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When I began looking for background images to use on the cover for Geronimo’s Bones by Darrell Bryant, my initial search keywords focused on the Superstition Mountains of Arizona. The fifth image I discovered figuratively took my breath away. I immediately emailed the copyright holder and received a reply within an hour, telling me that he had received the email on his cell phone while hiking in the Superstitions on a photo shoot. I obtained a limited-use license and began designing the paperback cover with the single image wrapping around both front and back covers and the spine.
A previous post covers the saga of finding an image to use for the early 20th century automobile I wanted to place on the background, and combining the two required a number of steps to position the automobile in proper perspective to the background and blend it to avoid the appearance of it being pasted in. This usually demands making a decision about which portion of the original photo works best, and especially in this case, it wasn’t easy to crop any of it.
And while I really like the final result, the added text, publisher logo, and ISBN box unfortunately distract from the viewer’s ability to fully appreciate the photo, not to mention that it can’t be viewed as a complete image when wrapped 180 degrees around a book.
To share with you more of this stunning photograph by Travis Neely, here is the paperback cover with only the two added key elements visible.