Earlier this year, I spent a lot of time looking at images for book covers. When I say a lot, I mean dozens upon dozens of hours. I went to bed those nights with achy eyes.
Being well acquainted with the pictures on a huge stock image site, I have seen them all over. It seems what draws my eyes does the same for the majority of people. Unless it is an original piece of artwork created for a book, most covers I see use the same images.
It stunned me at first. Then it made me panic. The models I picked have been on hundreds of other books! Maybe even thousands. Some have been poorly photoshopped and others have been beautifully done, but it's still the same models. Sometimes it's the same pose too.
I see this particularly in the urban fantasy and paranormal romance genres. (They are the ones I focus on, after all!) There is a little more variety with the female models, but the male models are much fewer and thus seen more frequently on covers. The same beefcakes over and over again. I'm rather tired of them.
Seeing the same male models used so often has made me reconsider what I want to do with the covers of books #4, #5, and #6 in the Totem series. I was going to put the heroes on the covers, but the models I chose are extremely popular. Yes, my covers as a whole are different from everyone else's but not those male models.
I had already been considering keeping the women on the covers before this started to bother me. Now I'm leaning even further in that direction.
I'm curious to know whether you notice the same models on different book covers. Does it bother you to see the same ones used over and over?