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Cars > PCKStudio’s Garage > Blog


PCKStudio’s Profile Photo


M –47
Phoenix, Arizona
United States


Some Newer Work

By PCKStudio

Added a bunch of newer illustrations, designs and renderings to my gallery... Feel free to check them out when you get a chance! Thanks for looking in!

Think FAST...

By PCKStudio

Like any good disease, the car thing is hereditary, I'm positive of that.

Think Fast.

If I were to ask you to name the first car that really did it for you... the one car that sparked your interest in hot rods or cars in general, what's the first car that comes to mind for you? I've asked this question a few hundred times in my life (conservative guess) to folks I know or meet in the car game, and one overwhelmingly consistent answer seems to be a Hot Wheels car (followed closely by either a neighbor's bitchin' street machine, a local kustom, and the always-present magazine feature car)

For me, there was always some interest in cars. It was and is in my blood. I'm convinced that it's genetic. My kids love cars, and always have from the start. My parents were rabid car fanatics, and it was working with my Dad on weekends and summers that provided me with the skills to earn my own living during and after school in the parts and service side of the industry.

To look back on there being that one car that really sparked it all for me would be impossible. However, to pinpoint that one car that set in motion my love for a certain style of car, all memories lead back to my die cast car cases that I prized as a little kid.

It was in those cases that my imagination could just go haywire! Man... there was just unlimited potential in those vinyl, lift-out holders. Wild paint, huge engines, side pipes, mean, aggressive, almost profane stance... These were my inspiration. It was my time spent with these Hot Wheels cars that made me look at cars differently. Somewhere in my mind, a switch was flipped at that early age, and rather than just look at a car, I'd be mentally re-working it. Changing the paint, the body... altering the stance, just testing the limits of what could be done to make even the most mundane sedan riding alongside our car on the road into the baddest machine in the world. I'd escape into my own world of outrageous, fire breathing motor madness. And all was good in the world.

By the age of five, I was drawing a lot... I made it my goal to capture the mental images on paper, and tweak them from one extreme to the next. On paper, I could refine an idea, and learned the importance of stance, tire sidewall height to wheel diameter and wheel opening size ratios, the importance of color choices and more. I'd grab cues from these scale cars in my room, and just run wild. One idea would inspire countless others, and I'd go through paper as fast as I could get my hands on it. Where my neighborhood friends were content to collect and play with cars, I was happiest creating my own versions. I was hooked.

When there was a way to scrape together a couple of bucks, I'd save for more Hot Wheels cars, or, once I'd discovered the madness between the covers, well, it was CARtoons or nothing, baby, even replacing my beloved MAD Magazine (we'll get into my Mort Drucker and Don Martin fascinations some other time). Between the automotive insanity in CARtoons and the occasional Dave Bell cartoon I'd spy in the magazines at the barber shop, I just knew that there were others who shared my twisted fantasies and tastes. Guys like Trosley and Austin and Borden just pushed crazy physics and power to new levels, and Bell's subtle tweaking and mastery of cartooned proportions folded my brain in exciting new ways!

Somewhere along the way, we all grow up, and our priorities change. We have things to worry about, like school, work, family... and in those changing time, we often lose sight of the little things we had as kids. The things that inspired creativity, filled our days and daydreams and got us excited for a ride in the car seem to take a backseat, and get lost in the day-to-day tasks we need to finish up. Our minds are clouded with lists, schedules, reminders...

We reach for techno-gadgetry to handle small tasks and make things quicker, and put our brains into overdrive, reserving those few down-times to have some television program provide entertainment for us. Quick wit gets replaced by repeating the one-liner from a sit-com, and creative tastes are inspired through advertising. Innocence and that "what if??" sense of adventure just seem to get swept under it all. We all go through it. I sure did.

I made a conscious decision some years ago, while driving in to my then cubicle-based land of employ. I resolved that morning to just let my imagination run wild on my 70-mile commute... Not to listen to the radio, or go over notes and schedules in my mind. Rather, I wanted to just stretch the right side of the brain, and see where it took me. I began looking at traffic with the same excitement I had in my youth. That econo-box next to me suddenly became this evil road racer, with IMSA-like bowed body panels and wild paint. The tow truck in the next lane took on some outrageous, CARtoons-like creation, with a huge blower and out-of-this-world size rear meats, with the tow boom swinging an oversized, chromed hook madly behind. My own ride became a Mad Max-like, post-apocalyptic street machine, racing for the next fill-up. I had found my own nirvana again, and even the worst of days was made brighter. "Just like the old days"? Oh, Hell yes.

At lunch, on breaks, during meetings, conference calls, whenever, I doodled. I began drawing again after years of neglecting that once vital part of my days. I was drawing again! I was having fun with it, and it was going in a million new directions. I had re-discovered what it was all about so many years prior. The fun was back, and having absolutely no limits on what could be done on paper was a most welcome escape from what had to be done with paper each day.

Fast-forward a few years, and I was designing project cars for clients at night and on weekends, and managing them during the day at a new job. The work was taking on a realistic appearance out of necessity, but the wild style within still wanted to play. One day in late 2006, I let it out in the form of the A-Tona, which I sketched up for a Truckin' Magazine Radical Renderings feature. This little Dodge A-100 has been the one piece of my work that gets me more emails, calls, letters and requests for re-prints than any other I've sketched. It's just got that something that makes people grin, and everyone just seems to get it. It's fun, it's irreverent, it's obnoxious... It sums up my earliest inspirations and daydreams in one bright orange, low-slung package, and looks like it just did something wrong... And, frankly, it doesn't give a ****. It's my inner child, street machine-style.

Recently, I went in and touched a few things up, and decided to release a few prints into the world again. These will be limited to 150 pieces, and will be signed (I'll personalize yours, if you'd like!), and retired once the last print hist the mail. We're even giving one away on our Facebook page, just for being you.

For the print give-a-way on our Facebook page, here's the deal:

Sketch up your wildest imaginary design for your daily ride, sort of like I described above. Just run wild, like having your thoughts run naked on a coffee buzz with a pile of cash through a Summit catalog (there's some imagery). Your sketch doesn't have to be amazingly detailed or in perfect perspective... this isn't judged on anything other than having fun. Not an artist? Even better. Just doodle away, and then scan, take a photo, whatever, and post it to our page. Easy as pie. We'll just leave 'em on display, and let everyone have fun with it, and we'll choose one that combines all of those things that not only get you fired-up about cars, but help you pass time creatively when thinking about cars.

...and how about cars in action?! Here's a little taste of what I'm playing around with (it's an intro for some upcoming drawing tutorials):

Click for video

Thanks for reading along, and here's hoping that you continually find that enjoyment and excitement in your life, and make the most of whatever it is that inspires you. And if you're like me, and your imagination is running wild on the streets during your commute, look for me. I'll be the guy in the wildly-raked, screaming yellow, tunnel-rammed 'Cuda with the fire bellowing out of the side pipes. Give me a wave!

Sincerest thanks as always for playing along... Now let's see what motorvates you!

Hot Rod Industry BMX Challenge

By PCKStudio

The Second Annual Hot Rod Industry BMX Challenge picks up right where last year's left off, but with less bruising and sore muscles... and takes place later this week (August 7, to be exact) in Louisville, KY, and returns to the amazing Derby City BMX grounds, and coincides with the NSRA Street Rod Nationals. As the official release reads:

"We are really excited about the BMX Challenge this year – we have changed the rules just a little – for the HRIC you must be a participant or vendor at the Street Rod Nationals – the BMX race is once again FREE of charge for you to participate in BUT to mix it up a little and to help give you guys and the spectators a better show we challenge you to “get sponsored”.
We will be running a Pro/Am mixed in with the Hot Rod Challenge and in order to bring in the “big guns” we have to show them the money! So we challenge you to get a sponsor for your race. Along with your name being announced during the race your sponsor will get some plugs as well! We ask you to get a min of $25 but challenge you to get more – the rider with the most sponsor money will get an extra special prize! Standard Byke Company is on board again this year – the winner of the HRIC will receive a new frame! Add to that more prizes, surprises and yet another frame from the great folks at Intense, and you have the makings of a grand event indeed."

Last years' event attracted 16 of the biggest and best builders in the game today, including Dave Tucci, Jesse Greening and Roger Burman, among the many talented riders and other industry professionals from companies like Billet Specialties, Welder Series, Vintage Air, Art Morrison, Calfornia Car Cover and more! Bill Stevens from Star Custom took the grand prize last year, after taking the lead from John Pearce after he lost rhythm in the last corner. Truly an exciting and fun event, to be certain, and with this year's prizes, it promises to be an even bigger draw!

What's really fun for me, anyway, is being tapped to create some art each year for the event... This year, as usual, the Stranges gave me full creative control, and told me to "just do what you do!". Suffice to say, I've had vintage drag racing on my brain for a few weeks, and busted out a Fiat altered, smoking the tires... I wanted more action this year, and wasn't going to go with a static car like last year. One thing led to another, and soon there was a rider in full flight overhead, and it just seemed to come together as most fun pieces tend to do.

I threw in a couple of little details as tributes to friends and family (as I do with almost every piece that leaves the Studio), and I'm genuinely stoked about the finished product. There's nothing like creating a souvenir piece for an event like this, and even better when it's for not only our colleagues and friends, but for prople whom I look up to for their skill, talent and drive...

If you'll be in Louisville for the Nats, or just happen to live or have plans in the neighborhood, make it a point to go to the races on Saturday... Get in on the fun, meet some great, influential folks, and enjoy the thrill of a hobby that got so many of us into cars in the first place!

Some New Art

By PCKStudio

It's been quite some time... But I'm updating my albums here, and figured I'd start with some of my latest art... I've been blessed to remain busy even in hard times, and have been cranking out some fun and inspired work for clients and self-promotion as well!

It's been a great mix of design renderings, portrait work and web/graphic design, and I've even been swamped this past Spring with an old favorite: Apparel Design! It's been great getting back to designing t-shirts, doing color comps and separations, and just kind of brings it all back to center for me.

Hope you dig the work, and if I may be of service, hit me up on my site: for great work at affordable rates...

Thanks for looking in!

Two Continents. Two Magazines. Eleven Pages.

By PCKStudio

It’s begun hitting the magazines...

...we’re officially big in Japan!

Resilience was shot in Sacto, and grabbed six pages in the kick-ass Japanese title Cruisin’ Magazine! We are flat-out stoked, and the response to the car overseas has been nothing short of amazing. I’m absolutely floored by it, and still can’t get over how incredible Tim’s work is on the car. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, we had a great team in the shop with Tim, Shawn and Dave, and I honestly could never ask for a better car owner team than Erik and Paul Hansen. Simply an amazing experience and time, and be sure to scrape up a copy on the Cruisin’ Magazine site, or from the good folks at Mooneyes!

…and as if that weren’t cool enough, Resilience returns to Rod and Custom this month in finished form!

We were stoked when the rendering was a part of the “Dream Car of the Month” column at the start of the year, and we get to follow that with Mike Chase’s fabulous studio shots of the mighty Buick, along with Tim B.’s great feature editorial. I was floored when I read the piece, and extremely thankful to Erik, Paul, Tim and Carrie for including my name in the article as they did… It was a pleasure just to be a part of it all.

Two guys who were left from the article (however it happened), but without whom this car would have never made the Pomona debut are Dave Neal and Shawn Ray, two remarkably talented builders and dedicated friends. These guys busted their behinds to make it all come together, sacrificing weekends, nights, comfort and time with family to see it through, and were an integral part of the fun and success of the big copper barge. Thanks, guys… amazing work.

And thanks, as always, to the staff at Rod and Custom Magazine for the coverage and support!

Cube-ism and Surf-realism

By PCKStudio

A couple of weekends ago, our good friend Pike had organized a pre-release cruise featuring 10 (yes, ten) of the new Nissan Cube's, and it was a blast. We hit a couple of area dealerships, then hit the road to the Pavillions in Scottsdale (great Saturday cruise spot if you're visiting the East Valley), where the impressive lineup of geometric people movers grabbed a ton of attention on the freeways. Suffice to say, the lineup was a smash at the cruise, and Pike even brought along a GT-R (more on Godzilla later... words fail me yet, and that was one hell of a Saturday night cruise around the Valley) and an as-yet unreleased Infinity G37 convertible just to round out the playing field.

My first reaction when seeing a Cube a couple of years back (don't forget, these have been around overseas since '98) was "not too sure about that". Don't get me wrong, I was impressed as all get-out that anyone could pack that much room into such a small-looking package, but the look was odd to me.

Fast-forward ten years, and my how things have changed. My first moment sitting in the Cube was a wild time... Headroom galore, great sight lines, and just enough legroom for even my lanky appendages. The dash is minimalist, but laid out in a tremendously intuitive way, and all controls are easily understandable and useful. Too cool.

The ride was incredibly comfortable, stable, responsive and above all, QUIET. It was that last fact that kept me stunned. The Cube is damn quiet on both highway and city pavement, and just felt "right" somehow. Aside from the constant stares from other drivers, I have to say, I'm giving this little machine SERIOUS thought (more on THAT, too later!).

Design-wise, I have to say it has me hooked. If you know me, then you know my love for asymmetrical design, and that rear window treatment NAILS it. A wrap-around side glass on the passenger side meets a thick pillar on the left, and it (again) just feels "right". Couple this with tall slab-like side panels, rounded corners all over, and a very trick windshield shape (oh, you'll be seeing this on a few designs of mine to come), and we're getting someplace. But oh that tail light... It was an instant love-fest for me. I have about thirty cars I want to use that in, and it's not coincidental that I like it so much when it shares a similarity to a certain Thunderbird production run. It just says "custom car" all over (hell, even the headliner is sculpted already!)... and I dig the Cube for that immensely.

Naturally, I began sketching ideas for these Cube's as soon as I laid eyes on them, and I'll give a few hints to where it's all going for me, prior to laying out some drawings for you.

As an Alexander Brothers fan, I've always enjoyed a certain "quirky/futuristic" aesthetic when it comes to a kustom, and that taste is finding it's way into the artwork in a huge way.

Think "Deora meets the modern day", and you're getting warm. Throw in some healthy Ed Roth influence, and by golly, we're getting there....

Top it with some Winfield and Cushenbury asymmetrical appeal, and man, it just gets wilder by the second! It's been literally years since any new car has trapped my attention like this, and I'm stoked about it... Hope you are, too. and that you'll stay tuned as I play with a bunch of combinations and styles on this cool ride from Nissan...

More, as always on my site:

A (40lb.) chip off the new block...

By PCKStudio

...literally ANYTHING to lose weight!

Project "Sick Seconds" is racing toward its debut at the SEMA Show (see it live in the Gear Vendors booth!), and a big part of the assembly process has been removing things... namely any pesky poundage. As a testimony to the serious approach being taken in this respect, imagine looking at the engine block and thinking "yeah, we can lose a few pounds there, too", and then milling 40 lbs. from the brand new piece? That's just what the gang at LSM Systems Engineering did, chiseling with fine precision at the outside of the block, working toward the valley tray.

As KMP Performance and Machine (the engine builder) said, "It's almost too nice to use!", and I think you'll agree with the photos here!

You can read more in the June 2009 Popular Hot Rodding Magazine, and be on the lookout for this monster on the show floor, the track... and even the street! The Camaro will be running 1,200 miles between tracks as part of Drag Week, so you'll have plenty of time to check it out in full race set-up, as well as street guise, wearing a set of absolutely killer Bilet Specialties wheels (16x16-inch beadlocks on the strip, and massive 20-inch rollers for street use) on Mickey Thompson rubber! More updates coming soon...

Holiday Shopping Made Easy!

By PCKStudio

We're clearing 'em out... ...and shipping them to you.

We have but a few shirts remaining, and the price is unbelievable. (and has sent our accountant into a fit... speaking of fit, these are TOP QUALITY Hanes Heavyweight, tagless tee's...perfect for the cool months ahead!)

If you're thinking "Holiday Shopping" and "stocking stuffers", we've got you (or your torso, or the torso of a friend or loved one... hell, buy some for strangers and make new friends!) covered. And you'll have 'em in plenty of time to choose the wittiest page of the comics section to wrap them in, too. We've thought of everything. Told ya we cared.

Grab 'em here, short-sleeve tees for under $10, long sleeves slightly more, and all have limited quantities. When they're gone, well, they're gone, as we'll be retiring the designs... and who knows... you could be wearing a future collector's item.
Have at 'em, and enjoy...

My Stickers WILL Make Your Car Faster

By PCKStudio

Are John Force-style burn-outs in YOUR future simply by peeling and sticking some vinyl on your ride? Maybe...

Blake ran the ‘Bird again a while back… and added more evidence to the claims that a PCK Studio sticker WILL make your car faster. How’s about four tenths faster?! Since we last checked in, the car was pulling low-11’s and very respectable high-10’s. Simply by peeling the backing and applying to your clean car, perhaps you too can gain speed, cut times, and launch like a rock star!

(actual results may vary. But you have to admit, it sure sounds good.)

...of course, individual results may vary. Here's the sticker on Blake's ride...

...and here, on a Buick!:

On the subject of running quicker, check out the video Blake sent… There’s drama, tire smoke, and dig the way the car launches… poetic, in a way:


Can’t wait to see what happens when the 3.23 rear gear gets swapped, and some slicks get mounted!
In any event… there’s a moral in this story, as well as a great bit of knowedge to be gleaned: Our stickers will make your car faster. Less than five bucks got an actual client four tenths.

Now to work on that miracle cure for flatulence…

More Ink!

By PCKStudio

It’s been a good few months in the Studio… We’ve met some great people lately, done some very cool work, and been part of some fantastic projects… even creating designs for builders that are not only heroes of ours, but whose work have set the bar continually higher. Add to that having the good fortune to be in three magazines on the shelves at once, and the icing on the cake is sweeter!
I was fortunate to have my work in American Rodder, Rod and Custom Magazine, and now the new issue of Truckin’. I hope you’ll find time to check out the artwork, and that you enjoy it as much as I did creating it. Big thanks, as always, to everyone who has supported what I do, and for the editorial staff choosing to run my artwork.
Thanks for looking in!

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