Geez, it has been way too long since I’ve printed my work. I had a groove going for a while, printing small Magcloud books as a way of closing out projects. You know how life goes though. I got busy. I got distracted. I switched processing software over to Lightroom CC and lost the ability to easily create those little Magcloud books. So, like most photographers these days, I just posted my photos online. They’re out there floating in the cloud, awaiting those microsecond bits of attention by the screen swiping masses. Who cares? I need to hold something tactile in my hands.
As I considered the best way to resume working with Magcloud, Dan Milnor got my attention with his Blurb magazine work. Here’s a guy that just creates, seemingly non-stop. If you have never heard of him, go check out his blog - after you’re done reading mine, of course. His magazines look great. Now, I never considered this particular print format before, but the stuff he’s doing with magazines really captured my interest. Then I thought about some of the quality magazines (yes, there are still a few out there) that I like, such as Iron & Air. There’s just something about a quality printed magazine by a publisher who gives a crap about photography. You know what - sure, I’m doing this magazine thing!
It was a kind of sign that now was the time to take the plunge since Blurb had a 25% off sale going on, that was ending the day I started to pull this thing together. While I should have been studying for the final exam for my summer class, I threw together a quick layout. I just wanted to do this thing - now. It wasn’t too difficult really. I stumbled a bit with Blurb’s BookWright app, but managed to get it altogether and uploaded just under the wire before the discount ended (hey, a couple bucks is a couple bucks.) No text other than titles and byline - just full page photos, a grid or two, and several double trucks.
Fast forward one week-ish and I had my magazine in my hands. Damn. Why didn’t I do this sooner? This thing looks great! It’s quite similar in paper quality to the Magcloud books I’ve done before. I went with the premium magazine and this isn’t the crappy tissue thin paper you see in the rags on the newsstand these days. It’s substantial stuff and it holds the ink quite well. I did all black and white images and I’m impressed with the depth of the blacks. The portrait format worked well for me. I wasn’t sure it would since I shoot in landscape orientation most of the time. It ended up not being bad at all with my live music photography. The photos are big and the magazine has a great feel without being bulky. It’s a joy to hold and flip through. My old 8”x8” Magcloud books feel a little dinky in comparison.
This changes things for me. I think I’ve found my new print format and I think it’s going to change the way I approach my photography. The magazine is going to be in the back of my mind when I compose a shot. There is an end “product” in mind now. Something tangible, consistent, and affordable. Sure, I’d love to do hardbound books for everything. That’s some serious coin though. I like the idea of this magazine thing a lot better. It’s cheap enough that I don’t have to feel guilt or pressure about whipping one together as the mood strikes. It’s a neat format to play with and I have all kinds of possibilities whirling around in my head. In fact, I think my upcoming weekend plans have just changed. There are magazines to create. I blame you, Milnor.
Want your own copy? Pick one up here.