It seems like photo albums, much like the name Gary and incandescent light bulbs, aren’t long for this world. Facebook, Instagram and other photo sharing apps seem to have rendered the physical album all but redundant. And while our sacrificing of privacy for collective convenience seems to dominate the discourse, we’re also forfeiting the joy of having our memories in one, tangible place; a collectible item which a thousand digital prints online just can’t compete with. If you’re inspired and thinking about making your own, here’s how; our 4 IDEAL tips for creating a photobook.

PICK A THEME 

One of the first things you need to do is establish a theme. Nope, a random collection of drunken uni photos just won’t do here. Ditto grainy snaps of your dinner. You need some focus and discipline to create an album which is truly memorable.

Some of the most common types of themes include family members, events (weddings, birthdays, graduations…you know the score), as well as travel (using a photo book to relive an amazing holiday). With so many different themes to pick from, it’s best to begin at the end, as it were. What we mean by that is that you should find meaning in your existing photos rather than dreaming up a theme and rushing through new snaps to complement it. 

USE MORE THAN JUST PHOTOS 

One of the great things about creating a photo book rather than committing your memories to the digital sphere is that you can use physical, tangible items which have significance to your life. As such, you’re granted a huge freedom to look beyond the photo; include poetry, programs, stickers, postcards, illustrations and menus from memorable meals. Make the pages pop. Reach out and touch them. Now that’s not something you can’t do on Facebook (Zuckerberg, if you’re listening, you’re welcome).

THE FRAME IS AS IMPORTANT AS THE PICTURE

Obviously, you’ll need to find an actual album to do your precious memories justice, to hold them to its heart as you do. You wouldn’t just shove them in a file or note pad, now would you? Indeed, a proper album provider who can help bring your ideas to life is vital. Companies like photobookdeals.co.uk are committed to providing the best photo book deals, from the most basic all the way to high-end professional books. Shop around and find something that suits your aesthetic. The rest writes itself.

ASK PEOPLE TO CONTRIBUTE 

Whether you want to document special occasions such as your wedding or your first day as a new parent, or simply capture snaps of everyday life moving and grooving, asking your nearest and dearest for help could prove hugely beneficial. It’s only natural that your loved ones will want to take – and will, in the past, have taken –  photos of your special days, so you may find that they have excellent snaps knocking around that could complete your collection. Having those close to you contribute towards your book can provide a sentimental touch too. Whether they help by either making a particular chapter or page their own or submit any other items they may have, looking back on the photo book in years to come will fill you with nostalgia and appreciation for your family members and friends.