You guys all know this picture by now
I recognize me. I look just like that.
However, it was recently brought to my attention that I don’t look like that.
The person who said it has been seeing me on the video show and thinks I don’t look like my author pic.
They may be right.
For branding purposes, I decided to pick a picture and stick with it – one that I liked well enough, but that wasn’t trying to be sexy or too serious or whatever.
The image I use here on the blog (and my books and everywhere else – because branding) was taken by my friend Katie, who’s a terrific photographer. I’m actually holding my 2 1/2 year old daughter (or 3 1/2, I don’t remember) in it, but cropped her out for an author pic.
And while all that was fine and good, it didn’t occur to me that I don’t look like me in the picture.
I can readily admit my hair looks like crap in that picture. I don’t know why; it looked fine all day but looked like crap during that whole photo shoot. I was worried about my kid looking good I guess, so I never glanced in a mirror.
Now, let’s look at some stills from the video show.
Well, I’m blurry, so maybe that’s the difference. Fuzzy image = fewer visible wrinkles. Who knew? Zoom in on that original pic – that’s why I left it large. See the wrinkles? I have them. (Doesn’t look like it in these video stills, though, does it? Hmm.)
and here I am again… what a difference a decent haircut makes.
Hey, they can’t all be winners!
And here’s Show 9; it has me as the cover image. Click it and watch me move around a bit. Maybe that’s part of all this.
So while this has NOT been a gratuitous post about HEY LOOK AT ME – that was just a happy side benefit – what do you think? Is my current author pic okay or should I go with a new one since I apparently look different?
More like the guy on the right (3 years ago)? Or the one on the left (3 weeks ago)?
I guess I can always call Katie and schedule a new author picture.
Trust me, nothing will change your appearance like seeing yourself on video. Wow, I had no idea I looked that fat or unkempt. No wonder actresses are so skinny in real life. Video will make you put down that second donut and question the first donut!
Okay, so maybe a decent haircut helps, but what do you think? I’m happy to do whatever’s needed to sell books, and I think staying with a certain look will work best for that, so I won’t be changing the picture every six months. It’ll stay whatever we decide for a few years and maybe a lot longer. People change. I get that. But I was never crazy about the first picture anyway. (It’s the hair. I look like I’m going bald or something!)
It’s probably more important to have an image that matches readers’ expectations than one that’s pretty – and I’m not even sure either’s all that important.
What is important is to pick an image and stick with it so fans immediately know it’s you when they see you. Coca-Cola hasn’t changed from writing their name in cursive for over 100 years for a reason. If I’m gonna switch, I need to do it and get it over with for as few years.
So, once again it falls to you, my friends, to help me resolved this dilemma.
Give it to me straight. New pic? Or stay with the existing? If we go with new pic, I’ll get a session scheduled with Katie and let you guys pick the best head shot from whatever she comes up with, but I’m thinking about staying with the current one unless the voting says otherwise.
Give me your thoughts!