Oh What A Year (Our 2012 Photobook)



I love making photobooks.  I originally started this project with the intention of doing a quick pick ten memorable moments of the year type album. Picking ten was easy, it was just a matter of finding photos to correspond with quotes from Audrey and Madeline. I don’t like to write much. I typically don’t include a lot of journaling in photobooks, only because it takes me so long to write but I do like to include some. Taking a “things you said” or “conversations we had” approach is an easy way to incorporate stories. I imagine years down the road when the girls are older, we will flip through this album and there will be lots of “omigosh remember that?” and “you used to say this all the time” and that will be the beginning of a whole new set of conversations.


By the time I’d gotten to moment no. 10 I had also stumbled across a few more photos that I wanted to include in the album. But most of them were just photos I liked or milestone/memorable moments with no quotes associated with it. So instead of continuing with the number sequence, I added a simple divider page to transition out of the “ten things” section.  To maintain continuity, I carried over the circular photo masks.





In terms of photos, this book is about 50% photos taken with the DSLR (like these above) and 50% iphone photos (like the two below). This ratio makes sense because I wanted to document both the big moments (this is usually when we have the DSLR out) and the everyday moments (we have our phones all the time).




The photos on the front and back cover were taken by Jaclyn Kaiser of The Image is Found.  This ended up being 72 pages long and I’m completely thrilled with it. I think it really helped that I started the project with a do-able goal of documenting ten things, otherwise I wouldn’t have started it at all.

This album template will be available in my shop this Friday, February 15, 2013. Both 12×12 and the 8.5×11 formats will be offered.

about this photobook

– 72 pages, 8.5×11 magazine style, printed at Blurb

Ten Things Album Kit (now available in my shop: 12×12 and 8.5×11)

– photos edited using Lightroom, RadLab or VSCO.


Blog Comments

Love this so much! I will be purchasing that Album Kit for sure!!!

Thanks Elizabeth! Did you make a book with your whitebox session photos yet? It’s still on my list of things to do. 🙂


Gorgeous! Can’t wait to see the kit!

Ronnie xo

Simply gorgeous! I love how you put this book together, and how you kept it manageable. Lovely!

Insanely good. WOW.

you are so inspiring. this is lovely!

just amazing Liz! love love all the little details, photos! you are so talented!! 🙂

Oh my god!!! This is SO BEAUTIFUL! I’m in love! 🙂 Wow, this is awesome! Thank you very much for all the inspiration Liz.

This is the most beautiful photo album I’ve ever seen!

You are a genius! That book is awesome and oh-so beautiful!

Liz, this is AWESOME! Love the simplicity but the huge impact it makes! Can’t wait for it to hit the store so I can make one for myself! (^_^)

Thanks Claudette, can’t wait to see what you make!

Hi Liz

This is AMAZING!!!

Thanks so much Veronica!!

This is stunning!

Liz , the album so elegant and lovely.
Earlier in this week I sent you an mail for buying Professional Use part from your kit if you can answer a bout that it will be great.
thank you,

Hi! I love this. What book did you use to create this? Is this a magazine book? I really like this style vs a hardcover book. Thanks!

Hi Erin, I printed via blurb. This particular style is the magazine format and softcover is the only option. They do offer regular photobook formats and you can go with softcovers for those as well as hardcover (image wrap) or hardcover (linen) with a custom dustjacket, just like a traditional “coffee table” book.

Just got the email with the kit templates, I love this book! It’s such a perfect way to use the magazine format, and it has so many possibilities. Thanks for another amazing product!

So thrilled you like it Cindie!

This is gorgeous and I’m so inspired to start making photobooks from all your posts. I think I recall seeing a post on your process for getting pictures ready to print, including your preferred settings in RadLab but I can’t find it. I would love to make some of the books from your templates, do I need to purchase photoshop elements? And you mention Lightroom, do I need this? I currently have just iPhoto for managing and adjusting my photos. One last question, any tips on how you mange to choose just two images of an event to print! I always feel like printing every good shot that I’ve taken. Thanks so much for the gorgeous inspiration.

Hi Sandra.

Did you mean this post? http://paisleepress.com/2011/11/before-after-photo-processing-with-radlab/

In order to use my templates, yes you will need photoshop elements. There is a 30 day trial version that you can download.

Both Iphoto and Lightroom are photo management/editing software, though Lightroom is a much more robust program and can do so much more in terms of photo editing. If you’re happy with the results you’re getting in iphoto, there’s really no need to get Lightroom. 🙂

Tips on choosing just two images per event? When it comes to choosing photos, sometimes it’s hard to just choose two, it’s something that I still struggle with. I think the key is two things. 1.) the more photos you print and the more pages you get done, the less pressure you’ll feel to want to print everything, if that makes sens at all. AT least that is the case for me. 2.) Don’t pressure yourself or limit yourself to just printing one or two. If you feel that including more photos is an essential part of telling the story, then by all means, include them. If your goal is to fit more photos on a page you can always go the photo collage route. Here’s a few examples of collages I’ve included in my project life entries:


And pages in photobooks with lots of photos:



Hope that helps Sandra!

i love it! it looks so great!

Thanks so much Jodi!

I love your style! I made 3 photobooks last year because of you. So, thank you for the inspiration 🙂

Beautiful, inspiring, wonderful work that you develop!
You have a brazilian fan.
When I grow up I wanna be like you 🙂

[…] have some intricate designs but also some very minimalist–in fact, here’s an example of Paislee’s own 2012 book.)  For others who prefer a more homespun or crafty look, there are options for that, too!  You […]

I adore this book, Liz! And, I have one of those second children too, the “I’m going be mad all the time” types… luckily for all of us she only holds to that pledge some of the time now that she’s older (8). But whoo boy, watch out some of the time : )

[…] am making a photobook based on our favourite things using Liz‘s Ten Things album kit. Since this is the last Sunday I’ll be sharing our happiness […]

I am trying to purchase this pack but everytime I go to shop or anything it says google cannot connect to the lilypad store! HELP!

Hi Liz – This is gorgeous! I love your aesthetic. I’m learning how to develop my eye for photobook layouts to be more minimalistic and clean like yours. Do you mind sharing when and why you choose to use a small border around photos versus when you choose to use full bleed?

Thank you for any tips you are willing to share!

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