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Nichols Rolls Into Desert Storm With Mobile Photo Lab

Mostly absent from the high-performance powerboating scene in 2016, well-known photographer Jay Nichols of Naples Image in Sarasota, Fla., is coming back strong this year starting with the Desert Storm Poker Run this week using a 30-foot Fleetwood motor home—outfitted with a 17-inch printer and a vinyl cutter—as a “mobile photo lab.” Nichols arrived in Lake Havasu City, Ariz., today and among his first duties was delivering 90 Desert Storm event posters he created for the event to Jim Nichols of Lake Racer LLC, which produces the annual event. (The 24-x-36-inch posters will be on sale at the Lake Racer LLC exhibit during Thursday’s Desert Storm street party on McCulloch Avenue.)

Nichols said he’s looking forward to producing prints on demand for Desert Storm participants.

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Photographer Jay Nichols returns to Desert Storm this year with a print-on-demand capability. Photo courtesy/copyright Jay Nichols/Naples Image.

“I can do everything here I can do at home,” he said. “I left the 24-inch printer back at home, but I brought the 17-inch printer here. I can also do vinyl lettering and striping right out of the RV for people who want it. One color, two colors, gold leaf—whatever. And I’m really good with stripes. I spent most of my professional life in the sign business.”

When not roving the various Desert Storm sites with camera in hand or back in his RV printing images, Nichols will be in the air with his longtime colleague and pilot Fred Young of Maverick Helicopters. He plans to capture the action on the water from a helicopter during several sessions for at least two days, as well as shoot Thursday night’s street party from a scissor-lift close by the Wozencraft Insurance Agency booth.

“That was all Fred’s idea,” he said. “We’re going to run it up and down the street while everyone is setting up—Fred will drive it and I’ll be on top shooting from the platform—and the park it next to the Wozencraft booth once the party gets going. Then it will only go up and down.”

Nichols said he has several sponsors in addition to Wozencraft including DCB Performance Boats, Teague Custom Marine, River Dave’s Place, Weldon Racing, Prestige Marine and Topock 66. Generous support from those sponsors enabled him to launch his mobile photo lab on its multi-go-fast-boating-event 2017 tour, he said.

“You know, 100 percent of the places I go are beautiful,” he said. “The boats are beautiful and the people are beautiful. What’s not to like about that? That’s the philosophy that drove me to do this.”

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