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Weight Strapped to Her for Underwater Shoot for Album Cover

Weight Strapped to Her for Underwater Shoot for Album Cover

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No one can drag Billie Eilish down… unless you’re the weight strapped to her during the photo shoot for her Hit Me Hard and Soft album cover art.

The Grammy-winning singer revealed on Tuesday’s episode of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert that the photo for her third studio album, released May 17, was in fact “very real” and not photoshopped.

“This was the day after this last Grammys, actually. I had gone to sleep at 7 a.m.,” Eilish recalled of the day she shot the artwork. “I woke up, I dyed my hair black — it was like bright red — I dyed it black that day. Then I went to this random place in Santa Clarita or some nonsense. There’s a tank in this giant place, and it was, like, 10 feet deep. And I popped my little ass in there, and I was in there for six hours.”

The “Lunch” singer noted that she was “fully clothed” while underwater, wearing “big long pants, giant shorts, a thermal long-sleeve, a button-up flannel, a tie, rings, arm warmers, bracelet and a weight. I had a weight strapped to me,” which was used to keep her down in the water.

Host Stephen Colbert proceeded to ask just whose idea this was to begin with, quipping, “‘Guys, it could be so cool if I could almost die.’” But Eilish took full credit for the creative direction, adding, “Dude, I’ve done it so many times — almost died in these shoots. It’s like I need to suffer.”

The Oscar winner continued, “You know what it really is? It’s not like, ‘What can I do that will be the most uncomfortable that I could possibly dream of?’ It’s more that I think about the visual before I think about how it’s gonna make me feel. So, it’s like okay, I want to be fully dressed, underwater, eyes open, upside down, and then I deal with how horrible it is.”

The “What Was I Made For?” artist also noted that she didn’t have a nose plug during the entire shoot, so she was “basically waterboarding myself for six hours,” drawing laughter from the audience.

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“A lot of my inspirations for the visuals on this album were optical illusion-type things,” she concluded. “Things that just make you question it or think about it for longer.”

Hit Me Hard and Soft, which Eilish worked on with her brother and longtime collaborator Finneas, features 10 tracks.

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