Design is one of our three passion points at W Paris - Opéra so when we saw the new cover of Dazed & Confused magazine, out today, featuring an exclusive shoot with Daft Punk and Giorgio Moroder by Hedi Slimane, creative director of Saint Laurent Paris, we wanted the back story to the production process. Christopher Simmonds is the art director of Dazed & Confused magazine, to celebrate the release of the new, epic issue we dropped him a line…..
Congratulations on the new magazine, an exclusive! How much time did you have to work on designing the covers? Thanks! Organising the schedules of Daft Punk, Giorgio Moroder and Hedi Slimane was, as you can imagine, not simple. We were initially planning on shooting in Paris but this then switched to a very late date in LA. As such the images came in 2 days before we needed to go to press so designing at a leisurely pace was not a luxury we were afforded.
Did you communicate with Hedi at all? I communicated extensively with his team. Hedi has a long relationship of shooting with Dazed and as such we understand the process between both parties quite well.
Did you go through a few choices before deciding on the final cover images? No, the brief was very specific for Hedi in that we wanted one portrait each of each of the cover stars. As he has such a strong point of view Hedi only ever submits the images he is happy to print.
Tell us about the shoot, how many pages is it and how did you choose to tell the story in terms of the layout? The shoot is 12 pages long and the key thing for the shoot was to highlight that this is the first time that Daft Punk have ever been photographed with a human for an editorial. It was very much about man vs machines. My original idea was to shoot in a nightclub referencing the disco heyday of Giorgio Moroder and we found a great spot - that is the cause of the highlights on Giorgio’s face and the glitter back grounds in the inside images. This also compliments the Saint Laurent clothing that Hedi created especially for DP.
Tell us three things about the Daft Punk issue 1) Something nerdy 2) Something funny 3) Something you found curious and interesting.
Nerdy: I actually appeared in the last Daft Punk shoot in Dazed, I got to become a robot and I’m in the lift shot at the back.
Funny: When I first heard the record it was sold as “the most emotional dance music album you will ever hear”. I’ve heard it many times now but still not come close to shedding a tear.
Curiousity: In honour of Daft Punk being the cover stars, the whole issue is themed around masked anarchy. The most oblique contribution to this theme is perhaps the shoot “Under Cover” by Blommers + Schumm. Shot over 2 days, the model was shot on day one, then life size prints were created with cut outs, which she then stood behind and was re-photographed.
Christopher Simmonds spoke to our editor, Sarah Hay