Randy Hassell of the Freeport Fire Department and Fire Commissioner Scott Rockwin of the North Merrick Fire Department coincidently had similar ideas at the same time. They wanted to do Airbrushed Art work, placed under the clear coat, so that it would not fade or chip, on their companies new trucks, one, a Hook & Ladder and the other a Foam Pumper. This had never been done before!

Now it's time to UPGRADE they said. Randy wanted me to create a new style Maltese Cross for the front doors. For many years they had always been done in gold leaf. Now it's time to UPGRADE. It had to look like diamond plate that was cut into the door. The lettering "TRUCK 1" had to look 3 dimensional and of course all the tools had to be there too, as realistic as possible. I sketched then finalized the art in the computer for approval. After a few departmental changes I was ready to start painting. After preparing the surface, then actually doing the airbrush artwork, I had to clear coat the complete doors, using urethane with a hardener, as the factory does. I then hand sanded & polished the paint to achieve the same surface finish that the factory had originally done. The art work is under the clear coat and you cannot feel it. Afterwards, I airbrushed the signs on the ladder sides. Each sign is 18 inches high by 12 feet long. First I airbrushed the diamonds (there seemed to be thousands of them) then created the illusion of the lettering tearing through the steel. The department wanted the lettering to glow red. The signs were also clear coated.

North Merrick had a totally different idea. Scott had a totally different scenario. He and his department wanted the original logo/mascot that was used on their trucks in the early 20's and 30's. It was Mickey Mouse. But, there is a story; Mickey must be 3 dimensional as in the newer movies and spraying foam from a technically realistic hose nozzle. Now the clincher, Scott says, he must be spraying the foam on a realistic fire. No problem, I said and proceeded to again use the computer to create a rough draft. Many changes were made until everyone was happy. Not until then do I actually do the airbrushing. Again, I had to clear coat the doors, using urethane with a hardener. I then hand sanded & polished the clear coat, as I had for the Freeport department.

If your Fire Department is looking to UPGRADE, to do something different for a truck or sign call me at my shop at 516-546-0350 or e-mail me at; gary@localbrush.com

I'm looking forward to hearing from you.

Click on the links