Thursday’s Pre-Publication Post: Please Advise Me On My Author Photo!

So, when we last left our heroine (moi), Author Photo Shoot Day was approaching. It came and it went…well! I have so much admiration for photographer Lisa Hancock, who did some really nice work (I think so, at least!).

You’ve seen some of that work with my new profile picture right here on the blog (if you haven’t noticed it yet, take a look on the right sidebar). But here’s the deal: The photo shoot package includes one complimentary “retouching,” which means I can ask Lisa to retouch one of the 200+ shots at no extra cost. Presumably, that’s the shot I’ll use for the book jacket (and maybe elsewhere, though it’s kind of fun to have a choice of photos to post as a blog profile, Twitter thumbnail, etc.).

I’ve received some good advice from people close to me, but now I’d like to hear what YOU have to say. Here are a few more photos for you to peruse. Which do you suggest I ask Lisa to retouch and use for Quiet Americans? (Or do you think I should go with the one I’m currently using for my blog profile?) Thanks for chiming in–I look forward to your comments!

34 thoughts on “Thursday’s Pre-Publication Post: Please Advise Me On My Author Photo!

  1. b.mousli says:

    Personally I vote for the one with the green, round-neck sweater. It is the one feeling the most natural… (and I really liked the one you had on your blog profile before.. It was the one which made me think "I'd like to know this person better"…). But my author's advice: choose the one you are the most comfortable with, because if all goes well, you are going to see it quite a bit!
    Keep us posted… I enjoy these pre-publication posts.

  2. Kiki says:

    I would vote for the one with you in the red. Maybe because I just like red, or maybe because you look a little more genuinely happy there, though I could not explain why. There is not a bad one in the bunch, so be happy with the one you choose!

  3. grrlpup says:

    I like the one you're using for the blog and the one in the green sweater, because they both have a sort of confiding look, like you're about to let us in on a secret. Just my two cents. 🙂

  4. austere says:

    I think the blog profile one, please.

  5. Delia Lloyd says:

    I went thru this a year or so ago w/my blog photo. I'm not visual so I let a few close visually oriented friends (one a former model!) choose for me. So take this w/a grain of salt. But I LOVE your new blog photo. I'd go w/that.

    All best
    Delia Lloyd

  6. Kim says:

    I noticed the new blog photo immediately and I read you daily. I think it's stunning and given the other choices, it remains my top pick!

    Kim Klugh

  7. Lupita says:

    Hi Erika,

    Yes, I have noticed your new photo and I like it.

    I recommend the one with you in green. It has more depth, the lighting is better than the others. Forget the black and white ones.

    Much luck on your new book. BTW, yours is one of very few blogs I read every day. Thanks.

  8. Deb says:

    Erika, they all look great. I like the black and white one the best, but it's only a tiny bit in front of the one with the green sweater.

  9. Duolit Consulting says:

    Hi Erika — I think I like either the top left or bottom right the best, the main distinction being whether a portrait or landscape photo would work better with the design of your book jacket. Really nice pics — kudos to the photographer!

  10. mymomshops says:

    Green sweater!

    Love, your sister

  11. deonne kahler says:

    They're all gorgeous, so you can't go wrong.

    Of the color photos I prefer the green sweater shot, but the black and white you're using for the blog is also great. It's good to have both options – color and b&w – and I think it depends where you're using it (e.g. book cover, online, etc.) to decide which is more appropriate in each case.

  12. Lisa Romeo says:

    Gren sweater is my favorite, followed by the one on the blog.

    As you said, she did a great job and you can't go wrong with any one of these.

  13. Lillian says:

    The black and white one, bottom right, or blog one. Green sweater looks a lot like a sweatshirt with a gold necklace and earrings–kitchen casual. The blazer looks a little like the picture of someone who works at a bank or business. The black and white one has both softness and crispness, great bokeh and focus, and softens up the skin. It's landscape, but it can also be cropped to portrait if need be.

  14. Colette says:

    The good news is — they're all great! I vote for the green sweater. That said, you can't go wrong with any of them.

  15. Otter7 says:

    I like the blk and wht close-up because the smile is engaging and overall it is more dynamic.
    But the green sweater is also quite good. You look great in green!
    Nix the pink because while the color is nice on you, it's a bit too low cut
    and that expanse of skin is distracting. You want people to focus on your face (recognition). Right? The one with the jacket is professional, but sort of boring. More appropriate for a corporate training manual. You have gorgeous eyes and a very engaging smile. Work it!

  16. Darla Himeles says:

    The blog one! You look the most genuine, approachable, and trust-worthy. Something about your smile and the tilt of your head.

  17. Avil Beckford says:

    Hi Erika,

    I ilke the one where you are wearing the green. You appear warm and approachable in that one.

  18. Felicia says:

    The green one! The green one!

  19. Philip Graham says:

    The blog photo, or the similar photo at the top right. The three quarter view works best, I think, and both photos have a more contemporary look. A great look.

  20. Dory Adams says:

    I like the one of you in the green the best, too. There's something about the angle and especially your smile in that one that comes across as the most engaging.

  21. Alison Ashley Formento says:

    My first reaction is to choose your wonderful blog photo because I'm partial to black and white photos, but I love the color one in the green blouse, too. it's a tough call without knowing what the cover of your book is going to be. Sometimes a color author photo clashes oddly against the color of the jacket flap or back cover of a book. That aside, the first commenter has it right—choose the one that you like best.

  22. Sarah says:

    Erika, these photos are lovely. My favorite is the one that you're using for the blog. Thanks for sharing and letting us weigh in!

  23. Cara Holman says:

    I like your blog photo best– it really flatters your eyes and it looks very natural, but the one in the green sweater is a close second.

  24. Anne Whitehouse says:

    Hi Erika, My daughter and I both like the one of you in the green sweater best. the blog photo is good too. we came to these decisions before reading anyone else's comments so it's good to know we agree with some of the other responses. I noticed the new picture of you right away. Very sophisticated and cool looking. Congratulations!

  25. Colleen says:

    I'm a fan of black and white for an author photo. It seems more serious, for some reason. I like your blog pic the best, although I notice the very top of your head is cut off. I also like the b/w for the blog because it goes really well with the rest of your blog color scheme:shades of gray, black, white, and a really nice, deep red. Very tasteful.

  26. Anonymous says:

    I agree with most people here….the green sweater picture is really pretty as well as authoritative, or the one b&w picked for your blog.

  27. Always Fabulous says:

    i love the green sweater in the first picture.

  28. John Vanderslice says:

    I realize I'm jumping in late here, Erika, but I think the one you're using for your blog profile is great. I think the closer perspective is good for a book jacket, and you've got such the authoritative (or should I say authorial?) look on your face. But, honestly, they're all good.

  29. Kelley says:

    I agree that they are all good. I prefer the black and white. My second choice is the one in the green sweater. Would be good to see the one in the green sweater in black and white as the pic on book jacket may be used as a black and white as well as a color shot in publicity and reviews online and in print.

  30. StephanieV says:

    They really are all good. I think I like the green sweater one best.

    For your blog though, a less formal forum than say a press kit or a book jacket, I kind of like your OLD blog photo. I guess I just don't like change.

  31. Orville says:

    I like the first photo Erika I think it is the best photo!

  32. Daniel says:


    the green.

    Cousin Daniel

  33. Thesis papers says:

    Ericka, you have a very sweet touch in your personality. My vote is with the green one which looks quiet genuine.

    thesis papers

  34. jublke says:

    Hi Erika:

    I like the one in the red and the black & white landscape. They remind me more of your previous blog photo. I like seeing the twinkle in your eye and the crinkle in your nose that lets me know you are really smiling – it makes you look approachable. The green photo is nice too, but seems more authoritative. However, they are all nice pics. Kudos to your photographer and congrats again on your forthcoming book!

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