Creating Photo-Books in the 21st Century

By Belinda Hungerford

The Photobook is a growing genre in photographic practice. Now an important avenue of exhibition in its own right, the Photobook is gaining momentum nationally and internationally due to the accessibility and distribution of digital publishing platforms to show work and disseminate photography to a mass audience. 

Recent years have seen more and more developments in self-publishing and a growing pool of prizes for photobooks; The Paris Photo and Aperture Foundation PhotoBook Awards, The FotoBookfestival Kessel Awards, PhotoIreland PhotoBook Awards and Australian Photo Book of the Year Awards, to name but a few. 

In a hyper-networked world, where the instant and singular image storms our social network feeds the Photobook slows down our image consumption. This format celebrates considered selection and juxtaposition, of photographic narrative in a published format.

Photographer, writer and curator Gerry Badger says “In the Photobook, the sum, by definition, is greater than the parts, and the greater the parts, the greater the potential of the sum.” (Parr and Badger, The Photobook: Vol. 1, 7.)


 Coming up for Photobook enthusiasts:

PhotoBook Melbourne runs from 12th-22nd of February. If you are lucky enough to get to Melbourne this artist-run initiative is a must.

Want to find your feet in the sea of self-publishing options?

We are running a very exciting Photobook workshop! Join dynamic duo Stephen Dupont and Marshall Weber in Sydney for this weekend intensive. You will explore the myriad possibilities for the photo book format, ranging from hand printed unique artists books, to cutting edge hybrid media books, to innovative trade publications.

Also coming up, Photobooks supporters Press Books will be setting up shop for a pop up weekend on the 7th and 8th of March. ‘A store for zines, photobooks and independent publications’ Press Books supports international and local published photographic works. Check them out at


Image: Courtesy and © Marshall Weber