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Creating Photo Books with Blurb presents three separate workflows for creating and publishing books that showcase photographs using the Blurb self-publishing service. The course starts with an exploration of photo bookmaking in BookSmart, Blurb's free desktop software, then shows how to make a simple photo book in Bookify, Blurb's online bookmaking service. The course also covers Blurb's PDF to Book plug-in for use with custom books created in Adobe InDesign, as well as information on ordering copies of photo books and selling them in the Blurb online bookstore.
Designing a cover for your Bookify book that looks good and that really represents the content and the mood of the book is important, because it's the cover that will first attract your readers. So let's talk about how to design a cover here in Bookify. I've been working on a special image for my cover in Photoshop, and I used the Get Photos button to go out and find that illustration and bring it in. And here it is down here in my photo stream. So now I'm ready to go out and design my cover, so I'll go up to the toolbar at the top of the screen and click Design Cover.
That may take you to the Design Cover workspace here, or if you haven't been there before, it might take you out to this page, where you can preview and choose your preferred cover type. Clicking on any one of these three choices displays an illustration of what that cover type looks like. So here's the Hardcover, surrounded by a Dust Jacket with flaps. Here's the Hardcover with ImageWrap, that has printing right on the cover. And here is the glossy Softcover version. I'm going to choose to design for the Hardcover with ImageWrap.
If I want to check out the prices of the various cover types and upgrades, I can click here. But I'm just going to go ahead and click Next. Over here I see the various elements of the cover type that I selected: Front cover, Back cover, and Spine. I'll start by designing the front cover. Down here, there is a Choose Layout button, I'll click that to see that there are other cover layouts that I can choose from. I could use the Shuffle Layout button or I could just find one that I like, click on it, and take a look here on the cover.
I think I'm going to shuffle through the other cover layouts to see if there's one that I like better. But my favorite is the first one, so I'm going to stick with that. Next, I'm going to drag that cover photo up onto the image container in this cover page layout. I'll drop it on the tab that appears-- it says Drop here to add. And here I notice that there's some white space on the sides that I designed into the photo when I was working with it in Photoshop. I want to crop that away. So, just like I would on an inner page of the book, I'll zoom in to the photo.
I'll click on the photo. That brings up the Positioning Toolbar. And I'll drag the Zoom Slider a bit to the right. I can also click inside the photo and drag so that just the portion I want is showing on the front of the book. And when I'm satisfied, I'll click off of the Front cover. Light blue is the default color for the rest of the background of the book. I really don't think that matches my book. I'd like to change that color. So I'm going to click on the Choose Background icon underneath the cover.
Here, I can choose from one of the colors in these chips and I can scroll over it to see what else is available. Or I can click the Eyedropper and move over the image and choose a color from there, which is a great way to match color. There isn't any color in this image, but I think I can get a dark gray that will look good with this cover photo. And then I'll click Done. I'm happy with that, so now I'll go on to Add a Title and Author Name into the text boxes that come with this cover layout. I'll click in the title text box and I'll type as the title Impressions of Venice.
I can see right away that that's not very readable on top of the dark gray background. So I'll select that, and I'll go to the Pick a Color box, and from here I'm going to pick white, and I'll click Done. I also am going to make the title larger, in terms of font size, so I'll come to this menu, and I'll try maybe 28 points. I could choose another font, but I'm going to stick with this for now. I also could set the alignment to the center or the right side of this text box if I wanted.
I'll leave that too, and then I'll click outside the text box. Then I'll click in the box that says Add Author Name. I can type whatever I want here, so I'm going to type Photographs by Jan Kabili. I want to make that white too, so I'll select all of that text by clicking and dragging over it. I'll click on the Pick a Color box. I'll click on my recent pick-- the white, and click Done. And I'll make that text a little bit bigger too, maybe 24 points, and I'll click outside the text box.
So there's the Front cover of my book, all designed. I'll take a look at the Back cover. Here I could add another photo, I could add more text, maybe a description of the book. I'm going to leave that blank for now. And I'll take a look at the Spine. You may see the title and author that you added on the Front cover. I don't, so I'm going to just type it in here again: Impressions of Venice. I'll select that, I'll make it a little bigger. And over here, Photographs by Jan Kabili. Select that, and make that a little bigger.
I'll go back to check the front cover one more time, and here I'm going to check SHOW SAFE ZONES, just to make sure that all the really important content is inside of that magenta border, because that area could be trimmed away during manufacturing. Then I'll uncheck SHOW SAFE ZONES, and I'm happy with the covers of the book. By the way, if you choose to design for the Hardcover with Dust Jacket and you design the inner flaps of the book, and then you decide to print your book as either a Softcover or a Hardcover with ImageWrap, any content that you put on the flaps won't appear in the printed Hardcover with ImageWrap or Softcover book.
Now I'm going to go back and finish editing the book. I'm going to the front matter here in the first spread. Now, here is the front end sheet of the book. End sheet is explained right here. It's a gray page that's going to be glued to the inside of the front cover, the back cover as well, and I can't print on this page. But over here, I can have a title and I could have a subtitle or maybe my name again. I'll click here and I'll type Impressions of Venice, if that's not automatically picked up in this text box.
And here, again, Photographs by Jan Kabili. This doesn't have to be a subtitle; I can type any text that I want there. Now, some people have another page that has copyright information on it. You can see that, in the Layouts, there is a layout for a Copyright page. But I'm not going to do that in this book. Then, I'm going to go to the very last page in the book by going up to the diagram at the top of the screen and clicking there, because I want to show you that there is another end sheet here and the page facing that has the Blurb logo on it.
If you don't want to keep the Blurb logo there, you can have it removed. To do that, I'll click on the logo, and here I see a message that tells me yes, I can remove the Blurb logo from the final page by clicking Use Custom Logo. But that will cost me, so before I do that, I want to be sure to check the Pricing and how much that is increased by removing the Blurb logo. I'm going to leave the Blurb logo on my book, I'll click X, and I am now all finished. Let's preview the cover by clicking Preview and going to Cover.
And there is the Front cover. Down here, I can move to the Spine and the Back cover, and back to the Front cover. So now I've got the kind of window to my book that I would like to have on the Front cover and I'm happy with the Spine and the Back cover too.
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