My Quick Mixbook Experiment: The Final Result

My Quick Mixbook Experiment: The Final Result

Last weekend, I sent you a short post about the quick Mixbook.com“>Mixbook.com.  Now I have the results, which is the first big plus for Mixbook.

I ordered the book around 8pm on Saturday evening.

I received a shipping confirmation email on Tuesday afternoon.

And I received the book in the mail on Thursday afternoon.

That's pretty quick!

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This is my book, just as I received it in the mail.  The packaging was nice and durable, but still fit in my mailbox.  (The book is a 10″x 10″.  I'm sure that a 12″ x 12″ would be on my doorstep instead.)  All of the packaging did its job, and the book was in great shape when I received it.

By the way, I really liked that

I really also wanted to check out the print quality.  I know I've had some comments from a few of you that you weren't completely happy with the print quality with Forever recently.  (I just received the book I ordered from Forever last week in today's mail, and I'll post on that next.)

I have to say, digital photobooks are rarely printed like our old film photos were.  But in comparison with some other digital products I've printed, the prints in this photobook are pretty clear.  It doesn't look pixelated or “off” to me.

Overall, I haven't got one single gripe about this photobook.  I hadn't even started the book a week ago, and today I'm holding the finished product in my hand.  Coupled with the offers that Mixbook frequently puts out, I will definitely print with them again.

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Photo books aren't the only thing that Mixbook offers.  A couple of months ago I tried a deal Mixbook had on canvas prints.  I had never printed a

I did this one in kind of a hurry, but I have a big empty section of wall space next to my staircase that I hope to hang a nice

My next experiment will be ordering photo cards“>photo cards, including save the date“>save the date cards, wedding thank you cards“>thank you cards, and

Mixbook: An Easy Way To Make A Quick, Quality Photobook

In celebration of finishing my 2014 album yesterday morning, I decided I just had to keep the momentum going.  I really wanted to complete the album for my family's trip to Yellowstone last summer, which has been difficult for me previously.  I started it last fall in Artisan, but I just kept running into hurdles.

So, I decided to try an online book with Mixbook.  I've wanted to do this for quite a while, just for the experience.  Now I can say I've done it, and I wanted to share it with you.

It took me about five hours total to complete the 51 page book with 353 photos initially uploaded.  (I used about 2/3rds of them.)

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If you've used an online site to build a book before, this will look kind of familiar.  You can choose a book style by theme, and then browse for the one that you like.

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You can preview the standard book before you make your choice.  But the cool part is, you can switch themes anytime within the editor and mix and match the pages.

Once you choose a theme, you'll be prompted to add your photos.  You can upload them from your PC, or import them for a number of different sites like Instagram, Facebook and Flickr.

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If you don't upload from that screen, you can still choose Add photos any time from the book editor screen and upload what you need.

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Once you have the photos, the rest is a piece of cake.  It's drag and drop from the list.  Hover over the photo to see a larger preview, and keep an eye on the green checkmarks, which show that you've already used the photo.  It's that simple.

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If you want to change the look of the page, go to the Layout tab and pick a new one.

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If you like the photo layout, but want a different background, just click Backgrounds to choose a new one.  The backgrounds are theme specific, so if you change the theme, these options will change, too.

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And, what would a scrapbook page be without stickers and embellishments, right?  We've got those, too.

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Really, it's just that easy.

Like I said, I created a book using about 250 photos in a total of about 5 hours.  I'm pretty certain you could probably outpace me on that … I second guess myself a lot.

Two projects completed and ordered in the past week.  On to the next one … and the promised challenge.  I'll have details about that soon!

Until the next time, Enjoy!

~ Deb

 

Installing the Update to Storybook Creator 4 from Panstoria

You've heard about this for weeks now, and if you've opened Storybook Creator, you've probably been prompted to update. This is important to do, because it will allow you to create projects to be printed at the Panstoria Print Shop, which offers some fun new items. (You can get an idea about what's offered in my post A First Glance at the Panstoria Print Shop.)

If you've already done it, great! You're all set.

If you haven't done it yet, here's a quick video to walk you through the process.

The News We’ve Been Waiting For

I know I've fielded questions and concerns from some of you over the last few months about whether your software will be of any benefit to you after CM finishes taking Storybook orders on September 23rd.

The good news is, there is a solution!  A motion was filed today with the bankruptcy court with the plan to have Panstoria, the company that makes Memory Manager and Storybook Creator, continue supporting our software and supply an option for us to use the software to print future projects.  So don't stop creating those projects!

According to CM's CEO Chris Veit, here's what is being proposed:  (Keep in mind, this still awaits bankruptcy court approval, so it's not quite set in stone yet.)

  • Both Memory Manager and StoryBook Creator software will continue uninterrupted. Software can be activated through December 31, 2013, and Panstoria will continue to provide software updates as needed. This means that even after September 23, you'll be able to activate your software.
  • Memory Manager and StoryBook Creator users will be contacted by Panstoria, and will be given access to printing and other features through Panstoria. The plan and timing for printing has not yet been finalized, but will be forthcoming. Please look for Panstoria news and updates in the Memory Manager and StoryBook Creator news feeds (right side of the main page).
  • Any Creative Memories digital artwork you’ve purchased can be activated (without an end date) on any computer.
  • Anyone who’s made an investment of time or money in software, projects or artwork can continue to use them uninterrupted.

There's still a possibility that the other interested investor will come through with their deal between themselves, Panstoria and CM, and supposedly, that would be even better.  We'll just see.  But either way, we can still use our fabulous software.  Sweet!

Until the next time, Enjoy your software!

~ Deb

Changes Coming For Our Software and What You Need To Do Now

You may have heard already about Creative Memories' bankruptcy filing and been wondering how this will impact your use of the software.  We haven't had a lot of information recently on that, but last Friday CM did release some updates for us in that regard.  Not everything is well-defined or definite yet, so please keep checking back.

Here are a few answers and action steps you should make time to do soon:

  1. First of all, YES, your software is still usable going forward.  It will not cease to work for you on August 21, September 23 or any other pre-determined date.  There is a possibility that there will continue to be updates and support for it after that date, just not from Creative Memories.  That is still being determined, so there are no further specifics at this time.
  2. The CM Photo Center/Digital Center will continue to take orders until September 23rd.  So any Storybooks or other digital projects you have in the works must be completed and ordered by that date.
  3. It's a good idea to make sure that your software, both Memory Manager and Storybook Creator, are updated.  The current versions of the software are listed below.  (To find out which version of the software you have currently, click on the question mark icon in the corner and select About.)
    * Storybook Creator 4.0 – 4.0.4728
    * Storybook Creator 3.0 – 3.0.3950
    * Memory Manager 4.0: 4.1.4780
    * Memory Manager 3.0: 3.0.3691
  4. Whether your software is up-to-date or not, you'll want to back up the files necessary to reinstall your software in the future.  The last day you'll be able to download the full software or the updates is September 23, 2013.  To back them up, pick the appropriate version of your software and use the link below:
    Memory Manager 4.0
    http://downloads.creativememories.com/MM4.0/MM_4.0_Setup.exe
    Memory Manager 3.0
    http://downloads.creativememories.com/MM3.0/MM3Setup.exe
    Storybook Creator 4.0
    http://downloads.creativememories.com/SBC4.0/SBC_4.0_Setup.exe
    Storybook Creator 3.0
    http://downloads.creativememories.com/SBC3/SBC3Setup.exe
  5. To download and backup these files:
    – Click on the appropriate link above
    – Select your backup location to save it to
    – Make sure you know WHERE you saved it!
    That's all there is to it.  Just make sure you save the activation code with it.
  6. If you have uninstalled/un-activated versions of either Memory Manager or Storybook Creator, you'll want to get those activated no later than September 23, 2013.  We don't know now whether those will be able to be activated past that date.
  7. To backup you Memory Vault(s), you've hard before that I always recommend creating a Shadow Copy as the best form of backup.  In my experience, it recreates the vault more cleanly, when needed.  However, if you need to just make a copy of your vault as a backup, you can copy the entire Memory Vault folder to another backup location.  You will need to know where your Memory Vault resides, which is the Documents/My Documents folder by default, but may be different if you designated a different place when you set it up.
  8. Storybook Creator and Memory Manager aren't the only things you need to consider.  All digital artwork will only be available for download from my site through August 21, 2013.  So if you have been waiting to purchase content, the waiting is over.  That is the absolute last day to purchase content for use with Storybook Creator.
  9. Likewise, if you still need to download artwork you have purchased previously, the last day to access your account for the download links and activation codes is August 21, 2013.  You can also get to your account here.  If you need help backing those up, please comment below or contact me.
  10. Don't forget to use the feature in your Storybook Creator software to back up all your activation codes.  It's handy and quick.  Just make sure you know where the .txt file is when you're done.
  11. The last thing to remember, all product codes will (for Storybooks, calendars, etc) will expire no later than September 23rd.

That's the gist of it.  Ask me questions, I'll do the best I can.  Let me know how I can help!

~ Deb

 

Incredible Custom Album and Pages!

You may or may not know that CM released a custom scrapbooking album cover option last fall, and then custom 12×12 album pages in the spring.  “Custom” in this case, means digitally created, whether by simply uploading photos and using the templates on the CM Digital Center, or by creating digital pages with Storybook Creator Plus 4.0 and uploading them to create your own unique work.

So, I purchased the fabulous deal that CM offered in April that included a 10-pack of the custom pages (that's 10 pages, 20 sides) and a custom album cover.  I decided to create my family's 2012 album in this one.

Well, all product credits through the CM Digital Center have an expiration date 180 days from purchase, and my credits were set to expire in the middle of this month.  I found that having that deadline helped me to make sure that I got the job done.  And the payoff came today … take a look!

And a few of the pages …

I have to say, the quality on the cover and on the pages is the best I've seen yet from Creative Memories!  And I didn't have to find time and space to pull out all of my tools to get started on this year's album!  Woohoo!

I'm not saying you have to make this choice, but wanted to show you how cool it is … I love Storybook Creator Plus 4.0!

Until the next time, Enjoy!

~ Deb