Nimoy Explores Passions Beyond Performing

By Michelle
January 24, 2007 - 7:32 PM

"I'm doing something that is about my photography every day of the week...either shooting, making prints or going somewhere to show some of my work," Leonard Nimoy (Spock) said by way explaining why he no longer acts or directs except in very small projects.

"Photography is a creative outlet I can do when I want to and where I want to," Nimoy told Chicago's Northwest Herald. "I walked away from acting and directing some years ago. I had was a very interesting career, but I wanted to pursue my passion for photography."

A student of the visual medium since he was a student at UCLA in the 1970s, Nimoy had thought previously about changing careers, "but the timing was not right." Now, after acting in dozens of film and television roles, directing feature films, recording music and publishing poetry, he devotes himself full-time to photography and his hobby, collecting modern art.

Many years after writing an autobiographical novel entitled I Am Not Spock, the actor says he has no regrets about playing the role. "Getting typecast does not always have a negative connotation," he explained. "Very often it means people in the industry know how to use you. They find out what in your persona works in your career, and you become identified with a certain type of character."

Though he said that he had a role in shaping Spock's character, including the characteristic raised eyebrow which Nimoy said he did himself as "a way of questioning what people say to me" and the Vulcan neck pinch "because I didnít want to go around punching people", he added that he "used a completely different part of me" to play the unemotional character.

Becoming a director was almost accidental, Nimoy said, when he was asked to take part in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock after the character's death in the previous film. "That picture worked, and then there was Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home and that was a big hit, followed by Three Men and a Baby. Directing was simultaneously satisfying and demanding."

Nimoy said that he remains close friends with William Shatner (Kirk) but is unimpressed with most contemporary science fiction. "We'd shoot it fast and cheap. So the emphasis went to the scripts and stories we were going to tell," he recalled. "Today you get a lot of very expensive science fiction movies that are totally forgettable. You are not being touched in a in a deep, visceral and personal way."

Asked about his goals, Nimoy joked that the next thing he wants to accomplish is to reach 76 years of age. "I'm having a great time doing what Iím doing," he admitted. "I'm constantly working on ideas, and that is a challenging process."

The original article is here.

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