Posted on Aug 12th, 2011 by audra
In these categories Crossed, Interviews, Matched, Reached, Samantha Aide

Matched by Ally Condie is sold in over 30 countries and had a first run printing of 250,000 copies. So many fans have asked us about the mysterious cover model and the beautiful dress that she is wearing. The-Society recently had a chance to interview Samantha Aide, the cover model for both the Matched and Crossed covers, and we are delighted to share her answers with you!

First of all, how were you approached about being on the cover of Matched and Crossed?
Theresa from Penguin emailed me about possibly doing the photography for the book cover of Matched. The dress I wore for the cover of Matched is what caught their eye initially. They spotted this photo of mine on Flickr, wearing “The Dress” and well after a short wait, I was contracted to do the photography for the book covers.

Let’s get technical for a moment, Ally said in an article that you actually took this photo of yourself. What is that process like?
It’s really a process of trial and error at first, after that it’s all fairly easy.

I’m able to take these full body photos of myself, by myself, with the use of a wireless remote. I plug the transmitter into my camera and then I have the remote in my hand, and I’m all set, I press the remote’s shutter button and then 3 seconds later my camera takes a photo. I set my camera on a 3 second timer so that I have time to ‘hide’ my remote so I can put my hands where ever they need to be in the photo.

I take a lot of trial shots to figure out all the little details that make up the photo. From where I need to position myself, how I want props positioned, how I want my outfit to look, the lighting, the crop of the photos, etc. Once I have everything figured out, I just try to slightly change something between each shot and shoot away.

What are the photoshoots like for the covers? Where was it shot?
I did the photo shoots right in my home. Since there wasn’t a specific background needed for the photos, it was really just a matter of setting up my equipment, switching outfits and then shooting the photos. I just had to convince my dog that he wasn’t needed in the photo shoots as he sometimes thought a napping dog was needed in some of the [shots].
Since I’m not really showing my face in either of the current book covers, the fun and interesting part of the photo shoots was trying to convey the emotions of the Cassia only thru my body language.

Were you able to read the book beforehand or were you told what they wanted for the covers? Do you have creative control or was someone else there to assist?
I was given a small summary of the book, just so I could get a sense of the setting and feeling of Cassia. Which felt like such a tease afterward, because after doing the photos I really wanted to read the whole book.

There was already an idea of how the Matched book cover was going to look, so I was asked to just try different ways to express the ‘trapped’ emotion. So a lot of that emotion had to come from my body language since my face isn’t shown in either of the covers.

What kind of equipment do you use?
I am Canon girl so I use a Canon XSi that was given to me by my husband. For lenses I switch between my nifty fifty (50mm F1.4) and my 24-105mm. All my other stuff is basic photography equipment… tripod, remote, backdrop etc.
As for editing, I work my magic in Photoshop.

Have you had a chance to meet Ally condie?
Unfortunately I haven’t had a chance to meet her, though I’d love to. I’m hoping she comes to my area sometime so I can stop by and have [her] sign one of my copies of Matched.

Everyone is in love with that green dress! There have been a lot of fans wondering where they could get one for their prom. Recently, Ally said that it was actually a white dress that was later edited for the cover. Where did you find this beautiful dress?
I found the dress about 4 years ago, listed online by a wedding boutique. The dress is actually an ivory/light gold colored wedding dress by one of my favorite Dress Designers (Maggie Sottero). After I bought the dress, my crafty Mother-In-Law and I altered the dress so I could wear it to the Marine Corps Birthday Ball, without the long wedding train…

After the wearing the dress to the military ball, I hung onto it and began using it as an outfit for photo shoots. It has this almost princess feel to it, so it works out perfectly for the whimsical fairytale photos I try to create. If fans are really wanting to wear the dress to prom, I’ve seen the dress available at a couple online boutiques, otherwise if anyone has a super crafty relative, the could consider trying to replicate the dress. I thought the dress had a name, like most Maggie Sottero dress do however it seems it only has a dress number, #J8031.

Where do you get your inspiration from?
Inspiration comes from a lot of places. Sometimes I will be sitting at work listening to music and a lyric will catch my attention and an idea will pop into my head for a new image to create. So I’ll do a little doodle on paper of my idea so that I don’t forget it and then go later I’ll try to create the image. Other times I’ll be looking at an art magazine and I’ll see a color palette an artist used in a painting and I’ll try to figure out how to use those similar colors in an image of mine.

I’m also a big fan of whimsical, fairytale, mythical stuff…so I try to put a little whimsical almost princess like twist on my images…

What is your favorite book?
Oh, that’s a toughie. See I have this thing where when I go book shopping I sometimes just find a book that has an eye-catching cover. I’ll read the little story summary on the jacket and if it sounds interesting I’ll buy the book. So in a sense I’m going against the age old saying of “never judge a book by its cover”….its terrible, I know but its like a little surprise, cause sometimes I’ll come across a author I’ve never heard of before, and I’ll end up loving their book and then go searching for more of their books. Other times I’ll end up learning a whole lot from a book and other times I’ll be totally flabbergasted by a book.

However some of my favorite books have come from doing this exact process. Like The Host, by Stephenie Meyer(I read this book before I was aware she was the reason behind the Twilight craze), The Weight of Silence by Heather Gudenkauf, and one of my favorite books that I read when I was in 8th grade, Z for Zachariah by Robert C. O’Brien.

Do you have a website or other social media that fans can visit?
Right now my photography is only on Flickr. I’m working on starting my own website that showcases my photography as well as my hand-made items.

Fans are absolutely in love with the cover of both Matched and Crossed, will you also be on the cover of the third book?
I believe I’m still scheduled to do the cover for the third book. However I haven’t been given any of the juicy details as to what the direction will be for the cover.

{Site note: The cover for the the third book in the MATCHED Trilogy, REACHED, has been released and Samantha Aide is on the cover!}

Is there anything else you would like to say to all the Matched fans out there?
I just wanted to say THANK YOU to everyone from Ally, to the folks at Penguin, and to all the fans of books. I hope everyone enjoys the book covers as much as they enjoy the books!

Finally, if you have read the books, are you Team Ky or Team Xander?
I’m all about Team Ky.

Thank you so much for allowing us to interview you Samantha!

2 Responses to “Exclusive Interview with cover model Samantha Aide”
C.K.X. on 3-27-2012 at 11:36 pm

What would happen if Samantha was looking to the left? Maybe it would give her a sense of looking towards the light thus indicating freedom, no? But it’s okay. I like the books and their covers and I realized after the first book that maybe the second and third books will be blue and red. I was all like ‘Aha! I knew it!! I so knew it!’ These books are so great, they should become a movie. I would go watch it. That’s how much I love The Matched Trilogy. :D


The-Society.NET • Your number one 24/7 source for the 'Matched' book trilogy! on 8-13-2011 at 4:04 pm

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