Saturday, May 4, 2013

Creating a Photobook from Lightroom

I've gradually been using Lightroom more and more in my workflow after being thoroughly convinced by Jared Platt's The Ultimate Lightroom Workflow class at CreativeLive. I even bought LRv4 just so I could create photobooks. (You can download Lightroom 5 Beta for free).

My first book arrived this week:

The cover was obviously not created in Lightroom. Credits here.

Lightroom only creates Blurb books so the photobooks can only be in Blurb sizes. You might notice that this book is in A4 landscape size- my preferred size. This is NOT a Blurb book. The closest Blurb has is 10"x8" or 12"x12".

So I thought I'd share how I made a non-Blurb book from Lightroom.
I pretended I was making a 12"x12" Blurb book and chose a bunch of templates that allowed a big margin at the top and the bottom. In Lightroom my pages looked like this:

Just to be sure, I made an image to use in the background that showed how much margin I needed.

That way I could easily check what was going to be chopped off my page.

Then from Lightroom I exported my book as JPG, and used the autoflow function in my photobook software (Albumworks) to automatically make full bleed pages. The excess margins were ignored.

It was so nice to be able to work within Lightroom switching between the Develop module to edit images and the Book module to work on the page. The export to JPG and import into my Albumworks photobook software at the end was a bit of a pain (I wish Blurb had A4 as an option!) but I'll certainly do it this way again.

Here are some more pages from my book:

If you're interested in giving Lightroom's Book module a try I recommend watching some of Julieanne Kost's free tutorials. She explains it very simply.

At first the set of templates in Lightroom seems a bit limited, but you can play around with the padding of cells and captions to easily customise them. I was even able to turn a photo cell into a journaling box by placing a white photo in the cell and adjusting the offset of the caption so it started at the top.

It was all quite straight forward, and I had a photobook done in record time! Great fun! :)


  1. Hey girl, nice to see you posting again! I don't have Lightroom, but this makes me want to give it a try. Oh, and creating photobooks... haven't done that either. I must!

    1. Yes, you must!! I hate to think of all your magnificent pages locked away in a computer!

  2. This looks so beautiful that I really am tempted ... The elegance and clarity of the design is lovely. Yu have made a splendid job of it!

  3. The photo book is stunnning and even though I understand the lingo all of this seemed double dutch to are good at these photo'll be pleased to know I am sorting out my photo a day 2011 using the template you are using for 2013 or was that 2012....there are so many good books of yours. It just comes down to time now...I'm picking the photo and dumping them into the template by month and then I'm going to go back and do the journalling...that is the plan anyway. Myself and my 2 girlfriends are meeting up this week for (what we affectionately know it as Photo Club) and I am going to keep working on this after all your inspiration I need to get moving and produce a book. Regards Kathy A, Brisbane, Australia PS Glad you posted....

  4. Gorgeous!!! I love it Esther!

  5. Thank you so much for sharing! I was trying to find a way to use this module but in Europe we mainly print in A4. This was so helpful! :)

    1. I am glad! I hoped I didn't skip too many steps in my explanation. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions!


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