A Flaming Harley Davidson

Cheetah Custom Cars

Having seen my hot S-Type Jaguar and a respray I did of a friend’s motorbike fuel tank, a local biker got in touch with a very special request.

When I finished the Jaguar project I told myself next time I painted fire, I wanted to go for the classic hot rod flame job, rather than free-hand organic kind.  I hadn’t realised the opportunity would arise so quickly.

When the tank, mud guard and rear fender arrived, it had the original black paint on it, but had been crudely embellished with white vinyl, that hadn’t really weathered very well.  Worse, when I removed the vinyl, it had clearly been cut to shape after it had been laid on the bodywork – the person who did it had sliced straight into the paintwork, drawing the flame outline with a blade.

Once the vinyl was removed the paintwork had to be flatted back…

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Assembly: Classic Motorcycle Racing at Pembrey


A few weeks ago I attended my second meeting of the Classic Racing Motorcycle Club at Pembrey Circuit in Wales.  I took a thousand photographs and sketched some preliminary ideas – but this is my first finished painting.  I thought I would write a little about why this moment inspired me, and show you how the painting progressed.

Classic 350s approaching the assembly area at Pembrey Circuit for final checks (oil on wood) Classic 350s approaching the assembly area at Pembrey Circuit for final checks (oil on wood)

The excitement as riders face their final scrutineering is infectious.  At this moment visitors, fellow bikers and bike owners gather to watch as the classic bikes enter the assembly area ready to race. I say my art is all about the relationship between human and machine and in this painting it is very clear to see.  The pent up energy of the riders is clear, but the dedication of the marshalls and close to 100 officials who…

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