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Kids determining the best kids' art photo book service.

Reviewing the Best Photo Book Services for Your Child's Artwork: Artkive, Shutterfly, and Scribble

April 17th 2024

As parents, we cherish the creativity and imagination that our children express through their artwork. But as the piles of paintings, drawings, and crafts keep stacking up, it can get pretty overwhelming figuring out how to preserve and showcase these precious creations. Luckily, that's where gems like Artkive, Scribble, and generalized photo book solutions like Shutterfly step in.

Artkive and Scribble are specialized services that focus on turning your child's artwork into beautiful photo books. On the other hand, general-purpose photo book services like Shutterfly, Mixbook, and others, while not specifically designed for showcasing children's art, still allow you to create custom photo books with your child's art. They might not focus solely on children's art, but you can still jazz up your book with their masterpieces, even if the designs are more geared towards photos of people and events. 

In this review, we'll compare these three options and help you determine which one is the best fit for your family's needs. We'll take a closer look at each service, explore their features, pros and cons, pricing, and turnaround time. By the end of this review, you'll be equipped with the information you need to choose the best way to preserve and showcase your child's creativity for years to come.


An Artkive Box ships to you to place your kids' artwork
An Artkive Box ships to you to place your kids' artwork

Artkive is a specialized box service that allows parents to preserve and showcase their children's artwork in a unique way. It all starts with an Artkive Box, which you can order from their website.  Artkive will ship a monitor sized box (24″ x 8″ x 4″) cardboard box in around 5-10 days after paying a non-refundable $39 fee. Once you receive the box, and after you have sorted and organized the artwork, you can place your artwork in the provided bags and ship it back to Artkive with the prepaid shipping label. Note that everything you want photographed has to fit in their box. You will be charged for every piece of art that is sent to Artkive regardless if you decide not to use it in your book.

After you send the box back to Artkive, their team of professionals will photograph and edit each piece of artwork individually, ensuring that every piece is shown in its best light. From there, you will be invoiced on the pages submitted, and then gain access to a digital proof where you can make adjustments to page order or modify captions. 


Books start at $75 which boils down to $3 per piece of art with per-page discounts when your book starts to exceed 100 pages. Including the box fee, you’re looking at a starting cost of $114 for a 25 page book. They do, however, offer discounts for additional copies. There are also additional fees for returning your artwork or receiving a usb drive back of the digitized artwork. Artkive also offers 3 months of digital access to the photos of your photographed artwork with an option to extend access via a paid subscription. Keep in mind that these various fees can accumulate, so it's essential to consider the desired final product and features when getting started with your Artkive Box. 


In terms of timeline, expect to wait about 4-6 weeks for photography, 3-4 business days to print your book, and about 7-14 days for shipping (with the option of paid expedited shipping). We’re looking at a total of about 6-9 weeks from ordering your Artkive Box to final book delivery (with longer timelines during peak Holiday seasons.


Good things come to those who wait, and Artkive delivers a high-quality, personalized photo book of your child(s) artwork that's worth the investment of time and money. While the cost and turnaround time for an Artkive book may be higher and longer than some other options, many customers find that the investment is well worth it for the exceptional quality and level of care that goes into creating these beautiful, one-of-a-kind keepsakes. These true coffee table books not only showcase your child's creative journey but also become cherished keepsakes that preserve precious memories for years to come. 


Shutterfly photo books are ideal for showcasing life's moments. Photo by Harrison Haines from Pexels.
Shutterfly photo books are ideal for showcasing life's moments. Photo by Harrison Haines from Pexels.

Shutterfly is one of the most popular and well-known general-purpose photo book services, offering a variety of customizable products at affordable prices. It's an ideal choice for those looking to create a personalized photo book without breaking the bank.

How it Works

Shutterfly's process for creating a custom photo book is relatively simple, but entirely hands-on. The first step is to upload your photos from your computer, phone, or social media accounts. Next, you'll need to choose a book size, cover type, and design template that best suits your needs and preferences. After that, you can use Shutterfly's drag-and-drop editor to arrange and edit your photos, add text, and choose from a variety of backgrounds and embellishments. Once you're satisfied with your design, you can preview the book and make any final adjustments before placing your order. 


For an 8”x11” matte hardcover photo book with standard pages, the base price is $59.97, which includes 20 pages. If you would like to add additional pages beyond the initial 20, there will be an extra cost of ~$1 per page. It's worth noting that this pricing does not include any potential shipping costs, which may vary depending on your location and the speed of delivery you choose. 

It's worth noting that Shutterfly frequently offers promotions, discounts, and coupons on their products, which can help you save even more on your photo book order. Be sure to check their website, social media channels, or sign up for their newsletter to stay informed about the latest deals and promotions. 


Shutterfly has a relatively quick turnaround time for printing photo books. Once you've placed your order, it typically takes about 3-4 business days for Shutterfly to print your book. After the printing process is complete, your book will be shipped out, and delivery time will depend on your chosen shipping method and location.

In addition to their regular production and shipping times, Shutterfly also offers expedited shipping options for an additional cost if you need your photo book sooner. Keep in mind that during peak seasons, like the holidays, production and shipping times may be longer,


Shutterfly is an excellent choice for creating custom photo books, particularly if you're looking to showcase photos of people and events. While Shutterfly's platform is user-friendly, there are some trade-offs to consider. You might find yourself spending a significant amount of time editing each photo, adjusting crops, correcting colors, and ensuring optimal placement within the book. It's also worth noting that Shutterfly's design templates and layouts are primarily optimized for photos of people and events. While not specifically tailored for children's artwork, Shutterfly's wide range of options, affordable pricing, and quick turnaround time make it a viable option for preserving your favorite memories.

Scribble Art

Scribble does the work to magically capture their 2D and 3D creations and transform them into pages in your book
Scribble does the work to magically capture their 2D and 3D creations and transform them into pages in your book

Scribble is a cutting-edge book builder that harnesses the power of AI and sophisticated computer vision technology to transform your child's artwork into stunning, professionally designed books and digital galleries. Unlike general-purpose photo book services, Scribble is specifically tailored to showcase children's creativity, making it the ultimate choice for parents looking to preserve and celebrate their little ones' masterpieces.

How it Works

Creating a custom photo book with Scribble is a straightforward and as easy as it gets. From uploading your child's artwork to receiving a beautiful, professionally printed keepsake, Scribble's intuitive platform and AI-powered technology make it easy to design and customize a unique photo book that celebrates your little one's creativity. Follow these simple steps to get started and transform your child's artwork into a cherished family treasure.

  1. Get Started: Begin by creating a free Scribble account and choosing from either an 8.5”x11” book, perfect for displaying larger art pieces, or a more compact 8.5”x8.5” option, ideal for smaller drawings or those seeking a more portable keepsake. There are no upfront fees, so you can start designing your personalized kids art book right away.
  2. Upload Artwork: Effortlessly upload your child's artwork from your phone or desktop, and watch as Scribble's AI technology works its magic. Scribble will automatically remove distracting backgrounds, straighten and adjust your photos, enhance colors and brightness, and even analyze your artwork to suggest complementary page colors. It's like having a professional photographer and designer working behind the scenes to ensure that your child's artwork looks its very best in print, without any extra effort on your part. From small-scale sketches to larger-than-life creations, Scribble embraces artwork of all shapes and sizes, allowing your child's imagination to take center stage. It's especially effective for capturing the essence of 3D projects, such as dioramas, LEGO masterpieces, science fair experiments, and even those epic bed sheet forts that become the stuff of family legends!
  3. Design and Customize: As you upload photos, Scribble's AI will work behind the scenes to design your book in real time. If you prefer a more hands-on approach, you can easily customize the layout by adding captions, adjusting background colors, cropping images, and even including photos of your little artists. With Scribble, the design process is magical, but also flexible, giving you the freedom to create a truly unique and meaningful keepsake that reflects your child's individual style and creativity.
  4. Preview and Order: Once you've finished designing your book, take some time to review the layout and make any final adjustments. To ensure everything is perfect before sending it off to print, you have the option to request a PDF proof, which will be sent to you for approval. When you're completely satisfied with the design, simply place your order and let Scribble take care of the rest, bringing your child's artwork to life in a beautiful, high-quality photo book. 


Scribble offers two hardcover book sizes at affordable prices, comparable to those of Shutterfly, with the added value of their done-for-you design process that's similar to Artkive. You can choose between an 11"x8.5" book for $49.99 or an 8.5"x8.5" book for $39.99, both of which include 24 pages. Additional pages can be added for just $0.30 per page, with a maximum of 200 pages per book. This allows you to create a beautiful and professionally designed photo book that showcases your child's artwork without breaking the bank.

In addition to their affordable pricing, Scribble often offers promotions and discounts, such as a current offer where you can get 20% off a second copy of your book when ordering. Plus, every book order includes access to a digital version of your book, which you can share with friends and family. 


Once you've placed your order, Scribble's turnaround time for printing and shipping your custom photo book is typically faster than many competitors. Your book will be printed within 3-4 business days, and then shipped out according to your chosen shipping method. If you need your book sooner, Scribble offers expedited shipping options at an additional cost. During peak seasons, such as holidays, production and shipping times may be slightly longer, so it's always a good idea to order early to ensure your book arrives when you need it. Overall, Scribble's efficient production process and fast turnaround times make it a great choice for parents looking to create a beautiful keepsake in a timely manner.


Scribble is an exceptional choice for parents who want to create a unique and professional photo book that celebrates their child's artistic journey. With an emphasis on preserving and inspiring childhood creativity, Scribble's AI-powered platform makes it easy to transform kids' artwork into beautiful, high-quality keepsakes. Offering affordable pricing comparable to Shutterfly and a done-for-you design process similar to Artkive, Scribble ensures a seamless and enjoyable experience for families.

Final Thoughts

Transforming your child's artwork into a photo book not only preserves their creativity but also promotes their creative confidence. It's an excellent way to showcase their artistic journey while making a thoughtful gift for friends and family, expressing your pride in their artistic achievements. Turning your child's artwork into a photo book not only tidies up your home but also makes room for them to dream up new creations. Among the options discussed, Artkive, Shutterfly, and Scribble each offer unique features and benefits for creating custom photo books. Let's quickly go over what each service brings to the table:

Artkive simplifies the process by sending you a pre-paid box to mail in your child's art. Their done-for-you approach guarantees professional results with some effort from you, but keep in mind that this convenience comes at the cost of a longer turnaround time and a higher price tag.

Shutterfly has a lot to offer when it comes to creating custom photo books. It's got a ton of products, affordable prices, fast turnarounds, and plenty of ways to customize your book. But keep in mind, it's better for traditional photo books rather than ones specifically for artwork. So if you're searching for a super easy way to show off your kid's amazing art skills, you might want to check out other platforms that are better suited for creating kids art-focused books.

Scribble, specifically designed for children's artwork, offers a more tailored option for parents looking to celebrate their child's creativity. Its AI-powered technology and done-for-you design process provide a streamlined and enjoyable experience for transforming your child's art into a beautifully printed book.

When choosing the platform that's right for you, consider factors like pricing, design flexibility, and turnaround times. Each of these services—Artkive, Shutterfly, and Scribble—presents an opportunity to preserve and cherish your child's artistic expressions for years to come.

Empowering Young Artists

Scribble is dedicated to nurturing the creative spirit in every child. By offering an effortless way to preserve and showcase your child's creativity, Scribble encourages young artists to explore their imaginations and express themselves through art. Support your child's creative journey and let their imagination shine. Don't let these precious moments slip by—capture a vibrant snapshot of your child's creative journey with Scribble. Ready to build their book? 

Start Their Scribble Book