"In the wake of the Best Book announcements posted on photo-eye Magazine we often encounter many more contributions to this "award" after publication. This year on the photo-eye blog, we posted Grant Willing's response to our best book list (originally posted on Humble Arts) and now Andy Adams, the noteworthy founder of Flak Photo, and LiveBooks and RESOLVE blogger Miki Johnson, have contributed their own response. As a follow-up to their hugely popular online discussion The Future of the Photobook (a follow-up to Joerg Colberg's post on Consciencious), Adams and Johnson have listed here their 10 most exciting photobook related projects for the 2009 year including print-on-demand books, newly founded blogs, not-for-profit publications and many other photography projects. We hope you enjoy this unique contribution to our Best Books lists."--Melanie McWhorter
For a month starting in early December and prompted by a FlakPhoto feature of Blurb's Photography.Book.Now winners, we conducted cross-blog discussion exploring the question, "What will photobooks become over the next decade?" More than 50 bloggers from every corner of the photo world contributed posts with their ideas. An equal number of people added their comments on RESOLVE, especially on our three final discussions, mediated by top bloggers, examining innovative means of creating, consuming, and funding photobooks. One of our goals for this experiment in crowd sourcing was to pool the collective wisdom of so many thinkers to find the most exciting photobook projects going on right now. Below is a list of our favorite 10 (in no particular order) -- you can find even more fascinating projects and publications in our complete Future of Photobooks coverage.
1. Jörg Colberg (Conscientious) and Hester Keijser (Mrs. Deane) launched The Independent Photo Book in early January. The project consists of a blog where photographers can send their independently produced and distributed books and zines, along with information on how to purchase them, creating a simple online clearinghouse for visual texts -- 70 so far.
2. Although this book contains no photographs, it is nonetheless the most futuristic book idea we came across. It is a physical book that you read by taking a photo of it with your cameraphone, which converts an abstract digital image into words, which update automatically every week from a keyword search on Twitter. Get it? Just watch the video. We promise, it's cool. (via Jonathan Worth)
3. A country road. A tree. Evening is a "film in progress" art project installed on a digital tablet and sold through a gallery. We're not sure if it's a book -- or even if it's physical or digital -- but it's definitely thinking outside the box. (via Harlan Erskine)
4. The 13th issue of Hamburger Eyes (a San Francisco-based street photography magazine) was funded through the online fundraising site Kickstarter last summer. The magazine met it's goal in only three days and even took in an extra $1,000, allowing them to print a larger magazine than ever before. (via Jin Zhu)
5. The collaborative online essay project Words Without Pictures, a simple blog format that became something of an online phenomenon, is now available as a physical book through the print-on-demand service, Lulu and soon to be printed by Aperture. (via Larissa Leclair)
6. Pictory is a beautiful new crowd-sourced, curated online magazine from former JPG maven Laura Brunow Miner. She works with guest editors for each issue and emphasizes personal, detailed photo captions to provide context, something sorely lacking with most of the millions of digital images we're bombared with daily.
From One hundred flowers
8. The international multimedia piece Around the World, Street Photography in B&W highlights a growing movement toward collaborative creative projects, spurred by the ease of contact provided by online communications as well as the increasingly isolated nature of creativity in a digital world. (via Francesco Gallarotti)
9. More collective creativity, this time with physical results, produced two of the most widely recognized photo books this year, both highlighting images from a wide variety of photographers: Publication from Nick Turpin and Lay Flat from Shane Lavalette (with guest editors Michael Bühler-Rose and Karly Wildenhaus). (via Nick Turpin, Francesco Gallarotti, Bryan Formhals)
10. The Obama Time Capsule, a book released early this year by A Day in the Life creator Rick Smolan, is a print-on-demand book documenting the historic election. The true innovation (and something we're sure to see more of) is readers can add their own images to the book and received a personalized (print-on-demand) version to not just commemorate the event but incorporate it into their own family history. (via Jonathan Worth)