No space for photobooks

Below is a comment I wrote at Mike Johnston’s photography blog in response to a post about a photo book.

* * *

I live in a small apartment, and don’t have enough space to collect any sort of books. I threw out most of my books the last time I moved. It was sad throwing out so many books. After that, I made a commitment not to acquire any more physical stuff, and so far I’ve kept pretty well to that. So I’m sorry that I’m not a customer for photobooks.

This does raise a bigger philosophical question about photography, whether photos really need to be printed, or whether photos exist just fine as a stream of ones and zeros.

2 thoughts on “No space for photobooks

  1. I grew up starting photography with a Kodak 110 film camera. My mother did a great job with out photo albums, building them on paper albums with captions, typically funny ones, along with dates and names. I followed suit even as I got older, switching to those crappy static-style ones but still using paper for captions and other info. Sorry, no EXIF data back then, LOL! The camera really didn’t matter for me, it was the memories preserved that counted. Years later, somewhere along my photographic journey (after Navy & college) the digital image came along and my ‘scrapbooking’ albums stopped. Kind of sad for me but the time they took, wow!

    I like the physicalness of a photo album. I’m old-school I guess. As an example, I prefer a hardbound workshop manual for my cars & motorcycles over a damn PDF file that I can’t easily write notes in, add diagrams, bookmark for later, make corrections, etc. I don’t worry about getting them a little “used” with dirty fingers but I WOULD mind if that happened on my keyboard or (ugh!) smartphone! Books/albums have character. They can even be collectable. Digital files not so much — collectable and in character. I’m the fool who appreciates simple, vintage vehicles even if they were considered ‘advanced’ during their time.

    I now [finally!] am shooting digital SLR and it’s so easy to just dump them to a hard drive. While that doesn’t have the charm or character of a physical album it sure makes life easier and quicker. However, I do have the desire to someday take some of my images and plop them into a book of some sort or another. It just feels good to pick up a book at any time and leave through it. Even more so when company comes by or in the evening with a glass of scotch (single malt, neat, please). No electricity needed.

    Of course, I live in a spacious house so space isn’t at a premium…


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