Approve the Cookies
This website uses cookies to improve your user experience. By using this site, you agree to our use of cookies and our Privacy Policy.
OK
Index  •   • New posts  •   • RTAT  •   • 'Best of'  •   • Gallery  •   • Gear  •   • Reviews
Guest
New posts  •   • RTAT  •   • 'Best of'  •   • Gallery  •   • Gear  •   • Reviews
Register to forums    Log in

 
FORUMS Post Processing, Marketing & Presenting Photos The Business of Photography 
Thread started 18 Feb 2011 (Friday) 10:58
Search threadPrev/next
sponsored links
(this ad will go away when you log in as a registered member)

Just launched a book, what are your thoughts?

 
Don ­ Komarechka
Senior Member
301 posts
Likes: 4
Joined May 2008
Location: Barrie, Ontario
     
Feb 18, 2011 10:58 |  #1

Hey Everyone,

I'm in the process of "going pro". I'd say I'm almost there, as most of my income comes directly or indirectly from my photography. One project I started late last year was to publish a book of my best work to date.

I designed in Adobe InDesign, and published it through Blurb's PDF-to-Book workflow. Its an 80-page book coffee table book with images, my own thoughts and ideas behind the image, and famous quotes that match up with the subject matter:

IMAGE: http://don.komarechka.com/images/potn/_MG_1362-medium.jpg

I sell it locally, and of course its available on Blurb in Softcover ($35) (external link) and Hardcover ($50) (external link). However, I've learned a lot (and I'm still learning) about the whole process.

First of all, copyright issues with using quotations is so confusing, complicated, and stressful. Laws are different in each country (the US being the worst), and there are provisions that honour one countries copyright in another. However there are laws defining that the shorter of the two copyright periods are used, and in some cases there are further revisions that negate this and use the longer term... ugh! I just ended up using quotes from people that died before 1921.

Its funny to look at it in this way, but famous authors such as Mark Twain, Henry David Thoreau, Oscar Wilde, etc were certainly outstanding authors of their time, but they continue to be extremely popular and well-known now because you can quote them freely as their work is in the public domain.


Cost is also an issue - small production runs of books is expensive. Selling the books locally I make about $5-$7 each, online a little more as I'm not absorbing extra costs in shipping etc. Still, the cost of my book, at $50, means it sees a rather limited audience. I certainly won't get rich from this.

I had contacted four local printing companies about run sizes up to 100 books, and their costs were absurdly more expensive than the one-off costs that Blurb gives me. I was a little shocked by this, the little local guys were not even in the same ballpark of pricing (sometimes even more than double).

I'd like to have it seen by a wider audience, but the commission rates of bookstores or Amazon mean that I'd be losing money on every sale. Distribution for a self-publisher is a painful journey. Getting an ISBN number was free, but I have to send a copy of the book to the national archives (this is Canadian law) at my cost.

I've heard nothing but extremely positive comments on the book, having sold roughly 30 copies. At the very least, its an impressive first impression when someone asks for your portfolio and you hand them a published book.


I'd like to heard from other people that have walked down this path. Any suggestions, ideas, or comments are extremely welcomed. Its been a fun project, and I intend to do it again in the future.

Canon 5D mark II w/ WFT-E4 IIA, Canon EOS-1n, Canon 24-105mm F/4L IS, Canon 100-400L IS, Canon 50mm F/1.4, Canon 100mm F/2.8 Macro, Canon 15mm F/2.8 Fisheye, Canon MP-E 65mm Macro, Speedlite 580EX II, MR-14EX Macro Ring Lite, and a black mitten
Photo Blog: Don.Komarechka.com (external link)

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
sponsored links
(this ad will go away when you log in as a registered member)
Hikin ­ Mike
Walkin' Like a Penguin Now!
Avatar
6,353 posts
Gallery: 16 photos
Likes: 342
Joined Aug 2005
Location: Atwater, CA
     
Feb 18, 2011 13:56 |  #2

It looks good. I did the same thing a few years ago for my book, "Along the Road (external link)". I only offer a hard back and I sell them for $75.


Images in the Backcountry (external link) | Facebook (external link) | Google+ (external link) | Twitter (external link)
SEO for the Photographer (external link) | Creating HDRs Using Layer Masks (external link)
Canon 5D 17-40 Ճ/4L 300 Ճ/4L IS 70-200 Ճ/4L 50 Ճ/1.8 1.4x TC Օ Kenko Ext. Tubes

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
PhotosGuy
Moderator
Avatar
75,920 posts
Gallery: 8 photos
Likes: 2566
Joined Feb 2004
Location: Middle of Michigan
     
Feb 18, 2011 15:33 |  #3

I'd like to heard from other people that have walked down this path.

There's a book publisher just a few miles from me, so I set up a meeting just to see what they'd say about mine (Blurb published).
After telling me just how great they are & looking the book over (see my Sig), they said "Of course we'll have our staff completely redo the layout, but we can get started with an investment of only $20,000!" :D


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
elevenbangbang
Member
91 posts
Joined Feb 2011
Location: Chicago
     
Feb 18, 2011 17:17 |  #4

I really like the cover!




  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
HappySnapper90
Cream of the Crop
5,145 posts
Likes: 3
Joined Aug 2008
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
     
Feb 19, 2011 18:35 |  #5

To play devil's advocate, a 2006 issue of Outdoor Photographer magazine has an article about publishing in the new media of today. The article was about selling E-books for $2.50 or $5 instead of going through a printed and distributed book. Far too often I find books like what Don is doing end up on Clearance tables in book stores selling for $5.

Are people buying photo coffee table books anymore when a Google Image search can show you 1000s of photos of your choice? I'd rather find a different way to sell my best 80 images than lumped together in a book. I sell 12x18 prints mounted and matted to 18"x24" for about $100 each. What will Don's book sell for? $40 for 80 images?




  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
bigcountry
Goldmember
Avatar
4,485 posts
Gallery: 7 photos
Likes: 148
Joined Oct 2006
Location: Louisville, KY
     
Feb 19, 2011 22:44 |  #6

blurb books are horrible


Louisville Kentucky Wedding Photographer (external link)
Travel the World and Photograph (external link)
Find me on Facebook (external link)

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
PhotosGuy
Moderator
Avatar
75,920 posts
Gallery: 8 photos
Likes: 2566
Joined Feb 2004
Location: Middle of Michigan
     
Feb 20, 2011 08:50 |  #7

bigcountry wrote in post #11876528 (external link)
blurb books are horrible

Details would be nice. Otherwise the term "user error" comes to mind.


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
bigcountry
Goldmember
Avatar
4,485 posts
Gallery: 7 photos
Likes: 148
Joined Oct 2006
Location: Louisville, KY
     
Feb 20, 2011 22:42 |  #8

PhotosGuy wrote in post #11878122 (external link)
Details would be nice. Otherwise the term "user error" comes to mind.

User error?

the books are not that great of quality. I use to include these for my wedding photography biz, no way now. they are pretty cheap and the pages are not that great. really overpriced.


Louisville Kentucky Wedding Photographer (external link)
Travel the World and Photograph (external link)
Find me on Facebook (external link)

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
10megapixel
"I'm a little slow"
Avatar
3,872 posts
Likes: 3
Joined Oct 2008
Location: ……Surrounded by Corn and Rednecks in Indiana
     
Feb 20, 2011 23:08 as a reply to  @ bigcountry's post |  #9

I checked out the preview and thought it looked really nice. I liked the picture of the tracks and the plant sprouting from the railroad tie :cool:

Good luck with it!



Gear List & Feedback



  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
Don ­ Komarechka
THREAD ­ STARTER
Senior Member
301 posts
Likes: 4
Joined May 2008
Location: Barrie, Ontario
     
Feb 20, 2011 23:15 |  #10

Thanks for the positive comments and well-wishes!

bigcountry, would you recommend a different printer? As mentioned earlier, Blurb has the best value proposition that I am aware of.

HappySnapper90, you make a very valid point - but tell that to the people I keep selling my book to. While I think that mass-market print publication is on its last leg, self-publishing (especially niche print markets) will be growing. Of course this can be debated as each side can make a great argument.


Canon 5D mark II w/ WFT-E4 IIA, Canon EOS-1n, Canon 24-105mm F/4L IS, Canon 100-400L IS, Canon 50mm F/1.4, Canon 100mm F/2.8 Macro, Canon 15mm F/2.8 Fisheye, Canon MP-E 65mm Macro, Speedlite 580EX II, MR-14EX Macro Ring Lite, and a black mitten
Photo Blog: Don.Komarechka.com (external link)

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
Bob_A
Cream of the Crop
Avatar
8,438 posts
Gallery: 48 photos
Likes: 47
Joined Jan 2005
Location: Alberta, Canada
     
Feb 20, 2011 23:37 |  #11

I only have experience with Blurb and AdoramaPix. I like the resulting pages of the AdoramaPix books much more than Blurb's, but I like the Blurb hard outer cover much more than AdoramaPix.

The AdoramaPix printing is on photographic paper and the pages lay flat.


Bob
SmugMug (external link) | My Gear Ratings | My POTN Gallery

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
PhotosGuy
Moderator
Avatar
75,920 posts
Gallery: 8 photos
Likes: 2566
Joined Feb 2004
Location: Middle of Michigan
     
Feb 21, 2011 10:38 |  #12

bigcountry wrote in post #11882370 (external link)
User error?

the books are not that great of quality. I use to include these for my wedding photography biz, no way now. they are pretty cheap and the pages are not that great. really overpriced.

I would agree that there are better options for wedding photography, but a blanket condemnation of them because they don't fit your needs is a bit extreme. Using a metaphorical hammer when you need a wrench would be user error in my book.


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
bigcountry
Goldmember
Avatar
4,485 posts
Gallery: 7 photos
Likes: 148
Joined Oct 2006
Location: Louisville, KY
     
Feb 21, 2011 12:57 |  #13

Weddings, portfolio, nature books, blurb is way overpriced.

do you have some sort of association with the company?


Louisville Kentucky Wedding Photographer (external link)
Travel the World and Photograph (external link)
Find me on Facebook (external link)

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
S.Horton
worship my useful and insightful comments
Avatar
18,051 posts
Gallery: 7 photos
Likes: 117
Joined Dec 2006
Location: Royersford, PA
     
Feb 21, 2011 13:05 |  #14

PhotosGuy wrote in post #11884738 (external link)
I would agree that there are better options for wedding photography, but a blanket condemnation of them because they don't fit your needs is a bit extreme. Using a metaphorical hammer when you need a wrench would be user error in my book.

With both Blurb and Lulu, you have to know exactly what you're doing to get a decent result. In my case, I had to purchase Adobe Acrobat to control the graphics, and for the original only inserted .EPS files.

Short-run presses and printing firms will -always- quote you their services; it is what they do, and it is expensive.


Sam - TF Says Ishmael
http://midnightblue.sm​ugmug.com (external link) 
Want your title changed?Dream On! (external link)

:cool:

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
PhotosGuy
Moderator
Avatar
75,920 posts
Gallery: 8 photos
Likes: 2566
Joined Feb 2004
Location: Middle of Michigan
     
Feb 21, 2011 13:41 as a reply to  @ S.Horton's post |  #15

bigcountry wrote in post #11885584 (external link)
Weddings, portfolio, nature books, blurb is way overpriced.

do you have some sort of association with the company?

No, but I've made two books with Blurb & I'm happy with the quality for the price. Also, the forum tested several book publishers before we made our POTN books, & Blurb won for overall quality vs. price.

I did design most of my pages In PS, though, rather than using their resizing & layout options. Did you?

As for being overpriced, I have two books now that I wouldn't have had without the service. So the price was right for me.


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
  LOG IN TO REPLY
sponsored links
(this ad will go away when you log in as a registered member)

2,639 views & 0 likes for this thread
Just launched a book, what are your thoughts?
FORUMS Post Processing, Marketing & Presenting Photos The Business of Photography 
AAA
x 1600
y 1600

Jump to forum...   •  Rules   •  Index   •  New posts   •  RTAT   •  'Best of'   •  Gallery   •  Gear   •  Reviews   •  Member list   •  Polls   •  Image rules   •  Search   •  Password reset

Not a member yet?
Register to forums
Registered members may log in to forums and access all the features: full search, image upload, follow forums, own gear list and ratings, likes, more forums, private messaging, thread follow, notifications, own gallery, all settings, view hosted photos, own reviews, see more and do more... and all is free. Don't be a stranger - register now and start posting!


COOKIES DISCLAIMER: This website uses cookies to improve your user experience. By using this site, you agree to our use of cookies and to our privacy policy.
Privacy policy and cookie usage info.


POWERED BY AMASS forum software 2.1forum software
version 2.1 /
code and design
by Pekka Saarinen ©
for photography-on-the.net

Latest registered member is Tom Ekblad
942 guests, 369 members online
Simultaneous users record so far is 15144, that happened on Nov 22, 2018

Photography-on-the.net Digital Photography Forums is the website for photographers and all who love great photos, camera and post processing techniques, gear talk, discussion and sharing. Professionals, hobbyists, newbies and those who don't even own a camera -- all are welcome regardless of skill, favourite brand, gear, gender or age. Registering and usage is free.