How to > Create a photo book


Photo book

Get started

Get pictures

Build your book’s pages

Create a cover

Preview and order your book


Build your book’s pages

Before you start building your book’s pages, take some time to get oriented with the different features and commands of the photo book workspace:

1: The picture strip at the bottom contains all the available images for placement in your book. Navigate using the scroll bar and (if applicable) pulldown menu, or hover over any thumbnail image with your mouse for a closer look. Uncheck the ‘hide used’ box to see all the images, including any that have been placed on a page.
2: The two-page spread in the center is where you drop pictures and enter text for the pages shown. You’ll notice that whatever page you’re working on is “active” and highlighted by an orange stroke around the outside edge.
3: The palette, on the left, is where you can change the layout, background and picture edge for each page.
4: Enlarge the highlighted page using the zoom link in the upper-right corner.
5: Turn to another page by using the two arrow buttons at the top right or mousing over the page strip at the top-center.
6: Add pages, delete pages and arrange pages using the buttons in the top left.



Create pages using Storyboard

If you have a lot of pictures, the Storyboard tool quickly organizes and groups them on the pages of your photo book. To use it, click the Storyboard icon—it’s the one with the arrow in the upper-right corner. To fill each page in your book, simply drag pictures on the left to pages on the right. We’ll find a layout that fits each group of pictures for each page. When you’re finished with all pages, click “Done” to return to the Pages tab. You can change the background or layout for an individual page using the options on the palette if you wish to do so.



Place pictures

You can customize your photo book by placing pictures on the pages yourself. To do so, simply drag a photo from the picture strip and drop it onto a picture box, one of the gray boxes on the spread that reads “Drop picture here.” You can place up to 16 pictures on every page except for the Title page and the covers.



If you want to swap the placement of pictures within a page, just drag one picture from one box to the other. The two pictures automatically switch.



To add more pictures to a page with no empty picture boxes, simply drag from the picture strip to the background of the page and drop. You’ll notice that the page outline turns red and the cursor changes to a green plus sign. A new layout will be automatically chosen to accommodate your pictures.



You can pick a different page layout if you’d like—there are many to choose from. To do this, click the “Layouts” tab on the palette. Select from layouts for 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 or more pictures, or choose “Text” for layout options with no picture boxes. Select “Undo layout” above the active page to return to the previous version.



As you place pictures, you’ll notice that they disappear from the picture strip; if you’d like a picture to appear more than once in your book, simply unclick the “Hide used" box.


Once you’re finished adding pictures to a page, move to the next spread and continue filling your photo book.



Edit pictures

To edit any picture you’ve placed on a page, click on the picture to launch the “Edit picture” pop-up window. Here you can rotate, crop, fix red eye and apply effects. To change the crop size, drag the corner handles. Drag the center of the box to move the crop area. If the resolution of your image as cropped is too low, it won’t print well. (If that’s the case, a warning icon will appear.) Once you’re finished with your edits, click “Done” to return to Pages.



Change backgrounds and picture edges

Use the palette to change the background or picture edge for any page. Click the “Backgrounds” tab to choose from hundreds of designs using the scroll bar and the pulldown menu. Click the “Edges” tab to select from dozens of options. If you find a specific background or edge that you’d like to apply across the entire book, select the “Apply to all pages” link at the bottom of the palette.



Add text

To add text to your pages, click on any box that reads “Enter caption here.” An “Edit text” pop-up window will appear. Enter a caption and choose the font type, size, alignment and color of your text. To prevent typos in your finished book, we automatically run a spell-check on what you write and alert you to any misspelled words. Otherwise, be proactive by clicking the “Check spelling” link. Click the “Preview” button to see how your text will look, then click “Done” when you’re finished.


It’s not necessary to fill a text box if you don’t want to—leave it blank and the box won’t appear in the final printed book. To get a quick look at how the page will look printed, click the Zoom button in the upper right.



Add, delete, or arrange pages

Shutterfly photo books are a minimum of 20 pages in length, but you can add up to 81 more for a total of 101 pages. To add or delete pages, use the buttons in the upper-left corner. “Arrange pages” provides a thumbnail view of all the pages in your book. To adjust the flow of your story, drag and drop the page thumbnails to rearrange them, and then click “Done” to return to Pages.



When you’re done building your pages and ready to choose a cover for your photo book, click the “Next” button at top-right.