Nicholas was born in Chicago and raised in a little idyllic village of Wildwood in northern Illinois. As a child, he and his friends would run through the woods and pretend to be adventurers around the twin ponds near his home. He was always fascinated and inspired by the vivid illustrations of N. C. Wyeth, the stories of Mark Twain and of legendary heroes of the past. So his future in both his music and painting was foretold from an early age, often incorporating legends and heroism in his musical works and some of his graphic and fine artwork.
Beginning as an oil painter in the late ‘70s, he soon developed a passion for pastel painting and has since painted exclusively in pastels. He joined the Pastel Society of New Mexico in 2008 and served as President for the maximum two-year term and has chaired the PSNM National Pastel Painting Exhibitions for several years. Additionally, he now serves as the Audio/Visual Director for the Society.
Being a self-taught artist, he feels that the influences of the many romantic, religious and classical artists whose works, lives and techniques he’s studied have actually been his teachings. Then in recent years, he has taken part in workshops by renowned pastel artists, among them, Vasili Katakis, Desmond O’Hagan and Doug Dawson, which have helped him immeasurably toward refining his technique.
He is also a guitarist, singer/songwriter who has cofounded two folk duos; Changes, with his cousin R. N. Taylor in 1969 and Phase II, with Mark Andrews in 1979. Though both groups disbanded after a few years, the music of Changes was rediscovered in the mid-90s and developed a huge following in Europe. In 1996 they returned to the recording studio and they now have seven studio albums to their name. Their most recent performance was in Darmstadt, Germany in October, 2019. The popularity of Changes revised interest in Phase II and since 2010 they’ve released two albums and are working on their third.
He has lived in Edgewood, New Mexico since 1997 and loves the climate and the vivid blue skies.