Sunday, October 23, 2011

How I Survived my Author Photo Shoot

Thank goodness for good friends with good connections.  That's how I found a terrific photographer to take the headshot I'll be using as THE photo on my books and all that kind of jazz.

I'm not an actor or performer, so I'm not the most comfortable person in front of the camera. The photo you see currently on my blog is one I took myself, in my own bathroom mirror.  I find that a much more comfortable way to get my photo taken than to pose for other people.

Okay, I can be a bit of a goofy ham when I feel comfortable. Which is why it was great having Joe shoot my photos, since he was so easy to chat with and told me to "flutter my eyelashes" at the beginning of the shoot.

Still, it took me awhile to warm up.  Later, as I went through the (over a thousand!) photos, I noticed how sort of squinty and skeptical I looked in the early shots.  Sort of a "Is this really necessary?" attitude.  Which isn't fair, since I set the whole thing up and yes, it is necessary, thank you very much Nina, you squinty skeptic.

It was kind of surreal, going through all those close ups of myself.  I re-noticed my grayish front gums (thanks to a bike accident I had when I was ten that knocked my front teeth out and lead to all sorts of traumatic dental fun over the years), and how I seem to like the left side of my face better than my right given how I angle it toward the camera pretty consistently. 

And ah, the schnozz.  It's a gift from my Berry forebears. My beloved Aunt Janet had this nose, until she got a nose job in her twenties.  No nose job for me, thanks.  I love my big schnozz, my freckles, my squinty green eyes, my weird gums, and tendency to smirk. It's easy to love beauty and symmetry. More a point of pride to love your own faults.  It's a struggle, one that will go on my whole life, I suppose, but I'm determined to keep at it. Beats hating yourself!

The main thing, as a redhead, is to wear green. I'm not kidding. For someone with my coloring, it's like a magic trick to make your hair look good, you eyes glow, and your skin say 'Thank you!"

One thing you can be sure of, this photo will NOT be my author headshot. Though I love it for obvious reasons:

I'll post the official photo when it's ready. Meanwhile, am treasuring the ugly/goofy/crazy face photos too.


Jen Klein said...

SO weird getting author photos made! Especially in Los Angeles, the land of actor headshots. Totally agree with you on green (although somehow we didn't end up choosing that for my shoot -- I did have several wardrobe changes that day).

I, of course, sort-of love the photo you're not using. I had several of those as well. In fact, I originally put one at the top of my blog posting about the shoot and my photographer FREAKED out. Understandably, she didn't want that picture to be the first one my readers saw of her work!

I hope you'll post the real deal when it's all set!

Nina Berry said...

Ha, glad to hear you had semi-goofy bloopers you loved too. I've had friends lobby me for this one to be the "real" author photo, but I just can't quite bring myself to be that much of a rebel.

So yeah, I'll post a conventional, smiley shot when it's ready. NOT that I'm having it photoshopped or anything. NOOOO, no, of course not!

Now I'm heading back to your blog to check out your photos again. Always fun to see what other author's did!

Jen Klein said...

For your convenience (and, you know, in the interest of self-promotion...), here's the link to the actual post: