Photographer Neil Krug was recently interviewed by Emmazed where he talks about his work, including the imagery he shot with Lana Del Rey for her ‘Ultraviolence’ record. Some photos from the interview of the shoots have also been added to our gallery.
You can read the parts of the interview where Neil discusses his and Lana’s strong focus on the narrative of the imagery below + more.
But how do you advocate a subject such as Lana Del Rey to be vulnerable with your work because of her perceived image?
I know what you mean. She’s been a fan of the Pulp Art books and didn’t think I was alive—it’s a long story. Whatever energy she saw in the Pulp books was what she wanted, or at least that’s the impression I had during “Ultraviolence”. I tried to put her at ease. Actually, I didn’t even try. I just did because when we met, we just dove headfirst into our ideas and didn’t really look back.
For whatever reason, I can’t really describe what brings that [vulnerability] out but I think it has to do with your energy, the energy you bring on that day. It’s good not to be phony. With her, we’re always trying to do our best with the narrative of the imagery—getting the atmosphere right as well is what we’re all about.
I’m interested in the story or some sort of narrative thread that moves along [pause] if not, I’m bored to tears. I want to put something subliminally into the work to unravel a completely loose narrative that I may not know when I’m making it.
I think there are some people you groove with and there’s some people you don’t, you know. Sometimes you get lucky and sometimes you go: “Ah, that’s a shame. I wish that would’ve worked better.” She’s [Lana] just like hanging out with my sister and it’s super relaxed and there’s no pressure.
Regarding your interest in the narrative, what are some essential elements that you try to inject in a story?
For me, its all about the mood and sequence. That being said, sometimes things can just be a visceral experience. In the context of what we’re talking about with Lana, an album campaign should have a narrative because her records are a narrative of whatever is going on in her life.
For me, unless I’m doing something with computer graphics and matte paintings—something allegorical and in your face—let’s let the audience tell us, too. Let’s give them something but not say everything. Let them have their own interpretation so it leaves them wanting more rather than saying, “Here it is. What’ya think?” [laughing] I’m a little bit more discerning than that. Let’s give it some energy—lay some bread crumbs—but not give everything away. If you’re watching a good movie, there are seeds a good director plants that lead you, so when it comes back around you realise [the intention].
To read all of Emmazed’s interview with Neil Krug, click here.