you used on this photo album. Do you use any other color for your backgrounds?

    • photobookgirl
      Posted November 29, 2010 at 11:58 am | #

      Hi Neriza,

      Generally I prefer black. I think it allows the photos to stand out more. I guess white would work too, but I still prefer black, gray or other neutrals. My other favorite is to use another photo as a backdrop. Thanks for your comment! 🙂

  9. Melinda Wong
    Posted November 30, 2010 at 1:52 am | #

    When I make my photo book, I’m going to take your advice and order the 10 x 10! This looks like an easy program to follow and I like that you can boost the color in just one click by hitting “perfectly clear”.

  10. Maria
    Posted December 6, 2010 at 11:20 pm | #

    Thanks for reviewing and posting this album! I’m sold 🙂

    • photobookgirl
      Posted December 7, 2010 at 12:14 am | #

      Please make sure to come back and let us know how you liked it!

  11. Maria
    Posted February 21, 2011 at 3:05 pm | #

    I actually ended up going with the Picaboo flushmount album because I decided I really wanted gilded page edges and a white leather album which the Anza, unfortunately, doesn’t have the options of. Picaboo is a bit pricier but it really is also a high quality and gorgeous flushmount diy album!

    • photobookgirl
      Posted February 21, 2011 at 6:04 pm | #

      White leather sounds very chic… 🙂

  12. Ana King
    Posted February 28, 2011 at 1:01 pm | #

    It was through this post that I got the inspiration to create my own Anza photo book. I am so glad that I stumbled upon your site! Thanks for sharing all that you do!

  13. Lorraine
    Posted March 6, 2011 at 11:31 am | #

    I’m so excited that flush mounts are starting to become direct to consumer! I might hold out a few more years, but the one you made looks great!

  14. Erin M
    Posted March 6, 2011 at 9:26 pm | #

    I made an Anza Flush Mount wedding album and it turned out fabulous! It is so impressive. Your review was right on. The packing and the cover are just beautiful and that’s just the outside. The software was easy to work with. I am excited too that flush mounts are becoming more available. I am in the process of converting my film negatives to digital files and I’d love to do another album.

    • photobookgirl
      Posted March 6, 2011 at 9:45 pm | #

      Oh, that’s nice to hear that you loved your Anza. Did you do the 8×8 or the 10×10? If you liked the Anza, you should check out the Ashbury – I think it’s a nice choice for something in the middle… I wish I could do flush mounts all the time!!! 🙂

  15. Posted July 7, 2011 at 3:59 pm | #

    I’m debating on what kind of company I will want to use for my future wedding photos (just got engaged!) and I do like the looks of this book. The gutter seems insanely small, and the outside cover is just sophisticated and classy. Definitely keeping this guy in mind! 😀

  16. Audrey
    Posted August 18, 2011 at 4:02 pm | #

    I love your site-I am putting together a wedding photo book for my husband and myself, and I think this is the book I have been looking for! Does your coupon code still work? Thanks!

    • photobookgirl
      Posted August 19, 2011 at 12:47 am | #

      Hi Audrey,

      Unfortunately, I don’t believe so – that was a while back. You could try to contact the company and let them know you saw my review – maybe they can do something for you. Doesn’t hurt to ask 🙂

  17. Winnie
    Posted October 31, 2011 at 3:02 pm | #

    On their website, they offer Anza and Marina, what is the difference?

    • photobookgirl
      Posted November 1, 2011 at 6:43 pm | #

      I believe it’s the additional cover options and additional pages that can be added in the Marina which makes it cost more. I don’t believe the interior pages are different.

  18. Sarah
    Posted March 21, 2012 at 2:51 pm | #

    Hi,
    Did you ever contact the company to see if they could work out another coupon deal? I’m between them and Picaboo but love the look of your album so I would like to do the Anza or Marina. Love your work, keep it up for the rest of us!

    • Erica
      Posted January 15, 2013 at 7:20 am | #

      Thank you for this blog!! I am in love with my wedding photos but am unfortunately taken aback by the price my photographer is charging for an album ($1000+)!!! I typically scrapbook for a hobby but of course for my wedding album I want a sophisticated, classic flush mount album. To the other users out there, who did you go with? Picaboo or Myphotocreations? I’m reading great reviews on both and cannot truly catch any differences. Thanks!

      • photobookgirl
        Posted January 16, 2013 at 1:54 am | #

        I haven’t done a flush mount with Picaboo, so I only have this one to go by. I suppose for me between the two it would come down to price and the type of book features (like cover options, stamping etc.) I was looking for. The software is good with both companies because you have a lot of customization options. It is a lot less than what photographers charge, but understandably photographers are also charging for their design time and their aesthetic. I can’t say that I’ve seen the Picaboo product, but I’m really happy with the flush mount I got from MyPhotoCreations. Keep in mind they are also providing the same product at BrideBox (they are affiliated companies) so go with whichever one is running a sale. I have a 20% off coupon that’s valid til 2/1, so that gets you a good discount. 🙂

  19. Amy
    Posted September 19, 2014 at 10:05 pm | #

    Do you have any current coupons for BrideBox or MyPhotoCreations?

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