We are extremely proud to introduce our latest LomoAmiga, Melissa Auf der Maur. Former bassist for the band, Hole, she has taken her solo music career even further with the recent launch of her second solo album, Out of Our Minds. Not only is Melissa a talented musician, but she is also a very accomplished photographer. We can only expect even more from her effortless talents.
REAL NAME MELISSA AUF DER MAUR
CITY NEW YORK
How long have you been a Lomographer (or are you new to this whole thing)?
I’ve been shooting with LOMO since 1999. I was on tour in Europe and came across a LOMO camera in Germany. Been following the evolution of the LOMO Film Take over ever since. I LOVE LOMO. Lomo and I collaborated on a Tour Photography project back in 2004, but this is my first year as a recognized, OFFICIAL Lomographer.
Describe the Lomo LC-A+ in five words.
EASY. INVITING. CLASSIC. MAGIC. HANDSOM.
The strangest, funniest, or hands-down greatest photographic/Lomographic encounter you’ve ever had?
My relationship with my camera’s on stage is a unique part of my photographic world. Usually when you are behind the camera
If your photos shown here could have a soundtrack of three songs, what would they be (song title & artist please)?
• “500 MILLION YEAR” TRIP by Kyuss
• “Stop Me If You Think You’ve Heard This One Before” by The Smiths
• “ The Hunt” by me…. It’s the sound of the hunt I am on.
If you could take your LC-A+ and a sack of film anywhere in the world right now, where would you go, what would you do, and why?
I’ve been lucky to travel around the world with music for well over a decade, but if I were to have a chapter of travel for photography, my wish would be to visit the places that rock music rarely travels to. To visit ancient civilizations starting with Egypt, the mysterious temples in Cambodia and Mexico to meet the Mayan spirits.
What or who inspired you to take Photography as a major in school?
I began shooting at age 12, my mother had an easy to use manual Minolta camera, and she encouraged me to use it. I shot all the photos for my highschool yearbook- it was a small experimental school, so it was more of a photocopied fanzine than a glossy yearbook. I was a relatively shy (and a lover of the smiths, slightly depressed) girl, so taking the 136 student portraits, was a great way to mingle! I fell in love with the darkroom, and there was no question that photography was what I was going to study. It was the lone soldier element of photography that appealed to me, but still engaging with the outside world through the lens, and then through “showing” them. It’s a slightly removed connection with the world. I loved art school, and never would’ve left if I was not called to duty by HOLE. Music became my full time engagement with people and life, but I photographed all the way through…. Only recently in the last few years, and the rise of digital and mass camera phone, social network, world wide obsessive documenting has my photography taken a pause. I’d keep a Lomo near by, most of the time it’s the Panoramic one, but I feel that a return to Polaroid and Large Format is in the cards for me (and maybe returning to School!). But, first I need to archive / digitize my 20 years of photographic negatives….
How does music influence your photography, and vice-versa?
I am inspired equally by music, film, photography, history, nature, magic, outer space, painting movements and life experience. The influences are intertwined, and they bounce off each other in the things I make. The way I approach a moment with a camera is not so different than a moment with my bass, BUT the result is! Photography is a slower and more subtle thing, music very direct and usually with others. So they fulfill different parts of my desire to “connect”.
The one person (living or deceased) who you would most like to photograph.
I guess if I could use photography as a weapon to time travel and meet some amazing people, we could start with Cleopatra, visit Rasputin on my way to a session with Carl Jung, then end the day with a glass of red wine with Anais Nin.
If you could collaborate with someone – in music and photography – who would it be and why?
I would intern for David Lynch on his next film, and be the water girl for Mastodon during the making of the next album. If we found a way to collaborate, then great!
What is the general message that you wish to convey through your music and photographs?
It starts with a feeling inside, a fire to share it, and then morphs into many things. My current project, OUF OF OUR MINDS, which is my first Album / Film / Comic multi layered project, is essentially an invitation for the listener and viewer, to travel out of the minds, into our hearts standing by. To feel not to think, and to enter a dreamscape and their subconscious for a while. The ritual of making or taking in any art, is to let go and explore another dimension. So I am inviting people to do so with my projects, but more importantly encouraging them to do so in theirs.
Any upcoming projects that you would like to promote?
OOOM – ALBUM – FILM – COMIC
Your advice to future LC-A+ shooters.
TAKE YOUR TIME. ENJOY X
Take a look at her gallery below: