At an early age, Nicholas’s artistic talent was recognized and encouraged by his mother, an artist in her own right who had studied under Charles Sibley and William Reimann, and who also ran the art program for the Boys Club in Norfolk, Virginia. However, Nicholas was distracted by his need to focus on his college education in preparation for a professional career. His years at Virginia Tech, however, were interrupted by the Vietnam War, where he served as a lieutenant in the army. The war’s influence on him was evident from his thought-provoking poem To a Newly Fallen Tree, the first prize winner for free verse in the Irene Leache Memorial Contest at the Chrysler Museum. He then went to work in advertising for the local newspaper, and later in the financial industry. Only upon retirement from the business world did he feel he could devote full time to his artwork. Throughout his earlier life, he often created paintings as gifts for friends and colleagues, though these were never submitted for public viewing. Nicholas’s collection of later work is representational and reflects scenes of subjects and places important to his life.