January 31, 2015

MexicoWave

Hi everybody. Welcome to my blog where I talk about the past. You know I would lie for a long time on my back thinking about past things. I’m gonna tell you a couple of past stories I thought about. They’ll be random stories because often my memory was random.

Actually, I’m still like that now. I had a client that would always snap her fingers and say, “Brian, Brian, Earth to Brian. Focus on what we’re doing please.” Sorry, see, here I go again, off on a tangent. Anyway, what was I talking about? Oh yeah, the past.

I learned to drive on the ice, literally by driving on the ice. Let me explain: My grandfather lived in Minnesota. At my age of 10, he decided it was time for me to learn how to drive on the ice. So he got the car, drove down to the lake, determined the ice was safe enough to drive on. He proceeded to take the car onto the lake. He then drove to the middle of the lake and put me on his lap to drive the car. Even at the age of ten I knew something was not right. I said, “Is this safe Grandpa?” He said, “Sure, just don’t go by the springs.” Anyway, I drove aournd the lake doing spins and turns, avoiding the ice fishing houses. It was a lot of fun. Yes, I did learn how to drive on ice. Oh, by the way, I still am very good at driving on slippery roads. One time I was driving to a track meet, you know going like 55 in snow. The car did like a high speed turn. You know, a 360 degree turn. My passenger was screaming and holding the roof. I was just laughing and having a great time.

You know, often when I was shooting I would take a break in the middle of the day. It would all depend on where I was. I would always like to shoot in nice light. You know, early morning or late afternoon. That would always leave the middle of the day open to us. I would often go surfing in the middle of the day depending on where we were. Mexico was always a great place for shooting and surfing. Cabo St. Lucas was always a great place to shoot and surf.  It was one of my favorites. You know, when you’re a fashion photographer you had to keep up on where to go, who the good models were, who was good at hair, who was good at makeup. You know, you had to do a lot of research when you weren’t shooting. I would often go to the agencies, like the model agencies, to stay on top of who was really  good. I would make the rounds when I wasn’t working. It would come in handy when the client would ask for suggestions. You really gotta stay on top of things. It was very important. Also, knowing where to go. That was very important. I guess you could say I was a little spoiled though. Clients would say, “Were should we go Brian?” And I would think, “Hmm, the surfing is good in Mexico.” And I would say, “Let’s go to Mexico!” And I even got paid for this. I was pretty lucky. Anyway, I’m gonna leave it at that. I’ll leave you my link about the present and a couple of cartoons I did. I loved the people I worked with. I’ll leave a cartoon of one shoot I did.

Have a good week. Love, B. Nice

NiceShoot

January 23, 2015

CrazyNeighbor

Hi you guys. Welcome to the blog where I talk about the past. I’m gonna include a cartoon above. Let me tell you the story behind it.

I was getting ready to build my house and I was staking out an area for the foundation. My neighbor was really upset that I was building. She threatened to call the cops. I was all legal and everything was cleared with the council, but I wanted to see what she was up to so, like a very intelligent person, I crawled through the brush under some trees and under her deck. I heard her dial the phone and call the department of environmental conservation. I was starting to take mental note of it when all of a sudden my cell phone started ringing, I started to freak out. She said in a very raspy voice, “Hello, hello. Is someone there? Is someone here?” I turned the phone off and sheepishly crawled back to my foundation. That was a close one.

I always seem to be getting in trouble with someone. I remember this one time we were going through Iranian customs. (This is in 1975 or so.) Well, we had some posters from China. You know, like real fascist looking stuff. It was kind of cool. Anyway, they wanted to confiscate the posters and being an intelligent person like I am, I was ten mind you. I said to the customs guy, “You can’t do that! My Daddy will beat you up!” I started jumping up and down. They all started laughing. I guess it was a bit of comic relief going on there. They did end up taking the posters though.

One other time I was in Spain shooting for Spanish Elle. I was going through customs and the customs agent started giving us a hard time about the film. I had about 1200 rolls and he wanted to X-ray it all. Well, my assistant said we wanted to swipe every roll and we’d stick around to do it. (They swipe for explosives.) And then my assistant said, “I’d like to talk to the head of security.” The customs agent said, “I am the head of security,” and my intelligent assistant said, “Yeah? If you’re the head of security, then I’m the president of France.” No a smart thing to say to a man with a gun. I said, “OK, OK just X-ray everything. We’ll call it art if it gets messed up.”

That’s about it for now. I’m pretty tired from therapy, Hope you guys have a good week. Love, B. Nice

It was my birthday the other day. Here’s the card my dad made me, and here’s a link to blog about the present.

bdaycard

January 17, 2015

Untitled 2

Hi everybody. Welcome to the blog where I talk about the past. Remember. I’ve lain on my back for years and to get through all this I think about the past.

You know, I have two degrees: a BFA in photography and an associates degree in science, specializing in psychology (go figure). In my psychology class they once had a hypnotist come. Apparently anyone can be hypnotized. It’s just a matter of trust and time. So imagine this, I’m sitting there and the professor brings up the hypnotist. He hypnotizes the entire audience. I felt myself going into a hypnotic state, but I refused. All of a sudden, the guy next to me who is a 275 pound football player goes up to the stage like a zombie. The hypnotist manages to convince this big guy to be a ballerina. The guy does his best imitation of a ballet dancer, a prima ballerina doing the nutcracker. The guy was amazing. You should have seen his leaps. Very impressive. It was very entertaining but what impressed me the most was the hypnotist brought a woman on stage that did age regression. The guy had her write her name on a chalk board at her current age, then 15 years old, then 10 years old, then 5 years old, and then he brought her to the stage of being an infant. He then said to her, “Now I’m going to bring you back to a previous life that you had.” The woman stands up and the hypnotist says, “Now I want you to describe what’s around you.” And she describes what would be a market in ancient Egypt. The hypnotist now says, “I want you to go to a moment in this previous life that influences how you live today.” The woman described herself walking down the street with her father. All of a sudden some chariots showed up coming around the corner. The chariots run over her dad and kill him instantly. The hypnotist says, “How does this affect how you live today?” And the woman replied, “Well, I never got the chance to tell my father I loved him.” So she does now, every day. She tells people she loves, that she loves them. Pretty freaky huh? I found out later the whole thing was a set up. Just kidding. No, I knew the woman who got hypnotized. Pretty wild. The professor said, “There’s one of two options. Either previous life experiences do exist, or we have an incredible imagination.” You know, everything we see, we record. The brain is amazing. When you’re hypnotized, you go back and review a specific moment, you know, like reading a license plate on a car. Something like that.

Like I said before, even when I was ready to check out, you know, catch the bus, live in the next life, exit stage left, I wasn’t so freaked out because I’ve had some amazing experiences. If you where to make a movie, it would be a combination of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, Big Fish, Forest Gump, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly. Then sprinkle in a little Indiana Jones and voila! you would have my movie.  Anyway, I’m halfway through. Who knows what’s next. Here’s my link to the blog where I talk about the present. I’ll talk to you guys soon. Love, B. Nice

January 10, 2015

2015-ParisNY

Hi you guys. Welcome to my blog where I talk about the past. It’s actually good for me. Good for my memory. I think about things I’ve done, places I’ve gone, people I’ve met. It’s good for me. Anyway, one thing I’d like to share with you is the fact that when I was at my recovery hospital there was a real interesting guy across from me. I think I talked about him before. He was real cool. He used to be a Black Panther and now he’s a Muslim cleric. I used to talk to him all the time. He was interesting. His whole family was interesting. I asked him what the most powerful moment was of his life so far. He told me he was in a shootout when he was a Black Panther. He was in a shootout with the police. Anyway, he remembers going from door to door shooting his gun. The next thing he remembered, some policeman was on top of him like beating the hell out of him. Then he realized the police officer was actually doing CPR on him. He was trying to save his life and he did. The story ended there. The hospital was cool because you would meet people you would never meet otherwise. Another time I remember talking to this guy, he said he and another cleric warned the US government about radical Islamists, you know, terrorists. I guess he was right. I mean, look at Paris right now. Crazy. Anyway, let’s talk about something else.

You know, there’s been of couple people who’ve been very influential on me as an artist. One of them is my father. He reminded me how important it is to really look at things. I mean, Art is all about looking.  So now, I paint and I sit back and I look at what I’ve done. You know, for like an hour. I just sit and look. When I know I’ve done a good painting, I notice there’s lots to look at.

Another influential person was a photographer I worked for in the ’80’s. He always told me to take a step back and look at the model. Look at the light. You know, take it all in before you start. and he was right. I even still do that now when everything seems to be in post production. People would often say to me, “Oh, we’ll take care of the color of the light later.” You know, stuff like that. Just an observation.

I guess the bottom line is, you really have to pay attention to what you’re doing. You have to adapt to what you’re doing. For example, I used to shoot in Australia a lot. The light there is very harsh, very contrasty. Therefore, I would adapt and shoot in open shade. Or if I was in Europe. The direct sunlight was warm and soft. I would shoot direct light there. The whole thing is you just really have to look at what you’re doing. That’s my moment of observation I’ll share with you. That’s my profound thought of the week.

My friend here said, “How does that relate to where you are now?” And I guess I’ll answer by saying I guess I’ve got some time on my hands now to really look so I do. I mean, I must look like a ground squirrel. I’ll stare at an object for half an hour. Anyway, here’s my link where I talk about more stuff at the present. Have a good week. Love, B. Nice

2015-NYParis

January 3, 2015

Hi everybody. January 3rd, Elizabeth, if you’re out there, happy birthday. Remember me? It’s Brian Nice.

Anyway, welcome to the blog where I talk about the past. I’m gonna make this one a quick one because it’s snowing out and my friend has to go. You know, my friend who’s typing this for me.

When I was around 16, I went with my friend over to Europe. We went there to go on a bike trip around Northern Europe. We went with the American Youth Hostel group. It was pretty cool. We had a chaperone who biked about 7 of us through Europe. We ended up in Amsterdam. Now, this is where things got kind of interesting. One of the guys in our group went out to score some hash. He met a drug dealer and bought a bar of hash. He brought it back to the room at the youth hostel and said he was gonna smuggle it home in his bike frame. I said, you know, I don’t think it’s a good idea. I’m sure someone has thought of something like this before. I’m sure you’ll get caught. Not a good idea. but the guy said he was gonna do it anyway. He broke out the bar of hash. I said, let me see that. I looked at it, smelled it. I said, congratulations, you just scored a bunch of old licorice. That’s my story for the day. Have a good week. I’ll talk to you guys next week. Happy New Year and here’s the link to my blog about the present.

2015SnowPic