Sunday, March 13, 2011

My bike books

I've been making books about our trips for a few years now. The first was of "The Gates," Cristo's 2005 art installation in New York. I've also made them for our Oregon Coast ride, our Washington bike tour and now, our 2010 Cycle Montana, Idaho and Oregon summer. Even though I like to think I'm a digital guy, there is just nothing like having a physical book out on the table. And, like I tell my photo students, no one is ever going to go through an attic and discover an interesting shoe box full of pixels. Hopefully, the embedded link will work and you'll be able to flip through the pages here. You can even click that little four-headed arrow and get a full screen view. Just in case it doesn't work, here's a link: Montana book

I've created books using Kodak Gallery, Snapfish, Qoop, MyPublisher and Blurb. Several use a web interface, and some use a downloadable program you run locally. After messing with them all, I like Blurb the best. Mostly because their program does away with a slow web interface, and works pretty well. It's no InDesign, but it's easy to use.

This book covers our Cycle Montana ride with Adventure Cycling (which we loved. I can't say enough good things about them) as well as our stop in Idaho and our Crater Lake ride. It's the largest book I've done at about 11 x 14 inches. I'm happy with the reproduction and so far it looks like we spelled all the words right.

My other Blurb book: One Thousand Miles, and a Little Bit More
I had so much fun making the Montana book I decided to make another one commemorating the quest for the California Triple Crown jersey undertaken by Lance Oldstrong and myself in 2010. I used recycled blog posts, screen captures from posts, photos and "liberated" ride reports. After all, this may well be my pinnacle of cycling achievement, so a book seemed somewhat reasonable. It will give me something to reminisce over as I sit on the porch with my mint julep.

I made two, and gave one to Lance Oldstrong. My trick totally worked. At first he had no idea it was about him, he thought I'd just found a book about the Triple Crown. It was fun watching it dawn on him that he was in it.

If you ride, make photos, or take vacations, I strongly encourage you to consider making your own book with any of these services. It's just plain ol' cool to have a physical memory, and in making the book you get to relive all the fun you had.

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