Friday, September 5, 2014

September 5, 2014

Hi everybody. I changed things up a little. You have to follow this blog through my website: I discontinued this website. It's kind of confusing but trust me - Hey! I think I've heard that somewhere before… I still do both blogs, present and past. It's just through my website: Hit the follow button again to stay up to date.

Friday, August 8, 2014

August 8, 2014

Hey you guys! I changed my website So if you want to follow my blog, you'll have to go there and hit the Google plus button from that site to get updates when new blogs are published.

Sorry about the change, but it's all good.

Love you, B. Nice

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Chapter 138 - June 10, 2014

Hi everybody. Here's the blog where I talk about stories from the past. Things I used to think about when I was on my back for a couple of years. Let's call this blog "Photo Assistants, Animals, Cooking, Children & Labor." It's actually good for me to do this blog because it helps me remember the good times and the not so good times. Anyway, here we go.

Let's talk about Photo Assistants. I mentioned it before but I'll tell you a couple of stories. I was the worst photo assistant in the world. I remember we went down to Washington D.C. for a photo shoot with the Senators' wives. I had one job and that was to bring the stands down there. Well, after a few beers and joking around, I realized that when we got to the Capitol Building, I left the stands at the airport. The photographer I was working for was extremely pissed off. So I got in the rental car and I drove as fast as I could to the airport. I left the car running and door open and ran into the baggage claim and saw them back there. I ran outside to the car, threw my bag in. Ran past the police who were curious about the car. I shut the door, rolled down the window and screamed, "I gotta get to the Capitol Building right now!" and peeled out. I went through a yield sign and immediately got into a car accident. After checking on the occupant of the vehicle I hit, I wanted to make sure they were OK, I sped off, tearing out on my way to the Capitol Building. I made it there just in time. They were getting ready for the photo shoot. I'm not sure I should have told you that story, but you see what I mean, I wasn't a very good photo assistant.

But I've got some good ones of people I hired. Like the guy that screamed at my client. And the assistant who served the client piping hot coffee. The assistant who brought his parrot to the studio. I'll let you use your imagination. The stories go on and on.

Anyway, speaking of photo assistants, let's go on to my next category and that would be Animals. I got to see a lot of wildlife on my shoots. I saw dolphins, whales, mountain lions, penguins, elephants, wild camels, horses. It goes on and on. I was pretty lucky.

One thing I really miss right now is cooking. I love to cook. I learned how to cook from a photographer I worked for and my mother. When my mother cooks, I hang out with her. I guess I still cook, it's just in a different way.

I was gonna tell you some stories about children. It was actually gonna be about my childhood. Man, I can't believe I survived my childhood. Let's freak my friend out because she has a 14 year old and an 11 year old. Both boys. Let's see, one time I almost fell off a ship in the middle of the ocean. I was 11. I used to walk the train tracks and throw rocks at trains. Very intelligent. I used to like to put tape on the feet of the cat and put music on. I used to like to burn stuff. But that's pretty common for a kid. I used to like to go on long hikes. I had a dirt bike I used to ride around on, without a helmet, in my shorts, nothing else. I'll tell you a few more things, but I'm gonna give my friend here a break.

Let's move on to my last category and that would be labor. You see, I had a lot of different jobs. I was a bartender, a waiter who quickly got fired, I was a driver for a hotel. Don't ever mistake a power brake for a clutch. The passenger won't appreciate it. I was a bellboy at a hotel. I rented out boats during the summer. I worked on a farm in the summer. I found out pickle trucks do go 100 mph very well. Anyway, I had a lot of different jobs. I'll leave it at that.

We'll copy some cartoons, you know, some drawings from my journal. They're basically records of what I did in the past. I hope you have a good week. Here's a link to my present. Love, B. Nice

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Chapter 137 - June 3, 2014

Welcome to the past. This is the blog where I talk about the past. I kind of fixed things up. I put in pictures from the past and I took the past blog and put in pictures from the present. Am I making sense? Anyway, I messed things up. But I'll go on. I'll talk about the past. Speaking of Past, I want to say hi to my friend Bugs and his wife and family. They're in Australia.

You know, when I was shooting in the past I used to pay close attention to light. It's so important to look at your subject. I mean take a step back and really look. Lighting is so important. So many people just go on shooting without really looking. Anyway, that's my opinion. I used to do that all the time, look at the light and the subject. I guess I still do. It's automatic. I remember, I used to get up really early to get sunrise then I'd take a long break in the middle of the day (which used to piss off the client) and then I'd go back to work in the evening to get the good light. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, I would sometimes go windsurfing in the middle of the day. But we won't talk about that. (That would really really piss off the client.) The point I'm getting at is, you've got to shoot with really good light if you want to make a really good picture. It adds another element to the photograph.

The other thing I used to think about was location. Remember, location, location, location. It's actually really important. It sets the mood for the whole photo. At least that was my excuse to go to the Bahamas. But really, it's important to shoot in a magical place where everyone is happy. A place where someone looks at the photo and wishes they were there. You sure as hell can't get that from a studio shot.

My friend here was reading back to me what I wrote, and I forgot to mention something. I was in New Mexico shooting a commercial job. We got up at 4 am to drive an hour and a half to the location for sunrise. I got the feeling I was a bit extreme when the creative director came out and said to me, "This is insane! What are we doing here?" We kept doing that for about a week. We even called room service on the way back after sunset. Maybe it was extreme. Good photos though.

I feel like an old fart talking about the past. But one other thing that's so important about creating a good photo. You have to pay attention to hair and makeup. It can make or break a fashion photo. Especially hair. You have to have a good hair dresser. But you know what? keep it simple. Anyway, I'm gonna leave it there. I'm gonna include some pictures on my trip I did across America. They are recent photos. I don't do fashion anymore. I don't think anyone would understand me right now. I could do comedy shoots. Anyway, here are some photos and here's a link to my blog where I talk about the present. The drawings are from the past. Everything is mixed up, but you know what? What isn't these days. Talk to you next week. Love, B. Nice

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Chapter 136 - May 27, 2014

Hi you guys. Welcome to the blog where I talk about the past. You know, things I thought of when I was in a bad way. You know, it was Memorial Day weekend this past weekend. One year I had to work on Memorial Day weekend. We were in Jacksonville, Florida. I had rented a house right on the beach. It was great. I was looking through the lens and I saw the model mouth, "Oh my God!" I looked over in back of me and there was a Blue Angel F-18 right above the beach. We were right next to the air show for Memorial Day. What an afternoon. We hardly got anything done because we had the best seats in the best house watching the air show. The planes were right next to us all day long. What a day. It was loud but it was a great day. It was amazing.

You know, one of my favorite places to shoot was Hawaii. I loved getting jobs in Hawaii. I didn't care what we were doing as long as I could bring my surf board. It was a beautiful place to visit. I remember one day though. I was shooting at a house right on the beach. It's hard to describe but it felt sad there. The people that worked at the house seemed sad to me. I was like, "Why are you guys so sad? It's got a weird vibe here," and the cook at the house told me, "Well, the owner of the house used to swim back and forth in front of the house every morning. Every morning until she got eaten by a tiger shark." I thought, well, that's a good reason to be sad. I've got tons of stories like that, but all in all, Hawaii was a great place to shoot.

There was one area on the big Island I loved. You could duplicate Fall really easy. The location was way up high on the volcano. The clouds would come in and we were just below the clouds. It was beautiful. The owner of the home told me something funny. The owner spent a lot of money to bring his father over to Hawaii. The owner was from Scotland. When the father got there he said, in a scottish accent, "You fuckin brought me halfway round the world to be in the same place!"

I did want to mention one thing. It's really strange leaving the house. When you're out of your element. you know, your day to day routine, it throws you for a loop. I went to my old neighborhood the other day and it has totally changed. It's as if I've been in a time machine. I still feel like my first operation was a couple of months ago, but it was like five years ago. I guess it's a good reason for behaving like a young idiot. My friend here, who's writing this for me said I've been using that excuse forever. Anyway, I don't really feel like blogging more so we'll leave it at that. I'll include some photos I've been doing. They're not from the past, but the present. Have a good week. Talk to you next week. Love, B. Nice

P.S. Here's a link to my blog about the present.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Chapter 135 - May 20, 2014

Hi everyone. Welcome to the past. I said it before, but I'll say it again, when I was just lying about, I used to think of stories like the following:

One time I was working in La Jolla, CA. They were having a wicked El Nino season. Anyway, some big waves were coming in. We were shooting right on the coast. At one point we stopped our shooting to watch some local surfers take on some big waves. Man these guys were crazy. They were catching big rides right by the cliffs and this one guy got pushed under near the cliffs. He basically disappeared right before our eyes. Now check this out. This is pretty far out. So the guy gets pushed underwater right? All of a sudden he finds himself in a cave under water. He comes to the surface in an underground cave. First thing he realizes is he's in an air pocket. He sees some steps so he carries his board up the steps. Mind you, he's all bloody and beaten up. He carries his board up the steps. He comes to a door. Knocks on the door (I'm not bull shitting. This is all for real). Like I said, he knocks on the door. Now imagine there's some people buying some shells in a store. They hear knocking on a door. They clear away some photos and there's a door behind some pictures. It was an old door. You know, like from the 40's. Anyway, the minute they get the old door open, there stands a surfer all covered in blood holding a surf board. Apparently it was an old door and an old passage from a previous store and that was where the shell shop was. Anyway after the people that were picking out the shells stopped screaming, the ambulance and police were called. The guy turned out to be all right but it was pretty far out. We used to see some pretty wild things when we were shooting. 

Once I was shooting in New Mexico in the desert when I saw a black plume of smoke appear right behind the model. Mind you, this was in the distance. Anyway, this black plume of smoke kind kept getting bigger and bigger. It turned out to be a major forest fire in the back ground. It was as if the whole hillside just burst into flames. Ash started falling all around us. Was a hell of a way to end a day of shooting. It was pretty amazing.

One time I was in Santa Barbara, CA. A major fire came over the hill. It was going fast with the Santa Ana winds. The fire started taking out houses, trees, anything in its way. My hotel had a front row seat to this event so I ran inside, grabbed a beer, sat down and watched Hell consume Santa Barbara. It was all entertaining until I heard some voices from the balcony next to mine. I heard a little kid say, "What about my toys?" And then I heard his mother reply, "Well, they can all be replaced. The important thing is, we're all safe." I guess they were evacuees from the fire. It was kind of a reality check. Anyway, I got to talking to them and sure enough, they were evacuees and they lost their house. Sad. But like the mother said, at least everyone was safe.

One other time I was shooting in Japan. Right near that famous mountain, Mount Fiji. Anyway, we were shooting in this mock village of a Bavarian town, and to top it all off, there was some drunk Australians playing oomph music in a small square in the village. It was all very bizarre. My friend here said it sounds like a dream, but it was more of a nightmare. A storm appeared in the background of the model and it started to grow and grow bigger and bigger. I said to my assistant, "Now imagine this," I said, "Look, run, here comes Godzilla, run quick." And then I delayed my voice so it looked like my voice was out of sync with my mouth. Well, my client didn't think it was funny. He said, "Work, Mr. Brian. You must not fool around. You must work."

Talk to you guys next week. Love, B. Nice

Oh yeah, I'll include the link to my other blog.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Chapter 134 - May 13, 2014

Hi everybody. Welcome to the blog where I talk about the past. Speaking of the past, this past Sunday was Mother's Day, so I'm gonna dedicate this blog to my mom. She saved my ass several times. Hell, if it weren't for her, I'd be in a nursing home. That's for sure. Anyway, thanks mom. I said it before, but I'll say it again. Thanks Mom.

I'm gonna start out with some pictures of my old house. You'll see why I get a little melancholy. It was a great house, but you know what, nothing lasts forever and sometimes things change, and you just gotta suck it up and move forward. Anyway, that's my little pep talk for the week.

I know I'm supposed to talk about the past, but, there's this damn bird outside my window and it wakes me up every morning at sunrise. For some reason it makes the exact sound of an alarm clock I had when I was building my house. I can picture it in my mind's eye. It was a black clock with a white face and green numbers. I always reach for the snooze button, but obviously, it's not there. I wake up expecting to go to work on my house and then I wake up and reality sets in. Damn bird.

You know, I've learned a lot through this whole experience, but really learning the word patience has come over and over. I have to be so patient. I remember when I used to be a photographer doing fashion, I had to be so patient as well. I had to deal with weather all the time. You know, like rain and wind. I'd have to make it look like a sunny day in the rain. Never easy.

I really don't have much to talk about this week. I'll include a cartoon. I used to do cartoons. They were a way of keeping my journals. Hell, I have a whole stack of them. Anyway, here is an example. Talk to you guys next week. Love, B. Nice

P.S. Here's a link to the other blog. Have a good week.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Chapter 133 - May 6, 2014

My friend here, who's writing this, talked about the date. It's the day after cinco de Mayo. May 5th. I used to love to have a few margaritas! Hell, I could get a job shaking them up, I shake so much. I was always hung over on the 6th of May. Just thought I'd share that with you.

Hi everybody. Welcome to the blog where I talk about the past. I'm gonna change things up a little. I used to talk about my former industry. You know, the fashion industry. I'm gonna change things up and talk about building a house. It's kind of symbolic to the way I am right now. You know, when you start with a house, you start with the foundation. That's kind of what I'm doing right now. I had built a house in Montauk, NY. It was right on the ocean overlooking my favorite spot where I used to surf. It was a great house in a great area. Sorry, I went off on a bit of a tangent there. I'll go back to the foundation. You know, when you build a house, you start with a solid foundation. When you re-train yourself, you gotta strengthen your body. I've had to learn how to do everything all over again. I mean everything. So,  building the house was kind of the same thing. Anyway, it's kind of like building a giant sculpture. I'm talking about the house. It was something I'll never forget. Amazing. It was during a time when the banks were just giving money away. I went to a bank. They said, "You need a construction loan? How much do you need?" I said, "I don't know. How about a million dollars?" And they said, "With verification of your income?" I said, "No." "Any downpayment?" I said, "No." They said, "OK, we'll give you a million one." And you wonder why our country is in trouble. Anyway, building the house was an amazing experience. If you can ever do it, I strongly recommend doing it. I'll never forget, the guy that was overseeing the project for me would bring his dog. I'd be on the 2nd floor girders basically praying for my life not to fall, then I'd hear a bark and there was his damn dog telling me to move. Another time he was in the bucket of the excavator. He'd been accidentally scooped up by the excavator. He was barking away. Never a dull moment. One time, let me back track. At one point I had buried a case of wine about 3 feet down. I was going to dig it up when the house was finished and have a big party. Now imagine this: I pull up one day. The architect, my builder and someone from the town were all arguing. They were like almost in a fist fight with each other. Then they stopped and looked at me. It was all very tense. My reaction, well, I walked over, dug up the case of wine, sat down and opened up a bottle and started drinking. They all laughed. I guess that was my solution. Anyway, the house came out great. It's gone now, but at least someone's enjoying it.

Here's the link to the present. LINK It's a blog where I talk about the here and the now. Have a good week. Love, B. Nice

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Chapter 132 - April 29, 2014

This chapter will be called, "June, A John on the John, The Eagle's Nest, and Get in the Car, Let's GO!"

Let's see. This chapter is dedicated to the past, and if you want to look at what I'm doing in the present, here's the link. My friend here will put it in. LINK

OK. June goes like this: I was on a small airplane in the Bahamas going to Christopher Columbus Isle. It's a small island in the caribbean. Anyway, I was on the plane with the crew I was going to work with when I noticed there was a real pretty girl sitting in front of me. She was short but pretty. Then I looked around and saw there was a whole bunch of short but pretty girls. I started talking to her. I said, "What's going on?" She said, "Oh, we're on a photo shoot." I said, "Really? What for?" And she said, "Playboy." I said, "Really? What's your name?" She said, "Oh, I'm Miss June." Anyway, we got to talking and she said she was gonna be in a talent contest that the hotel was putting on. In the back of my mind I'm think, hmm what kind of contest is this going to be? Anyway, I thought, boy, I can't miss this. Anyway, we had dinner that night of the contest and after dinner we went to the contest, me and my entire crew. Mind you, I had a hairdresser with me who was Japanese. He didn't talk that much, I think he was very quiet and conservative. Well he had a few drinks in him and when Miss June came on stage to sing he belted out, "June! June! June!" It was pretty funny. That guy was ripped, and the rest, well, I can't talk about it, but it was a good show.

The next story takes place where I lived in Montauk, NY. It was probably one of the most bizarre things I ever went through. There was a man that owned a house that had stairs going down to the beach. I went to his house to negotiate a price for shooting at his house and using the stair to get to the beach. His wife was there and answered the door. She said I would have to talk to her husband to negotiate the price. She said, "Follow me." So I followed her. The hallway she was in led to a bathroom. The owner of the house, we'll call him John, was on the john. The dude was right there sitting on the john. He said, "What do you want?" I said, "Well, I'd love to shoot here and use your stairs. I wanted to talk to you about doing that and paying you for it." He said, "Sure." Then he started talking. He straightened himself and he started to, well, you can use your imagination. Mind you, he was sitting down (thank god). We went back and forth on a price. Have you ever negotiated with a guy taking a dump? It's very bizarre. Anyway, we settled on a price and the shoot went great.

The following story took place in New Mexico. I was looking at a piece of property with a caretaker. We were looking a pond. I was standing there looking at the pond when I saw a single feather swirl around and land at my feet. I looked up and there was a huge bald eagle right above me and it was looking at me. It was very bizarre and spiritual too. Anyway, I'll leave it at that. It was pretty cool. Oh, yeah, I forgot to tell you. When I was standing there, the owner of the property rolled up in his car and said "What's going on?" I said, "Well, I'm gonna shoot here right?" And the owner looked at the caretaker and the caretaker looked away. I figured it out. The caretaker was gonna pocket the money for the location fee. The owner of the property showed up unexpected. It was all rather awkward, but in the long run I got to shoot there.

The last story took place in New Mexico also. Taos, to be exact. I was on a photographic shoot looking at places to shoot. It was for a magazine so they didn't have much money. We came across a guy there we were talking to. He was familiar with the area. He started talking about a cool location that wouldn't cost us anything. So he said, "Come on, I'll show you." And our editor jumped in his car and they took off. I thought to myself, holy shit! That's crazy. I jumped in our car and took off after him. I had a hard time keeping up with him. I thought, well, this is the last time I ever see her. I guess the moral of the story is: Don't get into cars with strangers. It all worked out all right, even though when she went to look for a map in the glove compartment, there was a revolver. Never a dull moment.

That's all for now. I'm going to show you a few photos I did on my trip across America. You know, I did the trip to show everybody that even though you're messed up, you can still do what you like. Talk to you next week. Love, B. Nice

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Chapter 131 - April 21, 2014

Hi everybody. Welcome to stories from the past. I'm gonna dedicate this to my friend who's a producer. She recently talked to another friend of mine who is an art director. The producer said, and I quote, "I miss Brian but I'm sure glad he's not here on April 1st." Now, let me tell you something, The Producer, if you have a look at my diary, it happens to be a remarkable diary. Every day is April 1st. So therefore, next time I see you, I'll see you on April 1st! Now, a) I miss you as well, and b) wait until you see what I have in store for you. In the meantime, feel free to do the following:

1. Now this is just wrong, but it happens to be one of my favorites. After you sneak into someone's room, open the toilet, cover the toilet in saran wrap very tightly so no one knows there's saran wrap there. The results are great. Don't forget to close the seat and the top. You can also buy a rat, a big rat. It's made of rubber and that's a real good one. If you can find fishing line, run it through the big rat's head and super glue it to the toilet cover. When they open the cover, the rat lurches out towards the victim. Oh yeah, don't forget to throw in a few squares of toilet paper and a Baby Ruth candy bar.

2. The next item is kind of hard to find, but if you can find it, it's great. I go to any big novelty store. So you basically turn off all the lights in the room. Find a light that's activated by the door light switch. Unscrew the ligthbulb and replace it with this device I'm talking about. The device lets off a blood curdling scream when you turn on the light, so basically the victim enters the room turns on the light, and there's a blood curdling scream. It's quite effective.

3. The next idea I have is great. You go to any thrift store, buy a cheap pair of men's running shoes, take the shoes to the victims hotel room and put them behind a curtain with the toes sticking out. Then gaffer tape a pillow behind the curtain so it looks like someone's there. Have you ever seen someone run out of their room really fast. It's pretty entertaining.

4. Now the last joke kind of dates me. I basically take an album, fill it with talcum powder, slide it under the door and pound on the album cover. It makes a mess of the room, so prepare for a real pissed off victim. That should get you started.

OK, so I'm either running out of stories or my memory is failing me. And be sure to remind me if I start to repeat my stories. I often do that. But my friend here said, "Well, they keep getting better." They're all things that really happened to me. They are things I remembered when I was in hospital. Hell, I could do a whole separate blog on the hospital itself. It was like a scene from one flew over the cuckoo's nest. It was all brain injury people. Just use your imagination. Anyway, if I remember, I'm sure I will, but if remember, I'll include it next week. Here are some photos I did of my recent trip. HOpe you have a good one. Love, B. Nice

Oh yeah, here's a link to my blog from the present. Talk to you later. Love, B. Nice      LINK

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Chapter 130 - April 15, 2014

Hi everybody. I'm gonna dedicate this blog to my friend in Paris. And check out the date. It's the last day to get our taxes in. Don't I blog you on the best days?! Welcome to another week of brain injury recovery. I talk about the past in this blog. You know, things I thought about when I was in hospital, things I still think about. Thinking about things helps me get through the rough stuff.

I was looking at older blogs and I was talking about assistants. You know, photo assistants. I don't know why but it reminded me of a time I had this one guy that I worked with. I decided to go snorkeling on a reef in the Bahamas. He wanted to come along. I said no problem so we both went out to snorkel on an outer reef. Anyway, we got out to the outer reef and I said let's go do some free diving. Let's dive down and check down that cave on the coral reef. Well, we dove down. Lo & behold there was a huge barracuda hanging out. Well, it didn't like us being there so it approached us. Have you ever seen a big pissed off barracuda? It's not pretty. They have big teeth, and this one was about the size of a door. Now what did my assistant do? My faithful assistant grabbed me by the shoulders and put me in front of him. He basically used me as a shield between him and the fish. After I calmed him down I told him to swim backwards to the shore on our back, basically keep your fins between you and the fish. The barracuda followed us back to shore. After we got out of the water I said, "OK, you owe me a beer."

The next situation took place in New York City. I had to shoot a cover for a famous bridal magazine. Well, everything was set up. The model came out and the editor said, "We gotta wait for the necklace to come." It was a piece of famous jewelry that we were going to use. These people showed up with the necklace and armed guards. Well, I started thinking about the shot and my pug kept walking into the photo. The editor thought my dog was cute so I took the necklace off the model and put the necklace on my dog. I told the model to hold my dog. The model did not look happy. Anyway, it was a great shot. It made the cover of the magazine. Sorry to my friend the model we won't mention.

The next story I have really has nothing to do with fashion but it's a good story. I basically ran across the country with 11 other guys. Well, we were in the Guinness Book of World Records. Anyway, it was a hell of a way to see the country. I remember one time I was running on an Indian reservation. It was in the desert in the middle of nowhere. I kept hearing sounds on the side of the road. I couldn't figure out what it was. All of a sudden a wild dog or wolf or I don't know what it was, came out of the dark and tried to bite me. Then another dog came out and another. You get the picture. It was a pack of wild dogs. They were surrounding me. The only thing I had was a flashlight and my relay baton. I started pointing my baton at them and each time I pointed the baton and screamed "Get the fuck away from me," they backed off. Well, it seemed to work and for the next five minutes I would run down the middle of the road screaming and turning in circles. Everyone in the van looked puzzled. The next guy didn't look happy. Anyway, here's a photo from the trip I did across America, you know, the run (thanks D. Campbell). The other photos will be from my trip I did driving across America, the trip I did recently. Oh yeah, the 1979 trip I was supposed to run with Jimmy Carter but he had to deal with some Iran Contra thing. Anyway, have a good week. Love you guys. Love, B. Nice

Oh yeah, here's my link to my other blog. Check it out. LINK

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Chapter 129

Hi Everybody. April Fools Day. This is a blog from the past. Stories from the past. I guess confessions from the past. Remember, names and places have been changed to protect the not so innocent.

You know, as a fashion photographer, we traveled to some great places and went to some great restaurants. One time I was at a real fancy restaurant in California. You know, long white table cloths. real silver, it was right on the ocean. It was owned by a famous movie star. You get the picture. Anyway, my location van driver can make the sound of a chicken exactly. She was very talented. At dinner, after they took our order, I said to the driver, "Hey, I have a good idea. Why don't you crawl under the table and make the sound of a chicken." Being as demented as me, she said OK and crawled under the table. I told everyone at the table to continue on talking and ignore anything they hear. Well, she started acting like a chicken. It sounded just like a real chicken. Everyone in the restaurant went silent wondering where the noise was coming from. It was all pretty funny. The table next to me, I think the guy was a vegan. He started freaking out.

Another time I was in Hawaii. It was my birthday. Well, the restaurant spent a lot of time and energy in making me a birthday cake. It was a really fancy restaurant. By the end of the dinner, well, we had gone through a few bottles of wine. The birthday cake came out. The art director picked it up and tried to put the whole cake into my face. Luckily I was still alert enough to get out of the way. The cake went onto the floor. But we were so ripped it didn't matter. We picked it up and ate the whole thing. The owner of the restaurant was not amused. We got thrown out, but hey, we were finished anyway.

I used to direct the models before we'd shoot. I remember this one girl I was talking to. I kept going over and over what I wanted to do and she seemed kind of vacant and far away. I was talking to her more and she explained to me that her brother had just died. I was like, Oh man. Anyway, I said, "You want to work still?" She said, "Yeah, it will get my mind off of his death and work will keep me occupied." Anyway, I got all the film back on her and it was eerie. Looked like she was looking right through me. Her brake lights weren't on, as you'd say. She was there but not. It's pretty wild what you don't see and film captures.

I was thinking about what I talked about above and it reminded me of another time. This model I worked with all the time, she had a bunch of specific poses she'd run through all the time. In other words it was always the same moves. I said to her, "You always do the same thing. It's like a catalogue of poses." So I presented her with a throw down. I said, "OK, I'm going to go through a whole roll really fast and you do all your moves." And you know what? I held my finger down on the shutter release and she quickly did all her poses. It was pretty funny because when I got the film back it was spot on. She had her timing down and she knew her poses.

One other time I was working I booked this model because she was great. Really natural. Really fun. Well I had a chance to shoot a fashion story with her in the Bahamas. It was going to be for a British magazine. Now, mind you, this is how things can get fucked up real quick. Well, I booked this girl because she was high energy. Just what was needed for the story. I started shooting and she stood there like a tree. She was like that for every image. No matter what I said, no matter what direction I gave she just stood there. I finally said to her, "What's going on? What's the deal?" She looked at me and said, "I just found out I'm pregnant." I said, "Oh, is that good or bad?" She said, "I gotta get another drink." I guess that was the answer. Anyway I'm gonna include the link. You know, the link from the present. I hope you guys have a good April Fools Day. Love, B. Nice

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Chapter 128 - March 26, 2014

Hey you guys. Welcome to the blog where I talk about the past. If you want to read about the present, here's the link. Anyway, when I was lying on my back for so long, one way to pass the time was to think about the past. I used to think about stories and things that happened to me. One time I kept bumping into this rock star non-stop. It was weird. It happened every week for like a month. It started with me and him getting on an empty elevator. We had a little chat. The following week I saw the same guy in duty free customs and getting stopped. We had a chat. And then the next week I saw the same guy in a bar in New York. We had a chat. The next week I saw the guy in Harbour Island, the Bahamas. We had a chat. The guy was looking at me kind of funny. I think he thought I was a stalker. The following week I was on a photo shoot in Jamaica. The manager of the resort I was shooting at called me over. He said, "Can I talk to you for a moment?" Mind you, I was checking in. He called me over to his office and there was the rock star. He said, "Mr. So & So would like to extend his stay. It's your room. Would you mind if he stayed on." I said, "Where the hell and I supposed to sleep? By the pool?" Anyway, I offered to spoon with him but he didn't think it was funny. He stormed out of the office, grabbed his girlfriend and took off in his own personal helicopter.

I'm trying to think of other stories from the past. One reader of this blog suggested I tell some more photo assistant stories. Oh my God! I wouldn't know where to begin. It could be a whole other blog on its own. I had this one girl as a photo assistant. She decided to change my film, 8X10 film. You need to do this in total darkness. Well, she brought all the film and all the 8X10 inch folders into the changing room and she closed her eyes tight and didn't turn off the light. So she changed the film in total lightness but her eyes were closed. I think she was cross bred with an ostrich. Anyway, the stories go on and on. I'll include some photos I'm doing now. Hope you guys have a great week. And remember how lucky you are - not to have a photo assistant. Just kidding. They actually have saved my ass many times. In fact, I'm sitting here right now because of a photo assistant. He saved my life. Talk to you soon, with another story. Love, B. Nice

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Chapter 127 - March 18, 2014

Hi everybody. Welcome to stories from the past. They're stories I used to think about when I was lying on my back for years and years.

One time I got done shooting and I went to my friend's house for dinner. Dinner turned into drinks. Time got long. And next think you know, it's like 1 am, and I was very drunk. It was a time in my life when I was also very poor so I decided to take the bus home. Mind you, I lived in a suburb just outside of Sydney Australia. The bus was the last bus and it made all the local stops all the way to Manly. It took a good 2 hours. Anyway, at each stop the people that got on seemed to be drunker and drunker. Next thing you know, people were taking turns getting up and singing. They were all singing bar songs and cheering along. A cheerful bunch. Anyway, they were giving some guy at the front of the bus a hard time and finally he stood up and bellowed out a ballad that was unreal. The guy must have been a professional singer. The girls were at the edge of their seats in awe. The guys were watching him, all quiet, with their mouths open. The bus came to a stop and he got off. The guys on the bus went, "Yeah, yeah, he was all right. He was good." It was a great scene.

I used to love living over there in Manly. I used to take a ferry to get there. It was just outside of Sydney. What a great place. I would shoot there as often as I could. Australia was a great place to start out in photography. I did about 2 editorial shoots a week. In New York, everything became commercial. You used to work your ass off just to pay the bills. Remember, if you're a young photographer, it's important to keep up the editorial and the commercial.

Not much else to say. I'll include some photos of the trip I did across the country and a link to the other blog about the present. It was tough man. I'll tell you. I could barely lift the camera. My friends did a documentary of the trip. I'll share with you soon. Hope you have a good week. Love, B. Nice

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Chapter 126 - March 15, 2014

Hey everybody. Welcome to stories from the past. I write about things that happened to me when I was a fashion photographer. Oh man, one time I was flying back to Australia. The day before my departure a model I knew gave me 2 sleeping pills for the flight. She said, "Take one pill only. They're very strong." And like a young idiot, I accepted the pills and carried them with me on the flight. Well, halfway through the flight I took one sleeping pill. An hour went by and nothing happened so I thought, she's just messing with me, but just to be safe I cut the other pill in half and took it. Nothing happened so I ordered a cognac. Drank it down and nothing happened. I ordered another cognac. I drank it. Next thing you know, I woke up to half a glass of cognac poured into my lap. I was still holding an empty glass. There was a flight attendant coming down the walkway with water. I was extremely thirsty and I held up my hand, but my arms were asleep. I couldn't talk. I had fallen asleep with my arms across my chest. I was leaning against the window with my mouth open. I sounded like a  mummy, a resurrected mummy. I tried to say "water" but nothing but a groan came out of my mouth. She was frightened and ran off. The guy next to me said, "Mate! I thought you were dead. I checked your pulse on your neck." I fell asleep for 10 hours straight. We left LA, I was in Sydney. It felt like a couple of minutes went by. Now that's a strong sleeping pill. I've never taken them since.

All of these stories I'm telling are random stories from the past. There was one resort south of Miami. It was in the keys actually. I used to always go there to shoot. It was a great spot for a photographic shoot. Anyway, the guy that owned the resort said, "You look so tired. Take break." So I thought, You know what, I've got a week off. I'll stay here is that cool. he said yeah, no problem. Satay here. I thought, well, since I'm staying here, I'll get a massage. He recommended somebody. I called him up and they came to my cabin and it all seemed good. And then the woman said, There's not enough room in your cabin to do a massage. Why don't we go outside under the palm trees. Mind you I'm completely naked except for my boxer shorts so I said, "Do you mind if I wear my boxers at least?" She said yeah, no problem. She set up the massage table under a coconut tree. I was lying on my back with a towel over me. Mind you, what I'm about to describe happened in less than a minute. She said, "We gotta lose the shorts. They're a distraction." So she whipped off my shorts. So I look up and there are a bunch of coconuts above me and there was a photo crew next to me making all sorts of comments and then the wind blew my towel off. So there I was, naked with the other crew laughing and my masseuse running after my towel. Relaxing, right?

Oh man, there was this one time… oh, I can't tell you that story. Let's go on to the next paragraph.

Actually, I'm gonna end it there. My friend here will include some photos I did on my trip across America. I hope you have a good week. Love, B. Nice

Oh, here's a link to the other website in case you want to check it out.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Hi you guys. Welcome once again to the past. Remember, the other blog I do is about the present. This one is about the past. I think about the past a lot when I'm lying on my back. You know, sometimes I can't sleep at night so I think about things I've gone through. You know, well, some confessions. For example: One time, my friend was over my house. Mind you, I was a little kid. The guy cutting the lawn started sinking into the lawn. My friend and I ran out to help him pull the tractor out. We cleared away the sod and we noticed he was stuck in a door in the lawn. We cleared away more sod and noticed there was a big big door there. Remember, the house I'm in was built around 1800. So my friend and I were excited over the prospect of finding something from the Revolutionary War. Anyway, we opened the door and there was a pit of brick that went down about 14 feet. We lowered a ladder down, and my friend wanted to go down and be the first to check things out. He found another door and I lowered a crowbar to him. He forced the door open. I heard gas escaping and a large scream. The next thing I know is there's a geyser of shit and toilet paper coming up. My friend was racing up the ladder screaming. We had hit the main septic line. He was covered in shit. He dove onto the lawn. My father came running out. The whole pit started filling up with raw sewage. My father was not happy. We all stood around praying it wouldn't escape onto the whole yard. After staring at a bunch of turds for a while, my friend said, "Hey! what's that?" and he picked up a shovel and picked up a condom. My dad looked at me and just rolled his eyes and walked away. I think I told you that story before, but it sounds good again. You know, my life was full of little adventures like that.

When I was little, my parents rented a small shack in the south of France. This was before it became trendy. When I mean shack, I mean shack. This place had a hand pump for water in the kitchen, an outhouse for a bathroom. It was cool though. We had a big field. I would lie in the field and look at the clouds. There was a big cherry tree there. I would sit there and eat cherries. Sometimes the farmer down the street would come over and recruit us to do some work. It was a good life. Never a dull moment.

I have lots of stories to tell you, but I have to look back and make sure I don't repeat myself. I'm gonna leave it at that. I hope you guys have a good week. My friend here will include some photos I did on my journey. We went coast to coast. Not an easy thing to do when you're like this, you know, traumatic brain injury. See you next week. Love, B. Nice

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Chapter 124 - February 26, 2014

Hi everybody. Welcome to the past again. I'm coming over from the blog where I talk about the Present. I'll have my friend here leave you the link. Anyway, I'll tell you a couple confessions.

You know when you lie on your back for so long it's good to think about things from the past. One thing I'm not so proud of, I was, well, I was the worst photo assistant you could imagine. A photographer I worked for reminded me of this. He said I was the worst assistant, but I turned out to be a good photographer. You know, I guess I'm hard on my assistants now because I was a bad assistant. Some of the things I did I'll just tell you real quick. I'll throw a few words out there because all of the things I did could make a whole other chapter! Let's see. I almost backed a car into a harbor. I tried to… Oh! skip that, I can't tell you that story. I had another car crash. (It was a rental.) I left 2000 rolls of shot film in a bar. A whole job. I dropped a lens out of a helicopter. It was only a $3000 lens. What's the big deal? We had insurance. Another story I can't tell you. Let's see… There's another helicoptor ride where we landed the helicopter on the front lawn of the hotel in the morning. Totally illegal. 

One time, a photographer threw a camera at my head. Almost took my head off. His wife had to separate us because we were involved in a fist fight. Another car crash. When you take a meter reading, when you're shooting film, you have to be very very particular. One time I was chatting up the model and not paying attention to what I was doing. I basically took a meter reading of the sky. The film was so dense the photographer had to make a 4 stop adjustment. In other words, it wasn't good. Anyway, I could go on and on and tell you stories, but I guess I learned at other people's expense. Sorry you guys. There's probably a wanted poster for me up in some lab somewhere.

I keep thinking about the time I lived in Australia. It was great. What a great place to live. One of my favorite places was Western Australia. Just below Perth there is an area called Margaret River. It's a great wave for surfing. Great wine. The area had great white wine. It was beautiful down there. No one there too. If you ever get a chance to go to Australia, go to that area. Mind you, from here it's the furthest place on Earth you can get to. But it's worth it.

I'm feeling kind of melancholy right now, so I'm gonna leave it at that. I hope you guys have a good one. Oh, I just found out, it's gonna snow again! How unusual. Oh my god. It snowed here like 3 days out of the week for months. It's crazy. At least my daughter likes the snow. It'll make her happy to see it. She's gonna be here in a week. How cool is that. Anyway, talk to you guys later. Love, B. Nice

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Chapter 123 - February 11, 2014

Hi everybody. Welcome to the blog where I talk about the past. You know, thinking about the past has got me through the present. At the present I'm messed up.

An old friend emailed me the other day. An art director. I used to do great shoots with her. I was lucky. I had a lot of great friends I used to work with. I'm going to go off on a tangent here. One time I was shooting and I saw the one and only art director I didn't get along with. I was on another job and this art director I didn't like was on another job. So what did I do? I went in my mobile home and dressed as best I could. I dressed up as a homeless man. I saw the art director I didn't like getting some coffee so I went outside, I rolled around in the dirt and went over to the coffee shop she went into. I reached into my pocket, put some change in my hand and when she came out, I pulled my hood over my head and hunched over, growled at her. I held out my hand of change and leaned in on her. She screamed, "Get away from me!" and I chased her all the way back to her location van. She kept screaming something about a freak. I thought it was pretty funny. She never knew it was me. I went back to my van laughing.

Anyway, I didn't like her and she didn't like me, but other than that one person, I liked everyone I worked with.

I'll get back on the subject of my friend that emailed me the other day. People often ask me what was my favorite location. One of the best spots that I ever went to was in Cabo San Lucas. It was great. Basically it was a hotel the brat pack went to all the time. It hadn't been renovated since then. It was like going back in time. I had my own house with it's own swimming pool and steps that went down to a private beach. The house was amazing. It had a wooden bar and it was made of wood and stone. We all had villas like this. What a great spot. The main hotel had very tall ceilings. It was also make of exotic woods and stone. It was on the peninsula that overlooked the ocean. The main restaurant was like a giant lanai, open to the ocean. The bar was beautiful exotic woods. The whole place was amazing and like going back in time to the 50's. You expected James Dean to walk in at any moment. Oh yeah! I forgot to mention the gift shop. It was surreal. All the items there were from the 50's, including the woman at the register. My friend here asked me how long I stayed there, and I usually stayed there for 10 days to 2 weeks and if the timing was right, we got to see the big whales that came right in front of the hotel. But I heard they tore the whole thing down. There is a new hotel there now. Too bad. Oh yeah! I forgot to mention, there was an airstrip right by the hotel, so members of the brat pack would fly in from LA or Vegas and then cross the street, check in at the hotel. What a great life.

Where was I, oh yeah, anyway, that was one of my favorite spots. It was also right near one of my favorite surfing spots so overall, it was a great place to shoot.

One other thing I want to mention, my friend asked me to set her daughter up in modeling. The girl's pretty, but I strongly discouraged it. You see, it's a tough business. Often the girls end up uneducated and getting little work. You see, the models start when they are like 15. You know, the time when you really need to be educated. And it's very competitive. There's a lot of people trying to do the one thing. If you do make it, you're career span is very short. So, overall, it's not worth it. Here I am saying that after saying chase your dreams. But it's just my observation. You know, I've been in this business since 1984. And it's rare that you become very successful. You're better off with a good education and being just a pretty woman. That's my opinion anyway. I don't know what the solution would be if you wanted to try. I just hate to see uneducated people. It's a dead end street in this business.

Well, it's Valentine's Day coming up. Have a good one you guys. I'll talk to you next week. Love, B. Nice

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Chapter 122 - January 28, 2014

Hi you guys. Welcome once again to the past. I'm gonna tell you a couple of fashion confessions.

One time I was going out with this girl. I'll tell you, never a dull moment with this girl. Anyway, she decided she didn't like her chest. She wanted to change her implants. So, she went to a plastic surgeon who specialized in breast augmentations. I went in with the woman I was going out with. The woman I was going out with started talking to the nurses. Mind, all the nurses looked like Barbie dolls. My friend who I was going out with couldn't decide what size augmentation to get so one of the nurses said, "How about mine? Do you like this size?" She stuck her chest in my face. It all got kind of freaky so I waited in the car. Anyway, I was told to come back at the end of the day and pick up my friend. Well, I picked up my friend at the end of the day and she said, "I don't know, I think they are too big." It's like we're talking about windshield wipers. She said, "I'll wait til the swelling goes down." So all week long she kept checking things out. Well, she decided they were too big. So what did she do five days later? She goes back to get smaller ones. I was like, "You gotta be kidding me!" So she goes back and she gets a few sizes smaller and she was happy. I mean, knowing now what I know about infections, the whole thing freaks me out. Anyway, I thought I'd share that with you.

Another time, I was shooting on the west coast and it was the last day of shooting. We got done with the last shot and went out to celebrate the end of the shoot. Well, we all got back to the hotel at about 4 am, and what do I find in my mailbox? A package with 2 swimsuits and a note. It said, "Please shoot these 2 suits before you get on the plane." Well, (a) I was extremely drunk and (b) I couldn't believe what I was seeing. I told my crew and there was a brief moment of silence and denial. So I rallied everyone. I think I got about an hour's sleep. I got everyone together. We went outside to tape the ground where the model should stand. I shot on a tripod and taped my focus. I stood with the sun at my back, and shot the 2 shots with a cable release because I was shaking so hard I could have made a hell of a martini. My assistant who didn't go out, thought it was all rather amusing.

The next story takes place in Portland. Yeah, I got on the plane. I thought it was going to Portland Oregon. I ended up in Portland Maine. I knew it was a bad start for a photoshoot. I really thought I was going to Oregon. Anyway, we finished the shoot and it all went well, but we went out to celebrate the end of the shoot. I was so hungover the next day, oh, yeah, this is why I don't drink anymore. I was so hungover, I couldn't get on the plane. I went outside to get some fresh air. I was holding the boarding pass. There was a Holiday Inn Express across from the airport. I dropped my boarding pass and started walking to the hotel. Well, my assistants heard the boarding call and grabbed my boarding pass and me and ushered me to the plane.

I have many stories like this and it's why I don't drink anymore. Anyway, I'll share a few photos with you. I hope you have a good week. Love, B. Nice

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Chapter 121 - January 15, 2014

Hi everybody. Welcome to the past. If you're coming from the other blog, or if you just happened upon this blog, welcome. You know, I do this blog about the past because I love telling stories about all the things that happened to me. I've been lying on my back pretty much for four years. You have time to remember stuff when you lie on your back for four years. Anyway, here are a few fashion confessions.

I remember, I was shooting in Paris when I lived there. I was shooting on the coastline of Brittany. The model came out in a beautiful Chanel coat. I wanted to do a double page spread, so I told the girl to lie down on the ground. Well you'd think I cut someone's head off because the editor went crazy. She made phone call after phone call. I thought someone died. My French isn't so good. I didn't understand what was going on. Well, apparently, you don't lie a model down on the ground while she's wearing a Chanel jacket. Welcome to Paris.

You know, I used to shoot on the street a lot. One of my favorite tricks was to find a good cafe, I mean a really good place with really good food. I would say to the owner, "Hey, look, I have to do a photo of a girl sitting at a cafe table, and if I do the shot here, we'll have lunch here. Can I do the shot here? Is it cool?" The guy would say, "How many are you?" I said, "Oh, about ten." He said, "Yeah, for sure." Then I'd go to the fashion editor and I said, "I really want to do a shot in that cafe, but they'll only do it if we have lunch there." She said, "Oh, but we have lunch coming. It's catered." I said, "Oh, we'll have it as an afternoon snack. Let's just have lunch there and shoot." She ultimately would say, "OK." So I had a great lunch. I got a shot off. I love being a diplomat in Europe sometimes.

Oh yeah, one time we were shooting in Napa Valley at a vineyard. There was another vineyard I wanted to go to and do an afternoon shoot. Well the owner said, "Look, it's $2000 to shoot here." I said, "Let me think. How about if we buy $2000 worth of wine? Is that cool?" He thought about it and said, "Yeah, why don't we do that." So I got $2000 worth of wine and we got to shoot there. The art director thought it was the best thing in the world. She sent all the wine to the office. I was bummed out to say the least. I didn't see a single bottle. Remind me to tell you the story of when I acted like an alcoholic in Napa Valley. It was priceless. I did stuff like asking people next to me if they were going to finish their taste-testing, could I have it? I did stuff like say, "I'll have that bottle way up there please." It was all very entertaining. Never a dull moment. Heh heh.

I'm sitting here with my friend. Her son is about 14. Then all of a sudden I started getting flashbacks to what I did when I was 14. My poor friend. She has no idea what she's in for. That was just a thought.

So I was talking to my old friend who is an art director. We were talking about the good old days. Listen to me, I sound like an old fart. Anyway, we were talking about how good it was and I have to say it, it WAS great. I recommended a restaurant she should go to. She was in South Beach, Miami. Oh, that reminds me. I just had a flashback. One time I was shooting on the beach in Miami and I heard this Italian photographer growling, "Grrrr Woman! Grrr Woman!" I almost tripped over the guy. I looked over at him and he had a girl in a leopard print bikini growling at him, showing her nails like talons. Very dramatic and kinky. Anyway, back to my story, where was I? Oh yes, my friend the art director was in South Beach, Florida. I recommended a restaurant she should go to. She laughed. She said, "Honey, things are different now. I'm lucky to have a yogurt in my room." So you see, maybe it's not so bad having brain surgery and staying home.

My friend here was reading everything back to me. I was all over the place. Sorry you guys. Like my friend said, I gotta focus sometimes. Anyway, I was just excited to share a few stories with you. Chalk it up to Cabin Fever. I just want to say one more thing. I just wanted to say "Hi" to all my friends  in Australia. I wish I could hop on a plane and come down there and see you guys. Have a coffee for me. Anyway, this is B. Nice signing off. Love, B. Nice