Diana Amigos and Brooklyn songbirds, Au Revoir Simone took the Diana F+ colette to South by Southwest!
Brooklyn’s Au Revoir Simone – Heather D’Angelo, Erika Forster and Annie Hart – are specialists in bringing out the heart from within the machine, their music is created through the medium of electronics, their songs are full of an organic warmth that defies their instruments of choice: three keyboards and a drum machine. That’s right. Three keyboards and a drum machine. We gave the songbirds a Diana F+ colette and some film to document their SxSW experience! After the show, Annie and Erika took a few minutes away from the blur of touring to answer a few questions for us.
Annie Hart, Erika Forster and Heather D’Angelo
United States of America
How long have you been Lomographers (or are you new to this whole thing?).
Annie: I’m definitely a newbie, though I have admired the photographs taken from the camera line for years.
Erika: I bought a Diana F+ from fredflare.com when they first got reissued. I have taken it on tour and weekend getaways… my original intention with it was to take portraits with the flash inside venues after our shows which is a particularly tricky light for my canon elph. i got some amazing shots the first tour. i think i like the daytime natural light shots the best though. the flash is very hit or miss… i just need more practice.
Describe the Diana F+ in five words…
Annie: Cute, smart, lovely, black and blue.
Erika: cute, light, square, nostalgic, plastic
Your name comes from a Pee-Wee Herman quote: so tell us, are there a lotta things about you we don’t know anything about? Things we wouldn’t understand? Things we couldn’t understand? Things we shouldn’t understand?
Annie: I have to say in all capital letters: THAT IS MY FAVORITE QUESTION I’VE EVER BEEN ASKED!!! So maybe you shouldn’t understand that I am a total dweeb. I prefer a layer of somewhat soft focus around the whole snorting when I laugh and spilling food on myself when I eat sort of thing.
Erika: amazing…well, … I sometimes find ways of breaking the law (rules & regulations i should say)… in very benign, uninteresting ways, and have a mild problem with authority. but for some reason heather and annie think I’m bad. and I am interested in espionage.
The strangest, funniest, or hands-down greatest photographic/Lomographic encounter that you have ever had…
Erika: getting my purse stolen out of our van in Barcelona (while we were all standing right behind the van eating falafel’s!) and they took a pair of headphones and my digital camera but not my Diana… i did lose 1 roll of film from our show though… i walked all around looking for it in the gutter, to no avail.)
You have a new album out on May 19th, Still Night, Still Light, what was the inspiration behind the album? What is the one instrument that every band should use?
Annie: There wasn’t one specific inspiration for the record. Since three of us collaboratively write it together, we have a lot of different influences that shape us and make us need to sing about things. But we toured a lot, and those experiences, musical, cultural and emotional alike, all added up to the material that make this record. And as far as one instrument that every band should have, I don’t think there is one. Then everything would sound the same and we would all get bored. Plus, if I told you the casios to check out they would get more expensive on ebay!
Erika: i think everyone should have a harmonica in their car. my friend taught me that trick because if you ever get stuck in traffic or have road rage, you can play harmonica along with the radio and it diffuses all stress.
Tell us about your experience at SXSW: Was this your first time playing the festival? Did you see any cool bands? Rub elbows with anyone interesting? Get some amazing BBQ and Mexican food?
Annie: This was our third time playing at the festival and my fourth time attending. It is always a blast! I really love it there, excellent burritos, margaritas, and warm weather abound, plus there are so many inspiring shows to see when you get a free hour. We loved Casio Kids, Camera Obscura, and I got to see Matt and Kim give a performance overflowing with happiness and gratitude that really inspired my live performance.
Erika: I always feel like a kid when I’m there. It’s the festival mentality… make friend’s with random people on the street, don’t make plans.. just allow things to happen, even if i get lost or ditched or my phone wont work i don’t really care because there is so much to discover. this year i got to see Jeremy Jay play who i’ve been a fan of for a while. he has this lyric: “oh beautiful rebel! you came out of the woodwork…! hardly human.” which i think is amazing. and his delivery is just right.
The one person (living or deceased) who you would most like to photograph.
Erika: David Bowie
Your advice to future Diana F+ shooters.
Annie: Read the instruction book! Seriously. It’s a pretty interesting read.
Erika: take notes on the settings and conditions so you can refer back when you develop the film. (i’m usually too lazy to do this but i’m going to start now!)