• BOMONSTER At Born Free 6

    Born Free is an amazing show. It's held next to Irvine Lake in park surrounded by trees with a pond in the middle. One one side are thousands of one-a-kind choppers ridden in by owners next to a roped off area for recent custom builds built by well-known bike builders. There's a huge stage with bands playing all day. Lots of vendors on the other side of the pond - all with really interesting stuff to buy. Most are home-built garage type "companies" with jewelry, t-shirts, small art pieces, some machined parts, painted gas tanks, and a few established clothing and accessory brands.

    There's two kinds of people - those who actually define the bike culture by building, creating and living it - and many more who try to look the part. The definers are all decent, calm, smart and don't try hard to be cool. The followers try to understand it all and many try just a little too hard to fit in.

    T-shirt vendors print up shirts with all kinds of nasty cringe-worthy slogans. There's another group that tries to sound evil with black shirts featuring goth death and violence as the theme - visuals of brass knuckles, skulls, devils, cliched "Ride or Die" type slogans. Some are anti-God with upside down crosses and I always wonder why all the hate towards a message which says to love and respect one another? They too are just trying a little too hard to fit in and that's the best they could come up with I guess.

    Everyone there has their own idea of makes Born Free so cool. I look at it as a creative art event. The motorcycles are a pure art form. Point a camera in any direction and you'll get a good picture. Since we are there to sell BOMONSTER art & apparel, I can't spend as much time as I'd like taking pictures and taking it all in. But here are a few starting with the excellent poster created by the incredible J Cruz...

    Meanwhile, on the other side of the pond were the vendors which is where all the really cool stuff was...

    Photos by BOMONSTER

  • BOMONSTER Points a Camera at Cook's Corner

    On the way to the Born Free chopper show there is a great little bar and grill on El Toro Rd in Silverado, CA called Cook's Corner.  Bikes fill up the small corner lot and make for a cool spectacle of pure chopper art. We stopped in on the way to set up our BOMONSTER art & apparel booth at Born Free for a refreshment and got these pictures.

    As nice as some of these bikes are, the added dimension is that the bikes are all ridden - some from other states thousands of miles away- which adds a buzz of travel stories to the experience.

    Photos by BOMONSTER

  • BOMONSTER at a DeadEnd Show

    I don't usually drive five hours for a one day show but we got invited by Deadend magazine to help them celebrate their 10 year anniversary at a car show they put on near Salinas, CA. Juan and Jesus Espinoza take pictures, design stuff, organize car, art and bike shows and put out their super cool webzine themselves. There was a bridal shower going on at our house for my son's fiance and he was more than willing to help me drive to the show and run the booth. We got there and was happy to see our pals from Suavecito, Josh from Greenspans, Rob from Lot magazine and Deadend there.

    It was a low-key casual show with some unbelievably-cool, nicely done first class customs. It ended soon and we packed up so fast that my son and I looked at each other with the same idea. "If we cancel the hotel room and leave now we can be home before midnight."

    I drove the first three hour shift while he slept with a burger stop in the middle. At around Paso Robles, we traded while I slept and he drove. The last thing I told him was to keep his speed down towing the BOMONSTER trailer because you can't see the cops at night. I woke up 2 hrs later halfway up the Grapevine and he was clearly breaking the speed limit law. I asked what he was doing and he said he had his iPhone set to a crowd sourcing app which alerts drivers where the cops are. His phone alerted him to a possible cop sighting a couple miles ahead and he slowed down. Sure enough there was a black and white Highway Patrol car parked on the side of the freeway up ahead, we passed and resumed to a breakneck speed and got home a few minutes before midnight.

    Photos by BOMONSTER

  • How Matt Armor Got Scratched by BOMONSTER

    New music by Blazing Haley's Matt Armor. Front and back covers scratched by BOMONSTER. Available now here.

    But before it was introduced, there was a party at the Wildcat Lounge in Santa Barbara. Matt sang the songs live with his excellent band and BOMONSTER made a special appearance selling his art and apparel.

    Beer flowed, cigarettes were smoked and the crowd was into Matt's new alt country sound. I've never seen my BOMONSTER art projected onto so many monitors at one time but 73 of my art pieces played on a continuous loop on the club's many, many monitors and was the perfect background graphic to Matt's visual songwriting.

    As an artist you always want your work associated with people and projects you believe in. The end result is an outstanding piece of songwriting and Matt clearly loves creating and performing great music. Now I can proudly say I have an album out in the world.

     

  • BOMONSTER says "Viva Las Vegas" 2014

     

    Viva Las Vegas is one of those shows you don't want to miss - either as a vendor or a spectator or just putting your car in the show. It's attended by fans from all over the world and even though it's a one day car show, they pack in a full day of cars, rockabilly music, people and all the cool vendors plus BOMONSTER! We were there to sell BOMONSTER art and apparel and it's probably the only show where the fans go directly to the vendors as soon as the gates open. As such I don't get to take too many pictures but with so many great people to talk to every year the VIVA memories will last forever.

     

    Photos by BOMONSTER except photo of BOMONSTER by Kristi M.

  • BOMONSTER Lone Star Round Up 14

    The annual Lone Star Round Up is a three day drive each way for us and it's one of my favorite shows. Why? I don't know any of the cars except the California cars. I don't any of the people except the California people - Weesner, Trophy Queen, Jack Hamilton, Grease Girl, Max Grundy, ACME Speed Shop, Josh Greenspan, Suavecito, Tres Noir, Coby Gerwertz, Piero -  although that's changing with every year we attend. There's a relaxed Texas vibe that I hear can only be found in Austin. But mostly it's the people. Call it midwest friendly, call it southern hospitality, call it the Bible belt, call it what you will but the people are so darn polite, respectful, unpretentious, and downright friendly - from the oldsters to the kids - you can hardly believe it's 2014 in America. And yet the one thing that remains the same is a love for cool, old hot rods, customs and dragsters and great, live music. Unfortunately I miss most of it while we're inside selling my BOMONSTER art and apparel but when I heard Jimmy Vaghan through the walls I had to go out into the crowd and enjoy the show. And while I was at it got a few pictures...

    Photos by BOMONSTER

  • Scenes from a Road Trip to Austin

    Some random left over pictures I like from our roadtrip to Austin, TX

    I pulled over to get a picture of the sign and the train just happened to come by. I think this would make a good painting but I'd run the powerlines off the right edge and wouldn't include the pile of dirt. Probably add long shadows off the sign and poles for some drama.

    Photos by BOMONSTER

  • BOMONSTER's Lone Star Road Trip '14

    I love road trips. Especially when there's enough time to take the scenic route. On our way to the Lone Star Round Up in Austin, TX to sell our BOMONSTER art and apparel we turned left at Las Cruces, NM and went to White Sands, NM but had to wait an hour while a missle was fired. There was nothing to see but when they opened the gate we were the first in. After some exploring, we ventured across New Mexico and then into Austin, TX. Here are some pictures to remember the trip by...

    Photos by BOMONSTER except photos of BOMONSTER taken by Mrs BOMONSTER and a perfect stranger.

  • BOMONSTER just a regular BO at March Meet '14

    The annual March Meet nostalgia drags at Famoso has been going on for decades. But we've only been selling BOMONSTER original hot rod art and apparel on vendor row for three years now and we're starting to feel like regulars. Shortly after setting up the booth, vendors tell us stories about their other shows, racer's families stop in to introduce themselves, new friends hang out, old friends show off new tattoos of my art and loyal customers return wanting to know what's new. I always think "I'm new. My stuff is new. This is all new to me!" But I'm starting to realize you're only new once and then BANG! - you're a regular.

    All photos by BOMONSTER

  • BOMONSTER Rocks the Lake Havasu Rockabilly Reunion '14

    We just got back from a great three-day weekend of live music, cars, bikes, girls, friends, fun and we had a front row seat to it all. Situated right on the Lake Havasu beach next to the London Bridge, we joined a small city of cool vendors and offered our BOMONSTER art and apparel to a creative and cool crowd.

    What makes a Rockabilly Reunion a Rockabilly Reunion? Rockabilly music and pinup girls. Plus cars, plus bikes, plus beer. Add celebrities and an interesting crowd and it makes you wonder why there's not one every weekend. The weather was perfect for an outdoor concert, people watching and taking pictures.

    Big Len of Big Len's Chop Shop in Havasu asked if I wanted a ride in his full blown '49 not-street-legal Chevy gasser. I thought "Where?" He said "Get in." Then we drove out onto the main streets of town and he lit up the tires filling the car with tire smoke. I had to cover my ears it was so loud. We only had to slow down because the light ahead was red. That's the unique thing about Lake Havasu - the residents have so many off-road toys that everything is legal to drive on city streets. Although the speed at which we accelerated to the next light was probably not exactly legal.

    I don't know how Kennie Cuppetelli does it but he somehow talks three days and night's worth of great bands to come all the way out to Havasu to rock the crowds. There's a lot of great music but my favorites were Three Bad Jacks, Cashed Out, Beau Knott and the Burners and a band that absolutely knocked me out - The Hellbound Blues Band featuring Corey Miller on drums. Corey is an awesome artist, always compliments my work and pushes me to deserve it. He came into the BOMONSTER booth for picture since I was wearing his shirt this time. The night before, Elvis and John the drummer from Three Bad Jacks also stopped in the booth and talked music and art before going on stage and rocking the house.

    All photos by BOMONSTER. Models shown include Brenda Lee Pinup and The Pinup Angels (top photo), Kelly Jameson (in yellow dress), and Kimberly Winegar (#rebelwink1) in red top.

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