Post Christmas

2009, Photography

I haven’t been busy taking photographs after Christmas, but I did find some time and enthusiasm to actually continue on my book project. I really want to finish this book, but doing so is pretty difficult. First making a selection of photographs, the book lay-out and preparing the photographs for the book.

I decided to create my book with the Blurb services. The BookSmart software is pretty simple to use, but you can also use Photoshop or DTP apps like Quark or InDesign. And preparing the photographs for the book is something I find quite difficult. I found out that Blurb uses HP Indigo printers and there is a HP Indigo 5000 ICC profile available somewhere else to do the soft proofing.

I have had good experience with printing large formats at a Dutch printing facility and they cope B&W prints very well. But printing a large book is something different and it is funny how little control you have over the entire process. So I will first do a small square book to see how different versions of some photographs look like. Unfortunately it is a quite slow process with lots of uncertainties.

So, if people have some experience with Blurb, please let me know. I am in particular interested in the B&W printing and how people did their soft proofing.

The only proper chances of photography have been the last two days. Yesterday at an industrial park and today when the kids where playing tennis. After all the Ricoh GXR stuff it was good to be back to the Canon 10D with the older Tokina 28mm and the M42 Pentor 35mm lens.

And last night I stumbled upon an article by the (in)famous Rockwell, which strongly reminded me of one of my posts in January of this year. The wish for a simple camera and less choices to focus more on our photographs.

All photographs by Wouter Brandsma

13 thoughts on “Post Christmas

  1. I bought 3 Blurb books this year: “Cellular Obscura” by Shawn Rocco, “Facing Paris” by David Ken and “E.U. 01” by Chris Weeks. All 3 books have almost 100% b+w images and they look absolutely great.

    In general, from what I’ve heard some b+w images tend to be a bit darker than the original, but not all of them – what makes it kind of a tough job to prepare your pictures for printing, I guess.

    1. Darker and a color cast are most likely to happen. My first test book will have some original photographs, a 10% brightened version, and a version soft proofed with the ICC profile. Still all very exciting anyway.

  2. Looking forward to it Wouter. I’m sure it will be worth the effort your making so enjoy the process involved and don’t worry too much about the small stuff ūüėÄ

  3. Hello Wouter,

    thanks for pre and post Christmas. Thank you for a year with passion and obsession. Make it simple as it ever was and will be….

    Have a nice 2010.


  4. I’ve also recently become interested in Blurb – I hadn’t even heard about the service until about a month ago. I’d like to hear how your project ends up.

    Have a great New Year!!

  5. Oddly enough I’ve been taking a lot of pics with my cell phone. Because there is nothing to do other than frame/compose and shoot I find myself forced to think more about matters like framing….composing….you know. Photography.

    I’m not saying I shoot better pics with my cell phone (truth be told: I use it to shoot tonnes of stuff, every day stuff, just to record moments in time that I will hopefully look back upon fondly later), but I believe I think more about them.


    But I’m not giving up my D40 yet either…

    1. The thing is that the iPhone is just all about framing, composing and pressing the shutter button. With modern cameras you have to go through menu’s, press some buttons, before you can do your framing, composing and releasing the shutter.

      Instead of using your Canon zoom lenses, you might want to look for an older prime lens and an adapter. Set the camera to center weighted metering, manual mode, and enjoy the good old fun.

  6. I wish you good luck with your photobook.
    I to did an photobook with photos from last year, and it was a good feeling when i got it. It feels better to lock at ones photos on real paper and in a book, instead of always looking on them on the screen.

    Best wishes


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