Pictavo

PHOTOGRAPHY - Creating A Yearbook People Love To Look At

We all know good photography is important in a yearbook. Let's spend some time discussing what it is that makes photography good and how to get what you're looking for whether you're the photographer or the staff member laying out pages.

Artful vs. Journalistic - If you're laying out yearbook spreads and have a vision in mind, use the most descriptive words possible. Starting with artful vs. journalistic can head the conversation down the correct path. Artful images are nicely composed, easy to look at...something you might see in a calendar. These images are great filler or background images (e.g. sun setting over soccer fields, cheerleaders' poms in a pile, homecoming floats lined up in the parade). Journalistic images tell a story and draw people in. They're emotional images that deserve to be the dominant piece of your layout (e.g. team winning the big game, faculty member receiving teacher of the year award, the impact a tragedy has on your student body). Beginning with "artful vs. journalistic" and following with specifics of layout, orientation, etc. will keep staff members on the same page and eliminate communication gaps that occasionally happen when working on a large project together.

 

What Makes A Picture Great? - Photography tends to be one of those "I know it when I see it" things. It's hard to put your finger on, exactly, what it is that makes your brain say "Yeah! I like that!" There are, however, some factors to research and consider before heading out on an important assignment!

Rule Of Thirds - Dividing your frame into a 3x3 grid. Place your subject, or the focal point,    along a vertical or horizontal line and a point of intersection.

Leading Lines - Using strong lines in a photo will help move the viewer's eye from the foreground to the background.

Point Of View - Changing the point of view can bring the view into the image by creating tension or showing scale. Consider taking both "worm's eye view" and "bird's eye view" photos of a few different subjects as a photography exercise.

Framing - Use a foreground object to help frame-in and draw the viewer's eye to your subject.

 

Two More Tips You'll Thank Us For - Making Ordinary Extraordinary

1. When the opportunity for portraiture arises, take it! Oftentimes, a student feature requires an image of a student. Just as often, a member of the yearbook staff will go find said student, ask them to 'stand against that wall right there' and take their photo. NO! After all of the fast-paced sporting events, poorly lit gymnasiums and boring rows of students in their club/activity photos, you finally have the opportunity to take an interesting photo of an interesting student! Student of the week for Art Club? Take the photo in the art room while the student works on a piece or cleans brushes after. Student went to the State Fair showing their horse? Absolutely arrange to photograph them on their prize-winning show horse! Show students in the environment that pertains to the reason for the photo. This will generate interest and draw the viewer in. Wanting to know more is the only way someone will read what your staff has worked so hard researching and writing!

2. Get in on the action! If you have been trusted with capturing images for a game or event, take it seriously. Get BRAVE and get down on the sidelines, court-side or into the front row of whatever event you're photographing. You're documenting history for your school...it's okay to get up close and personal! Don't forget about the fans, either. Turning your camera on the crowd will get some fantastic candid images of school spirit at its finest!

 

Almost There - Proofing your yearbook before submission

Create a team of yearbook 'proofers' to check your staff's work!

Create a team of yearbook 'proofers' to check your staff's work!

 It's spring. That means time to submit your yearbook. You've worked hard and the finish line is well within reach, time to double check all the work your team has done before calling it a year!

The best plan of attack for proofing your yearbook is this: NEW EYES. Don't rely on the person that worked on the book to be able to find their own mistakes. Always let someone else take a look at it. If your book is particularly large, create an entire proofing team.

Break the book into sections so each person has a task that feels possible rather than overwhelming. For instance, have a separate person check each of the following: headlines, spelling of names (one person per grade), matching of names to faces, images make sense on the spread (sometimes there are placeholders that don't get replaced), captions (full sentences, proper grammar), text boxes (no "double click to edit text" hanging around anywhere) and just overall layout (make sure nothing is covering an image, words getting hidden, etc.)

If you can pull together an entire group of people to page through your yearbook and all give the seal of approval, you are, officially, ready to submit. Congratulations!

 

3 Last-Ditch Sales Efforts To Boost Yearbook Sales

When you're down to the wire and you haven't quite hit your sales goal, yet, what do you do? We've got a few suggestions for the last few weeks of yearbook sales.

First of all, your sales team cannot be shy. It's time to use all of the tools at your disposal to make those last minute sales. First and most obvious in today's cyber-connected society: SOCIAL MEDIA. Every person working on your yearbook should be promoting it via every platform they are active on. Not exactly sure how to go about it? Try this:

  •  Snap a photo of the team working on the book or people looking at last year's book.   
  •  Use this photo on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter with a message that details how much time is left in your campaign AND when/where you'll be for people to place orders. If your school utilizes online ordering, give them the web address, too!
  • Does your school have social media accounts? Ask whoever provides content for them to post what you've posted on your own accounts.
  • Snapchat another photo of the yearbook team or the cover for this year's book on a computer monitor. Post it to your story for the day. Again, everyone involved in the project should do this. Create a buzz! Make people aware time is running out! 
  • Do it again tomorrow.

Next, utilize your school's daily announcements. At the very least, information about yearbook sales could be included in the daily information students get. If you're feeling creative, write a clever soundbite and make the announcement yourself! Many schools also email all parents subscribed to the announcements each day. Request that the information be passed along that way, as well. Include all details including when and where to purchase (including online option if applicable), the price of the yearbook and last day to order.

Using brightly colored countdown flyers may boost last minute sales efforts!

Using brightly colored countdown flyers may boost last minute sales efforts!

Last, but not least, plaster the hallways and doorways with signs that change daily saying how many days are left to purchase. A visible countdown shows there is a hard and fast deadline that needs to be met. Changing the flyer positions and color of paper they're printed on each day will call attention to your campaign. Make sure whoever is hanging new flyers also takes down all the flyers from the days previous to avoid any confusion about time left to order.

Want to use our countdown flyers? Find the blank printable version here.

We Love Checklists

It's February? Already? Wouldn't you know it...we've got a little present for you:

February's checklist was created using background B6165S, Clip Art piece C4677N_BW and Soli font.

Print version here.

A Few Tips for Custom Cover Creation

You've taken the time to develop a theme for your yearbook and carefully planned how to achieve just the right blend of theme and school message for the cover...you have a vision and that vision is spectacular. Let's take that spectacular vision of yours and make it a masterpiece! Following the four tips detailed in this post will ensure your yearbook cover will be set up according to our guidelines.

yearbook cover.jpg
yearbook cover spine.jpg
yearbook bleed.jpg
hard cover yearbook.jpg

Find the print friendly version here.

Keeping Things Interesting

Yearbooks are, by definition,  a record of the year. An annual publication containing statistics, commemorating school activities and student accomplishments. A history book of life at your school, during a period of time.

Of course, the goal is to make the yearbook interesting and engaging. In order to do this, the yearbook staff’s job is to combine both fact and entertainment. The big question is: how?

One foolproof way to add interest is to include as many people as you can onto the pages of your yearbook. This means not only triple checking that a photo of every person in the student body is included, but also adding those ‘student interest’ pieces that are going keep pages turning. These shouldn’t be full features, but mini-interviews or surveys. They don’t need to take up much of the valuable real estate in your book, consider them a 'high-interest page filler'. Using a PIctavo Snippet to contain the information creates a great design package that you can use on any student page.

How in-depth you’d like your student interest pieces to be is entirely up to your yearbook staff. Some questions are suited for both an entire school survey OR a “man on the street” style photo and answer. Others will require more lengthy answers and each package will only allow for a single interview subject to be represented. We’ve created a few examples to get your creative juices flowing!  

 

People love to answer questions about themselves. Use survey results to fill in a Pictavo Snippet. Shown above: S1010N

People love to answer questions about themselves. Use survey results to fill in a Pictavo Snippet. Shown above: S1010N

Ambush interviews are great for that entertainment factor we've been mentioning. Keeping subject matter light and fun will ensure that students will want to be interviewees!  Pictavo Snippet used above: S1249N

Ambush interviews are great for that entertainment factor we've been mentioning. Keeping subject matter light and fun will ensure that students will want to be interviewees!

Pictavo Snippet used above: S1249N

Being able to get content for your yearbook from the student body not only keeps your yearbook accurate, it also gives readers that 'day in the life' reality that is indicative of the time. Make your interviews casual and fun. In doing so, your replies will be conversational and real. Survey questions should be multiple choice so creating infographics is easy and straight forward.

Still looking for more ideas? The Snippet pages of the Pictavo Design Guide are loaded with more ideas. Take a look and get inspired!

 

DEVELOPING YEARBOOK THEME IDEAS

Developing your yearbook theme can be one of the most exciting parts of putting together your yearbook. So what better way to help you get started than to provide you with a huge list of yearbook theme ideas!? Use this extensive list of yearbook theme ideas to help get your creative juices flowing as you sit down with your team to determine what your theme will be this year. Then make sure to apply it to your book in the following ways:

PHRASES TO INSPIRE YEARBOOK THEME IDEAS

A PART APART

A SEASON OF CHANGE

AS ONE

A STEP ABOVE THE REST

A THOUSAND WORDS

AT LAST

A TOUCH OF CLASS

A TO Z

ANY WAY YOU SLICE IT

AS WE KNOW IT

ATTENTION TO DETAIL

ATYPICAL

A YEAR TO REMEMBER

BLINK

BRAND NEW

BREAKING THRU

BREATHE

BUILT TO LAST

CHECK IT OUT

CHOICES

COLOR ME…

COME LEARN WITH US

CONNECTED

CONTRAST

DIFFERENCES

DISTINCT IMPRESSIONS

DOT DOT DOT…

DREAMS REFLECT REALITY

EVERY STEP OF THE WAY

EVERYTHING IN BETWEEN

EYE ON…

FORWARD

FORWARD MOTION

FOR WHAT IT’S WORTH

FROM HERE

FROM THE INSIDE

FROM THE OUTSIDE IN

FROM START TO FINISH

FROM THIS MOMENT ON

GOING IN STYLE

GOING PLACES

GOTTA HAVE IT

GREAT MOMENTS IN…

HOW DO YOU MEASURE

HOW IT’S DONE

INTO SOMETHING NEW

INSTANT REPLAY

INVISIBLE

IT ALL ADDS UP

IT ALL BEGINS WITH YOU

IT GOES WITHOUT SAYING

IT’S A SMALL WORLD

IT’S ABOUT TIME

IT’S ALL IN YOUR MIND

IT’S A LOT LIKE NOTHING ELSE

IT’S ANYONE’S GUESS

IT’S COMPLICATED

IT’S OUR TIME

IT’S YOUR CHOICE

JUST FOR THE FUN OF IT

JUST HAD TO BE THERE

JUST SAYING

KEEP YOUR OPTIONS OPEN

LIKE IT OR NOT

LIKE IT/LOVE IT

LISTEN UP

LITTLE BIG TOWN

LIVING PROOF

LIVING THE DREAM

LOOK AT THE BEST

LOOKING BACK

MEET IN THE MIDDLE

MIXED SIGNALS

MORE THAN

MOVING ON UP

MOVING ON OUT

NOT GONNA LIE

NOT JUST ANOTHER…

NOT ON THE ITINERARY

NOT WHAT YOU THINK

NOW AND THEN

ON THE OTHER HAND

OPEN YOUR WORLD

OR NOT

OUR TIME TO SHINE

OUT OF THE BOX

OUT T[HERE]

OVER BEFORE YOU KNOW

OVER IT

OWN IT

PIECES OF THE PUZZLE

PLUS AND MINUS

POINT BEING

POWERFUL

PULSE

REMEMBER THIS

REPLAY IT

REVOLUTION

RIGHT ON TARGET

RIPPIN’ BEYOND BELIEF

ROAD TO SUCCESS

SPARK

SNAPSHOTS

STANDING PROUD

STAND OUT

STATUS UPDATE

STILL THE ONE

STORIES MATTER HERE

STRENGTH IN NUMBERS

SUM IT UP

SYNERGY

THINK ABOUT IT

THINK AGAIN

THINK FAST

THIS IS OUR TIME

THIS MUST BE

TOGETHER AS ONE

TOO COOL TO HANDLE

TOP SECRET

TOTAL IMPACT

TRACES

TRIED & TRUE

TURNING THE PAGE

UNPLUGGED

UNTIED

UNITED

UP DOWN ALL AROUND

VOICES

WHAT’S THE STORY

WHAT WE’RE MADE OF

WHEN EVERYTHING CLICKS

WHERE AMAZING HAPPENS

WHO KNEW?

WHY NOT?

WITHIN

WRITE YOUR STORY

YOU TELL ME

YOU WERE HERE

YOU WOULDN’T KNOW

YOURS

YOUR STORY

Y[OUR] STORY

 

A CUT ABOVE

A DAY IN THE LIFE

ADJUST ACCORDINGLY

A FLASH FROM THE PAST

ALL IN THE MIX

ALL OF THE ABOVE

A LOOK BACK

A LOT CAN HAPPEN BETWEEN…

AND EVERYTHING INBETWEEN

AND THE STORY BEGINS

A NEW AWAKENING

A NEW POINT OF VIEW

ANY SECOND COULD BE THE SECOND

BEFORE NOW

BE HEARD

BE KNOWN

BETWEEN THE LINES

BITS AND PIECES

CANVAS

CAPTURE THE MAGIC

CATCH THE MOMENTS

CAUGHT IN THE ACT

CELEBRATE

CHECK US OUT

DAYS OF OUR LIVES

DEEP IN THE HEART OF….

DEFINED

DESTINED TO BE…

ELABORATE

EMERGE

EVERYONE HAS SOMETHING

FACE THE FACTS

FIND YOUR PLACE

FIRST CLASS

FLASHBACK

FLEX

FOCUS

FOR MEMBERS ONLY

FOREVER YOUNG

GET THE PICTURE

GIVE AND TAKE

GLIMPSE

GOING BEYOND

HAD TO BE THERE

HELLO GOODBYE 

IDENTITY

IF YOU ONLY KNEW

IMAGINE THAT

IMPRESSIONS

IN A BLINK

IN A FLASH

IN OTHER WORDS

IN OUR OWN WORDS

IN QUEST OF…

INTERTWINED

IN THE MAKING

INTRODUCING YOU

INSIDE OUT

IN THE KNOW

JOURNEY

JOURNEY THROUGH THE YEAR

JUST PASSING THROUGH

KEEPING IT REAL

LAYING IT ON THE LINE

LEARNING TO FLY

LEAVING OUR MARK

LET’S FACE IT

LIFE AS WE KNOW IT

LIFE SUBJECT TO CHANGE

LIGHT IT UP

LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION

MAKE IT COUNT

MAKE IT LAST

MAKE IT YOUR OWN

MAKE YOUR MARK

MAKING THE PIECES FIT

NEVER HAD IT SO GOOD

NEVER SAY NEVER

NEW BEGINNINGS

NOBODY DOES IT BETTER

NO FILTER

OLD SCHOOL IN A NEW LIGHT

ONE AND ONLY

ONE SIZE FITS ALL

ONCE IN A LIFETIME

ONE LAST LOOK

ONE TO ONE

ONLY THE FINEST

ON OUR OWN

ON THE EDGE

PARALLEL

PARDON OUR DUST

PHASE 2

PICTURE THIS

PIECE BY PIECE

REACH FOR THE STARS

REALITY

REALLY…

REBUILD

REFINED

REFLECTIONS

SAGA

SAY IT WITH STYLE

SEEING IS BELIEVING

SEIZE THE DAY

SETTLED IN

SHINE

SHOUT OUT

SIGNS OF THE TIMES

SIMPLY THE BEST

SO MUCH TO SAY

TAKE ANOTHER LOOK

TAKE A CLOSER LOOK

TAKE IT FROM THE TOP

TAKE OUR WORD

THAT’S WHAT IT FEELS LIKE

THE BEST OF TIMES

THEN AND NOW

THERE’S MORE TO IT

THE SHOW MUST GO ON

THE SPIRIT OF…

THE TIMES OF OUR LIVES

THE WAY WE SEE IT

UNBELIEVABLE

UNCOMMON THREAD

UNDER CONSTRUCTION

UNLEASHED

VESTED

WE HAD A PLAN

WE’LL SHOW YOU

WE’LL TELL YOU

WE STAND PROUD

WE’VE GOT IT ALL

WHAT GOES AROUND

WHAT MAKES US

WHAT’S NEXT

YEARBOOK CONFIDENTIAL

YEAR OF THE…

YEAH, THIS IS HAPPENING

YOU ARE HERE

YOU GOTTA

YOU HAD TO BE THERE

 

Inspired By Independence

We love the 4th of July around here. The fireworks with their great bursts of colors and designs against a dark sky is enough to make us all take mental snapshots for inspiration of future yearbook art. This year our inspiration has brought some pretty awesome new stock and custom covers, backgrounds and clip art that commemorate our Independence Day. Here's a sneak peak of one of our favorite new collections for you to enjoy!

Americana Collection - B5976C (Custom Cover); B5129T (Backgrounds);

Americana Collection - B5976C (Custom Cover); B5129T (Backgrounds);

Americana Collection - B5130T (Backgrounds)

Americana Collection - B5130T (Backgrounds)

Americana Collection - B5135S (Backgrounds)

Americana Collection - B5135S (Backgrounds)

Americana Collection - B5136S (Backgrounds)

Americana Collection - B5136S (Backgrounds)

Americana Collection - B5131S (Backgrounds)

Americana Collection - B5131S (Backgrounds)

Americana Collection - B5133S (Backgrounds)

Americana Collection - B5133S (Backgrounds)

Americana Collection - B5137S (Backgrounds)

Americana Collection - B5137S (Backgrounds)

Stock Cover Design 15-18

Stock Cover Design 15-18

We hope you had a safe and enjoyable 4th of July weekend celebrating our independence!

~ Your Idea Garden Team

NEW Pictavo Video!

We are excited to show you our fresh new Pictavo yearbook software video! The video showcases the sophisticated yearbook design software, convenience and ease of use while highlighting important features and benefits you'll love using. It has been updated to reflect the many exciting new additions that have been made recently, including Snippets that will be available in the 2014-15 version of Pictavo starting in August. Be sure to check it out, let us know what you think and share it with your friends! 

Happy Yearbooking!

~ Your Idea Garden Team

Welcome!

Welcome To Our New Digs!
We’re excited to be moving over
from Idea Garden Blog and settling into our new location here on Pictavo.com. If you aren’t already familiar with the yearbook creation software, take a look around the site and check it out! It’s pretty powerful so if you’re in need of a stellar, sophisticated design solution to help collaborate, manage, create and sell your yearbook (that’s easy to use and navigate), you should definitely check it out.
 

If you already use it, or you're just here for great ideas look for upcoming posts with great tips that make designing in Pictavo even easier!