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Creating Your Journal With iBooks Author

Creating Your Journal With iBooks Author

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With your media ready to go, it’s time to dive into iBooks Author and put the finishing touches to your project


You’ll soon come to realise that iBooks Author is the perfect combination between power and creativity – enabling you to create awesome interactive books using an interface that’s insanely familiar and easy to get to grips with.


How you go about creating your own travel guide will vary, depending very much on how you’ve decided to document your time away. We’ve put together a guide that should give you enough knowledge to take this project as far as you’d like to. The beauty of iBooks Author is that it does a lot of the hard work for you; reflowing text onto the next page when there’s too much in one box, moving everything to fit in different types of media, and much more.


All that’s left for you to do is follow our guide to creating your travel journal and the instructions overleaf to share it with the world.


Chapters, sections and pages

When creating your journal, think about how it will be split up – we’ve utilised iBooks Author’s full set of chapters, pages and journals to help with hierarchy, but for a small trip or holiday, you may wish to just use regular pages throughout


Check your design

Use the portrait and landscape buttons in the top toolbar to ensure your design looks correct no matter which way it’s shown on an iPad – alternatively, you can disable the portrait (usually the most problematic) orientation altogether under the Document tab


Change the layout

To change the layout of any page, simply hover over it, click on the arrow in the bottom-right and select a new option from the menu that appears – there’s plenty to choose from so be sure to vary things up throughout your project


The Widgets menu

When it comes to collating all of the amazing photos, videos and audio you’ve been working on into your travel journal, the Widgets menu is your friend. Click here to see options for the type of interactive elements you can add to your iBooks Author project


Pulling in media

By clicking on the Media button in the top toolbar, you’ll bring up the Media window. From here, you can easily drag in any photos, video or audio you’ve created earlier on in the project by simply selecting it and dragging it into the Widgets you’ve already made


Image masks

In order to give our travel journal a seriously professional feel, we’ve used a page template with an image mask, dropping in a photo from our iPhoto album in the process and adjusting it until the picture was perfectly framed


Step-by-step to Add a holiday photo gallery


1: Which Widget?

Start off by selecting the page you’d like your photo gallery on and select the Gallery option from the Widgets menu in the toolbar at the top. This should insert it onto your page.


2: Move and resize

On a text-heavy page, it’s a good idea to make your gallery the centre of attention. Use the guides to help you centre your gallery and resize it to fill around 25% of the screen.


3: Give it a title

Giving your gallery a title is important, especially if your travel journal is viewed in portrait orientation on the iPad, as it’s not fully visible until it’s been tapped on by the reader.


4: Add some images

Click on the Media button towards the top and drag in your images from the iPhoto album you made earlier on – any images that are too big will be flagged up by iBooks Author.


5: Say what you see

Adding captions is also important, particularly if anyone reading your journal uses assistive tools like VoiceOver to help guide them through what’s on screen – add these for each image.


6: Adjust the order

Bring up the Inspector window and under the Widget tab you’ll see a list of the images in your gallery – drag these up and down to change the order in which they appear in your iBook.