Nergal, the Satanist

Read all about my collaboration with Nergal of Behemoth and Hysteria Machine.

Last Sunday I attended Mass. Well, actually a different kind of Mass. I shot Nergal, frontman of the blackened death metal band Behemoth, wearing a blind mask by Hysteria Machine.

A couple of weeks ago, I got in contact with my friend Nergal and Cara of Hysteria Machine. I asked her if she could create a specially designed blind mask for a shoot I was planning. Just check out her work at and you'll see why I asked her to do the work. Hysteria Machine's creations are both sinister and wonderful and of an incredible quality.
About a week later, I got the shipment in from London and another week later it was time to do the shoot.

Behemoth were on tour through Europe and when they hit Belgian soil, we decided to do the shoot at the Antwerp Trix Hall. I went there in the evening and presented him with the mask. It was great to see how much he loved it. We discussed some ideas of how and where we were going to shoot and let him be to prepare.
I then went to set up my gear, which consisted of two lights: one key light with the Elinchrom Rotalux 135cm softbox and one back light with an orange gel, lighting up the black wall, creating this little glow around Nergal's head.

When Nergal arrived on set, he had this bottle of blood. He told me he was going to put the blood in his mouth and on my signal he was going to have it pour out of his mouth. I loved the idea, so we went for it. I had expected him to slowly have it pour out of his mouth. Unlike my expectations, he opened his mouth and the blood went everywhere, splashing on the floor, spattering onto some of my equipment. However, I didn't really care, since the outcome of the pictures was phenomenal!
We shot for about ten minutes. After that, while my brother cleaned up the mess, I joined Nergal to the band's dressing room to check out the results, unaware that, when we were watching the pictures, the blood was still dripping from his mouth onto me. I didn't care.

Collaborations like these are the best. Every person involved in this shoot contributed in a wonderful way, which really shows that team work pays off.
- Amen

Photography: Tim Tronckoe
Mask: Hysteria Design
Outfit: Toxic Vision
Make-up: Nergal