To truly trace my interest in Custom Paint and Hot Rods I'd have to start out as a wee lad with my "Cartoons" magazines if you remember those, Ed "Big Daddy" Roth models and watching my dad tear his chopper apart in the basement and put it back together.

I didn't follow a non-stop path to what I do now, but always had a head for all things custom.
In 1986, at 19 years old, I tricked my High School sweetheart into marrying me and now after 22 years of marriage, she's the best wetsander this side of the Rio Grande!
Being married young I jumped from job to job as soon as I found one to pay me 50 cents an hour more than the last and in early 1988 I started working at a detail shop in the basement of Boemler Cheverolet in Arnold, Mo. for $4.50 an hour. From there, after a generous offer of $6.10 per hour and half of my uniform costs paid for, I made the jump to Dave Godat's Auto Body in Aug. of 1988. It was there that I painted my first vehicle, painted my first motorcycle and met some of the biggest influences in my custom painting journey.
To even begin to tell the Dave Godat stories would take pages and pages alone. I started out sweeping the floors and taking out the garbage and moved up to a painters helper for a big time custom painter named Custom Jim Ebenough. Man that guy was hard on me, but I learned alot from Custom Jim and I am so sad to say that I last saw Jim just months before his passing last year. He did incredible things and the custom world is lacking a hell of a guy now. I can remember the buzz around the shop when they said Custom Jim was coming there as a painter and how excited I was when I saw him pull up in this funky station wagon with big pink scallops and the rear doors cut out. I was hooked.

I immediatly started doing side jobs with the help of my very close friend to this day, Kenny Neuman, who taught me flames. That was 20 years ago and it's been flames ever since and Kenny is still the same great guy today as he was then, although he doesn't pick me up and turn me upside down like he used to. Not sure if it's his getting older, or my getting fatter or a combo of both. One thing Kenny is still as good at now as he ever was is clearing out a room after a breakfast of sliders. He does remain one of my most respected friends and honestly one of the best people I know. Kenny still beats out fenders at a body shop and teaches auto paint at night at South County Tech. I get the priveledge of sitting in a time or two each year and teaching the kids how to use the airbrush, how to make some flames or some other painting related tidbit and we really have alot of fun.

Fast forward to 1997 and hundreds of side jobs later to the day opened up my first shop on High Ridge Blvd. in High Ridge, Mo. - "Custom Bike" - I started out doing a few tanks and fenders for a local bike shop and fixing some wrecked cars here and there. It was a blast. As soon as I thought I was getting good, I'd screw something up royally and then go at it again.

After a couple years in the shop and no real money made, I enlisted the help of an old painter friend from my first body shop job, Randy Brandel, who later claimed the name Radical Randy. Randy was a hell of a body man and painted even better. Better yet, he was not afraid to do or try anything and with his help, we really leaped forward in our workload, our quality and our experience. We even got T-shirts - the metphorical big time! We did some really neat things together and as creative partnerships go, this one blew right down the shitter. My fault as much as it was his, but really I just wanted to do my own thing. As many who have been there know, partners suck. Randy went on to do some great things with another local painter that we met, Daren Williams, who's as good as anyone on the planet. So it probably worked out for the best for everyone as they created and continue to create incredible things and I get to do what I want on my own the way I want to do it.
I stayed in that shop 11 years and have had some of the most fun experiences you can imagine as a custom painter. I have mailed paint jobs all over the world. I have painted for all sorts of famous people and done so many crazy fun things as a result of what I do. My work has now been published in dozens of magazines and I am as motivated and obsessed now as I ever was.

Most importantly, I have managed to balance the custom painting with a day job, most of the time, and that has kept my wife from fleeing. I have 3 incredible children who at times think what I do is cool and I continue to branch out and push my limits which is what really trips my trigger.