Maplewood Richmond Heights graduate Nick Coulter (class of 2011) played football at the Edward Jones Dome in the state final in 2010. They lost, but said in an interview recently that things he learned then he’s using today. He’s is now a photographer, which he said takes as much work as football.
“The cold nights in Philadelphia, down by the bridge, it does not come easy (taking photographs). I played football – this takes work too. You look at this, you think it looks easy – there’s a lot behind it.”
Coulter remembers his plans when he was a high school senior: “I’m going to go to college, I’m going to play football, I’m going to go to the NFL,” he said. “It didn’t work out like that! It all happened in a different form.”
Coulter often works with his brother, Brock Seals, who is a painter. Coulter shoots what Seals paints. Recently they were in LA on the Coliseum playing field with the LA Rams. Seals had painted the players’ cleats and Coulter photographed the players wearing them.
Coulter said he took a journalism class at MRH and used a camera then, but wasn’t interested. “It”s funny to see how paths lead. Now I’m strongly involved with the camera; I don’t put down my camera. It’s funny how you transition, so I found my purpose I think.”
He talked about the importance of documentary photography. “I remember that picture of me and Marcus (Taylor, an MRH classmate on the football field),” he said. “You can always go off thoughts and feelings, but I can always go back and look at that picture — OK, I remember this exact moment.”
Coulter’s goal is to photograph for National Geographic or Animal Planet.
“I’m big on nature,” he said. “I just got back from Tampa Bay not long ago. Tampa Bay’s nature is different from California’s or Denver’s, or Salt Lake City. I’ve experienced different environments.
“Long term I’m hoping to travel a lot to different countries, take pictures,” he said. “One thing that’s helped me is not sitting still, not being afraid to travel. There’s a lot of things that can stop your mindset; keep you stagnant. My eyes haven’t seen everything, but stuff I have seen has inspired me to create more.”
See Coulter’s photos on Instagram at nicholas.coulter