an Interview with: NickyDigital 


In honor of the one-year anniversary of NickyDigital.com, Nick Rhodes (yes, his last name is not really Digital, he has “the same name as that guy in Duran Duran that plays the keyboards and wears a lot of makeup”) and I sat down in front of our computers and undertook an e-interview that is barely more cerebral than any number of surveys that find their ways into myspace.com bulletins.

The L Magazine: Why Digital, when did you take the name?
Nick Rhodes: In college I lived with a bunch of lit and journalism kids and I was a new media kid, always on my laptop or playing with some electronic gizmo, so they started calling me Digital... then NickyDigital... then the Didge.

The L: As for your first name, what influence, if any, did early Pink Floyd, particularly the drumming of Nicky Mason, have on you?
NR: I'd have to say that I love the fact that in 1981 they put out a best of album titled "A Collection of Great Dance Songs" I've never really thought of Pink Floyd as dancey, but I make a real effort to cut the rug when I hear them now.

The L: What equipment do you use?
NR: For nightlife stuff my typical set up is a Canon 20D, Canon L-series EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM, and one or two Canon 580EX Speedlite (depending on if I need a free hand for a drink).  If I'm shooting film, you are most likely to find me with my Mamiya C330 twin-lens reflex camera.

The L: Why are you always wearing a handkerchief?
NR: I'm a bank robber. J/k LOL ROFL! (Not funny)  I've been wearing them for years, I don't remember why I started, but I think it looks cool... don't you?  One of the more practical reasons is for when fictional partygoer Drunky Mc-Drinks-To-Much stumbles into me and spills their entire Vodka Soda on my lense — the bandana becomes an instant booze soaker upper.

The L: How did you start out with photography?
NR: When I was a youngster a close family friend was a professional photographer and he would always bring over different cameras and show me how they worked and how they differed from other cameras. It wasn't
until high school that I landed myself in a darkroom and really got hooked! Have you ever seen a picture develop on a blank sheet of photo paper? It's a Science PARTY!

The L: Which artists, photographers, etcetera inspire you?
NR: Right now I'm really into British photog. Nick Turpin's street work. There are also a TON of great photoblogs here in NYC that I love. Definitey Keith Yan's work at overshadowed.com and and Red DeLeon at 990000.com.

The L: How were you introduced into the scene?
NR: What scene?

The L: What was the first party that you photographed?
NR: I think I photographed my grandfather's 80th birthday when I was Nine, but.the first party photographed for NickyDigital.com was the now-defunct SoulPusher at the Delancey.

The L: With the success of Ron Galella's Disco Years, have you been optioned for a book? Are you interested in publishing a book, either one about your life or a photobook?
NR: Ummm…a book eh? I'd be totally into it! I can't think of a reason why I wouldn't want an Analog version of my website with old school page flippin' navigation.

The L: What is your relationship with other nightlife photographers like?
What singles you out among them?
NR: I've always taken the stance that there is enough fun for
everyone, so why not all run around and have a good time together? I
was heavily involved in photoblogging before NickyDigital.com and
really loved the community aspects of it Check out my not so recently
updated photoblog ModernFlaneur.com.

The L:What percentage of the people who you photograph are people who you already know? What is your I took their picture and then we became friends batting average?
NR: I'm not much of a sports guy but I'd say I bat around a .314.

The L: What is the traffic like on your website?
NR: Red light, green light, one! Two! Three!

The L: Are you afraid of there being a shift to film, having to change NickyDigital to NickyFilm and then being teased as KinkyFilm?
NR: I've actually given this much thought and have decided that I would go the NickyAnalog route. As for name mockeries, Lady Sov already calls me Dicky Nigital, but she has that cute English accent, so it's forgivable.

The L: Which is your favorite nightlife moment, party?
NR: I'm always really psyched when a band or DJ that I've photographed seeks me out to tell me they like what I'm doing or when people use a photo I've taken as their profile pic on the myspace.com. It's like getting a virtual high-five.

The L: How do you survive so many late nights?
NR: Red Bull + Whiskey = DidgeryDrew.

The L: What is your sleeping schedule like?
NR: Head + Pillow = sleep.

The L: What do you do in the daytime?
NR: I'm an art director at Radar Magazine.

The L: How do you feel about the scene? What would you like to see change?
NR: I'm not big on calling it anything because I feel like when people do that they have a tendency to exclude people because they aren't enough of this or that. Like I said earlier, I think there is enough fun for everyone, so lets all just get down!

The L: What do you see for the immediate future of the scene?
NR: I'm pretty excited that people are starting to wear color again!

The L: Where do you see yourself in 20 years, when your website is at the legal drinking age?
NR: This question is too witty to answer.

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