How to Create Professional-Looking Photo Book Layouts

By Katie Nielsen
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Photo books are an ideal way to commemorate and preserve your favorite photographs. However, designing a polished and stunning photo book can be a daunting task, especially if you have never made one before or are not particularly creative or artistic. So how do you create professional-looking layouts that let your photos shine? You don't have to be a photography pro; just follow these six simple steps.

Create a Focal Point – Busy layouts can be distracting and deter from the inherent beauty of your photos. This is especially true of layouts with equally sized photo boxes. Create a focal point on each page using a standout photo, surrounded with smaller, supporting images. For particularly eye-catching photos, opt for a panoramic spread, in which a single image is spread across two pages, similar to a two-page magazine spread.

Remember: Less is More – In the same vein as the first tip, always remember that less is more when you make a photo book. Take a minimalist approach to designing layouts, allowing your photos to take center stage and shine on their own, without the use of distracting graphics or too many photos.

Mix It Up – While you want your photos to be the focus of your photo book, you don't want to use the same layout on every page. This will result in a boring, uninspired photo book that lacks visual interest. Create diverse but balanced layouts on each page. For instance, if a page has a one-photo spread, use a layout with two or three supporting images on the opposite page.

Convey a Story – Your custom photo book should flow naturally and tell a story, especially if you are making an event-based photo book. Organize your photos chronologically and present them in that order. You want the people you share your photo book with to feel like they are experiencing your past with you.

Upload Only the Best Photos – Chances are, not every single photo you took on vacation is going to make it into your photo book. If you upload every single one into the service or software you use to design your photo books, you're likely to be overwhelmed by all the photos and have a tough time choosing which ones to use. Narrow down the photos to your favorites and those that are essential to the story (see the previous tip) that you are trying to tell.

Give it Your Personal Touch – Predesigned templates provide a great foundation for custom photo books, but you can give your project your own personal touch by tweaking your chosen layout in any way you want. Resize your photos, insert text, or add graphics and embellishments to make the template truly your own.

Gorgeous, professional-looking photo books are not as difficult to create as you may think, even if artistic design isn't your forte. Follow these easy yet effective tips to design striking photo book layouts that truly look professional.

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