In this article, you will learn how to plan your perfect photo album. In the past 4 years that I’ve been photographing, I realized that it takes a bit of planning to create a photo album that will take us back in time and will remind us and the viewers what it felt like living in that moment, a moment that we can never get again but we can always look back on.
Growing up, I loved going through photo albums. It’s fun seeing who I was 5 or 10 years ago or what my parents were like when they were my age. There is something very romantic about having a physical, printed photo album. It’s a good way to document our lives and to share stories. If you are planning an event or trip, include a plan for the images you will capture; this will make looking back in 5 or 10 years so much better!
Pick a theme
Having a theme for your photo album helps you focus and have an understanding of what should go in it and what shouldn’t. This also helps you organize your photo albums (in case you are planning to make more than one) easier. Themes can be as simple as last year of high school, Summer of 2020, the name of an event (Mark’s 18th Birthday Party) or simply your name or the name of someone you love.
Create a title
Now that you know what theme you want your photo album to focus on it will be easier to think of a title. Having a title sets the tone for your photo album, think of it as a movie title. It is usually short, gives the viewers an idea of what to expect, and sometimes it summarizes the whole story in a few words. It could be the name of the theme you chose ahead of time, or be based on something memorable that occurred while you were shooting the photos.
Choose a colour scheme
Colour scheme is an arrangement or combination of colours, this helps ties up the images together. If you are familiar with Instagram, I’m sure you’ve come across highly curated accounts. These accounts typically have a particular colour scheme.
This can be done in a few ways. The first and easiest way is through post-production. You can create your own presets in your phone or editing software that you can easily apply to any images before printing. Second is a little bit more complicated, make sure when you take photos that the colour scheme you chose is always present and if possible dominant in your photos.
It’s good to set a timeline on how long you are planning to document life events for your photo album. If it’s a summer album then you will want to think of how many images you want to include in the album, and identify which images are a priority to capture (you may run out of time to get them all).
Choosing a camera is essential for creating your dream photo album. Identify which camera works best for you. Sometimes having the highest megapixel, the most expensive camera might not be the best for your needs. You might need something small that you can always carry around with you and take the shots when the moment happens.
Other than photos
One great thing about making your photo album is that you can add items other than photos. Items that have a significant meaning that makes sense when combined with the photos. For example a sports ticket from one of your dates. Something simple yet meaningful can often trigger memories and emotions just as well as a photograph.
In this digital age, we sometimes forget that we can actually print the photos and look at them physically. Having a great printer at home saves money and enables you to be more creative with your photo albums. There are different types of printers and choosing the right printer can vary depending on your needs. Although you can print photos on almost all printers, I highly recommend getting inkjet printers; they are ideal for everyday printing and photo printing. Ideally, when looking for a photo printer you want something that has at least six colour ink set compare to most household inkjet printer that have only four colours.
Preserving your album
After putting all this work you probably want your photo album to last forever. First of all, keep your photo album away from direct sunlight. Printed photos tend to fade when left for a long period in direct sunlight. For long lasting images, store your photo album at room temperature and away from the sunlight.
One last thing to remember: failure to plan is a plan to fail. When creating a photo album you don’t need to know everything that you want to put in it, but it is best to have a plan so you can curate what you will put in it.
I hope this helps you create a perfect photo album that you and your loved ones will enjoy for many years. If you are looking for some advice to capture better photos for your album, you might want to read my article with tips to improve your shots instantly.
Let me know in the comment section what would be your ideal topic for a photo album!