Coca Cola Vintage Sign

This sign was restored using hand painted and hand lettered techniquesThe contractor who brought me this sign is a collector of vintage Coca Cola memorabilia.

Steve bought this sign from a local dealer and it was totally thrashed. The sign face was barely readable and we figured it to definitely be a vintage Coca Cola sign.

What I thought to be one of the finer points of the sign was the metal border. It was tiered stamped metal and had rounded corners. The separate border was about eleven inches wide and had junction pieces that acted as decoration on the border.

I made traced over what was left of the artwork and then researched Coca Cola signs to try to find a similar looking sign.

Steve brought me a Coca Cola vintage sign book and we found artwork that was used on signs like this one. I had purchased a book with Coca Cola art also. He cleaned the metal and got it ready for priming and then I did the background and border in Fire Red. The most difficult part was duplicating the illustration from the picture in the book, but after several trying attempts it started to have the look of an old Coke sign. I painted the illustration with acrylics, Mann Bros. to be exact.

Once completed, I made brackets for the tiered border so they could be mounted on the old sign and then aged the sign to have that ‘vintage’ look.

Steve was happy with the finished sign and it now has a place at his home.

Breezy’s Lookout Hand Painted Sign

Exterior hand painted sign carved high density urethaneI used hdu for this hand painted sign because of it’s durability and ease of carving. I was contacted by a friend of this client who wanted to have a memorial sign made for her friend’s horse that had passed away.

I met with the client at her ranch and she showed me where the sign was to be placed. It was a habit of Breezy’s to stand at this spot and gaze at the country side. She gave me a picture of Breezy and I used this to paint the picture in the oval.

I made a couple of sketches and Vicki picked the one she liked and I did a color comp for her review. I decided to use High Density Urethane board because of the elements. It is 2” thick. This ranch is in Orange and I wanted it to have the old California look. Like the vintage Orange Crate Labels. I hand carved out the background around Breezy to get a ‘leather’ look.
I used acrylic on the picture and enamel for the lettering. I installed the hand painted sign on the corral metal posts using gate hardware.

Hand Lettered Accordian Case

A hand painted accordion caseI play the accordion and have always been intrigued by the lettering done on travel cases of old. I would compare this type of lettering to any of the finest Calligraphy that was penned back then or now.

It was common for suit cases and trade good boxes to be hand lettered with the product name and the individual’s name. I remember in ‘The Music Man’ how he had his suitcase lettered. Most of these hand lettered boxes were works of art.

I also remembered the work that British sign painters did on steamer trunks. The list of craftsmen who yield the brush is extensive.

So, I came up with this design, based on what I had learned and enjoyed seeing from the sign artists of yesteryear. Once I had my design I made a pattern so I could transfer it to my accordion box. The surface is not smooth. It has the texture like the skin on a Fender amp, but it is possible to letter. Of course I used enamel paint for the hand lettering and the illustration of the poppy. People will often ask me why the poppy?

I have two accordion cases and both are lettered the same.

I’ve had more than one person come up, comment on the lettering and take a picture of the case.