This time last week I had just hatched the idea of creating a Blurb photo book. I was inspired to illustrate the song Unwritten with my photographs. In fact, I was so excited that I brainstormed other Blurb projects, such as creating a poem anthology, which would pair popular poetry with my pictures.
Two days later I was still enamored with this idea and while listening to Parisian cafe music during my morning walk, I was inspired to create a book that focuses on the beauty, rather than the ordinary, of my suburban Kansas neighborhood.
Six days later… I have completed that project! This is monumental for me on many levels.
First, I rarely complete a project – and NEVER within the same week (or year…) that I start it. I always begin strong and then enthusiasm quickly wanes. It isn’t necessarily a lack of focus or discipline, but more a realization that what I envision is not going to be as good as I have hoped. The anticipated sense of failure prevents me from moving forward.
Secondly, this project involved multiple steps, which gave me plenty of opportunity to delay or even quit. I wanted to compare the similarities of my neighborhood to Paris, France. To do this, I needed to sort through my Paris photos of three years ago, and find ones that would serve this purpose. Then, I needed to create a shot-list of similar pictures to take on my morning walk. Finally, I needed to actually take those pictures. Which brings me to….
Point three: I love the idea of photo safaris, but fear prevents me from taking them. All kinds of demon voices in my head take over at the mere thought of wandering around town with a camera. I am not good enough … who do I think I am … what will others think … etc. But this time I was able to ignore those voices and head out the door. And for nearly two hours I meandered slowly along my typical morning path, viewing the familiar with a new set of eyes. It was fabulous!
Of course I then had to come home, upload the pictures, select those to use for the project, edit them, decide on a proper sequence for the book, and then write the captions. While I have learned my way around Lightroom fairly well, I have no experience with digital scrapbooking, which comes with its own learning curve.
I did use the “book” feature within Lightroom to create this project, and the convenience of adding photos and/or editing selected pictures is quite nice. It was very easy to upload to the Blurb website – and there is an option to preview before purchase (which I used multiple times because I always found one more item to fix).
I have now completed the 38-page book (19 double page spreads). I did decide to order a PDF copy first, which proved to be a wise $4.99 investment. I have already found a few more tweaks before I order the hardbound book – probably early next week.
This book is probably of no interest to anyone else but me, but I think I now understand the statement, Art for Art’s sake. I feel such a sense of accomplishment and I look forward to reviewing the final product when it arrives.
If interested, you are more than welcome to view the proof PDF (although I warn you the minor corrections have not been made) … or I have also uploaded the photos and captions to my flickr account. I would love to hear your comments.