Lou And Me

In order to avoid further thumb-twidling in what is always a quiet time on the work front, I've been doing a bit of extra post production to give some new life to a few pics from the archive. Lou Reed seemed like a good place to start. The shoot was for The Times and took place back in 2007 when he was promoting an album of chill-out meditation music hence the "Walk On The Mild Side"  headline which The Times used to go with the interview. It was the most nervous I'd ever been before a shoot. Lou, as well as being a keen photographer himself, was renowned to be awkward at the best of times and it was no secret that he didn't much like journalists and the interview process. True to form, on his eventual arrival, he refused to sit on the chair that I'd found and certainly wouldn't sit crossed-leg on the floor as I also suggested. He told me he would remain standing and would only be shot from the waist up and also insisted that I count one, two then three when I click the shutter. This I did of course but seemed unnecessary as he did not move or change expression in any way. He also wanted to see each shot on the back of the camera, we thus ended up in a kind of creative stale-mate. One, two, three,  show Lou the picture, hmmm he doesn't seem to like it much but won't move or do anything, oh well, one, two, three......

After a few painfully long minutes doing this I think he must have sensed my stressful state or just realised it was worth making an effort to get a decent picture, so he changed into his stage gear for that nights performance, and  adopted a bit of rock star attitude. One, two, three, click. I had the picture and once he'd seen it, I was suddenly in the company of a surprisingly friendly Lou Reed who wanted to talk cameras and agreed to have his picture taken with me while adopting what he called a RUN DMC pose. (This is now framed and proudly on show in my downstairs toilet)

Then he went off and did the interview. Going straight back to grumpy mode, he made very nice lady interviewer cry, accusing her of not listening to his new album. I didn't care though, I was basking in the warmth of a few minutes of bonding with a rock legend!

As a courtesy, I sent some of the shots to Lou via his publicist and the feedback was that he really liked them but could I do a bit of work on his neck so it was less wrinkly. Sorry Lou, 4 years later, after I've upped the contrast and taken out the colour, your rock star neck looks even older and leathery!