Please introduce yourself and tell us something about yourself and your background.
Nic Nichols, Documentary photographer from Delaware, USA. Attended Rhode Island School of Design and the University of Delaware. Shoot all film, most old and expired.
What’s the central theme of your work?
Documenting people, places and things. Creating a collection of images that tell a story, convey a feeling or provoke an emotion.
What makes a good picture in your eyes?
one that makes you stop and think. One that makes you wish you had shared that moment.
Where do you consider a photograph to be created? When it’s shot or when it’s processed?
the moment that is it shot. The moment that the shutter is released. The moment that the light hits the film. My images are created in the camera- not in post production.
What ability are you currently missing in your equipment, camera or the software you work with?
I don’t think that I am missing anything. Holga’s for the images, a small fridge full of film, and a great lab. After that, a Nikon scanner, Mac G5 and a quick internet connection.. that’s all you need.
In what way do you use the Internet? What role does the computer play in your work?
The web allows me to share my work with others, I started my personal site, nicnichols.com in 1998 to display my photographs. The web gives me the ability to update my site each week, and anyone across the globe can have a look.
What means or ways do you use to show your work to the (outside) world?
I am finishing up a book now, and planning a few shows to support the book in the fall. And, as always, updating my site each week with new images.
Pixel or Grain?
Grain. I shoot only film.
Concept or Moment?
Moment. You can’t plan a moment, but you can always plan a concept.
The thin line between art & design is sometimes hard to define. Do you consider you work to be art or design? Why?
Art. I consider photographs to be art, and the manner in which you use them to be design. You can design an Ad, but it takes the photograph or image for it to work. A photograph can stand alone.
I'm just curious. To what extend did European cinema and painting influence your work?
I would say the only movies that really had an effect on me where the Red, White and Blue trilogy. The underlying use of color to set emotion in those movies really made me realize that you can add subtle bits of color, here and there, to dramatic effect.
Painting, on the other hand, had a great effect on my work. I come from a family of artists, most of whom paint very well.
I learned at an early age that I could not paint, at all. I was really, really bad at it. So to capture the images that I had in my head, my Grandfather gave me an old Nikon camera when I was young, and I haven't put one down since. The camera allows me to create the images I see, things I could never translate with brush and canvas.
If you had an unlimited budget and all the time you needed. What would you do?
Travel the world and take photographs. Write books. Volunteer. Document every corner of the globe with my camera.
What inspires you?
Life, people, and places. How people interact with their environments, and what they leave behind. Driving through small towns and seeing how real people live.
How do to you keep your knowledge up to date? Do you spread your knowledge at universities, conferences or workshops and so on?
I teach advanced Photoshop and Color Theory at a local college, usually one class per semester. I write for several online magazines, and read as much as possible, and check many online portals and magazines.
Who is your favorite artist/photographer? Why?
Sebastiao Salgado. The greatest living photographer. His work documenting the workers of the world may be the most important photographic project of this century.
Which project or website would you like to have made, or make?
An online community like toycamera.com where photographers from around the world could upload and share their images.
Keep making art. Keep creating, no matter what. Don’t worry about what others say, don’t worry if no one ever sees what you do. Just keep doing it. Keep putting it out there. Art is a giant living thing that requires each of us to keep feeding it everyday. ?>