Fuse #8

Monday, April 16, 2007

I've Always Sorta Wondered This Too

This is something I've always wondered, but it took The Longstockings to voice it perfectly. On their site someone asked the following question:

Can I ask you guys a couple slightly more technical questions? Do you get your author photos done professionally? Or have a friend take them? What are your opinions on acknowledgement sections? Long or short? Who to thank?? I'd be interested to hear what you all think about these kinds of things...

Well asked. A couple answers have come in thus far from the authors who work the blog, but I'm curious about the rest of youse folks. Photographs are difficult little things. Where do you have them done? Who does them? Sometimes I'll stare and stare at an authorial photo and wonder why they went with the one they did (I ain't naming names).

Any opinions on the matter?

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At 1:42 AM , Blogger Disco Mermaids said...

Luckily, one of the other Disco Mermaids is married to a newspaper photographer. He seemed just as excited to have his work put on the jacket of a novel as I was with the results. We took it in a tunnel beneath a freeway to get a myserious background glow, which was his idea...and I loved it! I've always liked author photos that added to the tone of the novel.

- Jay

(And, no, my profile pic is not my author photo...thought there is a nice glow around me.)

At 4:25 AM , Anonymous Loree Burns said...

I have a friend who is a professional photo-journalist, and she took my author photo. Actually, she took about one hundred author photos and we managed to find one that I loved. (My fault, not hers. Cheesy grins are a bad habit of mine.)

At 11:59 AM , Anonymous Tim B said...

A friend took my first author photo but it wasn't his work that was the problem... it was my horrific what-was-he-thinking-this-wasn't-even-cool-back-then haircut. Eventually I wised up and started drawing my image for the back flap, usually as a space alien, a dog or a caveman. Better for everyone, in the long run.

At 12:10 PM , Blogger Matthew said...

Jenni found a photographer down in MD who does her (and my) author photos--as well as a ton of shots of her son. The photographer took about 300 shots of us (which was not uncommon in ye olde filme days of yore, but is absolutely no big deal in the modern, digital age), then we picked a bunch we liked, and she went to town adjusting those particular shots.

I think for my solo shot, I actually later took a pic that had Jenni in it and cropped her out.

Of course, for our book jackets, Babymouse does the portraits.

At 6:38 PM , Anonymous brian said...

One word: tripod.

Five words: Years of mediocre author photos.

P.S. Hi, Tim.

At 11:10 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Matthew and Jenni. I need the name of your photographer.

Actually, the author picture I'm using right now was taken by a volunteer mother, whose 12 year old son was babysitting my then 3 year old daughter while I was part of a huge multi-author event in Western Maryland. I just grabbed my display model of the Wright brothers' flyer, held it up to one side of me, handed her my camera which had three (count them, three) pictures left on the roll, and had her take 3 pictures of me. One of them turned out great.

All other pictures of me, including some by professional photographers, were rotten, rotten, really, really bad. But that's me, not their fault.

For years I'd show up for an event and the organizers would not belive it was me because I didn't look like my picture. Now I've got one that not only makes me look good -- but seems to look like me, too.

-wendie old, also in Maryland

At 10:47 AM , Blogger Matthew said...


Here she is:


She came to Jenni's home and we did the shots in her dining room; it looks like Jodie has a studio, now, so I'm not sure if she's still making house calls or not.


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