Library Workers Recommend Books By Merging Themselves With Novels Every Week

Over the past couple of years, the cover of books has given way for a charming creative challenge. Using some strategic placement and illusion photography, readers are becoming one with a publication—literally—by merging their bodies with the images appearing on the chosen cover. They align the book with their face, shoulders, or even feet to form a trompe l'oeil portrait that brings the inanimate object to life. The practice was popularized by Librairie Mollat, a Bordeaux-based bookstore who created the Instagram series called Book Face.

Librairie Mollat isn’t the only place having fun with this literary trend. There’s an entire hashtag dedicated to Book Face that’s aptly called #bookfacefriday. At the end of every work week, people everywhere transform themselves into iconic figures seen on book covers around the world. Not specific to any genre or time period, they feature graphic novels, memoirs, fiction, and nonfiction—any book with a striking cover is game.

Libraries, in particular, enjoy taking part in this hashtag and use their vast collections as fodder for amusing matches and as a way to make book recommendations. Below are some of our favorite iterations of the trend. Follow the hashtag for a weekly dose of the literary optical illusion.

People around the world are having fun with #bookfacefriday, a literary trend where you match yourself with a book cover.

With some strategic placement and illusion photography, you become one with the picture.

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Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met, Manager of My Modern Met Store, and co-host of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
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