Prospective cover photos

So, I had to get author photos, for possible use on the cover and other promo of the books. Since I hate hate hate taking photos, this represented a significant source of stress for me. -_- During the retreat a few weeks back, fellow writing-group mate Tempest took some photos of me using my digital camera. One of them’s a good “candid moment” photo; the rest I hate (no fault of T’s, but I was in a funky mood that day). But I wanted at least one professionalish, me-looking-at-the-camera headshot.

At which point other fellow writing-group mate Eugene stepped up, with his spiffy professional camera (using actual film!), an itchy trigger finger, and an artistic eye. He took a lot of great photos, but I hate most of them. (Did I mention I hate taking photos? Again, no fault of the photographer; just my own peculiar neurosis.) However, I loved one of them, and liked two others pretty darn well, too. See if you can guess which one I liked.

(You wouldn’t believe how scary it is for me to post these publicly, BTW. Took me a few days to work up to it. Irrational, I know, considering these are for a book that will be published in at least two countries, but what’s rationality got to do with it?)

[Photos removed — folks keep “borrowing” the ones I don’t like. =( ]

Bonus! Those of you who haven’t seen me for awhile can see my new hair color! Which is soooo not the blonde I’d asked for, but it looks OK anyway.

21 thoughts on “Prospective cover photos”

  1. I *really* like the third one — the off-center composition is unexpected, and the facial expression is so…you.

    New hair color is *so* not blonde, but nice and warm red-mahogany color — it suits you, and that’s what really matters.

  2. You’re so hot! I love the hair colour, too–I know you were disappointed with it, but it looks *good*. I like the first one for a cover–you look very sure of yourself =D

  3. I’m totally with you on hating to have my picture taken. My god, the crappy photos I have had taken of me! And I agree with the masses and vote for photo three.

  4. Nice! I think I like the first one best — there’s something about the light that really works.

    Dare you to add captions to the photos you didn’t post and make author macros.

  5. Hey, Nora! I like the first one the best. And I love the hair, even if it’s not just what you wanted.

  6. Argh — just realized this thing doesn’t thread comments. Weird. I guess I have to add a plugin for that too.

    Wow, nobody likes the one I like!

    Maggie, now I am obsessed with the idea of LoLAuthors! (Might take you up on that dare…)

  7. My name is Angel and I am a friend of Eugene’s. I am a professional fine art photographer, and I use his headshot of me for my website.

    I would recommend using the third photograph. It is the strongest in terms of composition and lighting. Most importantly it is taken at an upward facing angle to your slightly turned head which is the strongest possible angle for a headshot. The other two photographs are also nice but the first photo is taken from a downward facing angle which makes the viewer look down upon the subject. Both metaphorically and photographically it is better to look up to the subject. Your facial expression in the second photograph seems too obvious whereas your expression in the third gives an openess but also holds back a secret. The way the shadow falls on the third photograph on your neck is also the most flattering of the three. In picture one it falls heavily and from an angle that foreshortens your neck. In the second photograph the shadow lines up almost exactly with the edge of the shirt and becomes distracting upon closer examination.

    I would also recommend doing some color adjustments on the photograph you choose. Since Eugene used film balanced for daylight but likely in a room with thungsten and/or mercury vapor lights there is a greenish cast to these. If the photo will be used as a b&w there is no concern but if it is to be used in color your complexion will benefit greatly from a little run through Photoshop.

    Of course no one will likely stare at your author picture this long when it is used but I thought I would offer these comments :)

  8. Not the first one, the photo is looking down your cleavage. (It could be cropped …) Second one is pretty good, but color balance is off. Third one’s the charm, great expression! Again with a little bit of color balance tweaking.

  9. Whereas I’m all for you showing cleavage as a general statement, I’m not feeling the cleavage shot as your book cover photo. I agree that the third is the strongest…

  10. Hi! I’m Sumana, the wife of your writing group friend Leonard Richardson. Now that I know how pretty you are I will have to accompany him to some of your critique sessions! ;->

    They are all lovely photos! I look forward to seeing one of them on your book jacket. Wait, you have THREE novels coming out! You could use one on each!

  11. Why, thank you!! ::huge blushy grin:: And may I say that “Sumana” is a gorgeous name. It flows over the tongue so elegantly, yet connotes strength. In fact… ::glazes over::

    Uh… would you mind terribly if I steal your name for a future story? ::sheepish smile:: No promises, of course, but if the right character comes along…

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