Here are a few recent questions from readers:
Q: Hi Photo Book Girl,
I stumbled on your website today – what a great find! I really enjoy reading your posts. Congrats on creating such a wonderful resource. I just have one question: have you ever produced a photo book with pictures taken on a mobile phone? My phone camera used to be a 5MP one, now it’s an 8MP but I was told the quality may not be up to scratch for enlargements. Would you have any tips to share? Thanks so much.
A: Hi Vivian,
I don’t think it matters what the source is as long as the photos are of good quality when you upload them and take a look on your screen. Also, you can still check what pixel size your photos are after you upload by clicking on “properties” or “get info”. Additionally, most if not all photo book company software will tell you whether your photo is of high enough resolution. A warning sign will pop up to tell you that your photo is not of sufficient quality, so you know to either eliminate the photo, or reduce the size of the photo box or photo container in which you are placing that particular photo. You can shrink the box until the warning sign goes away if you really want to use that particular photo.
Also, another consideration is what size book you are printing. Even a regular 12MP camera for instance may not have sufficient resolution to print out well on a two page spread of a book that’s 17 x 15 (which would result in a single photo that stretches 34″ across), but it may work in a book that’s 8×8 for example.
So, given the technology now, and how advanced cameras on phones are getting, it’s less important what you’re using to take the photo, than what resolution you are ending up with.
Hope that helps!
Side Note: Check out this post for more on photo resolution: What is the Right Resolution or DPI for Photos When Making a Photo Book?
Also, how many of you are using iPhone’s Instagr.am? It’s a social media tool/retro photo filter app in one. I’ve noticed Blurb has jumped on the Instagr.am bandwagon offering a way to instantly make books with your Instagr.am photos! I just downloaded the app last week and of course all the photos I’ve been playing with have been of my little guy! 🙂
Q: I just shot my brothers wedding and I would like to make him a really nice wedding album. I would like it to be preferably a flush mount album but would be fine with a lay flat album. Could you tell me the differences as well as the company with the nicest lay flat album and the company with the nicest flush mount album. Price isn’t necessarily an issue. I would prefer to spend a little more to have a better quality album. Thank you in advance for your help.
A: (Since I had a lot of updating to do since my original answer, I have basically rewritten it below – since that time, I made a flush mount album) 🙂
Essentially, all flush mounts lie flat, but not all lay flat books are flush mounts. (Doesn’t that sound like the setup to a logic game? Or should we have the “lie vs. lay” grammar discussion? ha ha…) Anyway, a flush mount book is one type of book that lies flat. When brides and grooms see those gorgeous wedding albums that showcase their photos on a thick, unbendable mat board type backing, that’s a flush mount. Another distinction is that flush mounts are printed on real photo paper. Here’s a few photos of the wedding flush mount I made with MyPhotoCreations:
In contrast, a “lay flat” album or photo book may or may not be printed on real photo paper. Photo books are typically printed on 100 lb. paper, often on “archival” paper. Many companies such as Picaboo, MyPublisher, Smilebooks, AdoramaPix, Shutterfly and MyPhotoCreations offer lay flat options either as upgrades to their standard books or as specific types of books within their product lineups. Some popular companies like Blurb,
Shutterfly and Photobook America do not offer lay flat books. The lay flat option is becoming increasingly popular though, so I wouldn’t be surprised if more companies start coming out with lay flat books.
Another way to tell the difference between a flush mount album and a lay flat photo book is the way it is labeled on a particular site. Many companies categorize flush mounts as “albums” and photo books as “press printed” or “digital press” books.
Price is another way to normally tell the difference between a standard lay flat book and a flush mount, with flush mounts being a lot more pricey (typically $200 and up for about 20 sides or 10 pages). But you get what you pay for! (b/t/w if I’ve found a deal on flush mounts you’ll find them here!)
If you’re looking specifically for companies that offer lay flat books (which includes flush mounts), check out my photo book wizard tool.
Another tool on my site is the software wizard which will allow you to narrow down which company offers the features you’re looking for with “lay flat” being one option.
If you’d like to see all my wedding albums and photo books check out my DIY wedding album roundup page.