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Many people are frustrated writers, wanting to write ‘that novel’. Others see beautifully published ‘coffee table’ photography books and wish they had the money to produce such a thing.  You may have even started to think that  ‘publishing is dead”.

Well it seems that publishing has now become more democratic and allowed many others into the fold by using online and digital technology.Print on demand (POD) publishing has become popular because of changes in technology and of course the use of digital cameras and new home based software. It also makes use of reduced warehousing costs and unnecessary large print runs.


Take Mic, he has written a novel (still unpublished) has been working hard on his photography for some time, filling many hard back photographic albums at home and even venturing into a web site ( mic warmington pbase) but just last week he sends all his friends an email ‘I ‘m published’ .


Mic Warmington has been able to publish a wonderful testament to his colourful abstract images and without leaving him thousands in debt.


out of the corner of my eye. Mic W.



sea or sky? mic w.

and one of my favourites:


Mic says about his work:

I have often thought of my photographic work as “Sketching with a camera”, often highlighting and abstracting unnoticed details in the environment.


Mic Warmington black gash

He has published “out of the corner of my eye” using Blurb.

Is it difficult? It demands some thought and some creativity but the process is relatively painless.

Download software from Blurb (with In-design templates) or upload your files as pdf using your own design/publishing software(e.g. InDesign, PageMaker , Quark).

Add photos (300 dpi or more), artwork and text. Photos really should be of the best quality (viewed at  100%) as the page is less forgiving than the screen.

Order one book or many- (they start as low  3.95 pounds/5 dollars)

Choose between different cover types and  book sizes

Design for up to 440 pages using  standard paper, or up to 160 pages using Premium Paper , Promote and sell your work on Blurb.com and keep 100% of the markup.


Online publishing is not so new -many traditional publishers   can help you publish books and market them,like instantpublisher but often you still have to have a guaranteed production of say 25-100 copies. What is good about sites like blurb and lulu is that you can produce just one copy if you want.


There are even competitions for the best books of the month.

If you want to share that book with a few close friends they can go directly to the site and order just one more copy. People are now publishing their blogs as they have invested so much time in writing and publishing they want to produce a legacy in hard copy.And of course what a better present than to give a book of personalised text and images which will be quite unique (remember you can order just one copy or have a limited edition). What about a cookery book of your best recipes?And your dissertation? What about your own travel book?Wedding photographs?

lulu can also provide you with your own ISBN number and bar code. As an estimate Lulu could manufacture one copy of a 100 page hardcover book with full colour images for about 18 pounds (22 Euros,35 USD). You can decide the markup but lulu will take about 20% of the ‘profit’ after you have paid the manufacturing costs. Probably for a colour photobook I would choose Blurb, but if you are publishing a novel, with mainly black and white text then Lulu might be the better option.

Both lulu and blurb offer good tutorials to take you through the whole process and can also help with marketing if you want to go down that road (many just publish single copies for their own use rather than sell). Artists have produced books of their own work to show as their own portable gallery – good for getting exhibition space.

There are other providers like Appleiphoto books but lulu and blurb  seem the most user friendly and cost effective, at the moment.


I am sure this will be a fast growth area – so keep an eye on new providers.

Some other publishers for photobooks include snapfish and mypublisher(20 pages,colour photos-$34.75).

Shipping – be aware that the cost of shipping one copy to Europe may cost as much as $20 with a reduction for more copies. PhotoBooks are zero-rated for VAT in the U.K. Shipments to other European destinations may be subject to VAT and additional taxes, duties or other customs fees upon delivery.

Of course there is the GREEN option  – publishing e books only –

Yudu is the choice for green publishing. All publications are in e-format and the company is carbon neutral. Perhaps we need to encourage some of the self publishers to offer elephant dung recycled paper and bamboo fibre covers  ( I am serious! ).

As I said before there will be many new digital publishers -I will add as they come on line. Here is one: albelli

Here is a quick review of their prices to compare with others:

Photo book square

Photo book landscape

Photo book portrait

Pocket photo book

Photo book covers



Greeting cards


Overview of prices

Albelli offers a wide range of photo products. In the list below there is an overview of prices and additional options.

Prices of our products exclude postage and packing. Postage costs vary depending on product and product size. Products of Albelli are delivered worldwide.

Photo products Standard price Per extra page High gloss

per page Photo cover Title on

the cover Bonded leather

Photo book square

Square XL £34.95 £0.75 £0.30 £7.25 £3.95 £9.95

Square L £24.95 £0.65 £0.20 £4.95 £3.95 £7.50

Square M £13.95 £0.40 £0.15 £3.95 £2.50 £4.59

Photo book landscape

Landscape XL £54.95 £0.99 £0.40 £10.00 not possible £10.00

Landscape L £25.95 £0.65 £0.20 £4.95 £3.50 £7.50

Landscape M £15.95 £0.40 £0.15 £3.95 £2.50 £4.95

Landscape S £9.95 £0.25 £0.10 £2.95 £1.50 £3.50

Photo book portrait

Portrait L £25.95 £0.65 £0.20 £4.95 £3.50 £7.50

Pocket photo book £6.95

Check on the quality of the paper also -200gm