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How-to's Software Reviews

Using the Lightroom Book Module - Part 1

Connie Cassinetto (Via the Lens)

Keywords: adobe, lightroom, book

I’m an Adobe user and have been for about 10 years now.  Lightroom (LrC) is my primary software program and I mostly use it and Photoshop, although I often use other software, too.  I find software fairly easy to use for the most part so I spend a lot of time “playing” with my images.  I love to create a piece that looks more artistic in nature and Photoshop is great for this.  Over time I’ve created many images that have a “watercolor” look or have a background texture added or have some other type of treatment.  Recently, I’ve been getting a lot of advertisements from Blurb for printing books, some for as much as 40% off.  This appeals to me as I normally create books using Lightroom and Blurb that run around $80 to $100 per book, these are large “coffee table” type books.  LrC makes organizing images to create a book very easy and the software is very flexible when it comes to organizing images or creating pages in the Book Module.  Given the on-going discounts I decided to create a book of my more artistic creations and then send it to Blurb when the next discount announcement arrived over email.  If you have not used the Book Module it can be a bit daunting at first but after creating the first couple of books it becomes much easier.  

This screenshot shows the back and front cover of my book as well as a couple of full-page spreads using two different page layouts. There are multiple layouts you can choose and each page can be changed as needed
Click for an enlargement


Your first task will be to decide on the images you want to include in your book. You can choose images that are in a folder, in an existing or newly created collection, or you can use keywords and the filter bar.  Any of these choices will work.  Sometimes I use a folder, if the folder does not contain a lot of images that I know I will not use, and sometimes I create a-temporary collection or use the Keyword List and/or the filter bar.  For the book on the artistic images I chose the keyword “Background Textures” from the Keyword List and then confined the selection choices with the filter bar to only images that were 5-star.  My general processing system is one where I take images and then process those that I like right away; as I process and finish I “5-star” the finished image. This makes it easy to quickly choose images for future projects.  To create a temporary collection, if you want to drag images from multiple folders, use the collection panel in the Library Module (click on the plus sign and a box will pop up asking you for a name for your new collection).  I have a Collection Set called Books and my finished saved books go into that collection set just in case I want to do something with a book in the future. Sometimes it helps to organize your images ahead of time if you do have a specific sequence of events, but I’m normally creating a picture book so the sequence is not important for me.  


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Herb Brail (hbrail) on August 14, 2020

Donor Ribbon awarded for his generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2014

Many thanks, this gives me a great start on experimenting with combining text and images.

Connie Cassinetto (Via the Lens) on August 12, 2020

Ribbon awarded for her valuable contributions to the Articles Section.

Hi Herb, on adding text and the template layout. I had to go into the Book Module and play around to remind myself what can be done. Actually, the software is pretty forgiving. The text layout, however, can taks a bit of time to figure out. If you want a full page of text only you go to Text Pages in the Page panel and click on the little down arrow or you click on the bottom of a page where the arrow is located on the right, although it looks like you can also add a small image to some of the text only pages. Otherwise you simply scroll through the 1-photo to 4-photo layout templates and choose the template that works for you. You can move a text or image cell around on the page by clicking in the center, holding down the mouse, and then moving the box where you want it. You can leave space between the template boxes or push them all up next to one another. You can push a text or image box out longer or make it shorter and you can remove a box using right-click. You can also add a text or image box, use Photo Description, with a right-click. The right-click is very important in LrC, in all modules, as it gives you many options. I hope this answers your question.

Connie Cassinetto (Via the Lens) on August 11, 2020

Ribbon awarded for her valuable contributions to the Articles Section.

Hi Herb, Yes, it is possible to do a two-page spread with text on the spine. In the Page Panel after you click on the little down arrow choose "Two Page Spreads." Experiment to see which one works best for you. The image must be large enough in pixel size to support doing this and sizing would depend on how large of a book page you chose. Remember that at 8 x 10, an image would be required to be around 3000 pixels on the long side. Normally, if you shoot RAW or JPEG FINE (name may change depending on your camera) you'll get a file that is large enough for a full-page spread as long as you have not cropped it to a much smaller size. A pano should work fine for a wrap. I did this with a book about Yellowstone where I shot a landscape pano with fall color and it came out beautifully. Sizing is a whole other conversation! I'll write again about the other question. The software does have limits.

Herb Brail (hbrail) on August 9, 2020

Donor Ribbon awarded for his generous support to the Fundraising Campaign 2014

Very informative. I hope in Part 2 you will go into some detail about adding text (perhaps more than a simple caption or image title) and integrating one or more text boxes onto pages containing images. Also, on the front and back covers, whether a panoramic image can be wrapped around both sides with vertical text on the spine.

Connie Cassinetto (Via the Lens) on August 6, 2020

Ribbon awarded for her valuable contributions to the Articles Section.

Hi, just got another email from Blurb this morning....40% off. Hope to have second part of article posted soon! Blurb CODE MYKEEPSAKE.

bruce thoms (dripdrymcfleye) on August 5, 2020

Thank you for being so generous in sharing your time and experience based knowledge. I'm sure that many will benefit from your effort.