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Living and working in London in the late nineties, Nicole visited the Tate one day and found herself enthralled by the Marc Rothko room. Staring endlessly at his vibrant abstractions, she may have been reminded of her childhood in Northern California and hours spent lying in the hay fields, absorbed by a brilliant autumn sunset or the clouds breaking against a vivid sky.

Growing up on the family vegetable farm, Nicole's childhood was rich in glorious scenery and luscious color. Left to their own devices until their mother rang the bell for dinner, she and her sister and brothers made good use of the nearby hills, fields and woods; staging adventures among the oak and fig trees and towering, purple-flowered thistles. From nature herself, along with the practical aesthetics of rural life, Nicole developed her interest in the economy of design, stripping away the extraneous to reveal the delicate harmonies of form and function.

What are three things you love? cheese, chocolate, and watching the sunrise then going to bed

What are three things that you hate? parking tickets, littering, and mosquitoes

What is your favorite color? orange

What inspires you? quiet time, function and talented people

What is one of your favorite memories?
I was on a walk in a dense grove of huge Horse-chestnut trees in North London on a fall morning. Millions of small, brightly colored leaves fluttered down. It was so quiet and colorful - I couldn't help but lay down on the damp grass and leaves and watch the spectacle.

What are three things you can't live without? Q-tips, my family and music

My favorite smell is.. citrus blossom in the evening

When I grew up I wanted to be... a bank teller or Batman

My favorite way to travel is... in a car, with a backpack, staying in fun hotels

To unwind I like to.... have a dance party with Amelie (my little one)

What is your favorite album? Calexico "Convict Pool"

The single thing that would most improve the quality of my life is.... gardening