Prepping Your Photos for Bookify and BookSmart

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Raring to go on your next Blurb book? If you want to make it even better than your last one, take a little time to ensure that your photos will look their best. We’ve got a few simple tips to get you started. This time around, we’re going to stick with prepping photos for Bookify™ Online and Blurb BookSmart®.

Start with the right camera: If your camera is three megapixels or higher (and these days, most are), you can assume your photos will work in Blurb books. Of course, you can always scan in photos, and if you stick to the rest of our tips when saving those, you should be fine.

Select your best photos: Be conscious of your image’s focus and light level – if it’s too fuzzy, dark, or washed out, it may not be the best choice for your book.

Edit your photos before uploading: Want to use your favorite photo editing software to fix a red-eye problem, crop out an unwanted background element or add special-effects fun? Rework the photo with your software first, and when it’s just the way you want it to be, save and import into Bookify or BookSmart.

Save your photos as JPGs or PNGs: Both Bookify and BookSmart happily accept JPG and PNG files. If you go with PNG files, they need to be 8-bit and non-interlaced. Save your PNG images as RGB or sRGB files.

Make the right resolutions: The resolution of your photos should be between 150DPI and 300DPI, and both Bookify and BookSmart will let you know if your image’s resolution is too low to print.

Optimize your photo’s size: Your images will look best in your final printed book if they’re at least 2048 pixels wide or tall (that’s about 7 x 7 inches, full bleed) but no larger than 4000×4000 pixels. Also, make sure each photo’s total size is under 10 MB for Bookify, and under 15 MB for BookSmart. Keeping to these size limits also helps Bookify and BookSmart run as smoothly as possible for you.

What about that warning icon?: If you see the yellow warning icon on an image, it means that its resolution is too low. You can fix this issue by choosing another layout with more photos on a page (which will reduce the size of your image), reducing the size of the photo on the page, or by re-importing the same photo saved at a higher resolution. If you’re working in BookSmart, click on the icon to pull up additional options to make it all right.

These quick tips for Bookify and are a good starting point, and there’s loads more help and answers in our FAQs. If you’re an experienced bookmaker or a creative pro, you might want to try out our PDF to Book workflow or color management tools. You’ll find plenty of answers and ideas, tips, tutorials, and webinars to help you make your best book ever.

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  1. How do I change the resolution of my photos?

    By Carolyn Davidson
      January 13, 2011 – 7:19 am   Permalink
  2. What colour space is best? I use Adobe RGB which most of our camera club use, but wonder if sRGB is better for Blurb Booksmart. I shoot raw and convert to TIFF then change to JPEG if using for a book. As you can see this lengthens the workflow.

    Would appreciate your comments.

    Jan Ward

    By Jan Ward
      January 13, 2011 – 8:16 am   Permalink
  3. If the images uploaded to print are of such a high resolution that ‘wavy grid lines’ appear on them in the preview which don’t come out when enlarged to full size normally, will they print with these lines, or will they disappear, as they do in a normal larger print?

      January 13, 2011 – 8:31 pm   Permalink
  4. Question … you say to resize photos to be 7 x 7, full bleed – at least 2048 pixels. Full bleed is 3788 x 3263 and is much larger than 7 x 7. Can you explain what you mean here?

    By Leslie
      January 14, 2011 – 8:53 am   Permalink
  5. Hi Jan,
    Great question. We suggest that you take a look at our Color Management Center for some good info and answers. You could also try chatting with or emailing our Customer Support folks, who are always glad to help.

      January 17, 2011 – 2:58 pm   Permalink
  6. Hi Carolyn,
    We’d like to point you in the direction of our FAQs for the answer to your excellent question. If you can’t find help there, feel free to chat with or email Customer Support.

      January 17, 2011 – 3:01 pm   Permalink
  7. …originals in photoshop 11×17. Looking to use Booksmart 10×8.

    By David Williamson
      August 28, 2013 – 2:48 pm   Permalink
  8. Hi David,

    I’m not sure I understand your question exactly. Our Support Team should be able to help you out. Just drop them a line here:

    By Kent
      September 25, 2013 – 11:20 am   Permalink

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