Looking for a beautiful tangible printed wedding album that will hold all your treasured memories and have pride of place in your home? Well, wedding albums have definitely moved on since the days of the ringbound album with the clear plastic sheet you’d lift to stick your 4 X 6s into (totes showing my age now)!
When you have your wedding photographed by Zoe Larkin Photography, I offer Fine Art Heirloom Albums, which will blow you away with their elegant style, enduring quality and true craftsmanship. Get in touch for more information about the albums themselves and to view the samples.
I offer a full service process from guiding your through image choices, to design, to delivery to your door. We will collaborate every step of the way to make sure you receive the album of your dreams, with no surprises.
Take me through it, one step at a time!
1. You make some initial album choices
The process begins when you view my album samples! If you can’t make it to my studio, you can still get a good feel for the albums by viewing my detailed guide which you’ll receive online. If you come to a consultation, you’ll receive the guide to remind you of the options.
I’ll also keep track of the choices you were drawn to by noting them down during the meeting and sending them to you so that you can sleep on it and finalize when you’re ready.
There are definitely options, but the choices are not overwhelming. I have a modest, tailored selection of tasteful leathers and linens (think about coordinating your colors with your home) to choose from, as well as custom photo covers and cover debossing. Cover text? You’ll need to tell me exactly what you’d like it to read.
Other requests can be accommodated even if you don’t see the options presented, but I do try to keep things as simple as possible.
2. You pay the deposit and the design process begins!
Once you’d like to move ahead, I’ll prepare your album contract which locks in the options you select. Unlike your wedding photography contract, the album design & production contract only needs to be signed by one of you, so let me know which partner you’d prefer to handle the admin.
When you return that contract, you’ll also pay the first payment of 50% online straight afterwards via an invoice link I’ll send. That must be received before design can begin.
3. Choose the images for your album
Once I know the album you’d like and how many spreads you are thinking, I can tell you how many images will fit. Albums come with 10 spreads (20 pages) as standard, with more available at a very reasonable rate.
As a general rule of thumb, I like to design with an average of 2 or 3 images per spread. A larger 12 X 12 album allows for more images because they won’t get lost on the large page. An 8 X 8 album only looks good with a maximum of 4 per spread. Some spreads will have just one panoramic image – PS this looks awesome, BTW.
It’s best not to crowd every spread, and to allow your design to breathe, with some white space too. When it comes to design, less is more.
My photography also adheres to these same principles of minimalism and negative space. Rather than cramming 10 images onto every spread, I design with simplicity and boldness in mind.
So for the a 20 spread (40 page) album: I suggest the following:
8 X 8 album: 50 images
10 X 10 album: 65 images
12 X 12 album: 80 images
How is image selection done? Well, for one thing YOU pick the images you’d like to be included in your wedding album design.
On your online gallery hit the ‘favorite’ (heart) button at the top when the photo in question is enlarged on the screen.
The system will prompt you to enter your email address, as only one email address is linked to each ‘favorite’ list. Then, it will ask you which list, so click ‘For my Album’!
The ‘For my album’ list will be added when you decide you’d like an album. Let me know if you don’t see it there! This can only be tied to one email address so let me know which partner’s email address to link the list to.
You can favorite and un-favorite, as you please until you’re happy with your selections. You can revisit another day and your selects will be saved. If you go over the suggested number, that’s cool, I will design using the number of images you have selected and extra spreads will be added.
The next important step is to inform me once you’ve made your final selections, by emailing me.
4. Collaborate on the design process & approve!
I’ll get to work once I have your album choices and photo selects.
As I’ve mentioned, I see the process of designing your album as a collaborative one. With some smart web-based album software, you’ll be able to quickly and easily proof your design online. You’ll flick through the virtual pages as if you were holding the album in your hands.
Using the ‘comment’ feature on the webpage, you can let me know anything you’d like change, like ‘swap out this image for this one’, ‘make this one bigger’, etc.
When all is good, you would approve the album design online! And we’re done! Once you finalize your design and before we go to print that’s when I’ll invoice you for part 2 – the second 50%. [You can also simply pay everything on the first invoice!]
Note: companion albums (also called parent albums) must be an exact replica of the main album, and ordered at the same time in order to qualify the discount. However, the cover can be different. Discount applies to whichever is the cheapest. If ordering 2 (or more) companion albums, the cheapest two will both receive the discount.
So, that’s really it concerning the process of ordering your book! I also had a few FAQ’s to address – the questions I get a lot!
How long does it take?
There are two parts to this question – how long does the design take and how long does delivery take?
Firstly, the design piece really depends on how many rounds of revisions we go through. If you approve the first design I send, then it’s really going to be a very quick process! But each round of tweaks takes time to implement, email, wait for feedback etc, and as I do all the design work myself, also has to fit around my schedule of shooting, editing, owning a business and keeping myself healthy!
I would advise to start the album process when you know you’re going to have some time available at your computer to collaborate on the process.
There are multiple steps I’ll be waiting on you for – signing the contract, paying both of the invoices, and then going through rounds of revision. If it’s the busiest time of your work year, or you’re about to go on vacation, move house or undertake a stressful new project those may not be the best times to think about your album.
I do try to keep the process moving from my side as I don’t want to keep your album from you any longer than I have to! That said, allow up to 2 weeks (during my busiest times) for me get my initial design to you. I definitely want to do this justice and not rush. After that, the tweaks should take far less time, ideally 2 – 3 days each time.
Up to 2 rounds of revision are included, extra rounds can be added on and will be added to the invoice for your final payment.
I say allow a week to 10 days for your album to get to you once you have the approved the final design.
I like to add treats and little tokens of my gratitude to the package you’ll receive in the mail and sometimes I take pics of your album for Instagram (c’mon, they are too dreamy not to!!) If you need your album ASAP I can have it dispatched directly to you, though this means I won’t get a chance to check it over first.
If there are any issues with it of course let me know!
When should I order my album?
You can order your album whenever you like, but honestly, during my busy season of shooting/editing (May – November) design will be slower than during my winter when I can devote more time and attention to getting clients’ albums out the door!
The best time and fastest time for me to design albums is February – April.
If you are planning to gift an album for example for a holiday, anniversary or special occasion, I urge you to allow plenty of time – ideally at least 6 weeks! That will just help to avoid any disappointment or the need to charge rush fees if I just can’t feasibly complete your album on time, especially if I have heavy seasonal orders, a crazy burst of City Hall weddings (December is the busiest time of year for them!) or upcoming vacations on the horizon.
Can I order my album years after the wedding?
Yes! My prices do change over time as the cost of doing business increases, but they will always be fair, and the price increases are incrementally small. I keep all my delivered photo files, so you don’t need to worry that I don’t have them! If I’m still here, I can design your album! : )
The album guide that you received has prices that are valid for within 1 year of the date you received it. After that, prices are not guaranteed.
Can you incorporate photographs that you didn’t take?
I’m afraid not. The album is a bespoke piece of art for which I’ve been commissioned and which bears my name, and I only use my own images that I and my second photographer shot with your album in mind. I do recommend the many consumer photo and album labs, including Google’s own, that will auto-design some great books for all you and your guests’ images, to supplement that album that I’ll design for you.
I can include photos from engagements or any other shoots that we did together! Or if you had multiple wedding celebrations, no problem, we can combine or create separate books, or only use images from one of the celebrations. However I do find that it can tough enough to cull down from hundreds of images to just 50 or so, I can only imagine if you have thousands to choose from. You’ve been warned!
Albums are I believe the most compelling way of displaying your images because they tell a story, which is central to the way I take pictures. The intimacy and interactivity of flipping through pages is really special.
This article is meant to provide a thorough overview as to what’s involved before you make your decision. To get more info, or if you’re ready to view samples and start your legacy today please get in touch!