Credits: Steven Brower Design, studio:
Arnold Katz, photographer;
Carol Publishing Group, client
Objective: For the cover of JFK: The CIA, Vietnam and the Plot to Assassinate John F. Kennedy, Brower decided to create a photo-illustration of bullet holes in an American flag to represent Kennedy's assassination and its damaging effect on the country. Brower's design required three bullet-hole entrances for the book's back cover and three exit holes for the front cover. With the help of photographer Arnold Katz, arrangements were made for a flag-wrapped book to be "shot" at a local firing range. However, when the shooters realized they were expected to shoot a book wrapped with an American flag, "they became outraged and refused to participate," recalls Brower. After much pleading by Brower and Katz, "someone, in absolute disgust, fired a single shot through the flag-wrapped book."
Challenge: How to produce four more authentic-looking bullet holes?
Solution: After a little experimentation, and using the real entrance and exit bullet holes as models, Brower found that he could re-create the look of the bullet holes using an electric drill, matches and cigarettes. Brower drilled two holes from the back cover all the way through the front cover of the flag-wrapped book. Then, using the matches and cigarettes, he burned and frayed the edges of the drilled holes until the look matched that of the real bullet holes.