Drag Racing Paint Schemes, and Award Winning Graphic Design Services...
Thank you for inquiring about my Graphic Design Services. If you go the top of the website and click on “About Us” my bio is listed there, and I can forgo listing my design credentials and history here.
I have been designing for a little more than 25 years and have won “Best Appearing Car” awards in 4 different decades. I mention this to show that great design has no time limit; trends in fashion may come and go, but great designs transcend the present moment. Whether it’s a Coca-Cola or Greyhound Bus logo, or the shape of a P-51 Mustang, stylized innovation based on form to function can last through the ages.
Now I realize in this day and age, paint jobs can be very expensive, and many race teams are resorting to 'Wraps" instead of paint, and I have supplied many designs for that purpose. However, if you are going to use a wrap, my design will have to be recreated in the software of the company you are going to use for the 'Wrap." I am supplying the design artwork only, and in actuality, a high quality design is the most important part.
All designs are approved by you first, with Preliminary Sketches provided via email. Once you are satisfied with the design, I supply you with a (suitable for framing) design rendering that will look great on your office or home wall. My renderings are in vivid color and are something a computer file can never give you...
If you are interested in my Paint Scheme Graphic Design Services, please email me at Davidcarlpeters@Aol.com I will then supply you with phone numbers, contact information and Prices. (I initiate contact this way in order to cut down on telemarketers.)
Here are a few examples (shown as design renderings, and real life) of some my favorite designs and histories over the years.
A rendering of Goodwin & Swayne's 2 Time NHRA 'Best Appearing Car " Winner.
Jack Clark's "Taco Bell" Top Fueler... Yes, I helped start the shredded paint motif, seen here in 1993..
Les Harris "Best Appearing " "'Maui Style" Grand Am. Just to show how great designs last, this car was done over 10 years ago, and was it just featured in the 2015 No. 4 Issue of National Dragster. It is still featured in color pieces in many magazines. Seen here being worked on by Master painter BillyB of Krazy Kolors Paints in Upland, Ca.
Billy also painted the previous two cars, and for my dollar, he is the "Best" Custom Painter money can buy..His work has to be seen in person to appreciate it's sheer perfection...
One of my very first designs was John Martin's Beretta FC. This simple design changed the way paint would be laid on cars from then on. After this, all sorts of paint jobs had the colors rolling off the hood. This one was painted by Tom Stratton...
Another of my earliest designs was Jim Dunn's T-Bird, this was the last car Jim drove. After watching the movie 'Funny Car Summer" for so many years, I felt it an honor to be able to design Jim's last car. Both Jim Dunn and John Martin's car I did for free for painter Tom Stratton. Tom said I needed to build up my credibility as a designer before I could start charging people. Back then drivers would just drop off their car at Tom's shop and say paint it Red. Tom would take it from there and do his thing to the car. So I was able to get my designs painted by him without anyone knowing it at the time..I also did Jerry Darian's Green Alky Dragster for Tom for free. Those were the last cars I did for free..
Continuing with some early designs, Brad Anderson trusted me right from my start. After I did his "Jolly Rancher" car, I did all the design work for the Anderson family for next 10 years until they left the sport as a Family team.
My first "Best Appearing" award came at the 1989 Nationals at Sears Point in Sonoma. Though seen here in my Rendering, the actual car was beautifully painted by John Pugh. After this, the color Purple became all the rage...
Seen here in a very early rendering all done in markers, is Warren Person's Ford Probe. Featured in Super Stock Magazine in 1989, you can still see this simple design shape used today...
One of my more memorable designs from1989 was Jr. Pastrana's "Witchdoctor" Nova, one of the first of what would later become "Pro Mod" cars. Seen here in my rendering, Kenny Youngblood credits me with starting the "Wild" Pro Mod paint design wars. I took that as quite a compliment coming from the Design Master himself.
Jr. liked my "Witchdoctor" design so much he wanted me to lay it out on all his cars. Seen here winning the "Best Appearing Car" award for his Grand Prix Pro Stocker the first time out..
Another fun car early on was Jerry Yeoman's Pro Stock Beretta. Jerry said when the artwork arrived he thought I had lost my mind giving him Charcoal and Pink car. When he won "Best Appearing Car" at his first NHRA event, he changed his tune. Back in those days designers like Youngblood and myself didn't give clients choices of designs, you either liked it or you didn't, and fortunately for me my designs were always accepted at least 98% of the time. Back then racers didn't pretend to know anything about graphics, designs or colors, they knew we were the professionals in our field and they trusted us to give them the best thing we could, which we did. It wasn't until computers came on the scene in the 2000s that clients expected many choices, and that's when things got ugly. I found clients inevitably choose the worst of the designs, and then went out of their way to make them even uglier. After a while, designers just became the clients crayon continuously drawing up what the client thought might look good. That's when the "Decade of Ugly" reared it's confusing head and the whole design industry went schizoid....
Another fun Pink car was the 'Insanity" Corvette. Again, this is when clients trusted me as a Professional Designer to give them the trendiest of ideas. It worked out well, as the Tom Stratton painted Vette won 'Best Appearing" at it's first showing at the "California Nationals" at "Sears Point in Sonoma. This was two years in a row for my designs winning "Best Appearing" at that event.. After the Awards Presentation I got to ride in the back of the tow truck as they towed the car down the track . Tom McEwen was in the announcer's booth and he said, "There's David Peters the man who designed the paint on this car in the back of the truck. Let him hear it if you like the car." I received a standing ovation the entire the length of the track from everyone in the grandstands as we towed by. I was in tears by the time we reached the finish line, it was an experience I'll never forget...
One of my favorite clients early on was Al and Helen Hofmann. Good ole crash & burn Al, every time we got the car painted nice, it would blow up leaving the body in shambled ruins. He would then replace it with his backup body that had some awful patched up paint job, and he'd run that until he could afford to rebuild and repaint another body. But they used my BDS paint scheme most of the time..This first T-Bird was beautifully painted by Bill Carter. It made one lap before it blew up destroying the body..
One of the nicest people I ever had the chance to meet was Tom Dimond. Seen here receiving the "Best Appearing Car" award and deservedly so. This beautiful Candy Emerald Green and cobwebbed Gold Leaf roadster was painted by J.R. Hill in Mansfield Ohio at his Custommotorsportspainting.com shop.
Local "Super Gas" racer Danny Booker was another early client. His Ford Probe was very sleek looking, and even then I was trying to push the envelope by using curved stripes. Back then curved stripes were considered a Big No No..
You wouldn't think so by today's standard, but in 1990 this paint scheme was just to freaky to be used. I had done the shredded paint look on some Motorcycles the previous year, but trying to get that motif onto cars was really pushing it. I had to straighten out all the black lines before the paint scheme was accepted. I still think it looked Great!
In 1990, I was completely enamored with the Color Aqua, and I looked for any excuse to use it. Custom Painter Duane and wife Heidi Robison gave me a chance, and they loved it when artwork arrived sight unseen. Remember at that time clients let me do my thing as a designer, they didn't want to influence my work or crimp my imagination in the slightest. Wow have times changed!
I also drew my big ugly logo on the artwork along with my phone number, just in case the sketch showed up in a magazine (which they did on occasion) I could get some free advertising out of it.
The interesting thing about Duane, although he said he loved the scheme, he had no idea what color it was, as he was colorblind. I don't think he was the only colorblind painter I met, he was just the only one to admit it...
1990 saw black and silver as popular colors, to me they were the absence of color, but I managed to sneak some color stripes on Gary Herman's Pro Stock Beretta. Although the Grand Prix seen here is owned by Kenny Delco, the scheme was originally designed for Morris Johnson Jr.
Believe or not, one of my Most Influential designs came in 1990 from this Bruce McCoy owned Duelie that I designed for Bruce's "Drop Shop" Store. By this time I was done with this graphic design shape having already used it a lot. Since Bruce was local to me and not knowing what would be acceptable for a street truck, I did several preliminary sketches and took them to his shop to have him sort through them. This was my least favorite out of all the ones I had done, but when he saw it he jumped up said, "That's it!" He hired Tom Stratton to paint it, and Tom and I went round and round about it. The stripes featured Pastel Peach and Rose. Tom said "I hate Pastel colors! I paint Candies!" I said okay then, "Paint them in Candy Pastels. No one else could pull that off!" Well the challenge was on, and Tom did a great job and loved the truck when it was finished..After this truck made the cover of the magazine this design started showing up on everything. I saw it on cars, trucks, boats, buses, trailers, and Toyota even made it a factory option. It's hard to believe this shape had not been used before, but curves were not in the graphics lexicon back then, now it has become a standard cliche...Gee if I could only have gotten a piece of royalties for that design...
BTW, Bruce sold the truck to some Japanese folks for $150,000. It was shipped to Japan and was used in Parades..Who woulda thunk it?
Rolling into the 90s I was having great fun. It was awesome to see a row of my Funny Cars all lined up. Jim Murphy's Day-Glo Green Daytona painted by Mark Woz at "Color by Woz" and of course John Martin's Ex car now owned by Wyatt Radke, and the Strausser's "Insanity" Vette.
As you can see by "Holy Smokes" and "Insanity" on the track, Bright Colors Ruled the day!
Of course my most prized design of that time was Roland Leong's "Hawaiian Punch" Daytona. Roland had been one of my favorite Drag Racers since 1965, so to get to design some cars for him was very special for me..Roland later told me, this was his favorite car of all that he had owned, again that is such a treat for me to be so closely associated with one of my childhood heroes.
My favorite remark about the paint scheme came from the driver himself Jim White. When I finally got to talk to Jim at Pomona after the car was painted I asked him what he thought about the new look? After all this was quite different from the previous schemes. Jim put his had on my shoulder and said in his best Oklahoma drawl, "Dave I have to tell you, that Lime Green Stripe personally offends me." Man, I can never catch a break, how can a stripe offend someone? It made little difference as the car turned out to be the fastest Funny Car that year. I told Jim at the end of the season, "Had I known that Lime Green stripe was going to so lucky I might have used a lot more of it." Jim just smiled and walked away...
Bill Miller was an interesting cat. When he called me he said, "I'm real hard to please, and I know just what I want, so it might take you a while. I want the car 90% Black and 10% yellow. I drew this up for him feeling sort of bad because it felt like I hadn't designed anything here. He loved it right off! Tom Stratton painted the car and of course he couldn't just paint yellow, he had to fade a little orange into those yellow stripes, just enough to give it some flavor.
Looking back at this I think I missed the mark, this looks more 85% black and 15% yellow. Bill still runs this scheme today, but he has removed the upper stripes just leaving the yellow along the bottom. I guess he agrees I had the percentages wrong...
Another car I just had to mention was the first car I did for Randy Goodwin, his "Aqua" some would say "Teal" (but they would be wrong) Olds Cutlass TAFC. Again, painted by Tom Sratton with the color I designed. The color was made possible by Tom as he had to make it up. Back then you couldn't just walk into the paint store and buy these colors, you had to use transparent toners and make up the colors yourself, hence the term 'Custom Painter." Tom made this Aqua color so transparent, it took him 8 straight hours of painting to lay this color down, continuously going over the car coat after coat until the color built up the the right shade... This car was such a standout at the time, and I was always sad the it never did win a 'Best Appearing." It was so different from everything else and Tom's paint job was immaculate. The color had so much depth you felt as though you could sink your hand into it...
Seen here in this beautiful Leslie Lovett photo is Jr. Pastrana's Olds Cutlass Pro Stocker. This was by far my most copied design. For the life of me I could never figure out why people thought it was acceptable to copy and use a paint scheme that was bought and paid for by someone else, yet that happened continuously during the 90s.
I may have had more paint schemes stolen from me as I got paid for. Yeah, yeah. "Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery" so they would always say... BS! It was flat out thievery and theft of intellectual property... There were probably a dozen cars running this paint scheme in different color combinations, including Funny Cars and Super Stockers...We designers use to send pics of our latest cars to the magazines for their "Whats New" section. But it became common place that by the time the races rolled around, my clients would tow their newly painted car into the staging lanes only to find some other cars painted the same way. Others had copied and stolen the paint scheme right from the magazine. I never understood how people thought that was okay? I felt horrible for my clients and I stopped sending pics to the magazines and trade papers all together.
One car that got a lot of mileage in the trade papers was Andy Spiegel's Comp. Dragster. Andy always pushed me to create something very different from the norms of the time. This asymmetrical design was completely unique and original at the time. It was seen in advertisements in the Trades in almost every issue. It was one of my Most-Seen designs, yet very few ever knew I designed it...
Besides NHRA, the IHRA kept me plenty busy as well. Carlton Phillips ran the IHRA and these are a couple of cars I did for him at the time. I just loved designing Green cars, but stigma and superstitions about the color kept many people from using it. Thankfully John Force's stellar career with the Green Castrol cars has put that silly superstition to rest. You can also see here my playing around with my logo. I really liked my Roger Dean inspired entangled logo in the lower pic, although this is not a good representation of it.
Another IHRA car I did that flew under the radar was Chuck Va Vallis' "Dodge Fever" Pro Mod. I did this in 1990, and I'm not sure why Chuck hired me to design the paint job, the car was already being built with my competitors yellow paint scheme on it. It wasn't until years later after the car crashed that it was rebuilt and painted with my scheme.
Certainly my most standout contribution to IHRA was my series of Mark Thomas "Ethanol" Alcohol Funny Cars, all of which were beautifully painted by JR Hill at Custommotorsportspainting.com
Mark literally dominated and owned the Alcohol Funny Car Class for more than a decade and I'm not sure how many times he was crowned "World Champion."
Each of the cars had it's own Nickname, this one being called "the Corncobb," for obvious reasons. Here are a few more..
My favorite was this one, nicknamed the 'Praying Mantis."
After several years of running Green cars, the 'Ethanol" folks wanted something different, I gave them this. It was nicknamed "Godzilla" for some reason, maybe because it looked like reptile skin. My rendering is seen here on the cover of the IHRA Drag Review trade paper, but the real car looked much better. This was another paint scheme that got "borrowed" and copied onto other people's cars...
After "Godzilla" had stomped it's way to another "World Championship" the "Ethanol" folks wanted to go back to Green. (Gee I can't image why?) However this time they wanted to go dark Green instead of the previous Limier Greens. I don't know what this version was nicknamed, but it was turned into a Diecast Collectable, and was really one of the nicer ones I've seen..
For the next installation the "Ethanol" folks said, "hell just let the designer do his thing!"
Just what I wanted to hear, and JR "Humpy" Hill did an awesome job with the paint work. You could see this car from miles away..
It was fitting that the last car I dd for Mark also Won "Best Appearing" due in large part again to "Humpys" beautiful effervescent paint job...
Mark was a wonderful client over the years, and I am honored that he trusted my work and vision, and stuck with me for 15 years...Thanks Mark, it was an Honor and a Privilege, and certainly a Pleasure!
Another famous Alcohol car I had the honor to work on was Tom Aker's "Wizard" cars. I did three in all and they were all beautifully Painted by the "Paint Wizard" Louie Trench in Chicago. Louie prided himself on creating all his own candy colors and his paint jobs were extremely vivid and could also be seen from miles away.
Another string of cars Ii did with Louie Tench were for Amy Faulk. They too always won "Best Appearing" but that again was largely due to Louie's brilliant paint work. Louie is another guy that has been with me from the start giving me one of my very first designs doing his Show Car Duster. He is sweetheart of a guy that could bench press 750lbs, his arms were bigger than my waist.. I consider him a very good friend..
Another client that stuck with over the years was the Brad Anderson Family. Starting at the beginning of 1989, I designed all their cars until family stopped racing at the end of 1998.
When son Randy took over the reigns of his dad's Jolly Rancher Trans Am, he quickly became "World Champion" in TAFC. No one knew TAFC racing better than father Brad, and he decided to form Brad Anderson Enterprises to produce and sell his Championship proven Alcohol Heads. In 1992 when Daughter Shelly moved into a Nitro Top Fuel car the Jolly Rancher team colors of Red had to be changed as to not be confused with Lori Johns race winning Jolly Rancher car.
I was asked to redesign the team colors and I just placed the Jolly Rancher Candy Box colors onto the cars. Seen here from conceptual drawing to finished cars, they were quite a departure from all of Brad's legendary Red cars, but the bright colors on the white background really made the team stand out from the rest.
Randy and Shelly's cars were the last two cars painted by legendary Custom Painter Tom Stratton shortly before he passed away. ( Well over 20 year later I still miss that man.)
After Stratton had passed away, the daunting task of following in Tom's wake was placed in the hands of BillyB of "Krazy Kolors" Graphics in Upland Ca. Much like myself, Billy was mentored by Stratton and had no trouble stepping up and producing the finest paint jobs available. Here we see the "Jolly" cars undergoing slight color changes from pastels to more vibrant candy colors..
After the Jolly Rancher candy company bowed out of Motorsports, Brad quickly secured the "Western Auto" Corporation to sponsor Shelly and Randy. Shelly in Top Fuel, Randy in TAFC, and rival racer Al Hofmann in a Nitro Funny Car. I didn't design this "Western Auto" paint scheme, (it was borrowed from the Naacar team) but I was responsible for changing the scheme to Black and graduated Blue stripes from the previous shades of grey. Happily It was just in time, as the Die-Cast craze had just begun, and these team cars quickly became some of the hot sellers...
When Al Hofmann lost his part of the deal with "Western Auto" it was decided that Randy Anderson would step up into the Nitro ranks. 'Western Auto" was also under Corporate reorganization and was changing the name to 'Parts America" and a whole new look from the previous paint scheme had to be developed. I got the call one late afternoon to do the job, and was informed the car had to be painted the following day. So armed with nothing more than a rough sketch, I showed up at BillyB's paint shop the follow morning and showed him my design. For the longest time I wanted to do a dark car with an orange roof, to me reminiscent of the "Strategic Air Command" (S.A.C) planes I watched land at my local March Air Force Base in Riverside when I was a kid.
Although hard to see in these photos, the car was dark candy Blue with graduated lighter blue stripes and a brilliant orange roof...I just loved the look of this car, it looked 'Bad-Ass" on the track... Apparently others agreed with me because it became a big selling die-cast model, and Revell produced it as a Plastic model kit. The model kit was special to me, as I worked for Revell prior to my design career, building the models that were photographed for the box covers. So I had come full circle, as models were now being made of real cars I worked on.
The following season its time to redesign the team look as "Parts America" was now the brand, with a whole new marketing dept.This was were I got my first taste of "Corporate Board Room Cluster F___ks." Whatever I designed, someone in the group would have something to say about it, and would recommend changes. This lasted for several months, and by the time we got to final race of the year at Pomona, Brad walked up to me, handed me this ugly childlike drawing and said, "This is what they want!" He shoved the drawing at me with a gesture of pure disgust.
Well this certainly didn't sit well with me, and Brad said "they're over there in the lounge if you want to discuss it with them." I made a beeline for the trailer door just looking for someone to scream at. Fortunately I realized it may not be wise to call someone a "bloody fool" and I might screw up this whole deal, so I changed my tactic. I walked into the lounge to meet the CEO of "Parts America" and his marketing adviser, the one that had been giving me grief for the last few months.
I tossed their design on the table and said, " I don't see how it would be beneficial to you as a Corporation to be associated with a car that would be perceived by these fans out here, as pure Ugly!" The CEO just looked at me with a blank look on his face and said, "I would have never thought about the car being seen as ugly, and you're right, that wouldn't do us any good at all."
With that I laid my designs on the table (the one seen above) and began a short lecture on Design Theory and Visual Dynamics. I explained every graphic shape on the car, it's purpose and placement. When I finished the CEO shook my hand and said "Thank You, I had no idea what all went into graphic designs, your sketches are beautiful and I can see what you mean. By all means, we'll use your designs." Whew, what a relief that was, all I could think about was loosing the Anderson's as clients, and I wasn't going to let that happen if I could help it..
So you can see here how BillyB translated my sketch onto the car, thankfully he made it look even "swoopier" (if that's a word) than my sketches. The car eventually made it's way to Wyatt Radke as seen in the lower pic.
Unfortunately, the "Parts America" Corporation only lasted a year, not much longer than it took to get the designs finalized. "Slick 50"s was next on board for the Andersons. The paint schemes were designed for two main sponsors, although the second never materialized. Once again BillyB's Candy Orange paint jobs were screaming bright.
The last car I did for the Andersons, was in-conjunction with new kid Tony Schumacher and Universal Studios, to market the re-release of the "Blues Brothers" movie and also to be released by Revell as Model Kits.
As my luck would have it, for some reason Universal cancelled the deal shortly after I did these drawings. I didn't really care though, as my father had just passed away, and I did these drawings the days prior to his funeral.
However about two weeks later I got a call to go into Hollywood and meet the Director of Marketing for "Universal Studios" to discuss a Nascar project they had in mind. I took copies of these renderings with me knowing Universal hadn't seen them yet, and besides it would give them an example of my work. I met with head of Marketing David Lederman (obvious why I could remember his name,) and showed him my sketches. As he looked at them I started talking about my love of Drag Racing in general, not trying to sell him on anything, actually I was just making small talk because I was nervous and completely out of my element.
After about 5 minutes of him quietly listening to me ramble on about Nitro Gulping Monsters, he picked up the phone and made a call. It was quick call, and said to someone, "Hey the Blues Brothers" deal with the Drag Racers? It's back on!"
He hung up the phone looked at me and said, " Man you're one hell of a salesman."
I was dumbfounded and completely caught off guard because I had no idea I was selling him anything. We then talked about the Nascar deal he had in mind (which I will show later down the page.,) then he walked me around the entire floor we were on and introduced me to everyone. When we got back to his desk he asked me if I'd like job there? This all happened so quickly I really didn't know what to think, and I regret not having more time to think about what that would mean. To this day, I wonder what life would be like had not turned down his job offer...
The "Blues Bros" deal did happen, and I added a couple more models to my collection, although the job that offered would have added much more to my resume....
Another standout car of the day was Roger Primm's Top Fueler. BillyB and I had done a few cars for Roger and since his previous driven by Del Worsham was black it was decided to brighten up the image. So of course why not go with Peach? Although in this image the car looks slightly Pink, it's actually a shade of Peach. I have to give credit to Ron Capps in his first Nitro ride, as he took a lot of teasing for the color of the car. However, once the car Won a National Event most of the teasing stopped. Once again it was Billy's great faded paint work that made the car look so good..
My client loyalty always impressed me, repeat customers kept me in business. One such client whom helped me pay the rent on numerous occasions was Billy Lynch from New York. Billy was the best at Fishing for Sponsors (he can be seen above in the black suit) and I did countless Sponsor-Proposal design renderings for him. The above are a couple of examples, and the lower images was one deal he landed, the Paint Company Spies/Hecker. I wanted to come up something different for this company so I developed this brush stroke design to highlight their colors. The car was a real eye catcher and it made an outstanding looking Die-cast model as well.
Now the biggest fish Billy Lynch had on the hook was none other than the U.S. Navy. Billy, wanting to deliver nothing but the "Best" to the Navy Dept., teamed up with the Johnson Family which was the Hottest Top Fuel Team on the planet. Had Blaine not been tragically killed and finished the year as "World Champion," which was on course to accomplish, the words "U.S.Navy" would have adorned the spot where "Travers" is located here.
I am most proud of this design and heart broken at the same time. The day Blaine died in this car was one of the worst days in my life. I didn't design another car for months and it was only through the encouragement of my Father (an Ex Navy man,) that got me going again. You can read more about that story in the copy for my print 'Victory in the Vineyards."
Now to get back to the design. I had done an earlier design for the Navy following the "Blue Angels" theme. The Navy liked it but felt something more dramatic was in order, so Billy called me and hired me to start all over. What I came up with here are not random paint shreds, this is my graphic rendition of a "Strafing" run as the bullets are hitting the water at high speed at an angle. Whatever the explanation ,the idea worked and everyone loved it. The car was painted by East Coast Painting Legend, "Bob Gerdes" of "Circus Paints" in New York. The paint job was absolutely beautiful, and this graphics design style took fire and the shredded random look became the new fashion. After this design I rarely drew a straight paint stripe on a car again.. It still breaks my heart that my best work ended in such a tragedy. Blaine was such a Great Guy...
Almost a decade later in 2005, Billy Lynch's son would pick up the mantle to fish for sponsors and try to put a deal together. Having contacts at the Discovery Channel, he pitched them on the idea of an original show that would follow a Top Fuel team called, "American Dragster." He also tried to pitch them on promoting their other hits shows, "American Chopper" and 'Overhauling": I always got a kick out of the fact that I would have designed the Chip Foose show's race team.
Once again the Lynch's let me do my thing, and it was nice that in the day when everyone was designing on computers, they wanted my Air Brushed Artwork for their Boardroom Meeting with the "Discovery Channel." Yes this is all airbrush artwork approximately 24" to 26" long.
I still don't use a computer to design, I still do it this way with real artwork. Why? Because I can...
Another client that hired me often to help fish for sponsors was KC "Hollywood" Spurlock. Here he is going after paint company PPG. You can see here the shredded paint idea is taking off, no one wanted clean finished lines anymore. These designs also show how well colors make things stand out, quite different from today's dark and drab styles..
"Hollywood" also went after the "Penthouse Magazine" deal when they wanted to go Drag Racing. My idea was, that each "Pet of the Month" would have their image on the car, with her name written across the windshield. Unfortunately, the deal was given to Jim Dunn before these designs were ever seen. Oh well, there goes another good idea..
Another racer that did a lot of sponsor fishing was Frank Pedregon. Frank would often call or stop by my studio, he would tell me what sponsor he was fishing for and he would come back the next day to pick up the artwork. I did a lot of designs for Frank, here are 3 samples. These were done over night with no time to ponder ideas, it was lay it out once and it better work. These are airbrush renderings with no computer design work, again why? Because I could...
Here is one of Frank's Deals that made it to the track..The car is actually a vinyl wrap, which explains the lack of depth and off color in the paint job.
Another client that has stayed with me over the last 20 years is Rod Saboury. This Corvette of Rods' is legendary, and is probably my most seen design to date. It was featured in advertising and was in every issue of Hot Rod magazine the whole time Rod owned the car.
In between Corvettes, Rod ran this Trans Am, Though not as successful as the Vettes, but again Rod always let me do my thing with the designs.
Rod's twin turbo Vette is a Monster. You might have seen this Vette go across the blocks at the Barrett Jackson Auction. If I remember correctly, it sold for $128,000
This Rods' latest venture, we named in the "Black Widow"
When Prolong came on the scene, I was their 'Go To Guy" for graphics.I did a ton of stuff for them including this show car. If you can see past the Beautiful "Marnie" you can see BillyBs gorgeous faded paint job...
I did this for Gordie Bonin when he worked at Prolong. He went over to England to race this car and he Won..
Another example of my fascination with Vivid color combination and the shredded paint look is the team layout I did for Richie Stevens for his "Valspar" Pro Stocker. The tractor trailer rig looked really good going down the road...
Another team that was Hot during the Mid 90s was the Father and Son Team of Andy Mana Sr. & Jr. so much so Andy Jr. won the Comp Championship in 1997 in his Gary Hanson built Roadster..
Now along with all the Racing Machinery, I did my fair share of Pro Street and Show Cars, below are a few samples..
Being a huge Mopar Fan, I wanted to get a few of them in here. Here are two of my favorite Dodge "Avengers" and the "Hobbster" is another "Best Appearing" winner...
The "Motown Missile" cars were another fun set of Mopars. The lower Avenger is still being raced now owned by Eric Shelton..
So as promised here is my "Universal Studios" NASCAR story. As you may recall I was called to work on a Nascar project for 'Universal." It was to be for Darrell Waltrip as a 25th Anniversary release of "American Graffitti" in conjunction with "Harley Davidson." They wanted a classic Hot Rod Flame Job, the first to be seen in Nascar. I had the meeting on a Tuesday and I had create the Art board and get it shipped off to Florida for the "Big" Meeting that Friday. Okay, I thought that was doable without any unforeseen circumstances...
As I get ready to ship it on Thursday, I start getting calls from all these different agents, I needed to copy the artwork and ship it to a dozen different people all over the country. Well I scramble down to my copy place and get all the copies made. I package up and address13 different packages and manage to get them to Fed-Ex before they closed for the day. It cost me 100s of dollars to overnight everything, but I got it all done and shipped...Whew!
The next day I get a call, I answer the phone and I hear " Buddy you're my Hero! I Love my Hot Rod!" It was Darrell Waltrip calling to Thank Me. Wow! I was on cloud 9. If I could start doing Nascar work I'd make some serious money. I thought I was all set, just wait until Daytona and everyone gets a load of Darrell's Flamed paint job...
Later that same afternoon I get a call from some guy screaming at me that he didn't get his artwork, I looked, and his wasn't on my list of recipients. I apologized and told him his name was not on my list. He started screaming at me again saying, He'd see to it "that I never did another thing in Nascar ever again!"
I had no idea who this clown was but I was in no mood to hear it after the last few days, I told him to go "F himself!" and slammed the phone down. I never did find out who he was.
Well now it's time to get paid, and all of a sudden no one is answering all the Nascar numbers I had, and no one seems to be in Darrell's Office. It turns out that "Harley Davidson" backed out of the deal and without them, the whole deal fell through, and Darrell never raced again...It took 6 weeks to get paid and reimbursed for the Fed-Ex shipping, and that was only with the help David Lederman at Universal. Universal paid the bill.
A few weeks later on a nice Sunday morning, I sit down to watch the Daytona 500, and I'm surprised to see Darrell doing color commentary, and what are they all talking about? They are talking about Jeff Gordon's new "Flamed" Dupont Paint scheme. There is was, sitting on the track, my same basic paint scheme I did for Darrell. Damn!!!!!!! I couldn't watch the race, I was so fed up with people stealing my ideas! It sucks! Bad enough in Drag Racing but my one deal in Nascar and it gets ripped off...Can I ever catch a break?
I wanted to squeeze one of my boat designs in here. The most visible these days is Shawn Reed's "World Champion" Blown Hydro..I designed this boat for BillyB's shop,and only Billy could create these screaming colors. I've done a lot of boats over the years for Billy, and those "in the know," know that he's the "Premier" boat painter. His work can be seen ripping up and down the river in Needles Ca. His work is absolutely superb...
I also wanted to include a couple examples of some Off-Road stuff I did. I did several cars for Clive Skilton's "Jeep Speed" group as seen here...
As the new century arrived, so did a design trend that didn't sit well with me. They called "Theme Cars."
Basically now people wanted to incorporate comic book heroes and themes into the paint schemes. I was all for using real world images in the designs, like this "Live Fast" scheme, but now to start drawing cartoons all over cars? I absolutely hated the idea.. So now paint jobs were going to be left up to airbrush artists to paint cartoon murals all over cars? No Thanks..
I did do a couple of these "Theme" cars only because I hate to quit anything,. This "Robo Cop" Willys was the only one I did, that I liked....As time went on, we saw a multitudinous conglomeration and cartoon abortions plastered all over race cars. No thought for style, flow, or color, just paint whatever you want all over the car.
90% of the cars looked horrible to me. They were amateurish, and while they may be interesting to look at up close in the pits, from the grandstand they were a complete mess. Most of the time you couldn't tell what was on the car, or read the names. The colors were dark and drab, and visually abhorrent. But hey, that's just me, and what do I know about?
I couldn't come this far without giving a nod to my buddy Mark Woz, of "Kolors by Woz".
Mark has been with me from my start and he is a excellent painter...Seen here are two of my cars, Mark ran this paint scheme for over 10 years. When he was painting the car, it got painted in a white pearl base, and I came over with a marker pen and literally drew the flames on the car. He then masked off the flames and created this awesome paint job...
It only seems fitting that I end here with Mark winning "Best Appearing" at the 2013 WinterNationals for his Metal-Flaked Red Monte Carlo.
This "Best Appearing" allowed me to win awards over 4 different decades. This was Marks last car as he is now retired from Drag Racing. Like I said, Mark has been with me from the start, he always treated me with respect, listened to my ideas and suggestions, and as John Force would say, I consider him "One of the Good Guys."
If you made it this far down list I want to Thank You for taking the time to read through my stories. These are just a few of the more than 1,200 cars, trucks, motorcycles, boats and even an airplane or two I designed. Each design has its own story, and each design has numerous preliminary sketches and drafts before the final artwork was completed. All in all, I'm sure I've done 5 or 6 thousand designs, and I'm not done yet...