Sunday, November 1, 2009

Photographing Mr. Brown

When I was first invited to photograph Dan Brown, courtesy of Editorial Planeta, the Spanish publisher of The Lost Symbol, I was told that he wouldn't pose for any pictures; photographs were to be taken exclusively during his interview time.

As soon as Mr. Brown arrived at the Philips Exeter Academy library (New Hampshire), where we were to interview and photograph him, he cordially allowed photographs and video taken of him, by the Spanish and Argentinian media there. I went down on my knees to take a photo, and when Dan looked my way, I couldn't help but lower my head in submission.

He must have liked my demeanor, then and during the interview with Carlos Fresneda, of El Mundo, which you can read here (in Spanish), for he agreed to pose for me, if only for an instant, on his way out for the lunch break. We were to meet at the entrance of the library, but when I saw him taking the stairs, I followed (after all, I'm fond of stairs, and I had taken them on the way up to the sixth floor). There I saw the opportunity for THE photo. "Could you please hold it and look up my way?" That was it! The result was published in the printed edition of El Mundo, alongside a profile photo taken during the interview, both of which you can see here.

Dan was so kind that I had to run and buy The Lost Symbol, his latest novel. When I later asked him to sign it for a friend, I was sure to point out that I bought it at a small Exeter bookshop, thus supporting not only him, but his local economy. "Thanks, I can put gas in my car now," was his answer.

Thank you, Dan, you're a true sport.

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