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Year in Review Albums
Posted By Jessica Sprague On January 5, 2010 @ 7:00 am In Photo Book Ideas | 15 Comments
As the end of 2009 approaches, it’s the perfect time to reflect on all the adventures of the past year. Did you move? Did you have a baby, send a child off to school for the first time, or have a child leave home? Even if nothing this momentous happened, you’re still another year wiser, and have another year’s worth of memories to treasure. Just how you do that is up to you, with a year-in-review album.
(Image by JessiW )
The purpose of a review album is to use a few specific moments to capture the feel of an entire period of time – most often a month (although you can do 52 weekly pages as well, you go-getter!). This takes the pressure off for perfection, since you’re going more for a sweeping overview than individually perfect photographic shots, and it also logically limits the size of your book – twelve 2-page spreads, plus a title page, and you’re done!
(Image by Joey-T )
And the final benefit of starting a year-in-review photobook tradition, comes with a little visualization exercise. Imagine with me right now, the spot on your bookshelf where the 2009 book will go. Now what about next year, tucked right in beside? Now what about ten years from now, when your shelf is filling with beautiful memories year by year? See why a year-in-review is worth tackling?
(Image by AnnAbbott )
Now that you’ve decided to take the plunge, I’ve got some tips to streamline your process as you select photos and write captions to create your Year In Review photobook!
Tip 1: Organize your photos by month to make finding easier
I store my digital photos in folders by the month they were taken, so it’s easy for me to dive in to my January folder and choose out 12-15 photos that tell the main stories for the month. Okay, the narrowing down part, maybe not so much. But the folder part, yes! I highly recommend creating a new folder in your file system for each month.
Tip 2: Choose a simple, multi-photo design
For this overview-style photo book, I like a design that crosses two pages and allows for 12-18 different photos. A multi-photo design fulfils two purposes, as well: it lets you tell more stories, and it allows your photos to “read” visually as a group. Since no one photo stands out, none of their possible imperfections stands out either. Always a good thing to reduce stress over photo editing!
Tip 3: Tell a good story even if you don’t have a photo for it
Did you go ice skating in January, but didn’t bring your camera? Be sure to save a space to tell that story in your year-in-review book, even if it’s a one-line highlight of that event. Reading your book in the future, that one line will spark a string of great memories!
Tip 4: Don’t forget the small stuff
Life has its huge moments, sure. But it’s mostly filled with the small stuff – daily happenings and events, routines, conversations, growth and change, learning and accomplishment on a smaller scale. Don’t forget that these are precious things worth remembering in a book just like this one. Maybe you want to include a list of the books you read that month, or the new recipes you tried, new routes you took in your morning run, new milestones your child passed – all the small pieces of joy that fill your life – make sure they have a place alongside the big things.
Creating Your PhotoBook
There are several ways to actually create your project:
As a digital scrapbooker, I will admit that I’m pretty partial to number three. And to show you how easy this method can be with a template, I’ve created a set you can download for free! Follow the simple instructions here, or click to watch a video tutorial I’ve prepared to show you how fun and easy digital templates can be!
Download the Digital Scrapbook Templates
To get you started with your own year-in-review photo book, I’ve designed a two-page spread you can open in Photoshop or Photoshop Elements and use as a template for telling your own stories month-by-month. No need to stress about design! Just about narrowing down those photos!
Click here  to download.
Here’s an example of how your two-page spreads might look:
To use this template:
Saving and Uploading
After you’ve completed a template, save the file as a .jpg (File > Save As, then change the format to .jpg), and upload your .jpg files to Shutterfly. Place each spread side-by-side in a blank 8-inch photo book, and you’re on your way to making a beautiful year-in-review album!
And for next year, try selecting photos and filling in stories as each month ends – recording a month at a time to finish a year in review album as you go along! You’ll be amazed at how much easier it is to remember those small, everyday memories. Happy Holidays, and joy to you as you look back on 2009, and forward to a bright year ahead!
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URL to article: http://blog.shutterfly.com/1685/year-in-review-albums/
URLs in this post:
 JessiW: http://community.shutterfly.com/gallery/post/start.sfly?postId=/gallery/1/post/GMGDFgzcOXDNs4YAktWWgO
 Joey-T: http://community.shutterfly.com/gallery/post/start.sfly?postId=/gallery/1/post/GMGDBg3aNGzlk4Ygu-OPMe
 AnnAbbott: http://community.shutterfly.com/gallery/post/start.sfly?postId=/gallery/1/post/GMGDBg4atXLlqzYAbN-Q0y
 Year In Review: http://www.shutterfly.com/photo-books/year-in-review-designed-by-lisa-bearnson/year-in-review-8x8-photo-book?cid=PICTURETHIS
 Simple Path: http://www.shutterfly.com/photo-books/simple-path?cid=PICTURETHIS
 Custom Path: http://www.shutterfly.com/photo-books?cid=PICTURETHIS
 Digital template in Photoshop: http://www.jessicasprague-m3.com/downloads/ JSprague-AYearInOurOrdinaryLife.zip
 Click here: http://www.jessicasprague-m3.com/downloads/JSprague-AYearInOurOrdinaryLife.zip
 click here: http://www.jessicasprague.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=691:tutorial-digital-templates&catid=25:general-photoshop-tips&q=template
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