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meMy name is Oliver David Bell.

The three most important things to me are my family, my friends and my creative endeavors.

I was born and raised in Taos, New Mexico. I have roots in Venice Beach, California. You can usually find me in one of those two places.

When I was around 15 years old I found myself enthralled by the world of skateboarding. I loved everything about it. The fun, the danger, the camaraderie and most of all the pure and simple feeling of the board under my feet as the world flies by, the sound of the cement under my wheels.

I yearned to document the purity of these simply joys. I did this with a video camera given to me by my father.

In high school, a friend and I made a skateboard video. It was at this time that I decided I wanted to pursue a life of documentation. After high school I moved to Santa Barbara, California to study video production at Santa Barbara City College.

A year or so in to my studies, I linked up with a group of friends from my hometown who were living on the road, hand-to-mouth, making music. I was intrigued by this lifestyle and spent quite a bit of time over the next five or so years touring around with them. It was an epic time in my life, getting a taste of the trials and tribulations that life has to offer.

Not long after, I moved back to Taos to work for a marketing company. At this point in my professional life I had a fair amount of experience working with a video camera and editing but hadn’t fully examined the ins and outs of making videos professionally. Over the next few years, I honed my skills to do things more professionally. Shooting stock video, archiving media and editing in a more professional way became a priority. I am profound grateful for the experience.

Later, I found myself doing documentaries on the arts. Working with artists, documenting art shows, and recording oral history interviews became my “bread and butter.” This just felt right, as art had always been a very close part of my life. I still didn’t consider myself an artist.

After a few years of “living the life of a migrant fruit picker,” I woke up to an email inviting me to an artist-in-residency program. The email seemed to good to be true. It was real though. Six months later I was off to an exotic land with a truckload of video equipment. There I met some of the most interesting, supportive people I have ever come across.

Being in a new place, I had an urge to do new things. I found myself profoundly motivated to do things I had never done.– conquering fears some might say. I was investigating 35mm photography, painting, making video installations with light and space. It was a new world for me. It was reminiscent of learning to skateboard, jumping on an RV with my buddies to live a life of music, and exploring how to be more professional at my craft.

Since the residency I have been doing more of the same, with great success. I still make video/films, but now I have other interests and passions to keep me on my toes. I’ve learned the more I work and keep myself busy, the happier I am!

With all that said… welcome to my website! You can see examples of my work, both analog and digital. Check out my Resume and CV as well. Check out my Blog to see my early work, adventures and how my story has progressed. If you can relate to any of it, PLEASE, keep in touch!

I am looking forward to what the future can bring!
Ollie

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