Need to Know: Klinko and Indrani

6.21.2010

By Dustin Fitzharris


Bravo's latest reality show, Double Exposure, goes behind the scenes with Markus Klinko and Indrani, two of the hottest photographers in the industry. Over the years the duo has shot album covers for Beyonc', Mariah Carey, and David Bowie, in addition to shoots with Will Smith, Jennifer Lopez, and Kayne West.

Working together to capture these images isn't always easy for Klinko and Indrani. After all, they were lovers for eight years and have tried their best to carve out a civil working relationship that often involves 18-hour days in exotic, highly stressful environments.

Then there are there the rumors. Lately, Indrani's personal life has been under more scrutiny than her photographs. Rumors of a steamy relationship with actress Lindsay Lohan have been swirling. Out asked Indrani if there was any truth to this, and you won't believe what she had to say.

During our discussion, stylist and Double Exposure costar GK Reid also stopped by. The three of them told us what it was like working with Lady Gaga, if Naomi Campbell is as scary as people say, and offered advice on how to craft your own image.

Out: How did Double Exposure come about?
Indrani: For many years people said we should have our own reality show. We're very open. We try not to be too caught up in creating an image for ourselves. We like to laugh at ourselves and bringing the audience behind the scenes with us is an art project from our perspective.

How would you describe the show?
Markus Klinko: I think this show is actually very funny. What makes it almost a comedy is the fact that we're so passionate about what we're doing the moment we're doing it. We sometimes get excited about small things. I read a review where somebody criticized the fact that it was funny. It's television -- of course it has to be funny. We're trying to demystify the process. This is not brain surgery. It's something we're proud of, but the technical aspects around photography are not as difficult as people would like to pretend when they're in the business. It's about creating the concept and the ideas.
Indrani: What we do is make the world a more beautiful place. That's our goal. We want to make beautiful images. We want to entertain people with our work. This show is really an extension of that. We want to show people that if you're passionate about something, you can achieve the goals you dream up. Although it's not brain surgery, it's almost impossible to create an iconic image that's going to define someone for the rest of time.

When you do album covers for artists, what is your process? Do you listen to the music on that album first to get an idea of the message you want your photographs to send?
Indrani: This is an area that I really spend a lot of time in. It's really about getting to know the artists. Sometimes we have the good fortune to spend time with them before the shoot. With Mariah we had a couple of days. We talked and brainstormed ideas. It was a real collaborative process. With other artists, they just show up on the set and we've only talked to their managers. We always do a lot of research of where they are coming from and who they want to become. Creating images is very much about creating one's future. The images live on. For example, when we shot Beyonc's Dangerously in Love album, that was her solo debut. So, it was so important to cast her in the right light for who she was becoming.

Markus, you recently said that Lady Gaga was the most exciting photo shoot you did in 15 years. Why?
Klinko: I need to explain this statement. We've done so many incredibly exciting shoots and when you have experiences with people like Beyonc' or Kate Winslet, it's pretty much impossible to really pick one that is the most exciting. From the perspective of now, this moment, Lady Gaga is the most exciting because of her status in the music and fashion world.
Indrani: For me, what was exciting on that shoot was that she was really completely open to our ideas. She pushed us to go even further. That's pretty unprecedented. Most artists you work with have very strong visions of what they want to do. She is not caught up in the conventional idea of beauty.
GK Reid: She was very open to the fashion I brought to the shoot, too. It was a collaborative process. It was so wonderful to be tapped into that moment together.

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