Photo Rehab Cover Makeover #4: The Invention of Solitude

Cover Makeover #4 and I am still interested. It’s kind of fun, and it repurposes old photos. A win-win, if you ask me. Yeah, I know you didn’t ask me.

Here’s what we are given as the original:


It’s The Invention of Solitude and here is a brief excerpt from Goodreads: “Paul Auster’s moving and personal meditation on fatherhood. The first section, ‘Portrait of an Invisible Man’, reveals Auster’s memories and feelings after the death of his father, a distant, undemonstrative, almost cold man. As he attends to his father’s business affairs and sifts through his effects, Auster uncovers a sixty-year-old family murder mystery that sheds light on his father’s elusive character.”.

This is an interesting book because it was originally published in 1982 and it is occasionally listed as fiction and other times as a memoir. It is, as far as I can tell, a memoir. There are a number of covers for different editions, and the above is a fairly faithful take on the first edition. Other covers play on different themes, so I felt pretty good about taking some liberty with the theme, concentrating on the title rather than the actual content. 

And, yes, this is yet another book I would never read. For one, I’m not a father. For another, my experience with fathers is not exactly something I draw on for anything but at best a neutral experience, and often drifting into the negative. 

Solitude, however, is something I valued even as a kid. I much preferred being out on my own, the company of others being a burden. Per my limited understanding, that makes me somewhat unique . . . but then, aren’t we all unique?

Solitude . . . as humans are absent in the vast majority of my photos I immediately resolved to eschew any representation of solitude involving actual humans. 

I could have used animals (ignore the caption; it was for another post) . . . 

I have lots of pictures of this place, but the buffalo adds an anchor to the picture. Something for the viewer to connect with.

I have lots of pictures of this place, but the buffalo adds something for the viewer to connect with.

. . . but, that’s not something a person can identify with; not many people wade through rivers in Yellowstone. 

I could use one of my many landscape shots . . . 

MISC_28AUG2010_13579-Processed_DIGI (2)

But, that’s a broken-down remnant of human presence. I know I can see me in a place like that (restored, of course, and with cable, internet, and a nearby Costco), but others might have difficulty associating it with “solitude” and may see it more as “lonely” which is a whole other thing (and one I’m not familiar with). 

No, I needed something evoking a person alone with their thoughts but that does so without the actual person.

I took this photo because the empty furniture looks inviting as a place for solitude . . .


. . . cropped it to the desired orientation . . . 


. . . added mood . . . 


. . . and I was nearly there.

However, there was too much texture, detail . . . too much distraction. Enter Topaz Simplify . . . 


Yeah! That’s what I’m talking about, but still too much color . . . enter Topaz B&W . . . 


Perfect! . . . or so it seems to me. Others might disagree.

Here’s the final product after processing it in Photoshop.

Cover Makeover 4 -The Invention of Solitude_DIGI

For them who need mood music to go with it . . . 

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.

 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ o o o o o o ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Amplified and drawn out

Amplified and drawn out

Astute persons might have noticed these doodles, and correctly surmised they hold some significance for me, and perhaps for humanity at large.  

If you click on the doodle, and nothing happens, this is the link it’s supposed to go to:


Note: if you are not reading this blog post at, know that it has been copied without permission, and likely is being used by someone with nefarious intention, like attracting you to a malware-infested website.  Could be they also torture small mammals.


Please, if you are considering bestowing me recognition beyond commenting below, refrain from doing so.  I will decline blogger-to-blogger awards.   I appreciate the intent behind it, but I prefer a comment thanking me for turning you away from a life of crime, religion, or making you a better person in some other way.  That would mean something to me.

If you wish to know more, please read below.

About awards: Blogger Awards
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Note: to those who may click on “like”, or rate the post; if you do not hear from me, know that I am sincerely appreciative, and I thank you for noticing what I do.

. . .  my FP ward  . . . chieken shit.

About disperser

Odd guy with odd views living an odd life during odd times.
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14 Responses to Photo Rehab Cover Makeover #4: The Invention of Solitude

  1. Pity about the music, ruins the whole thing, kills the idea of solitude immediately, still you never said you were perfect, implied it wellllllllllllllllll……………… :)

    Liked by 1 person

    • disperser says:

      I have to play at being less-than-perfect . . . people hate perfections. They say they don’t, but they do. They always take it as reflecting badly on them.

      Still, careful about insulting the music. One of my favorites from one of my favorite movies.


  2. Ha! You made me laugh (especially your words in ( ) ‘s ) AND your first commenter made me laugh! :-P Thanks, guys! :-D
    Okay, I like your cover W-A-A-A-A-Y better than the original cover, Emilio! It screams “solitude”!
    Ooh, I love mood music! That song made me sigh…I find that song so peaceful and calming.
    HUGS!!! :-)


  3. Hi! I just dropped by to say how much I appreciate your participation in the Photo Rehab Challenge and the outstanding work you share with us. I was on vacations and I am now catching up with the former posts. It is beautiful what you do and we can learn a lot from you. Thanks! Hope you continue interested and having fun! That’s the best we could wish for.


    • disperser says:

      Thank you, although I don’t see myself as a teacher.

      If anything, I would say just go and play with stuff, and save what you like.

      As for continuing, as long as inspiration strikes me and I continue having fun, I’ll be there.


  4. desleyjane says:

    Great cover again! I like your process that you show. The decrease in clarity to remove texture is quite effective.


  5. andy townend says:

    An excellent take on the theme and great to read all about it!


  6. AnnMarie says:

    I prefer your cover and I always enjoy seeing the steps you take to get the end result. But it does take the right photo to begin with. And you always manage to find it.


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