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Greg Watermann & the Digital Versatile Doom

Greg Watermann is a professional worldwide photographer, whose curriculum counts, among all, a collaboration with HIM for Digital Versatile Doom: Live at the Orpheum Theatre XXXVII A.S. .

The Heartagram Path had the opportunity to interview Greg Watermann.

We're totally honored to have the chance to chat a little with him.


Interview edited by lovehim - Giada  for The Heartagram Path

English Translation by Mrs. Doom - Marzia for The Heartagram Path


Greg Watermann

The Heartagram Path: How was your passion for photography born? Once, in an interview, you've said that you got your first camera when you were seven. Thinking about how everything started, do you still feel the same motivation which pushed you when you were so young?

Greg Watermann: “Yes, my passion for photography has always been my desire to share what I see, with others. That hasn't changed.”

THP: What's been the link which has let you be able to turn your passion for photography into your work?
Did you attended some classes or it was working in the field that turned you into the great artist of today?

GW: “I'm very serious about what I take pictures of.  It's not just a hobby, and I shoot all the time no matter what.
I did go to Brooks Institute for a while, which was great for my technical background.  But yeah, you always learn the most when you're shooting.”

THP: You've said that when you work you try to picture what you see in the most natural way without, for example, using lights and other stuff. What's the philosophy behind your photographic approach?

GW: “I want to take pictures of something that's really happening.  I hate creating a moment to look cool.”

THP: You've said that one of the photographs you take inspiration from is Jim Marshall, who shot the Beatles during their last show in 1967. Apart from him, who are the photographers that have marked your artistic path?

GW: “Jim Marshall recently died and it was a huge loss.  He was the first-ever Rock Star Photographer and I miss him already.  Neil Zlozower, Ross Halfin, Dean Karr, and Neal Preston are also Great rock shooters and I love studying their work.”

THP: During your 23 years as a professional photographer, you've worked with successful and worldwide bands such as: Nirvana, System Of A Down, Linkin Park, Interpol, My Chemical Romance, Ozzy Osbourne, Slipknot, Colpdplay.
How do you feel when you think about all the great names you've worked with?

GW: “Well, it's certainly a sense of accomplishment.  Touring with Linkin Park helped create the best selling book: 'From the Inside: Meteora'.  I was the first photographer ever allowed on-stage with Coldplay. And of course I was with S.O.A.D. for their final tour and last (?) show.”

THP: Nirvana were able to make the history in the grunge/ alternative rock music scene and all the music fans know it. In 1991, when the band released their second studio album Nevermind, you shoot them for their first USA cover of Spin Magazine. How was Kurt Cobain? Do you have some special memories of him?

GW: “He absolutely didn't care about being famous, and he hated having to pose for a magazine cover. He thought it was stupid.  Needless to say he wasn't very cooperative as a subject, but we still got great photos that day.”

THP: Is there still a rock band or a solo artist that you'd like to work with?

GW: “Nine Inch Nails”.

THP: Since your work is linked to the music world, what are the bands and artists that you like the most?

GW: “The bands I love the most are the ones I get to photograph. I have a better understanding of their art that way.”

THP: On your Myspace page we can read this Edgar Allan Poe's quote: "They who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night". Edgar Allan Poe is known to all the HIM fans because of Ville's
passion towards this poet - he's even get his eyes tattoed on his back. Do you love literature, too?

GW: “Yes, I love it, but I don't read much.  Photography is the only thing that matters to me.”

THP: For every so called fans, every album of the band he loves is a little treasure, apart from the opinion he has about it. Mostly, when we talk about a DVD live, it soon becames one of the favourites of his own charts, because a fan is always looking for live gigs, willing too see a show where his idols are in their element, the stage, and they show themselves for what they are.
Digital Versatile Doom: Live at the Orpheum Theatre XXXVII A.S is HIM first live DVD, so expected and desidered by all the fans.
How do you feel knowing that you're part of something which will be forever in the heart of so many people?

GW: “It's awesome!  The coolest part about my job is that I'm creating images that will remain in people's memories. And that they'll see over and over again in that package.”

THP: Speaking of your work with HIM, can you tell us how this collaboration as Digital Versatile Doom photographer was born?

GW: “I already have a good reputation with the creative people at Warner Bros., after working with Linkin Park. They always call me when they want my style of photography for a specific project.”

THP: The Digital Versatile Doom booklet photos seem to be taken from a show. Can you remember when you shoot them?

GW: “Most of the photos in the book came from those shows at the Orpheum.  There might be a few in there also that I took on tour with them, when we were on Projekt Revolution.”

THP: How did you arranged your work? Did the guys or the crew made particular requests about the photoshoot or did they give you the chance to express your creativity as you wished?

GW: “Usually I'm just told to do what I do, and I'm given all-access to the stage during the entire concert.  Even at LIVE8, when I was on-stage with Linkin Park and Jay-Z.  There were a million people in the audience that day in Philadelphia... and I was still allowed to do whatever I wanted with my camera.  It was awesome.”

THP: You'd have attended the show. What were your fellings in front of HIM's Love Metal music?

GW: “HIM's music is magical, and they have incredibly dedicated fans.”

THP: What about Ville Valo? From his interviews, he shows a great personality, cleverness and humour. As you've met him, can you tell us if, actually, he's how he seems to be?

GW: “Well, he's very intelligent and he's always concerned what you guys think about the music.”
THP: In the USA, HIM have a great organized and wide fan base. Did you know their music before working with them?

GW: “Yes, for sure. And I have all the albums.”

THP: Have you ever listened to some of their albums? If yes, can you tell us what your favourite is and if there's a song that you like the most?

GW: “According to my computer, I listen to 'And Love Said No' the most.  It's my life story, I guess.”

THP: HIM have been the first Finnish rock band to go outside Finland and sell over millions of albums first in Europe and then in the USA. Even if not so popular, there're a lots of made in Finland bands whose music is loved and appreciated. What do you think about Finnish rocks scene?

“Wow, you guys are really HardCore!!!”

THP: Finally, is there still some dreams that you'd like to realize?

GW: “My dreams are all I really have that are mine.”
THP: Thanks again for your time and congratulations for you wonderful work.

Vsit Greg Watermann's official site: www.gregwatermann.com

and his official MySpace page: www.myspace.com/gregwatermann

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