Making Books with Blurb and Lightroom 4

With the release of Adobe’s Lightroom 4 they formed a partnership with the online bookmaking service and produced an in-app module that is very similar in experience to making books within Apple’s Aperture application. That is to say, it’s extremely easy and user friendly. I wanted to find out for myself how easy the process was, the following is an account of my experience.


When you launch Lightroom 4 you will see the “Book” module in the upper right hand corner of the application, if you were to just click on it right away you would be presented with a blank book template at which point you’re going to have to populate with some photos. What I chose to do (as I had previous experience with using Aperture’s bookmaking process) was first make a collection of the photos I thought I would want to use for my book. There really is no “required” order or anything like that forced upon you, and you are free to create whatever kind of book you desire. If I may offer a suggestion though, having photos that tell some sort of cohesive story is far more compelling than a random collection of photos. Once I had my collection established, I launched the book module and was presented with some choices. One has to decide between some different things before you start to build your book, namely: “What size book to you want?” and “What type of paper do you want it on?”  Once you’ve made that decision you can begin to drag and drop your images onto your pages and build your layout.

The building process really is as easy as drag & drop, which is a very welcome feature in my opinion, and it makes for a very quick building process. You have the freedom to choose from a number of page styles and formats to place your photos or text into. The whole experience is incredibly user friendly and allows for really impressive levels of customization, you’re definitely not stuck with a “pre-canned” template like some other services.

Once you have your layout completed and your book size chosen all you have to do afterwards is hit the “Send Book to Blurb…” button and place your order. Easy huh? Now, for those of you that are thinking of making a book as a potential holiday gift this season, if that’s you, you’re in luck as there is still plenty of time to get your book made and in time for the holidays.

Here are the shipping cutoffs from Blurb:

  • Slow shipping – Monday, December 10th
  • Medium shipping – Wednesday, December 12th
  • Fast – Sunday, December 17th

Additionally, Blurb is offering holiday discounts presently through December 12th:

Enter the code HOLIDAY12 at checkout through December 12, 2012* and save:

  • 15% off with no minimum spend
  • 20% off with a minimum order of $50 or more

I was really pleased with the quality of the book once it arrived, the pages have a nice weight to them and the covers were well done. I would like to experiment with other layout choices and cover designs in the future. So, in the end, thanks to the partnership between Adobe and it is very easy to make high quality photo books for just about any occasion. I have the one that I made for myself, but the neat thing is that the storefront allows you to even sell the books you create through their service! This opens up all sorts of possibilities for photographers to produce their own books with their artwork and sell it on a global market, very cool if you ask me. I plan on making more myself because as soon as I finished my first one I already had ideas for the next one, and something tells me I’m going to have a lot of books before too long! Check it out for yourself and see what you think about the process.

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