MY ACCOUNT
cart
cart
photographers
SHOP

Youtube

Family Album Spread Design Tips

Being Creative with Spread Design!

filed in:

I'm Katelyn James Alsop, a photographer, educator and momma who believes any photographer can have a profitable AND purposeful business.

WELCOME

Top Categories

Browse All

read more

WEDDINGS

Browse All

EDUCATION

Browse All

PERSONAL

A wintery boston wedding

w/ inside, dark ceremony

KJ ALL ACCESS

WATCH ME SHOOT weddings
Come join over 3,000 other photographers from around the world & become my virtual third shooter! 
FREE TRIAL
Arrow KJ
Arrow KJ

Browse Series

 Baby James Story

Our Home

Our Kids

Ask Anything

Album design process

This is such a fun post for me to share because it’s what I consider my “hobby”! Sure, it’s still photo-related so maybe it’s not a true hobby for me since my career is consumed in the photography world… but it is most definitely what I love to do for fun!

This brand new Youtube episode is dedicated to talking through HOW I actually make design decisions when it comes to my family album spreads!! How do I select which images go where? How do I find patterns and what system do I use to piece this massive project together?! 

 

Well, before I dive in, let me first give you some stats and info on my Family Yearbook process:

 

  1. Time it takes to complete: 10-12 hours of work during our “Netflix” time on the couch in the evenings! 
  2. How big is it?! Well, the last two years I have overdone it. I actually have created over 400 pages and two volumes. NORMAL people wouldn’t do this. They would probably have a 100-150 page book. I’m excessive and I know it! 
  3. What size is your book? It’s a 12×12 photo book! 
  4. Where do you get it printed? BLURB! With Standard Pages!
  5. What album are you using to design your spreads? Smartalbums and I LOVE this program!!! 
  6. Do you do one album per year or per kid? Just one album! It’s too overwhelming to try and divide up images per kid. I can’t imagine how I would make that work! 

 

In this Youtube Episode, I’m going to be taking you through the thought process behind piecing together my Family Yearbook Spreads. There are so many aspects of this process that are just second nature to be but I actually really enjoyed breaking it down and thinking through WHY I made certain decisions and what visual patterns I was paying attention to! 

 

Overall, here are some design tips that I shared in the video! ….

 

When designing album spreads, I’m looking for:

 

  • Variety of pulled back and tightly cropped shots
  • Simple groupings (not too many images on one spread)
  • Images that can fit over the spine and not get lost in the crease!
  • Images that share similar color patterns
  • Out of a group of related images, I look for a dominant photo or a dominant pattern (ex: One bold image to be big and the focal point or a dominant pattern like using all verticals)

 

There are so many other tips shared in this episode! If you find it hard to comprehend what I just listed out, be sure to watch this video to see real examples of them in action!!!  Enjoy! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

.

Thanks for reading!

— Katelyn

Leah + Hunter A Classic Commonwealth Club Wedding | Richmond, Va

The day started with bubbly personalities and bubbly drinks in the historic Linden Row house in downtown Richmond. I walked in, found Leah and then one by one I met her amazing bridesmaids. From the moment I met them all, I knew this was going to be a fun day, not lacking any energy! I loved the way this day started…. however, it got even better the moment dad walked in.

READ MORE
Weddings

It’s an exciting day in Youtube land! We have just launched a brand new series that we’re really excited about!!!! So often when I’m going through KJ All Access episodes and editing our behind the scenes coverage of our wedding days, I find myself noticing a lot of scenarios that require a lot of thought and problem solving in order to create a FINAL image that I love!!

READ MORE

Creating a Soft Image in a Harsh Environment New Youtube Series!

Youtube

Matt + Abby | Married A Classic Middleburg Portrait Session

Gosh it feels good to do what I love to do again! This was my first shoot back since maternity leave ended and I loved every minute of it! I have known Matt and Abby for years and years and so while this was a true portrait session with paying clients and outfit changes, etc…. it was also a shoot with dear friends and it was wonderful to spend some time with them!

READ MORE
Blog

How to Document Your own Birth Using the R6 to Film Our 4th Baby’s Birth!

First of all, let me just say, I do NOT endorse not hiring a professional birth photographer! As you read this, keep in mind that I desperately wanted to have my friend and fellow photographer Jill with me during my fourth birth. I was heartbroken that she wasn’t allowed to be there!

READ MORE
Youtube

Have you ever showed up for a wedding or a portrait session and took one look at the location and thought…. “You’ve got to be kidding me!!! How am I going to make this work?!” I have. I have had so many scenarios in my career where I have thought….“Ok, how in the world am I going to make this lousy location work as a great portrait location!!?”.

READ MORE

Tips for Dealing with Lousy Locations How to make a poor portrait location work!

Youtube

Student Spotlight April 2021

It still feels surreal to tell people about what we do for a living. We photograph weddings and we teach other people how to photograph weddings. It’s quite literally a dream job for a creative like myself who loves people! Every month when we do these Student Spotlights, I’m reminded all over again how much of a privilege it is to be a part of these photographer’s lives and play a small role in their stories.

READ MORE
Blog

READER FAVORITES

KJ ALL-ACCESS

THE VISUAL - LEARNER'S DREAM
Unedited, unfiltered, real-life behind-the-scenes education delivered monthly! Come be our Virtual Third Shooter for FREE!
GET YOUR FREE 30 day TRIAL

A wintery boston wedding

w/ inside, dark ceremony

"Best money I have EVER spent on education! ... and I've spent a lot!”

- Kara Abbey, ALL-ACCESS MEMBER

"I love all the lessons I'm learning from KJ All Access! Thanks Katelyn!”

- Shannon Drummond, ALL-ACCESS MEMBER

"I find very few educational resources worth it ... this one is!”

- Kate gansneder, ALL-ACCESS MEMBER

"Recently signed up for KJ All Access and it's EVERYTHING!”

- Kassidy Mowery, ALL-ACCESS MEMBER

"Being able to see behind-the-scenes of Katelyn interacting with her clients has been SO impactful!”

- Angie mcpherson, ALL-ACCESS MEMBER

"Recently signed up for KJ All Access and it's EVERYTHING!”

- Kassidy Mowery, ALL-ACCESS MEMBER

"SO worth it! It's amazing the amount of knowledge you get out of them!”

- Brittany Lowe, ALl ACCESS MEMBER

"I learned just as much in one All Access as I did in a whole course! SO GOOD!"

- Joanna Krueger, ALL-ACCESS MEMBER
10 Steps to Starting Your Photography Business
Helping a friend survive a season of Infant Loss
How to photograph a first look in Harsh Light
OUR KJ COUPLES REUNION
A Lake Como Destination Wedding - Greg and Kate
A Letter to the Go-Getters fearful of Motherhood

The KJ blog
must-reads

The KJ Blog is where you get to know me, where you meet our KJ Couples and see their beautiful wedding days, where I have been building an archive of education for over a decade and where I let you see a peek into our life, our home, and hear about our purpose! 
don't miss the
Arrow KJ
Arrow KJ
Arrow KJ
Arrow KJ
Arrow KJ
Arrow KJ

YOUTUBE

Join 24,000+ others and learn, grow and get connected via our Youtube Channel! This is where I'm constantly sharing new content, talking all things gear, business, tips, tricks and letting you into the behind-the-scenes of our everyday life! 
MORE FREE EDUCATION + CUTE BABIES ON
WATCH NOW

"I have invested in all of KJ’s education!

The way she teaches makes so much sense and I’m so grateful for her! My business will be forever changed!"

- Renee Nicolo

"KJ education has been life-changing

 It has elevated my work so I could quit my day job and work from home with our baby boy!"

- joanna k.

"I'VE INVESTED IN SO MANY RESOURCES... 

and none compare to what I get from KJ!"

- LAUREN M.