I Could Make a Whole Book Out of This Stock Footage
I’ve a really really great article found via bookshelves of doom. Now I’ve always had conflicted feelings towards Getty Images. Sometimes I’ll see a great cover and think the Art Director really nailed the essential nature of the book. Like last year when I saw how lovely Jenny Han’s Shug was.
Aw. So pretty pretty. It worked with the essential nature of the book. A girl growing up. Childhood things.
Then, not two months later, this title hits American bookstore shelves:
That’s . . . . weird.
Not so weird as all that, though. As the recent piece Cover deja vu: The Dangers of Stock Photography pointed out, this kind of thing is pretty common. As a fan of John Crowley’s Little Big, I’d been pleased with the lovely cover on the new edition. Now I’m feeling less positive. But is that even fair? Just because a cover comes from a collection of images rather than a planned photo shoot, should that change my opinion of how nice it is? Shouldn’t covers share and share alike?
Pretty much, the next time I see the name "Getty" on a book’s inside cover I’ll be watching it a little more closely. Situations like the ones in the article may be rare, but they cheapen an otherwise lovely book jacket.
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About Betsy Bird
Betsy Bird is currently the Collection Development Manager of the Evanston Public Library system and a former Materials Specialist for New York Public Library. She has served on Newbery, written for Horn Book, and has done other lovely little things that she'd love to tell you about but that she's sure you'd find more interesting to hear of in person. Her opinions are her own and do not reflect those of EPL, SLJ, or any of the other acronyms you might be able to name. Follow her on Twitter: @fuseeight.
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