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How To Make A Vintage Photo Book

Retro camera

Have you ever walked around and spotted people with those chunky Polaroid cameras? One-half of your brain often thinks: jeez, what’s the use of that? The other half thinks: dang, I wish I had one of those.

It’s fair to say that, in today’s world of slick, modern technology, Polaroid cameras are a little clunky and inconvenient. But the point of Polaroid cameras is not to be convenient or even take sharp and crisp photographs. They’re old-school. And old-school is cool.

Whenever you take a picture with a Polaroid camera, you’re left with an image that feels vintage. It may be of someone posing with a 21st-century smartphone in their hand, but for all intents and purposes, it still looks like it was taken in the 70s.

But this is actually a significant ongoing movement at the moment — the regeneration of vintage photography. In 2023, many people are out there taking vintage photographs, posting them on social media, and even making photo books dedicated solely to the vintage movement. 

And it’s not only done by people with a Polaroid camera, either. If this sounds like something you want to explore, then there are plenty of ways you can take more vintage photographs with your smartphone alone. All you need is a bit of know-how. 

With this in mind, here are seven ways for you to shoot vintage photography and create a photo book worthy of the past: 

Pick A Particular Theme

We mentioned photo books earlier, and this first point is the most important if you plan to create a coherent vintage photo book. Pick your theme. The word vintage can apply to several eras and times, so look back through the history books and choose the era you want to replicate. It may take time, but you can create a photo book in 2 clicks! So take the time now and make sure the photo book is perfect. 


When gleaning inspiration, the best thing you can do is type in the hashtag “#vintage” on Instagram and see what others are doing. As we mentioned before, there will probably be a lot of different vintage styles on display, including the 1920s, 30s, 40s, and so on. But you will definitely be able to pinpoint some styles you are going for and go from there.

Stay Aware Of Colors

When it comes to actually taking photographs, an excellent way to do this is by utilising filters. There are a number of pros and cons to using filters, but to create the vintage look, they’re a must. They won't take vintage photos for you by any means, but they will certainly push your photography in the right direction to capture something old-school. The rest you have to do yourself. Make sure you remain aware of color pallets and adhere to the colors that evoke the vintage feel – such as candy pink, mauve, maroon or sepia. 

Vintage Is Not Just About Fashion

Vintage is also not just a fashion thing. Although vintage clothes are cool and more necessary than ever, this isn’t just about dressing your friends in old leather jackets or ruffled skirts. You can, of course, but capturing vintage photography is also about finding scenes that could exist comfortably in the past. You can even have subjects wearing modern-day clothing. If anything, this adds a wonderful juxtaposition that makes the photographs themselves even more eye-catching and engaging.

Keep The Feels 

When you’re going for a style of photograph, it can be easy to forget why you’re taking it in the first place. Remember, the best pictures are the ones that have substance over style, so stick with capturing scenes that mean something. This will also work in your favor when you put them into a photo book. Whilst the vintage look is beautiful, it can wear pretty thin after a while if there isn’t anything engaging to look at.


It’s also important to divert a little from your ordinary style when taking vintage photographs. If you look back at old pictures from the 50s or 60s, they’re not exactly “out there” when it comes to angles or lighting. They’re simple, and that’s what your photographs should be too. Simplicity is key, especially when it comes to vintage photographs. We never thought we would tell a photographer to refrain from experimenting, but there we are! 

Choose The Very Best!

Lastly, if you’re looking to use a photo book maker, it’s essential to choose the photographs that are the best. Don’t get too tempted to simply beef out the pages with everything you’ve shot, as there are sure to be some “meh” ones in there, and that would only be doing an injustice to your ability. Instead, pick the very best and allow them to shine!


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