SoFoBoMo 2009: Final thoughts
So long to Solo Photo Book Month 2009… or aufwiedersehen shall I say rather? Now I can enjoy perusing the books the others made over the next few months. Some wrap up thoughts:
- I don’t think doing the PDF is enough. There are some good lessons to be learned in getting the thing published and since the focus is a book, I recommend seeing it all the way through. There is real satisfaction in holding the thing in your hands and sharing with others.
- Blurb seems to be the current Internet fave for self-published photo books. Their new PDF to Book process is pretty nifty, and came along just at the right time for me (I tried, but was not a fan of their Booksmart software). The photo quality of my Blurb book is still well below what I would call excellent (ink jet print), but it’s good enough to make a nice looking book.
- This was my second year doing this, and I had a bit more trouble latching on to a theme that would fit in the time allotted. I started one project, floundered, sat on it for a couple weeks, then restarted with a new idea. In the end I followed the old sage advice to shoot something you are interested in. I was interested in raising some free-range laying hens, and it dovetailed nicely with the book project.
- I’m struck again by how the project parameters: one fuzzy month, 35 pictures, a PDF, combine to make a really attainable, flexible and worthwhile exercise. It makes you cut to the essence and learn the nuts and bolts of making a photo book. And it was good to have the lesson reinforced this year, and to learn some new things (like making a book using a markup language is a really good idea).
- Although personally I enjoyed the project as much as last year, the size of the group participating made the “communal” aspect diminish considerably. I suppose that is to be expected. It would be kind of fun to have a variation on it where we would collaboratively make a book in small groups, or something else to foster a little more sharing.