Issuu - provide full-colour animated books and catalogues online, completely free of charge.
We love this service but were not quite sure where to place it. Perhaps it should have been in the Portfolio section as you can use it to promote your work online (a little like a print-shaped portfolio or website) and allow people to download it. But it is also a pseudo book or catalogue so we placed it in Publishing.
Remarkably simple, you lay out your book using any design or desktop publishing system, convert the finished project to a pdf file (now almost universal as a digital format) and then upload it to Issuu. The result is a fully animated, ‘book’, ‘magazine’ or ‘catalogue’ which visitors to the site can ‘flip’ through by clicking to turn the pages.
The book 'feel' is remarkable and apart from Issuu giving you a free account and placing your publication on a personal ‘book shelf’, they also give you a web link to send to people so they can visit your page directly. You can also embed the publication into your website or blog with all the animation effects. Visitors to this version can click to enlarge and view the publication ‘full screen’.
The service is free but branded with the Issuu logo and served by links to other ‘relevant’ Issuu publications, which is a small price to pay for an innovative service like this. If you want to remove the Issuu logo and ads, there is a paid version.
Large publishers are using the service to preview their books and hundreds of artists and photographers can be found on the platform as well as a mass of commercial magazines.