Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Pictures + Words

Over the past year I've spent a lot of time documenting my work, my time and my experiences. School requires a certain amount of this as do job and residency applications. At first I took the practical approach by laying out my words and images in simple grids and when binding was necessary I used a plain metal coil. However, after a few compilations I became a little bored. I looked at the books and portfolios of artists and designers that seemed way more like play than work. As a result my books and portfolios have changed dramatically and I'm happy to say look way more like play than work too! I think the best parts are the sketches, watercolors, comments and quotes that show not just facts but humor and whimsy. Most of us aren't professional artists nor are we established writers but we have thoughts and talents and sharing those with friends and family can mean more than a fancy coffee table book or novel.

Steel Petal Press 

One great tool is Lulu. Both a publisher and a book fabricator, it's a fantastic online services where you can use one of their many templates or go rogue and create your own. Cookbooks, novels, portfolios, photo books, wedding albums, calendars and e-books... you name it! I'm currently using their service to make a book which requires me to upload a pdf of my text and images (the website walks you through the simple, limited steps), select the cover and binding and voila, for approximately $25 I'll have my softcover 85 page book.

So, think of the words and images you've shared with friends and family... song lyrics, photos, concert ticket stubs, crazy nights out, family meals, the birth of your nephew, an epic road trip... and you've got a pretty amazing gift!


Emily Smith

No comments: