In Note & Diary Style Book volume 4, a magazine I love, there are 3 pages covering how Spanish photographer Itxaso ZuÃ±iga recorded her journey to Gobi desert in a Traveler's Notebook. I found some interesting techniques by just looking at the way she did it and I'm sharing with you all photo journaling lovers.
- Play with cut-out window of a page to show part(s) of a photo beneath that page. It can be as simple as the example on page one of the magazine, but you can have a lot more fun doing something more complicated, e.g. shoot a photo from inside of a beach house looking through the windows, take another shot of the beach from outside, use the first photo with cut-out windows on a page to show part(s) of the second photo in the next page.
- Take a lot of people photos with shallow depth of field, select one as the key image on one page, put a collage/mosaic of the rest of the people photos on the opposite page. This creates a simple 2 pages of lives you met in your journey, which already tells a lot of the place.
- Use the same technique above but change the topic to "Sky", "Cloud", "Flower", etc.
- Intentionally take a lot of sky, eye-level and ground photos. Use these stock photos to compose a collage, say 5 x 7 photos. On the top rows you put various sky shots, on the bottom rows ground shots. Put either one large photo of an eye-level shot or just follow the grid to fill in photos of objects/scenes/people you shot during the trip. This creates a collage with a central theme but not as obvious because the whole collage is obscured by "background" shots.
- To match a rough theme using a Polaroid (soon to be reproduced again!), peel off the white protective frame to make a square photo which the unexposed chemical formation can be seen on the edges.
- Keep the words simple. A few keywords which capture your feeling is already enough if you decide the journal is more visual. In an example of Itxaso's page, beneath a Polaroid of the Mongolian family she wrote "Nomads Generosity Strong Hospitality Humble Pride".
- Put glue evenly on a page and sprinkle sands and dirts on it. You brought back a piece of the land you once walked on in the journey. Same trick works for plants, feathers and human hairs :P
Lastly, as I often mention in our Travel Photo Cafe talks, to create a beautiful photo journal, equip yourself with a few layouts in mind before the trip, this will help you take more useful shots, collect more interesting objects and create better layouts because you are effectively stocking up useful contents all the time.