Wrapero Magazine | www.WRAPERO.com | IG/WraperoMagazine
RAPERO is one that is an artist, a creator, an innovator, a trendsetter, a master in the design, styling and the installation process of vinyl. They must know what will work and what will fail. They’ll be able to accentuate the design and styling of the vehicle that they are wrapping. They are the equivalent to a make-up artist that beautifies a model before a magazine shoot or prior to her stepping out onto the runways of Paris, New York, or Japan. They bring the sexy to the exotic and the brains to the muscle! And only second to being a master, you respect our craft and assist in the progression and spreading of our field to the masses. You don’t fear the competition but embrace it. Because it feels good to win and you can’t win if you’re playing with yourself. You’re a shepherd and a beacon of light to those that are entering onto our roads and you guide them on this journey of wrap. Long live the Wrapero! WRAPERO MAGAZINE was created with one thing in mind, the vinyl wrap game and the juggernaut art form that it has become. Automotive vinyl wrapping has become one of the most popular trends in vehicle customization and it’s continuing to grow. As vinyl companies create new colors, laminates; printer manufactures develop new advanced technologies for printing, with the ability to print vibrant colors, metals and white inks. Mix all this with artist that can create amazing designs. Giving vehicle owners that unique look that they greatly desire. We are not looking at a fad but at an industry that has longevity. Our vision is to showcase the automotive wrap culture to both beginners and enthusiast, to pursue this lifestyle. Our future issues will feature more vehicles and the owners behind the wheels. However for you that have cracked open our premiere issue of Wrapero, you will notice that we focused most of our coverage on shop owners, their wrap shops and the designers behind the head turning concepts. Wrapero looks at the vinyl wrap business from the United States of America, Canada to Mexico. We travel across seas to Australia and Hong Kong and show how far the hand of vinyl wrapping reaches. We look at the body’s that are wrapped, from exotics to classics. What vinyl wrapping offers, from color changes, to color shifting wraps, to invisible wraps, to chrome finishes, themed wraps and premier automotive shows like SEMA. Within our premiere issue we wanted to showcase the architect’s behind the vinyl covered steel paint and the many types of vehicle’s that could be displayed to the world. Wrapero’s displays our staying power! THANKS: A BIG thanks goes out to my beautiful wife Heather, your my strength, my good thing, my youth. To my daughter Lyonette, you finished your magazine before Wrapero, BRILLIANT! Thank you for traveling this road with your father! Big thanks to my brother’s Alvaro ‘Ace” Armenta, John “Poohbear” Barrientos and Michael Corpus. My mentor for the pass 20 years: Mr Hursey Fortenberry, from the heart. For all those that are featured within these first pages we could not have come this far with out all of your participation. You made this dream into a reality; for this you will always be welcomed into our home of wrapping! Too the designers, writers and photographers, amazing! We tip our hat. To my mother Maria M DeLombré; all those auto-magazines you purchased, the model cars, trips to hobby and comic shops, our cruises down Hollywood Blvd, birthed this moment. Thank you for pushing me to keep the faith! God is good. So this marks the beginning of our journey in this great wonder of automotive vinyl wrap and to the length that vehicle owners will go to say, not with words but with vinyl, “this is my creation and no one has it like me!” However we’ll say it for them! God bless the wrap game, God Bless the world and God bless America! Loving, Living and Never Dying, LOUIS A DeLOMBRE
Maria, Louis, and Heather DeLombré
Lyonette A DeLombré
John Barrientos, Louis A DeLombré and Alvaro Armenta
DELLA A new children’s book about wrapping is coming in 2018. Why we ordered up a book about our business? We introduce to you Della Catezon.
TOXIC RAT We meet with the wizard of Aus (Oz) and he shows us what real magic looks like on his Toxic Rat, last year’s winner of Avery’s KOTWW.
GK CUSTOMS Want to open a wrap shop? Take a few pointers from Garo the owner of GK Customs as he talks to us about what it’s like having a wrap business.
FELLERS Why is Mr. Frank Fellers considered to be the godfather of the vinyl wrap world? Well we get a sit down with the wrapslinger himself to find out why!
ARMENTA STYLING Make more money by offering custom graphic themed wraps to your shop today. Follow the footprints from pencil to installation for a custom concept.
SCREAM BECAUSE ‘MERICA He’s back, Kevin “Da Professa” Kempf. Our cover feature unwraps the artistic and chrome process that it took to get these twin Corvettes street stopper ready!
MOLLY WATERS Molly gives us 6 things of importance if your planning on opening a wrap shop. However even if you already have a shop, this is still a must read!
THEMED WRAP: SPIDER MAN Let’s take a trip down East Hollywood Blvd as we meet up with Jack. The owner of a wrapped Spider Man vs Venom, BMW i8 that was inspired by his son Niko.
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THIS ISSUE IS DEDICATED TO THE LOVING MEMORY OF COLLIN ARCHULETA. WE LOVE YOU BABY BOY. CREDITS Louis A DeLombré FOUNDER Heather A DeLombré ADVERTISING Maria M DeLombré EDITOR Alvaro Armenta WRITER John “Poohbear” Barrientos CONTRIBUTOR www.ArmentaSignature.com GRAPHIC DESIGN + VIDEO PHOTOGRAPHERS WARNER BROS JOKER Clay Enos | www.ClayEnos.com ARMENTA STYLING Ryan Q Wang | instagram.com/RyanQWang EXOTIC GRAPHIX TOXIC RAT Angus Firestorm Films | instagram.com/fsfer EXOTIC GRAPHIX LEI’D LOW Caprice Photography | instagram.com/Photos_By_Caprice WRAP WORKZ The Glass Eye | www.theglasseye.ca Dylan King | www.dylankingphotography.com PG NOLA™ THE JOKER CAR Ezaac Lopez | instagram.com/EzaacLopez PG NOLA™ LAMBO Ted 7 Photography | www.Ted7.com Sean Magee | instagram.com/smphot0s PG NOLA™ BECAUSE ‘MERICA Kevin “Da Professa” Kempf | instagram.com/pgnola Images by Robert T. | Trent Spann | instagram.com/trentspann PG NOLA COLLIN & FATHER Ezaac Lopez | instagram.com/EzaacLopez GK CUSTOMS Emil Minasian | www.GKCustoms.com GIOVANNA | MOZTER WRAPZ TV | SPIDER MAN CAR Armenta Signature | www.ArmentaSignature.com Photos are copyrighted by each photographer and/or company hired by. All titles and articles are property of Wrapero Magazine a publication of Armenta Studios. Hollywood, CA
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MEXICO RISING Mexico’s known for it’s beautiful colors, now with all these color options of wraps and mix that in with the super wrap hero Rafael! You get some amazing designs. COLLINS STORY Get to meet Collin, one of our own. His father Kevin and his mother Kelly will narrate you through parts of his short life. We truly believe that his story will help save others.
PG NOLA: FROM THE BLUE BAYOU Kevin “Da Professa” Kempf owner of Louisiana’s PG NOLA display not one but two brilliantly wrapped cars. His range is crazy, from exotic to classic!
BROTHER BRETT Thinking about purchasing a large format printer for your shop. Edging out your competition. Well we got Brett here to guide you on your way to making this buy.
WRAP WORKZ CANADA From Hong Kong to Canada, Wrap Workz brings the knowledge on how to grow a business and they can help you with a franchise.
YOU BETTER LEI’D LOW The Australians heavy sluggers are back. Our cover feature unwraps the meticulous process on this beetle. Not one to take the easy road but climb the mountain.
GIOVANNA If you haven’t seen Diko and his family on The Real Housewifes Of Orange County, here’s your chance to get to know the how he got his wrap colors.
MONZTER WRAPZ TV A new reality show about our industry. Creator Louis A DeLombre and star Michael Corpus talk about the series and how the show will bring in the viewers. Wrapero Magazine | www.WRAPERO.com | IG/WraperoMagazine
When working with color shifting paint you have to be with
the business, basically you need to know what your doing as a painter. Your base coat will determine the final finish and how the color flops. Some paint artist will use a black base giving the paint it’s most dramatic effect possible, others will use whites or colored bases to achieve more of a pearlescent look. It’s all with one thing in mind, have the paint showcase it’s most intense color change! With that said you can now bypass all the knowledge and years that a painter goes through to achieve the most brilliant paint finish. Thanks to Avery Dennison and their ability to once again manufacture an outstanding color finish, we Wrapero are able to present to you this Rolls Royce Ghost. Wrapped in Avery Dennison’s ColorFlow™ Series. The “Rising Sun” works really well with its satin finish. Viewing the wrap from different angles creates an even flow of color. Making this wrap a real head turner! The installation of the product work really well around curves, recesses and the adhesive made for an easy install.
Wrapero Magazine was present not only at the time of installation but when its owner scooped the Rolls Royce up… “There’s only a few things that have made me happy in life and this is one of them!” said Major League Soccer player for The Real Salt Lake, Yura Movsisyan. We’ll leave it at that! (Wrapero drops the mic). -WM
Customer: Yura Movsisyan Vehicle: Rolls Royce Ghost Wrap Shop: Elevated Auto Concepts Vinyl(s) Used: Avery Dennison Model: ColorFlow™ Series Color: Rising Sun (Red/Gold) Vinyl(s) Used: 3M Model: Wrap Film Series1080 Color: BR230 – Brushed Titanium
Photography By: Armenta Signature
When we talk about wrapping we get the idea of solid colors. Change the appearance of the vehicle and make it stand out from the models that share the road with your vehicle. However let’s say you’ve worked your ass off and now you’ve just purchased that one exotic that only that 1% can achieve. Exotics, super cars, hypercars, apex cars, whatever the heck you want to call them come perfect for the most part. The body looks like it’s in motion as it just rests there and the paint finish just screams out, “look at me!” Again Wrapero tailed along to meet one of the wealthiest men on the west coast, possibly the world! His rides rest their bones on what some have called the most desired piece of property in Los Angeles! You’re so high up that you possibly could bump into an angel! His ride roll call at the time we last met: Pagani Huayra, McLaren P1, Porsche 918 Spyder, LaFerrari Red, LaFerrari Grey, Rolls Royce Wraith, Porsche 918, Ferrari 488 Special and his children had about the same number of powered cars. This was so badass! One thing was for sure; he not only loves his cars but also loves their paint! His request to the dealers was to paint over the marker lights, interior pieces and other trim. So every part of the car had to be wrapped in clear-bra. Starting with the body, under body, lights, luggage area, interior pieces where your feet and arms would make contact. You can purchase a cut kit but these kits are missing certain parts that were requested to be wrapped. So a graphic artist had to be called in to design a trace pattern that would persily fit. Every piece of the Pagani Huayra had to be custom traced to have cut in the plotter! The process for a custom cut pattern starts with; tracing the body pieces, scanning the trace on a large format scanner, followed by tracing the scan in Illustrator and finally delivering the file to be cut by a plotter. As we stood with the finally dressed, well spoken, polite owner of this super world. He said one thing that we’ve heard before by car lovers. But this made an impact because of the business we are in.
Photography By: Armenta Signature
Photography By: Armenta Signature
Photography By: Armenta Signature
Photography By: Armenta Signature
“I wrap my vehicles in clear-bra from bumper to bumper because I respect the cars paint and I respect the next person that might purchase the car,” he said. We couldn’t of said it any better ourselves! That’s it, clear-bra protects your cars paint from direct impact and if road rocks tap the body the paint will remain unscathed! Clear-bra not only protects your paint but protects your investment and ultimately saving you time and money from damage. So save and protect your vehicles paint! -WM
he chrome wrap is one of the hardest to lie. There is no room for, over stretching, fogging, bubbles, particles, imperfect seams and joints. You can’t hide mistakes so easily with this finish. However when it’s done right, it creates one amazing finish! Back in the 90s I can remember having a conversation with my friend about dipping an entire 1948 Chevrolet Fleetline in chrome. We’d seen fully chromed out engines and undercarriages, axel systems, interiors but the bodies? Wow that would be a banger of a car! So we spoke about how we could go about it and the legality, you know giving someone one a quick sun blinding reflection that would go onto cause an accident on the boulevard would not only be a show stopper but a copper stopper! What teenage minds think up, crazy kids! Now zoom into the present and we see all types of makes, models, years of vehicles slapping on the chrome finish. It’s as if you see jewelry encrusted cars cruising the boulevard. This is nothing new of course, take the camels of the great Egyptians of Africa and how they would dress them and array them with gold and precious stones. Nothing has changed when it comes to banging out a heater of a ride!
Photo by Clay Enos/ & © DC Comics Courtesy Warner Bros. Pictures
“SO BE AS SMOOTH AS WATER AND AS POWERFUL AS CHROME!!!” We’ve seen fully chromed cars, chromed mixed with carbon, chromed mixed with satin’s, chromed colors mixed with chromed colors. Yup, those crazy teenage minds are now operating in wealthy folks that got it and got to show it! It’s always fun though! Chrome wraps do take it to another level or little higher or possibly to the highest limit but hey, some got it and some want it. So if the crazy Joker would use it on his car, everybody in the game that uses chrome got a bit of Joker in them! So watch out for those wackos, hahahahaha! So be as smooth as water and as powerful as chrome!!! -WM
Photography By: Armenta Signature
They say that a Leopard cannot change its spots and that
a Tiger cannot change its stripes. What if you have a million dollar Apex car and you not only want to change it’s stripes but you know if doing so will mean that your prize possession will have to go under the knife of a razor blade. Too much hand pressure and your paint is done, not enough and the blade just skates on top of the vinyl and you now have to go in for a second pass! This might be what’s on the mind of the super cars owner. There’s apex cars and then there’s this one, the McLaren P1 GTR, the first ever street legal vehicle of it’s kind to hit the cement of the good old U.S. of A! The owners known for purchasing Michael Jackson’s costume that he wore on the music video for Thriller. Now finds the bravery to trust someone with his unicorn of a car. He decides to call the Arbramyan brother’s, owners of Innovative Auto Craft located in Beverly Hills, CA. The brother’s do the smartest thing, instead of trying to find an installer that might be able to do the work and possibly leave the P1 GTR looking as if it woke up from a nightmare encounter with Freddy Krueger. The brother’s Emil and Nelson decide to contract an experienced wrapper and cutter Michael Corpus from Elevated Auto Concepts. With Armenta Signature called in for all the graphic recreations of the sticker badges.
Broker: Innovative Auto Craft Wrap Shop: Elevated Auto Concepts Decal Recreations: Armenta Styling Vinyl: 3M 26
Wrapero was able to ride along with Michael and met with Emil and Nelson. They talked about a game plan and how was it going to be executed. Once they agreed on the direction Michael went to work. The race lines that were straight through with no tucking were not so difficult. Once he reached the hood, this is where experience and technique is needed. Mike would pull each piece of the preinstalled vinyl and save it on the side. Once all the pieces were removed and numbered for the layer order of stacking. He heated the pieces to try and bring them back to there original flat form. The next move was to place each original piece onto the new vinyl and use it as a template. Removing the plastic backing of the 3M and the installation of the vinyl begun. Piece upon piece was placed onto the P1, that we named “Big Bird.” She would trade in her green lines for burgundy ones and before you knew it she was ready to hit the scene to be seen. And boy! Did she make a hit! After talking with Emil and Nelson, they said that the owner was extremely happy with the finish of the line swap. Wrapero Magazine was grateful to be able to be present to witness first hand to such a beautifully designed piece of art. Only to be enhanced by the hands of the Wrapero’s. So here it is, a Tiger can change it’s stripes, well at least this one! -WM
STEP 1: All factory vinyl was carefully removed and used as a template for the new color vinyl. Creating a perfect factory style installation.
STEP 2: After installing each piece of vinyl you begin to trim off all the excess parts of vinyl. Tape is used to give clean and even cuts.
STEP 3: Once the three under pieces were installed, the largest piece and the one that holds it all togther was placed on top.
STEP 4: Once all pieces of vinyl are installed, itâ€™s heated to give it the strongest grab possible. This process was repeated for all pieces. Decals were also recreated.
e get asked a lot about the name. It’s not so complicated as some might make it out to be. Here’s our story about the origin of the name Wrapero and we’re sticking to it! Get it? Vinyl wrap, big sticker? Ugh nevermind. As I wheeled her through the hospital halls to get her to a procedure. We reached the front desk and her daughter walked over to sign her in. I rolled her over to a waiting area and I sat next to her. Knowing that she’s my biggest fan, I popped out my phone and swiped to the last job I had designed. A Ferrari, vinyl wrapped with red chrome and finished off with black carbon fiber accents. The carbon fiber design was inspired by the Samoan tattoo culture or what some call, tribal design (I got to give my wife credit for this design). She looks over at the completed car; her tired green eyes and the face that I love, broke with a slight smile and told me, “It’s beautiful and amazing.” I told her that this photo was taken by Snoop Dogg and that Mike had wrapped the car. She followed with “ THE WRAPERO?” I smiled and let out a soft laugh, THE WRAPERO, sounded funny. This would be the last piece of artwork that my grandmother would see; she would pass two weeks later. But hey, we practice what we preach here at Wrapero Magazine! Grandma’s coffin was printed, wrapped and finally installed at the mortuary! Holy Jesus! THANK YOU NANA REST IN CHRIST BEAUTIFUL
Photography By: Armenta Signature
ith all these amazing companies creating and producing these amazing colors that even a leprechaun would be proud of and find himself lost in one of their factories searching for a pot of gold. But we must question, how important is a printer for a wrap shop? Is a 13,000-dollar plus investment worth it? It doesn’t stop here with only a printer but how about the laminator? If your car is your canvas and all the options that vinyl’s provide, why do we need a printer? Did Dali, Rembrandt, Picasso, Monet or any other fine artist mix their oils? Of course! So canvas sometimes if not most of the times are not just painted one sold color. With technology, the ability to print on chrome vinyl’s, advanced printers, brilliant designers, the paint pallet is endless. We have a conversation with “Brother Bret” and he gives us 20 plus years of knowledge and wisdom when it comes to printers and where we are headed and what to expect in the print vinyl niche. Wrapero: Please introduce yourself and tell us about your business. Bret: Hi, I am Bret Meacham. I have been in the sign, print and graphics industry for over 20 years. Currently, I am the hardware/software specialist for Denco Sales in the Southern California area. Denco is a Denver based company with eight branches throughout the Western United States, that sells all types of equipment to the industry ranging from printers, laminators, & cutters to routers and screen printing equipment. Even with all of the various machines that we offer, the sales of supplies represent the largest portion of our business. Supplies can be anything from vinyl and banner material to window tint films, rigid substrates, inks, components for electrical signs, tools and much more.
Wrapero: Are you surprised by how expansive automotive vinyl wrapping has become? Bret: Maybe itâ€™s because of being located in Southern California, or possibly it is because I have always been a car enthusiast, but I am not really surprised to see the growth in the automotive wrap industry. I owned a sign shop in the 1990â€™s when cutting vinyl lettering and logos was growing rapidly. I was a witness to the tremendous return businesses received from marketing dollars invested in vehicle graphics, consistently providing more bang for the buck than most other forms of advertising. When printed graphics came onto the scene, customers immediately demanded full color graphics which were much more eye-catching and therefore generated even more business from potential customers. When graphic designers became aware of the endless possibilities, the best among them were able to elevate their wraps from fairly conventional advertising to almost a form of art.
Wrapero: How has the vehicle wrap industry grown in the last 5 years? Bret: The vehicle wrap industry has grown in several ways in recent years. The biggest change is full wraps becoming more mainstream. When vehicle wraps first started in the late 1990â€™s it was very rare to see a vehicle with a full wrap. That immediately started to change but the evolution was slow at first. The companies producing the wraps and installing them were much more adept at installing smaller graphics and the skills needed to wrap an entire vehicle with vinyl were not yet well honed. In the last 5 to 10 years there has been an enormous uptick in the number of qualified wrap installers and their abilities. Not too many years ago, it wasnâ€™t unusual to have a crew spend the better part of an entire week doing a wrap on a single vehicle. Todayâ€™s installation crews will wrap multiple vehicles in a single day, or even complete a large vehicle such as a bus in that amount of time. Not only has the speed increased but the quality of the work has advanced significantly. Techniques have been developed and improved, while at the same time the materials have advanced significantly, which also boosted productivity and quality. The other factor that created amazing growth in the wrap industry was the introduction of color change vinyl. This is high quality cast vinyl sold in a wide variety of colors for the purpose of wrapping a vehicle and changing the color entirely.
Unlike printed wraps, this is usually not done for advertising purposes, but instead to change the appearance of the vehicle. In many areas of the country this has become a huge trend. The color change vinyl comes in a wide variety of colors, finishes and even textures. In Southern California, vehicles with matte finishes started to become very popular about 5 years ago. Soon after, materials such as chrome, carbon fiber, and metallic vinyl became available in wrap material. This has changed the wrap industry immensely. It is not uncommon for affluent customers to want their exotic sports car wrapped in a color that is not offered by the manufacturer, and then before a year is up, to want it rewrapped in a different color. Talented shops are using some of the amazing new materials like blue or red chrome, and mixing colors and finishes to produce wraps that are absolutely stunning. This offers the customer unlimited choices for their vehicles and at the same time creates fantastic opportunities for the shops who are taking advantage of the emerging market. Wrapero: Did you believe that the vehicle wrap business would be as big as it is today? Bret: I knew that wraps would become more commonplace as business looked for better ways to reach out to potential customers. However, I did not foresee the color change wrap business prior to those materials being brought to the market. Now, with so many colors and effects being offered, I truly believe we are likely still in the infancy of the wrap industry. Wrapero: Why is a large format printer important to an automotive vinyl wrap shop? Bret: For someone who is only doing color change wraps, a large format printer may not be necessary. However, for those shops who are doing wraps for advertising purposes, a printer is essential. There is no other practical way to incorporate a business name, logo, contact information, description and images without the use of a printer. Now whatever the customer can imagine, and the graphic designer can create on a computer, is easily printed and turned into a wrap. Printers can print vivid images with bright colors and sharp text easily, and the turnaround time has been shortened significantly with recent advances in ink technology. Even shops specializing in color change wraps benefit from having a printer so that they can create custom, one-off colors for their discriminating customers. Printing on chrome wrap vinyl and creating a new “color” of chrome is becoming one of the outrageous effects we are seeing. Wrapero: Is a laminator need to complete a print job? If so, why? Bret: Realistically, a laminator is a necessity for making a quality wrap with a life expectancy of 5 years or more. While shops occasionally print short term graphics for vehicles that will then be removed a few months later, anything where longevity is desired and expected needs lamination. Even though some of the ink technologies offer good scratch resistance and up to a 3-year lifespan without lamination, most inks cannot hold up well to chemicals and severe abrasion. During washing, cleaners are typically used that will eventually be detrimental to the graphics because of the chemicals they contain, and then the abrasion comes into play when the vehicle is scrubbed repeatedly. So in addition to extending the lifespan to 5, 6 or even 7 years, lamination offers resistance to the other factors involved in cleaning and maintenance. The less obvious benefit to laminating is the way it makes installation much more manageable. Most of the print vinyl for car wraps is very thin, 2 thousandths of an inch in thickness or less. Laminates are usually a similar thickness and by applying them to the vinyl, the graphics become significantly easier to handle. With added life, increased durability to cleaning, and easier installation… laminating is obviously the way to go. Wrapero: What do you think about wrapping other scenes like low riders and hot rods? Bret: I think that other potential markets like low riders, hot rods, motorcycles, and off road vehicles will all come to find the many advantages of wrapping when compared to an expensive paint job. Not only are they quicker to produce and install, but also easier to change or repair if they are damaged. I am not a paint expert but I would imagine some of the effects like the realistic looking carbon fiber, or the colored chrome finishes, would be almost impossible to accomplish with paint. While some of these markets might be traditionalists in terms of insisting on paint, I believe they eventually come around to appreciate advantages of wraps. Wrapero: Do you see an end anytime soon for automotive wrapping? If not, what’s in our future? Bret: I think we are truly in the early stages of the wrap phenomenon. I am confident that it’s growth with be swift, and the type of businesses and individuals exploring the potential for wraps will explode. We will see continued advances in the colors, finishes, and effects not only in the wrap vinyl, but also the laminates that are made to be used in conjunction with them. We are just starting to see laminates with effects like carbon fiber and brushed finishes that can be used with any base color. We have also started to see tinted laminates that can change the color of the vinyl below it, intended to be used with chrome as well as other colors. These developments tell me that our options are going to be too numerous to count, and the finished products will be limited only by our imagination. Wrapero: Do you want to add anything else to this interview? Bret: I would just like to add that someone that wants to get involved in the wrap industry would be well served to get the proper education and ally themselves with a supplier that has a good knowledge of wrap products and offers excellent customer service. Wrap classes are being offered in many areas of the country with increased frequency. Do the research and seek out a quality, well respected class and the learning curve with be shortened. Finding a supplier like Denco Sales that focuses on a well trained staff and insists on doing the right thing for the customer at every juncture, will be extremely helpful in avoiding costly mistakes and becoming aware new products as they become available. -WM
utomotive vinyl wrapping has become one of the most popular trends in vehicle customization, and it’s continuing to grow. As vinyl wrap became popular with celebrities, it’s begun to get more attention. Mix all this with the artist that conceptualizes amazing designs, giving vehicle owners that unique look that they desire. We are not looking at a fad but at an industry that has longevity. Now the time is just right to see a show that focuses solely on our industry. We’ve already seen our medium be used on shows like Ryan Friedlinghaus’ West Coast Customs. Transportation reality television can be entertaining if it’s done just right. With hit television shows like American Choppers, American Hot Rod, Gas Monkeys, and vehicle builder celebrities like Chip Foose and the late Boyld Coddington, we found a show in the automotive world that revolves around our industry of wrapping. We are given Michael Corpus of Monzter Wrapz TV. Michael Corpus, owner of Elevated Auto Concepts and his team “Da Wrap Pack,” design and vinyl wrap vehicles for celebrities, high rollers, moguls and automotive wrap enthusiast. With outrages concept request and with crazy turnarounds, a group that sometimes don’t see eye-toeye but like champion teams they always come out on top. Making them the best in the vinyl wrap industry and a leader in one of the most popular trends in vehicle customization. We talk to the Michael and he tells us why the show will bring in the viewers and the creator and show runner Louis A DeLombré tells how the idea was birthed and what are the mechanics of the show.
Photography By: Heather A DeLombrĂŠ for Armenta Signature
WRAPERO: CAN YOU PLEASE TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF AND HOW YOU GOT INTO THIS INDUSTRY? MICHAEL: I’m Michael Corpus co-owner and co-founder of Elevated Auto Concepts located in Pasadena California. I install vinyl wraps; clear bras and we specialize in custom theme wraps. I got into this industry by installing clear bras when I had a mobile clear all business. I was hired by Vic’s father to install clear bras and this is when I spoke to Vic and he told me that we should open up a shop and I was more than willing. His uncle had the lease for the shop that we’re in now. So Vic and I put up half the money, $6,000 each and most of it that went to or Elevated sign LOL. WRAPERO: WHAT WAS YOUR THOUGHT WHEN LOUIS PITCHED YOU THE SHOW IDEA? MICHAEL: Following Louis pitching me the show idea, I really didn’t know how we would approach it. My big question was, who wants to watch me install a huge sticker onto a car? But he was able to put me into the viewer’s eyes and how the stories would all work into the show. I could now see what he and the audience would experience. He made me believer and was sold on the idea at that very moment. WRAPEOR: WITH YOUR HIGH PROFILE CLIENTS? CAN YOU TELL US HOW POPULAR HAS CAR WRAPPING BECOME IN THE PAST 5 YEARS? MICHAEL: Oh wow very popular. In Los Angeles everybody wants to stand out when it comes to the cars, there’s only so much a pair of rims or some tinted windows will make you stand apart from the next guy but when you have a wrap or a wrap design theme that really make you stand out. Doesn’t matter if the guy next to you has the same car or same year model, the vinyl wrap is what says who you are. Like having two men standing next to each other one has a fine tailored suit while the other one has a ready to wear suit off the rack who’s going to get the looks. And the whole thing is not how popular it has become but its how popular it can become yet. Because to be honest most people do not know what wrap is and you know it’s how we can decorate your car. WRAPERO: YOU HAVE A VERY INTERESTING TEAM AND IT CREATES A SHOP ATMOSHPHERE THAT’S VERY ENTERTAINING. HOW DO YOU DEAL WITH EVERBODY’S PERSONALITY? MICHAEL: The whole idea is that we’re all artists within the shop and every artist has there own mind and that’s what you have to allow them to do. My job is just to get the clients in make them happy and get their car back to them and have them have a head turner of a car. We’ve been a team for the last five years, but most of the time when it gets really busy I’ll bring in other hands to help along with the work. So if you swing by the shop you’ll see familiar faces and at other times you’ll see different faces. The whole idea is to keep everybody happy keep everybody on one accord and keep pushing. However I must say we do have very strong personalities but at the end of the day and at the start of the day we’re all on one goal and that goal is to complete the cars. WRAPERO: HOW STRESSFUL CAN THIS BUSINESS GET AND HOW WILL IT TRANSFER TO YOU VIEWERSHIP? MICHAEL: Oh wow, very stressful. Whether it’s the custom designs that clients want, the vinyl doesn’t always function the way you wish it would function, it tears but for instance when it reaches a certain season like that of SEMA other car shows whether it’s a big car shows doesn’t matter whether it’s hot rods lowriders, imports it gets busy and it’s real busy and it’s this busy scheduling that you still have to deliver your best work. WRAPERO: HOW WILL YOU INCORPORATE BUSINESSES? MICHAEL: You have to ask Louis for that answer. Mike laughs. WRAPERO: WHAT TYPE OF WRAPS AND CARS SHOULD WE EXPECT TO SEE? MICHAEL: If it has four wheels its on here. Many will watch only because the type of wraps we do, others for the designs, the artwork that goes behind it but also the type of cars we do. If you’re a car lover through this you don’t want to miss some of these cars that are so rare and then you’ll think to yourself, why would somebody wrap this car with a gigantic sticker? For God’s sake! But they do and we’re here to show the world. Continued on Pg 43
WRAPERO: HOW AND WHEN DID YOU GET THE IDEA FOR THE SHOW? LOUIS: My automotive design and styling agency Armenta Styling designs for Elevated Auto Concepts. Our first major project was for Lexus, a December to Remember and boy do we remember! This was back in 2011. I would go to the shop often to over see designs for colored wraps, themed wraps, stripes, the list goes on. Eventually as a car lover you just show up! Mike and Vic would tell me what vehicle belong to what celebrity or athlete. But, and here’s the huge BUT! Elevated was getting contracted out, put it like this, they were ghost-wrappers. Mike started to take me with him to different jobs, I got to see extremely rare vehicles, first to touchdown in the states, first street legal cars, meetings with moguls. So I pitched the idea to Mike and he hit me with questions like, “Will it work? Who wants to watch a show about vinyl wrapping? How much will this cost?” I understood where he was coming from. “I’ve grownup in the entertainment industry all my life, my grandfather worked television, radio and film. So I’d like to think, well I actually know what will sell and how to sell it! Just say yes Mike.” That was my response. WRAPERO: HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH THE NAME “MONZTER WRAPZ TV AND DA WRAP PACK?” LOUIS: Mike and his team are beasts at what the do! But naming the show “beast wraps,” now that would sound funky but now to think about it, it might have just worked, yeah. Well now the word monster fit better but we decided on spelling it with the letter “Z” and as for “Da Wrap Pack,” I’m a huge fan of Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin. That’s all. A Play on words, like the artist Eminem. WRAPERO: HOW WILL YOU INCORPORATE BUSINESSES? LOUIS: The star of Monzter Wrapz TV is Mikey. But we’d like to invite other designers and wrappers, like The Professa from PG NOLA™ to possibly collaborate. Even the living legend Frank Fellers. Both Mikey and I are about supporting our industry. A lot of family’s get fed off of this. Our goal is to have this industry of vinyl wrap keep growing. Inspire new entrepreneurs to open up shops. WRAPERO: HAVE YOU REACHED OUT TO THESE PEOPLE OR OTHERS IN OUR INDUSTRY? LOUIS: No. This might just be the invitation.
WRAPERO: HOW ABOUT SPONSORS? LOUIS: There’s people that want it and those that go out there and get it! At the moment we are open to conversations with companies. It’s just a matter of product placement. I tell interested sponsors to please visit our Vimeo at vimeo.com/armentastudios to view the sizzle real. WRAPERO: IN THAT SIZZLE REEL DO YOU TALK ABOUT THE SHOW? LOUIS: No. It’s the actual intro to the show. You’ll be able to see what the look of the show is, what its about, the genre of the music, the style of the editing. Everything that you see is our footage that we shot while we were with Mikey. Whether this was in his shop or on a mobile installation in the Hollywood Hills. Maticulous handles the score production. I wrote the intro to what becomes the voice over and handed it off to the musician Randy Marx. Randy took it over to the HD Flats studio and hit the booth with it. You can see our creation all under a single minute. I’d rather show you my vision than have to tell and explain it to you. Our elevator pitch comes with a 4k TV. WRAPERO: WHAT IS THE SHOPS ATMOSPHERE LIKE? LOUIS: Look, you need that authenticity from a shop and they deliver. They bring that energy but it can’t be stupid crazy over the top! The Monzter Wrapz team is amazing, intelligent and engaging. It’s a team but like any professional organization you have arguments, well I wouldn’t call them arguments more like disagreements. It’s like this Heather, all five of my stars are artist. Very capable of making beautiful, gorgeous... So yeah, you deal with ego from time to time. That comes heavily into play. We also get the diversity of cultures; it’s almost that barbershop conversation. This is a show about cars, so you have to bring those designs and they have to come in on time! We can’t say, hey let me hire the production crew for another week. Time is money. Business partnerships are being established. However at the same time, this is a family, a real family. Friendships that are continuing to grow within the shop, returning customers or virgin car owners. It’s a place where I love to bring my 5-year-old daughter. I have the faith of a mustard seed for this crew. That’s all you need. WRAPERO: WHAT’S THE SHOWS DEMOGRAPHICS? LOUIS: Our target audience is 25-54. Skewing male BUT I have a daughter and trust me; she can bat with them boys! So this is why our producer Heather reached out to Alice Oz. Alice can also bat with them boys! She wrenches with her father and a brother that serves in our amazing American military. Yeah the girl is going to bring the ladies to our show. On a side note, Mikey’s grandfather’s a combat veteran or the Vietnam War. Highly decorated. I believe he did two tours, in the Army branch. So I really want to dedicate a show to our American military. We’re able to do what we do because of their many sacrifices. Continued on Pg 43
MICHAEL CORPUS Cont...
LOUIS A DeLOMBRE Cont...
WRAPERO: WITH THE SUCCESS OF MONZTER WRAPZ TV WHAT DO YOU WANT THE SHOW TO ACCOMPLISH? FOR YOURSELF, YOUR TEAM AND FOR OUR INDUSTRY? MICHAEL: Believe this show not only bringing the viewers but it will greatly help our industry of vinyl wrap. Cause for the first time people will see a show that is dedicated to our craft and art form. And I believe that it will inspire others to pick up the vinyl and blade and go out and start and open up their own shops. A lot of money can be made in this industry and if I can inspire others to be entrepreneurs and startups then I’m proud of what I’ve done.
WRAPERO: DO YOU THINK MONZTER WRAPZ TV WILL BE SUCCESSFUL? LOUIS: YES! Look, this so called trend, which it’s not! It’s taken over the automotive world. We see it in Mexico, Canada and as far as Dubai, Japan, Europe, and Africa and of course where all the trendsetters are, our own beautiful United States. You have car enthusiast that are locked down to a single style. You don’t put hydraulics on a hotrod and bounce it down a race-strip. However you can wrap low riders, hot rods, exotics, or any-other form of transportation!!! Now a day with social media, it’s not enough to have an exotic but I have to be different, better than the next guy. So what do you do? You take it Monzter Wrapz TV, the wrap master Mikey comes up with a badass design. He mixes colors, chromes, carbon fiber, themes, prints and he gives you a one of a kind beast. That still looks classy but a banger of a car!!! WRAPERO: WILL YOU BE SHOOTING A PILOT? OR WILL YOU BE DOING A FULL SEASON? LOUIS: Product tie-ins. Again at the moment we’re talking to sponsors. Each episode will revolve around a product. We can have an exclusive deal with any vinyl wrap company. Whether 3M, Avery, Hexi, Oracal, say, Hey Louis we want to be an exclusive sponsor.” Deal made and only their product will be used. Remember, that’s for an exclusive contract. We’re also pitching the option of sponsoring per episode. We’d like to include all the major companies that produce vinyl, we want them to all have their moment. Reality television is fast television. With pre-production, production and post-production banged out in two weeks for a single episode. So yes we’ll begin filming our pilot episode in mid 2018. Other episodes will follow. We’re projecting ten episodes for our first season. We’re shooting for that 10/90. WRAPERO: A TEN NINETY? LOUIS: A 10/90 is a ten-episode season. With the season doing well; another 90 episodes will be ordered and at this point a show can go into syndication. However let us bang out 10 and we can go from here. WRAPERO: WOULD YOU LIKE TO ADD ANYTHING ELSE TO THIS INTERVIEW? LOUIS: Monzter Wrapz TV is about family and friends that are innovators in this automotive vinyl world. You know and have witnessed what this business has become. It’s a train that’s nowhere nearing a stop and by the looks never will. As cheesy as it sounds, it’s brought together countries. People of different cultures, only our business can do this. Look at the tradeshows! Just look at this passed SEMA 2017! The winner of Avery’s competition was some dude Nick from Australia! So will it be worth your time to watch, YES! Monzter Wrapz TV will be on a network near you. So tune in! -WM
WRAPERO: WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO TELL YOUR FUTURE VIEWERS? MICHAEL: Tune in to watch the show and it’s going to be fun, it’s going to be one heck of a ride and if you’re new to this, you’re going to learn. Your going watch episode after episode, bing watch this Wrapero’s!
10 FAST FACTS ABOUT:
10 FAST FACTS ABOUT:
1: Grandpa worked in Kuwait on diesel engines. He opened a general repair shop in America
1: Father and mother work in the fashion industry
2: Young Henry would go with his gramps to the shop and buy ice cream 3: Mother’s father was a mechanic at GM. Open his shop in San Fernando Valley and still works on cars! 4: Attended a Associates in automotive technology from Arizona Automotive 5: Mom said to make mechanics a hobby 6: Worst memory: Speeding ticket; Over 100mph 7: Because of the ticket he couldn’t get a job at a dealership! This happened 1 month before graduation
3: His first built was a go cart at age twelve 4: Made and saved $10,000 cutting grass at the age of 15 5: Grandmother helped him purchase a 2000 Civic Si at seventeen 6: Worked in a gas station at sixteen 7: For five years he worked at a rim shop, starting at seventeen 8: Photographic memory: Able to dissemble and assemble any vehicle
8: Worked construction with dad
9: Knows mechanics, electrical, video, audio, rims, tires and performance parts
9: Parents were married on top of a skating ring
10: Is also an owner of a customizing shop: GK Customs
10: You shouldn’t have mirrors in a bedroom
2: Purchased his first car before having a license
10 FAST FACTS ABOUT:
10 FAST FACTS ABOUT:
“ALICE O” OROZCO
VICTOR “VIC” OGANESYAN
1: Lupus fighter
1: Learned to wrap in a week
2: Father blesses all the animals he hunts
2: Family owned a wrecking yard in the 90s
3: Beat the boys while racing on bikes
3: Father and brothers own a collision center in 2000
4: Her father’s her hero
4: His summer job would be working at the body shop
5: Loves Animals
5: Attended UTI and became a Porsche technician
6: Brothers in the army
6: He’s a perfectionist
7: Grandfather died of cancer and grandmother of Lupus
7: His little brother works in animation
8: When her father see’s a hawk that represents his grandfather
8: Started Elevated with his business partner Mike with only $6,000 each
9: Father known in the neighborhood as a helper
9: His uncle had the shop avalible for Elevated to begin operating out of
10: Native American blooded
10: In November of 2014 his father was diagnost with cancer but has beat it
10 FAST FACTS ABOUT: MICHAEL CORPUS 1: Grandfather is a Vietnam veteran 2: Grandfather was born in the Phillipinnes and his grandmother in Germany 3: His grandfather was digging his grave when the American military showed up to save him 4: His wife works in a Casino as a dealer 5: Started a mobile detailing business with $50,000 6: Mike met Vic while doing clear-bras for Vic’s father’s body shop 7: His grandfather restored a 1972 Corvette 8: His grandmother died of cancer 9: It took 5 years to go from mobile clear-bra installer to opening a shop 10: Enjoy’s golfing
Production company: ARMENTA STUDIOS Watch the sizzle reel at: vimeo.com/armentastudios For all inquiries please contact: email@example.com Created by: Louis A DeLombré Produced by: Louis A DeLombré Heather DeLombré Maria M DeLombré Starring: Michael Corpus (Owner / Boss) Henry Harabedian (Installer) Vic Oganesyan (Installer) Garo Koussayan (Master Mechanic) Alice Orozco (Secretary) Armen A (Graphic Artist)
DO YOU WANT TO SEE YOURSELF, COMPANY AND/OR BRAND ON THE TUBE? FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: firstname.lastname@example.org 48
DO YOU WANT TO SEE YOURSELF, COMPANY AND/OR BRAND ON THE TUBE? FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: email@example.com 49
DO YOU WANT TO SEE YOURSELF, COMPANY AND/OR BRAND ON THE TUBE? FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: firstname.lastname@example.org
DO YOU WANT TO SEE YOURSELF, COMPANY AND/OR BRAND ON THE TUBE? FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: email@example.com
Illustrated By: St Louis Lujos
ow picture this, we hear a whistle from the hot desert air piercing through the Las Vegas show. As the train begins to depart you see the silhouette of a lean 6’2” man as he steps out from behind it. You can hear the pebbles being crushed against the desert dirt from underneath his distressed cowboy boots. As he nears, we finally make out his blue jeans, button down shirt and topped off with a Stetsons cowboy hat. He looks like a gunslinger. Could this be “the man with no name?” He could be a character straight out of a Sergio Leone epic spaghetti western. But there’s not going to be no Mexican standoff or stylized gunfight. He’s not a gunslinger but more of a vinyl wrap-slinger and yes he has a name, Frank Fellers. Frank Fellers story is amazing. He started his company in Tulsa, Oklahoma from his home garage in 1986. He lived off pizza and peanut butter and jelly. Selling vinyl material to sign companies for making banners and signs. By 2006 Fellers became the first company in the world to focus on selling wrap supplies. Fellers went from his garage to having warehouses all over the United States. Let’s hear what this wrap-slinger has to say!
WRAPERO: Are you surprised by how large and recognized Fellers is? FELLERS: I decided to focus FELLERS on Wrap Supplies in 2006 and we were the first company in the world to do this. I felt strongly that the wrap industry would become very large, and that if we were the first company to focus on it, that we would also become well recognized. WRAPERO: How has the vehicle wrap industry grown in the last 5 years? FELLERS: The vehicle wrap industry has grown tremendously in the last five years. It is the fastest growing part of our company and probably one of the fastest growing industries in the world. WRAPERO: Did you believe that the vehicle wrap business would be as big as it it today? FELLERS: Yes, I became very passionate about the vehicle wrap business after I drove my first personally wrapped vehicle (a camouflaged pick up truck) in approximately 2004. The public’s response was insane! I also personally wrapped my 1967 Pontiac GTO in black gloss vinyl and, I saw the potential of color change wraps for personal vehicles. I predicted the development of color change wraps in one of our early catalog articles. WRAPERO: What are the pros of getting your vehicle wrapped? FELLERS: With commercial wraps, the low cost advertising benefit is tremendous and proven. Some commercial wraps can get advertising in areas that are impossible for anything other than a vehicle wrap.
With colorchange wraps, the benefits include the ability for anyone to have the color or customization they want regardless of the original paint color. In addition, colorchange wraps can protect the base paint/improve the re-sale, and they can be changed out a lot easier than paint. WRAPERO: What do you think about wrapping other scenes like low riders and hot rods? FELLERS: There is really no limit to the possibilities for wrapping. Whether it’s show cars, low riders, hot rods, tuners, motorcycles, etc., etc. With the continued development of new colors, finishes and textures, wrapping is increasing the ability for anyone to have a temporary or a permanent custom look to their vehicle. In the past, when you needed to get a custom look, it took quite a bit of work and time to find the right company or person to do this for you with paint or air brush. Wrapping is increasing the possibilities and the ease of getting customization done. And often, wrap can do things that paint or airbrush can’t do. WRAPERO; Do you see an end anytime soon for automotive wrapping? FELLERS: I was warned by quite a few people at first that they felt I was merely chasing a “fad” and some even predicted my failure. That was over ten years ago and we are over twice the size that we were then and growing. Wrap is not only a lot bigger now, but it is continuing to grow with no end in sight. Wrap is not a “fad”, it’s a trend.
Why is FELLERS the World’s Largest Wrap Supply Company? They have 75+ locations in the United States and reach most wrap shops in 1-2 days via UPS. They carry the top wrap brands including 3M, Avery Dennison, ORAFOL, Arlon and more. Their facilities are all climate controlled because they know vinyl doesn’t like being too hot or too cold. They typically place multiple orders with the large manufacturers each week so they have got fresh inventory.
The house/garage where Frank started the company in 1986.
Wrapped wall at Fellers Tulsa, OK distribution center. It’s wrapped in custom printed 3M IJ180Cv3 with 8518 laminate.
“Growth is good. It is better for all of us if the Wrap industry gets bigger and becomes very established and strong.” - Frank Fellers
WRAPERO: What’s in the future for Fellers? FELLERS: We will continue to help our customers grow by opening more warehouses and carrying the right wrap products needed for profitable growth. We will also continue to lead by helping to promote this industry to the public. WRAPERO: Do you want to add anything else to this interview? FELLERS: Yes. In my thirty plus years of business experience watching industries develop and grow, I think it is critical that all of us in the wrap industry try very hard to support each other. It is difficult to support your competitor. It is difficult to watch some folks do things that you wouldn’t do. It is difficult to watch new folks enter and take business away from you. But, I want to yell out to everyone in our Wrap Industry to focus on the good that everyone is doing and not focus on the bad.
The enemy is not each other. The enemy is: all the other industries competing to take finite resources available out there to spend. THE MORE PEOPLE THAT WE HAVE IN OUR INDUSTRY THE BETTER. THE MORE OPINIONS, THE MORE TECHNIQUES, THE MORE COMPETITION, THE MORE PUBLICITY. Growth is good. It is better for all of us if the Wrap industry gets bigger and becomes very established and strong. This is why I wish WRAPERO magazine great success and, thank you for what you are trying to do. Please let me know if you need anything else. When we contact Mr. Fellers he wrote to Wrapero,”I am honored that you would include me in your magazine.” No sir, we are the ones honored! -WM
Frank Fellers with two of his wrapped vehicles.
The truck is wrapped in Avery Dennison SW900 Blue Chrome and was wrapped by LE Wraps out of Oklahoma City, OK The Lamborghini is wrapped in custom printed 3MIJ180Cv3 wrapped by Skinz Wraps out of Dallas, TX
“THE MORE PEOPLE THAT WE HAVE IN OUR INDUSTRY THE BETTER. THE MORE OPINIONS, THE MORE TECHNIQUES, THE MORE COMPETITION, THE MORE PUBLICITY.” - FRANK FELLERS 56
hen we birthed the idea of Wrapero Magazine we knew that at its core it had to reflect the family. For us that grew up attending classic car shows, super shows, picnics, swap meets, raceways, museums or any other Sunday cruise; It was always about family! Introducing the youngsters to our passion, whether it was hot rods or be it low riders. It was always about the cool cars. You’d dress to impress, fresh cut, pressed up, crispy white t, letterman’s club jacket. The New Years gathering at Elysian Park was and is the spot! But you’d better get there early enough to get your patch on the concrete showroom floor. If you stay long enough you can take in the scene while taking in some Mexican BBQ style food. A cool and fun place where families gather and showoff their rides. So we knew we had to show not tell our youngsters about our craft. And what better way to inspire the next generation of Wrapero’s, artist, installers and enthusiast? Ordered up a children’s book to be written and illustrated!
Della Catezon “Fix The Rotten Thing I Have Done” is avalible now. Visit www.DellaCatezon.com Della Catezon already had a world that was created where vinyl wrapping would and could fit right in! So it wasn’t difficult to order up a children’s book that would encourage the next generation of designers and stylist to enter our medium of customization. We knew that the vinyl wrap world could easily fit into Della’s universe and that of her two best friends, Emily and Floyed. We see them convert a taco truck into an extension of their already successful bakery front, Della Catezon. But the over all design is too boring therefore Mr Peony, the local pawn shop owner, pitches the idea of wrapping it! With the help of Mr Moth the team begins to design, print and wrap the cupcake bakery truck. However we already know that Della is extremely brilliant but often times clumsy. Della’s trying to do good but ultimately she does something bad! Fast, funny and fascinating. Your children and yourself will fall in love with Della and her freshly wrapped baketaco truck, as she calls it! Releases early 2018. -WM
Della Catezon “Fix The Rotten Thing I Have Done” is avalible now. Visit www.DellaCatezon.com 60
e set out like Interpol to find Wrapero’s from around the world! We were able to catch and arrest the most brilliant masterminds and outlaws that our industry has to offer to date! I call them masterminds for the obvious but why outlaws? Because they are willing to take a risk and move outside the status quo! They prove to us that this medium can and will be used on whatever automotive body lends itself to the creative minds behind the vinyl. Will they get heat, yeah; have they already gotten heat, yeah. However when you’re the boss and you have to lead the crew, the crew being the industry. Well, you might just be a sacrificial lamb but you know you have the internal fortitude to handle the business. Example, when someone commented on one of these builds: “Ruined a bad ass car with some bullshit,” the installers response was smooth, “Different strokes for different folks man. If we all followed the norm and did everything like everyone else, what fun would the world be? We respect your opinion, wont hate on it…” Oh yeah, whatever tickles your pickle! We do what we do and people that can’t nor have a vision or are not willing to except change, will ultimately get left behind! When we allow change to come, we’ll get pushed out of our comfort zone but we’ll experience more, you’ll get to see to what limits you can push this vinyl too and yes we strongly agree; it’s about the FUN! What we have learned throughout this endeavor and it’s one of the things we constantly hear, “We want to be seen, to standout, to be different and to be heard!” Vinyl wrapping has allowed car owners to do just this. So yeah we’re going to have some numb skulls poking around but for the greater part, it’s just to late for the non-believers because the automotive industry has already embraced us!!! -WM
THE PEARL OF CANADA. Travel with Wrapero to Vancouver, Canada as we talk with Sam Li and Lewis Fan of Wrap-Workz and showcase what their Hong Kong founder Pat Lam has created.
AMERICAN MADE. Wrapero finally wraps it up with our country hero, Kevin “The Professa” Kempf. Kevin shows us how he can juggle an exotic and a lowrider without dropping the ball.
MEXICO RISING. As we move south to Mexico and we meet with Rafael Muñoz, he opens up about how he’s spreading the wrap creed throughout Mexico, Central and South America!
THE WIZARD OF AUS. Take a trip to AUSTRALIA as we zoom down under to meet with the undisputed champion of the world, Nick Caminiti of Exotic Graphix as the team showcases their winning hot rod: “Toxic Rat!”
anada has a style all it’s own. From Canadian Hip-Hop, to producer/director Byron Kent Wong, automotive designers like Fiat-Chrysler’s Ralph Gilles, to fine artist and our favorite, Tom Thomson who inspired, Lawren Harris who famously said, “Art must take to the road and risk all for the glory of adventure.” Mr Harris would stop signing his paintings because he wanted his work to be critiqued by what was on the canvas and not by the strength of his name. This brings us to our homies from Vancouver, Canada, VanCity’s own… Wrap-Workz. When you take a moment to look at their portfolio that wraps the bodies of foreign and exotic vehicles from VanCity to the city of Hong Kong, China! What we get is perfection. Tossing together a perfect blend of styling, metals and vinyl’s. When you take the time and view Pat Lam’s Instagram, the founder of Wrap Workz, you can clearly see the influence behind the shops. The lifestyle of vinyl wraps is not influenced by the car but by the owners. Will you choose to convey a style that’s urban, country, classy and quiet or be bold and loud? Will the wrap reflect a style that showcases your cars design or will it reflect your passion and love. However how do you translate that fine quality look from Hong Kong, China to across the Pacific to Vancouver, Canada? You find a representative. Not any representative but one by the name of Sam Li and his right hand Lewis Fan! How can you see the connection that these gentleman have? Once again by looking into their social media. Getting glimpses of what makes them move, the love of cars, fashion, photography, friends, family and their Canadian and Chinese pride. Culture can be one of the biggest thing’s that can set a designer apart from the rest. The Chinese have always been humble, kind, hard and smart working people. I continually hear this from my wife that is not Chinese but grew up in Los Angeles’ Chinatown. Hence a lot of her friends and families she grew up with and around are of Chinese descent.
Photography By: The Glass Eye and Dylan King
Now it’s only a matter of time before we see a Wrap Workz branch touchdown in America. Because if you have a dream of opening a vinyl wrap shop, them boy’s can help you make that dream materialize into a reality! Through their franchising offerings we might see a shop with this title around the globe! We can only continue to grow as a community with the guidance of those that have traveled the road before us and these boy’s are well traveled. As we wrote earlier, let us reflect on the words of Lawren Harris and sum it up with; Wrapero believes that Wrap Workz’s art hits the road through its vinyl wrapping and they continue to risk it all for the glory of the vinyl adventure! Now let’s rap with our Chinese-Canadian connection! WRAPERO: When did you hear about automotive wrapping and how did you enter it? WRAP-WORKZ: We knew automotive vinyl wraps/liveries existed for many years. It only got more popular when the vinyl’s became more user friendly. As gear heads ourselves, we entered the automotive wrapping industry after attempting to colour change our own vehicles. My partner that owns the Hong Kong branch, him and I slowly became very intrigued and somewhat addicted to wraps after our first vehicle wrap, Chasing after the perfect wrap became our weekend hobby and the birth of Wrap-Workz just puzzled through after. WRAPERO: How big has automotive vinyl wrapping become in your area of the world? WRAP-WORKZ: For our Canada branch, I believe it became very popular but nothing compared to the US or Asia. In Canada, at least Vancouver where we are located, we believe there is still a large amount of education that needs to be given about vinyl wraps and what it really is. A lot of people still do not understand nor know about wraps, others think they do but have interesting standards with vinyl wraps. WRAPERO: What kind of attention do your wraps receive?
WRAP-WORKZ: We specialize in bespoke liveries. All designed and created from scratch, majority inspired by its relative history and or a relevant theme for the occasion. I must say, our wraps attract quite the attention and we are thankful for everyone that supports us and is a fan of our work. Other than automotive canvases, we specialize in commercial storefronts, interior decors etc. We advertise your business with a twist that works. WRAPERO: Where does vinyl wrapping go from here in your area? WRAP-WORKZ: Vinyl wrapping is everywhere, we are not sure where vinyl wrapping would “go” from here but its definitely not leaving for awhile. With main suppliers creating more innovative vinyls and patterns, we can only expect more canvases to open up for wrap opportunities. WRAPERO: What do you want to tell the automotive vinyl wrap world about your global region? WRAP-WORKZ: We would love to tell you more about vinyl wraps and the education behind it. Then you can tell us what you would like wrapped. For fellow wrappers reading this, Wrap-Workz is officially available for franchise opportunities now! -WM
Photography By: Dylan King and The Glass Eye
Photography By: The Glass Eye and Dylan King
Photography By: Dylan King and The Glass Eye
Photography By: Ted 7 Photography and Sean Magee
n actors range can be summed up by; does the actor possess the ability to transition seamlessly between one genre to another and be believable. The actor must disappear and allow that character to come to life. Not enough and the audience won’t relate but too much and the performance is just that, an act! A brilliant actor like Heath Ledger could become an American in, “The Patriot” to transforming into the psychopathic Joker in, “The Dark Knight.” When we took the time to showcase a shop that could do just this but with vinyl, it was difficult to find. The beautiful thing is that most shops have a very distinctive style and it’s recognizable. This isn’t a bad thing; at times it just comes down to the graphic designer or the customer’s request from the shops past portfolio pieces. This can cause the vehicles that are being spit out by the design shop to look similar in their over all concepts. So Wrapero set out to search for a designer that had a range for automotive wrapping. They had to have the ability to swing from one artistic style of design to another. We needed originality but it had to also showcase craftsmanship. Our journey brought us to this. We that are in this closely-knit community of vinyl wrapping are all too familiar with The Professa’s Lamborghini wrap, that crowned him “King of the Wrap World” by Avery. We were told, “he already has too much exposure, try someone else…” But you know what? A-list actors stay on screen by staring in A-list movies. PG NOLA™ showcased a brilliant piece of art. That not only showed a vinyl wrap that was way ahead of the industry but also kept the respect for the Lamborghini design and styling. The Professa and PG NOLA™ disappeared and allowed the vinyl, the design, the styling, the colors and the Lamborghini to become the star!
Car: King of the Wrap World Vehicle Make and Model? 2015 Lamborghini Huracan LP-610 Vinyl: Same thing, we used a variety of films, but the base was printed onto Avery silver chrome w/ luster lam. We also used black chrome, KPMF Pacific Blue Starlight laminate, black & silver reflective film too. Wrap Designer: Kevin Kempf Installer: PG NOLAâ„˘ Photographer: Ted 7 Photography + Sean Magee
So you may be asking, “Louis where’s the range?” With a slogan like “Paint Is Dead,” to someone like myself and many of my childhood friends and family that were raised by paint loving maniacs… “Paint is dead? Them’s fightin’ words.” Then out of Internet heaven, PG NOLA™ hits us with this, “The Joker.” A 1963 Chevrolet Impala, looking like it’s been freshly dipped and baked in the California sun! Any hip-hop heavy hitter would bounce this beauty across their music video. You could catch some Chicano homies hitting that three-wheel motion up and down Whittier Blvd. Or catch a brother scrapping the frame down Crenshaw Blvd. So take these fighting words; “The Joker” gets that California love! Because we’re the home of lowrider’s and hotrods! Now I can comfortably sit with my paint filled lung buddies and feel justified for writing for a vinyl wrap magazine. So range, PG NOLA™ and The Professa got it. And they ain’t acting! They’ve already taken home the Oscar for the vinyl wrap world. So what’s next for the sequel? We get a sit down with the big homie Kevin. Lights, camera, and vinyl! WRAPERO: Please introduce yourself and tell us about your business? KEVIN: My name is Kevin Kempf, also known as “The Professa”. My company is PG NOLA™, out of New Orleans, LA. We have been in business for 12.5 years. We have a large shop, but we are a very small company as far as size. We usually only have two installers full time, one being me. I am member of both the Paint is Dead vehicle wrap network and also Masters of Branding too. I am a board member for PID too. I am Avery Certified, Arlon Wrap it Right Certified, Hexis Accredited, Fellers Certified & Wrapify Certified. We are a full services design, print and install facility, but specialize in custom color change wraps. We won Avery’s “Wrap Like a King” contest last year live at SEMA Show 2015 too. very honored to have that title, being a small show in an otherwise small city like New Orleans. WRAPERO: What was your customer’s inspiration for the wrap? KEVIN: Honestly, the majority of our customers come to us for our creative ideas. Many of our clients give a basic color scheme, hand us the keys and tell us to let them know when it’s ready. I’m blessed that people can entrust us with vehicles that can run up to half a million dollars.
WRAPERO: Did you participate in the artwork? If so what was your input? KEVIN: Yes, I am the head designer, lead installer and all around everything guy here, ha-ha! The design was all out of my head, client let me do whatever I wanted. WRAPERO: What kind of attention have you been getting? KEVIN: It’s been getting lots of good attention, locally and on social media too, can’t complain one bit about the support and love we’ve been receiving WRAPERO: Now, is paint really dead? KEVIN: NO! I will be the first person to say it is not. I have much respect for painters, air brush artist, etc.… at the end of the day, we are all artist and the level of our talent is what people come to us for. There will always be stuff that a wrapper can’t wrap, and same goes for paint. Painters don’t like to paint things, yet a wrap shop can probably take care of it. I know many painters that can’t stand the phrase “paint is dead”, but they don’t understand its brand, a movement and a state of mind when a professional wrap installer strives to make that wrap look as close to paint as possible. Until vinyl film can be easily combined and mixed like paint can, paint will always be needed. Vinyl grows drastically every year, so I can’t wait to see what the future holds and I am proud to be a part of this ever expanding industry.
WRAPERO: What are the pros of getting your vehicle wrapped? KEVIN: Protects the paint, can change the color whenever you want and some options that paint don’t offer. when you own a 2016 S63 sedan and want it army green, how much do you think it would cost to do that paintjob? Then, what would your demographic be to buy that car when you are tired of it 3-5 years down the line? With a wrap, you can get that color for a fraction of the cost of paint, and when you are done with the car, just rip the wrap off, trade it in or sell it and you will not be penalized for anything or having a green car. At this point, your paint has been protected from UV rays and every day damage for however long you’ve had the wrap on the car. That’s a HUGE bonus. I am mentioning this car in particular, because its exactly what we did a couple years ago for a professional athlete and good client of ours. WRAPERO: One of our main questions is about wrapping other scenes like low riders and hot rods. Now that we have witnessed your flawless work, do you believe it can catch on within these car communities? KEVIN: I think these car communities are a very hard nut to crack.. they’re history is based off of custom paint. The Joker is something special, something never been done before, but is it going to be instantly loved by the lowrider community in particular, I doubt it. but I do know for fact that many of the lowrider guys down here that have seen it, appreciate what has been done and now see there are options now and a different way of thinking.
Like I said before, we have been getting great support on this car so far. My goal is to break into the lowrider and hot rod scene with a few other custom projects we have lined up in the future. It’s all about execution. It has to be done right and done to respect tradition or that culture. These cultures have some of the best painters and artist in the world. Very talented guys. I strive to match some of their work someday. I have personal goals and ideas that I just can’t express because the technology isn’t here yet. WRAPERO: Do you want to add anything else to this interview? KEVIN: I just want to say thank you for reaching out to us for this interview. We strive to be different, unique and go against the grain at PG NOLA™. We are known for our creative and over the top designs. It’s something I have personally worked hard for, for many years. I’ll probably die doing what I do best…….playing with fancy stickers!!!! HAHA Lastly, I want to give a shout out to my fellow Paint is Dead and Masters of Branding brothers and the network of incredibly talent installers I have met, learned from and befriended from around the world. Big thanks homie for schooling us, Da Professa! We out, until the next episode. -WM Update: Our prayers are still with you brother Kevin, with Kelly and the PG NOLA™ family. With much love and respect we honor the memory of our own... Collin Archuleta #PaintTheWorldPurple
Photographer: Ezaac Lopez
Car Name: The Joker Vehicle Make and Model: 1963 Chevy Impala Vinyl: 100% Avery wrap film, too many to list, but 5 different chromes, silver leaf, etched glass vinyl and also their Diamond Line films too. Wrap Designer: Myself, Kevin Kempf Installer: PG NOLAâ„˘
s Americans we have been blessed by God to welcome or birth some of the greatest American-Mexican’s in history. Sports figures like: Ted “The Greatest Hitter Who Ever Lived,” Williams. World Series Champion Fernando Valenzuela. Champion pro-golfer Lee Trevino. Two-time Super Bowl champion Jim Plunkett. L.A. Angels of Anaheim owner: Arturo “Arte” Moreno. Knockout boxers: Oscar De La Hoya and Julio Cesar Chavez. Retired NBA player: Eduardo Najera. For our lady fans, U.S.Tour, LPGA Major Champion golfer: Lorena Ochoa. Yeah, yeah we’re going somewhere with this. I can name drop successful American-Mexican’s but would likely have a bible sized magazine, lol. From Politicians, entertainers, lawyers, doctors, inventors, business owners, entrepreneurs, to the hard working immigrants that do the jobs that us seasoned Americans would not give a damn about doing. However our focus is on the masked heroes, them are those southern wrastling boys! Let’s look at Wrestle Mania I, where Hulk Hogan and Mr. T defeated, Roddy Piper and Paul “Mr. Wonderful” Orndorff in the main event. That first mania would kick-off with The Executioner being defeated by American-Mexican WWE Hall of Fame inductee, Tito Santana. Today another masked hero has risen almost like something out the pages of a comic book. This unmasked vinyl superhero is Mr. Rafael Muñoz and his metaphorical Gotham City that rises out from the land of the Golden Eagle, Mexico. To some it may be comical, yeah that’s a pun but in our conversation he says that when wearing the mask some children come over and would like to take a photo with him. This is his way for young impressionable minds to be influenced to later enter into this highly profitable field. Possibly opening businesses and a guarantee that we will not be extinct and that our medium will be around for generations to come. He’s known for being a pioneer in the automotive wrap world within the Southern America’s. Like many of our American wrestling icons, he steps out with the attitude of other great American-Mexican wrestling fighters that would emerge, like the masked Rey Mysterio and the late Eddie Guerrero. Rafael’s cars come wrapped like The Joker’s Violator car from the movie Suicide Squad. Like most Hollywood blockbusters, he dons a mask like the superhero Batman. Wrapped around his wrist is a leather band something like Batman’s utility-belt. Instead of weapons to stop and arrest criminals, Raphael is equipped with multiple blades to arrest the attention of people that might just walk by his amazing wraps.
Let us stand tall and watch the Bald Eagle and Golden Eagle fly side-by-side in unity. Wrapero Magazine steps into the vinyl ring with Raphel and he tells us just how he plans to pin down the industry in Mexico, Central and South America! ONE, TWO, THREE!!! BAAAAAAM!!! WRAPERO: When did you hear about automotive wrapping and how did you enter it? RAFAEL: 20 years ago I started in one of the companies pioneering in this industry in Mexico and that’s where I got to know the vinyl business and started my work with them. Since then I have dedicated myself to trying to professionalize the installation service in Mexico. WRAPERO: Can you please tell us about your workshop? Is it open to the public? RAFAEL: My workshop is one of the most important and recognized nationally, as I make sure to make my group of installers highly qualified. It is a workshop open to the public where we conduct trainings that are made available to all those interested in different substrates for a wider knowledge. WRAPERO: How big has automotive vinyl wrapping become in your area of the world? RAFAEL: In recent years, the color change in automobiles has been growing yet not sufficient enough here. 4 years ago I started wrapping cars with very good results but still much remains to be done in Mexico. WRAPERO: What do you believe has to be done to cause a greater growth within Mexico and within our industry? RAFAEL: The main issue is the professionalization of the installers. That is why I am currently starting a new project, unique in Mexico, which will reinforce this, being a platform for installers and all those involved in the industry to come and learn techniques and share experiences for continuous improvement. WRAPERO: What kind of attention do your wraps receive? RAFAEL: My work is recognized in Mexico and Latin America thanks mainly to the shows that continually invite me to show that continually invite me to show my work and the support of the vinyl manufacturers who have trusted me to represent them in other parts of the world, as well as the different prizes and Acknowledgments obtained and the publications that promote it.
WRAPERO: We know that support only comes from hard work and discipline in one’s craft and the ability to execute that craft on continual bases. We have been following your work for a while now and have seen your artistic ability. Please enlighten other vinyl artist about the most important character trait they need to posses to be prosperous and or continue to be prosperous within our industry? RAFAEL: Dedication, constant training, responsibility in the workplace and honesty are the decisive factors to succeed in this industry, as well as the ability to adapt to the changes and the evolution of the industry, risking always to be innovator’s. WRAPERO: Where does vinyl wrapping go from here in your area? RAFAEL: In Mexico there is a very wide market, since it is used for decorations, car wrapping, urban advertising, etc. WRAPERO: As American’s we know first hand how hard working and intelligent the Mexican people are. Once you continue to spread the vinyl creed and the Mexicans become professional in our industry, what do you think artistically Mexico can offer? RAFAEL: Mexico and Mexicans have a great artistic ability that translates every day into their work, because of this, I believe they can generate important contributions to the artistic part of the industry, especially in the area of car decoration. The mix of techniques such as airbrushing and vinyl or paint and vinyl, as well as the tattoos with vinyl that my team is currently working on, are some of the examples that can demonstrate these contributions.
WRAPERO: What do you want to tell the automotive vinyl wrap world about your globe region? RAFAEL: We need the confidence and support of visionary entrepreneurs who will financially support this kind of artistic expression. In this sense, the installers are committed and desirous of knowledge to face the challenge that is eliminating the bad practices and aiming to have and take advantage of the best tools that exist today. WRAPERO: What can we do to support vinyl wrap in Mexico? And how can this support spill over to other countries? RAFAEL: My mission is not only in Mexico, since having the possibility to work in other countries I seek to inject the passion for vinyl in all installers and to raise awareness among entrepreneurs and leaders of the industry so that they offer the necessary support to strengthen it WRAPERO: Would you like to add anything else to this interview? RAFAEL: I would like to give thanks for the support received, during these years, to publications like this that help promote professionalism, as well as vinyl producers, event organizers and media entrepreneurs. -WM
Photography By: Angus Firestorm Films
reamtime or Dreaming is a form of Australian Aboriginal art that tells stories that depict a moment in time when the land was inhabited by heroic figures with supernatural abilities. They were not to be worshipped for they were not gods but only to be respected. The Dreaming paintings show the creation and forming of life, people, animals, spirits, nature, astronomy and culture. For instance, the Possum that can be seen in what we know as the “Southern Cross” and shows up on the flag of Australia. The Dreaming depicts stories of the after life, like when death arrives they are taken up to the sky by mystical canoe, to an island within the Milky Way where campfires burn along the edge of a great river. The canoe is sent back to earth and can be seen as a shooting star, letting the family of the recently deceased know that they have arrived safely into the land of spirits. As elders hand down a Dreaming to the next generation they are taught to always respect and one should never paint a Dreaming without the permission of the Dreaming’s owner! If it’s painted without the blessing of the owner you are considered to be stealing a Dreaming story! A Dreaming possesses a recognizably different spiritual essence to each owner. An essence that was only captured by sand drawings and body painting, up until this point. However by the 70’s a teacher encouraged his students to take up a paintbrush and transfer their sand drawings onto canvas. When the elders saw the teacher, Geoffrey Bardon and the student’s artwork, they had a talk with the teacher. This talk led to the painting of the now famous, “The Honey Ant Dreaming.” However the true meaning had to be hidden to the outsider but was still comprehensible to the Dreamers. The Dreaming paintings may not be understandable but art is about connection and building bridges between human beings. Working together to spread a common message.
Exotic Graphix and their directorial elder blesses Wrapero Magazine with the Dreaming process and shares their secrets with us spirits of the wrap world! So we may pass the wisdom and knowledge from designer to installer to shop. Now let us begin Dreaming. This is how a mix of a background in custom painting and a business in vinyl wrapping led to Exotic Graphix becoming Avery Dennison’s 2016 “Wrap Like a King Challenge” winner. His love for Hotrods and customs and with the purchase of a 1930 Ford Tudor he traded his earlier plans of paint for the challenge of a vinyl wrap. Once a believer that only paint should cover the metal flesh of this oldie but was soon converted by the opportunity to challenge some of the best Wrapero’s! With love and respect for the hotrod enthusiast he setout to, “prove to the world that wraps can be designed/printed and installed just as good as Custom Paint.” Once he found the inspiration of the design, he would present it to his team. At the work began, from wrapping the entire vehicle, followed by drawing out the lines, removing the wrap and shrinking the vinyl back to its original form. Finally they would scan in the sections. Creating a custom template for which to work from. His two designer’s would incorporate the 60s custom hotrod paint themes. Jack handled the airbrush on canvas art and once finished was scanned in, ready to be printed onto the vinyl. The brilliance of sunburst stacking, fish scales, fingerprinting, and Chantilly lace that even Mr Richardson’s “The Big Bopper,” would take a heavenly cruise in. Only he and his team knew to what degree they could take this craft and demonstrate to the hotrod lovers… That it can and it will be done! So how do you prove to the world that you’re the number one Wrapero? By out wrapping 223 other companies from 21 countries at the big stage of SEMA Show 2016 and that’s how you become the number one Wrapero in the world! Enter the son of Rocky, Nick Caminiti and his team and how they came to be crowned and now sit on the throne of our vinyl kingdom! A badass hombre of a Wrapero! Once you landed in Las Vegas and after viewing the competitors you knew this wasn’t going to be an easy win. You had some of the best pound-for-pound vinyl Wrapero’s beneath one roof, playing for each other’s throne. You knew the heavy weight was back to defend his title, Kevin “The Professa” of PG NOLA! Damn boy, homies The Joker lowrider was sure banging the vinyl! However the vinyl G-d was on the side of Nick and his team from Exotic Graphix. When Gas Monkey Garage’s Richard Rawlings announced the winner, of Avery Dennison’s “Wrap Like a King Challenge” the crown fit well. Now this Wrapero Nick Caminiti grants Wrapero Magazine a sit down, explains to us how they came from an Australian town, and now walk tall to display their vinyl crown.
Photography By: Angus Firestorm Films
WRAPERO: Please introduce yourself and tell us about your business? NICK: My name is Nick Caminiti and I’m the Director at Exotic Graphix P/L. We are a Melbourne (Australia) based company that is made up of 11 employees. We do a wide range of marketing and branding services but are experienced and tooled up to handle a custom one off wrap to a large Fleet roll out. WRAPERO: What was your inspiration for the wrap of “Toxic Rat”? NICK: My apprenticeship consisted of a custom painting back ground, Exotic Kustoms was my first business that offered custom paint and wraps so custom paint has always been a big part of my career, I’ve loved the hotrod/custom scene since I can remember and was fortunate enough to have built some cars with my family while growing up. The Ford Tudor was one of my most recent purchases that was always intended to be custom painted in the 60’s inspired designs. The scene unfortunately doesn’t support these types of cars/bikes to be wrapped, I was one of them people also that said these cars should always be painted not wrapped, but when WLK came up what better opportunity do you get to prove to the world that wraps can be designed/printed and installed just as good as Custom Paint. Don’t get me wrong custom paint is still an unbelievable art and will always be, but its great to see how far wraps have come and how close they can be compared to paint. WRAPERO: Please take us through the process of the design, from pencil and paper to digital? NICK: The design was always intended to stay with the 60’s custom paint theme, so a lot of research with the help of social media platforms of Pinterest, Instagram etc came in handy. The “Bobber” Motorcycle’s gave majority of the inspiration. I unfortunately don’t get time to pick up pencils anymore so straight to Photoshop I did some renderings at home in my spare time. Once I was close I brought this into work and pitched the idea to the guys, I then worked along side our two designers in recreating the pattern and textures in a mixture of Photoshop and Illustrator. They were a great help and found some quick yet accurate ways to get the patterns to look and feel airbrushed. The colour was easily chosen as we are known for always using magenta’s and pinks in our business logo and cars.
Choosing the name was one of the harder parts, we left this to the last minute and finally decided on “TOXIC RAT” this came about as we were trying to find words that had exotic in it, we were originally having a rat eating the letter “E” but scrapped that idea and just ran with it having a Rat Skull. The TOXIC lettering we used a contractor that does some amazing vector hand drawn lettering. He was amazing to deal with and nailed the brief on the font we were after. WRAPERO: Please take us through the process of the installation, from how the material was chosen to the installation process? NICK: The initial process was to make sure we had accurate to the millimeter templates of the entire vehicle as we knew the design was going to be 60’s inspired paneled out design. This was done by wrapping the entire vehicle drawing out the lines, removing the wrap and shrinking the vinyl back to its original state and scanning in the sections. We wanted to achieve the whole wrap with minimal joins or over laps, so every panel was wrapped to its finishing edge. We had to join the vehicle through the middle swage line so to cover the butt join we chose a 19mm spun gold leaf overlay. This worked perfect and disguised the join yet suited the 60’s feel. The material chosen was Avery Dennison’s SWF Diamond Series Silver. This was the closest match to a metal flake finish that we were chasing. We had no luck printing on the film so decided to print on the DOL1460 laminate to achieve the candy paint look which worked better than we could have imagined. The hardest part of the install was making the lines perfect even and consistent to the boarders. We worked out a quick way to diecut 12.5mm squares to use as guides to make lining up a lot easier as at the start we had no luck keeping it accurate. WRAPERO: What type of attention have you received, both before and after your win with Avery? NICK: The video has been amazing, we reached 35,000 views in 2 weeks, and had a great support from the Australian market. After winning the award, I still am unsure what’s happened, we have been contacted by so many people, and been congratulated by so many that I would never have thought would of known what we achieved.
The car has been asked to be put in magazines and invited to so many Hotrod shows here. I’m still overwhelmed by the whole experience. I’m not sure what it will bring for the company but feel we have at least got our name out in the market place. My main concern is not to get side tracked from Business, I owe it to my team to stay humble and concentrate on the business first and make sure our clients are getting looked after. If it were not for my team, family and clients we all wouldn’t be here. WRAPERO: How big has vinyl wrapping become in Australia? NICK: Its Massive haha, seriously it’s growing so quick over here, we have our issues with the weather being so hot but are managing that well. The industry is so young and I think its just at it’s beginning. We have some serious talent in OZ, I think we are always the forgotten country a bit that always inspires to be like the US or Europe, but after visiting SEMA we aren’t far behind, I hope this win can open opportunities up not just to us but for all the wrap companies in OZ and NZ. WRAPERO: Do you want to add anything else to this interview? NICK: I believe our team is up there with the best in the world. We can’t wait to see what 2017 brings! Nick plans to pass the keys down to his daughter! I can relate brother! We caught that BBQ on your tape; so next you slap that beef onto that grill, invite an American homeboy over for some Australian tacos, haha! -WM
Vehicle Name: Toxic Rat Year: 1930 Make: Ford Model: Tudor Wrap Shop: Exotic Graphx Vinyl: Avery
ake a little trip with me as we wind through the Mulholland Hills of Los Angeles. The views are stunning, the air is fresh and where the road guides your car. A place where couples have found their first love and while others have found there last breathe. It’s dangers and adventures! While you sit back in the cockpit of this freshly wrapped American beauty. Snaking through the curves with a feeling of nostalgia, an emotion that stirs up a peace that only bread and wine can bring. Brilliant design that’s held together by an amazing theme line. With it’s double bubble roof that was adopted from the 1957 Zagato by Alfa Romero Milano. You have the comfortability of driving this American muscle through the pebble filled road because as the rocks tap against the body of your ride, it’s fully protected! Photography By: Armenta Signature
You think about the hard work you’ve put in in order to purchase this snake. You’re accomplished and you’re satisfied. If you truly have a relationship with your vehicle you’ll know the man behind the newly redesigned Viper. The head of global design Ralph Gilles. At the young age of 17 he would write a letter to Lee Iaccoca head designer at Chrylser. Who famously said, “If you can find a better car, buy it.” Wouldn’t you know it, they wrote back? Mr Gilles dropped out of college after only 5 weeks. Living at home hiding in the basement, his brother came home for spring break when he could of stayed in sunny Florida with his homies, he decided to go back to a freezing cold Montreal! And go see his brother. He came home to find him in the basement, buried in papers, drawings of cars everywhere, what his brother saw was a young kid sitting wasting his talent. It was obviously there, right in front of him. His brother reminded him about that letter from Chrysler and asked him if he was going to do anything about that dream? Stayed up all night choosing his best artwork. You got a gift, let’s just get this done. His brother was not going away until he sent his work to Detroit. The letter and with the push of his father and brother Dr. Maxime Gilles would go onto work for Chrysler. The son of Haitian immigrants would go onto design one of the industry’s most game-changing car. The stylish Chrysler 300. The car would go onto to appear in music videos, we’d see Lee Iaccoca appear in a commercial, the car was owned by soon to be Barack Obama.
Former Presidents Obama’s 300 would go for sale on ebay for a starting bid of 1,000,000.00. Yeah that’s not a typo. Now back to your dream that you’re living. Now you’re a leader just like Ralph Gilles. Now you lead the way of the road! You can’t help but admire the beautiful surfacing of your car, with the music of your mufflers blazing, motor rumbling, sun is warming, the air fills your lungs, your hot lady friend reaches over and massages your head, your king of the… SMAAACK!!! A rock strikes the front window of your 2017 Dodge Viper ACR cracking the windshield and you snap back into reality! Your Sunday cruise just turned into a black Sabbath. You pull over and your hot lady friend see’s you cry like a child for the first time. Out the door or out the crack of your front windshield goes your bravado! So another dude swings by in his freshly wrapped Corvette! He open’s the passenger side door and in jumps your hot lady friend and they then zoom away into the sunset. You could of possibly avoided the cracked window and kept the hot lady friend! Now you got beat by the guy in the chrome bowtie! Why because he got his window wrapped! What you can get your windows wrapped? Oh yeah, that’s why our business kicks jackass! -WM
Photography By: Ezaac Lopez
Mother Kelly and son Collin
e was 17 years old, graduating on May 19th, then starting Pre-Med at Holy Cross College down here in New Orleans. His dream was to be a Neurosurgeon. His favorite car was a Lamborghini. He made me make him a promise years ago, that when he is a big time doctor, that I would wrap his first Lamborghini however he wanted. I shook his hand and told him that when he shows up to the shop in a Lambo, I will do whatever the hell he wants, ha-ha! He loved the Psycho Hurricane that we won WLK 2015 with. He was a big help with that car and that was his favorite car. There is a story behind this car and Collin and I’s moments with it. It’s a long story, but I will just say, he was there from beginning to the end helping with that car. He was with me at 5:00 am the day it was due doing the final touches, hand laying KPMF Starlight lamination on each and every spoke for each wheel as seen in the attached photo. He also laid some pin stripes, and helped clean it down to before it left. With that said, my son was never super affectionate. He was very genuine, but most kids don’t’ get emotional if you understand what I am saying. Anyways, when we pulled the car out of the shop for the first time, we were all in awe of how crazy it looked out in the sun. as I left to go take some quick photos and videos of it before the client left with it, my two other installers were fighting as to who was going with me, but I shot them down and said neither of you is going, Collin is! So we go on its maiden voyage, others are following to get photos/videos and when we get to the red light to turn back to go to the shop, Collin leaned over, gave me a big hug, then grabbed my hand and said “Pops, I am so proud of you and thank you for letting me be a part of this build, I love you!” that may have been the most genuine and affectionate moment he and I ever shared. It was beyond joy of getting the Christmas or birthday presents he asked for if you know what I mean. He had me crying at the red light. We went back to the shop, then left directly for the airport. We had already missed one of our flights to WrapsCon and ended up missing two. Like I said, there is more to this story, but long story short, that was my sons favorite type of car, and favorite car he helped us work on too. A friend of mine reached out to the owner, undenounced to me, but told him the full story. Two days later I get an envelope in the mail. Inside was the key to that car. Not sure you know this, but that car was burned down in a hate crime last year. Though that wrap wasn’t on it, the second wrap was which was at SEMAS 2015 in the Amani Forged booth, next to American Force Wheels. The insurance kept one key, the owner kept the other. So, this key he sent me is literally the only remaining piece to that car. The car that meant so much to the owner, to me and my son Collin. To everyone else, it’s just a key… to me, it’s the KEY that holds Collin & I’s greatest bonding experience, proudest moments & memories together. I have some of his ashes that I will keep her at the shop so he can look over me working and be a part of every job forever. I am working on having a custom urn made, something unique to my style and his also, something cool and different, not a fucking flowerpot. The key will then hang from this urn, so he will now have the key to his favorite car and his dream car! - Kevin Kempf Collin’s Father
ou see... Collin was smart, a breed of intelligence that could manipulate practitioners to believe that he was okay... So he would see a practitioner for a while and then they would discharge him to an as needed basis and that as needed basis would always come. Some time would pass and Collin would fall right back into some inappropriate behavior pattern and we were right back at square one. During Collin’s life he was hospitalized twice for suicidal ideations and once for suicide attempt. In between these in-patient stays, Collin continued with inappropriate behavior that landed him in quite a bit of trouble and during Collin’s 8th grade year I made the decision to put him in a Christian boarding school/treatment facility... allowing him to work on school, while work on himself. Collin claimed to be an atheist, this was not how he was raised and was really combative with the Christian education he was receiving at this facility. I would travel back and forth to him and eventually he came home after 4 months... that 4 months of him being gone was some of the most un-bearable days for me as a mother. I lost my hair, my eyelashes, weight, sleep, and quite frankly my own sanity... I was a mom, struggling to save my son’s life. Seven months later, Collin was back at Children’s Behavioral health after a failed attempt at suicide and had his last inpatient stay, that was 2 years ago and I begged the doctors to transfer him to a long term treatment facility, however, the doctors told me he did not need it and released him home. I placed Collin in intense one on one counseling again and eventually he was released. Collin’s tenth grade year things started to look up for Collin. He was accepted into the school he wanted to be in with the friends he wanted to be with, he was making college plans and meeting goals he had set for himself, however, his depression phases would go in and out. I then decided to start interviewing counselors and found one I thought Collin would really connect with and not manipulate and he did but Collin had a rough year academically tenth grade year and was not invited to return back to the school of his choice for his junior year. Collin had a pretty rough summer last summer (2016), this sent him into a very deep depression. He continued weekly counseling and pushed through each day... he began to grow increasingly worried about where he would go to school. I decided that summer to let Collin view and tour Christian and private schools... I told him he could pick the school of his choice, he was so excited to make this decision. He researched schools in our area and called to make appointments to tour. I told him lets look at this as a fresh start, a way for him to start over and be in the environment he thought was best for him and his education. We toured school after school and he finally settled on Crescent City Christian School and though he did not meet academic criteria to stay at his last school, his academic accomplishments afforded him the opportunity to graduate one year early at Crescent City Christian School. He was so excited and I was so excited to my boy excited about life for a change. He started Crescent City Christian School and they embraced him with open arms... he even had an interview with the principal before school started and he expressed to her that he did not believe in God but he felt that it was the right environment for him to successfully achieve his goals. She accepted him and embraced his spirit anyway, honestly, the whole staff did. The school year started and moved forward and Collin excelled in ways I had never seen. Collin got his driver’s license and a little job.
“Collin is an attractive child with mischievous gleaming eyes” was the opening statement on his very first Individualized Education Plan as a gifted and talented student. I will never forget reading that statement for the very first time and thinking, WOW, how true. Collin Archuleta was born on January 13th, 2000 at 7:49 pm and from the moment I laid eyes on my perfect little gift from God I knew that he was going to be a strong willed child. His determination and will to do life on his terms from the womb until the day he went to heaven was strong. You see when I was pregnant for Collin, a number of health issues arose and doctors presented to me that Collin was going to have a number of health issues, including decreased fetal growth and that his head would be too big for his body but Collin proved those doctors to be wrong. Collin was born a healthy 7 pounds, 12 ounces, 21 inches long and he came into this world kicking and screaming... a healthy set of lungs, I assure you and his head was a perfect 13 inches in circumference... must have been that big brain he was trying to show off to those doctors on those ultrasound pictures. I knew Collin was of high intelligence at a very young age. He always tested well over where he should have been on every test encountered throughout his life... from daycare to preschool to high school he excelled academically and was quite the social butterfly. Teachers would often elect him to help other students get acclimated socially or help them with a lesson they were struggling with. However, there was something else I noticed about Collin at a very young age, something was just not right, he often acted out in ways which deemed to be inappropriate... what was pre-diagnosed as ADHD. It wasn’t until later in Collin’s life (middle school) that I learned he actually did not have ADHD, which makes sense because the medication the doctor would prescribe really did not help but would rather make it worse... it turns out Collin suffered from depression and social anxiety and acting out was his outlet. But why? Why was my beautiful boy so plagued with depression and social anxiety? No one knows for sure, as he never came to terms with what was in his head that caused such depression and social anxiety. However, through many years of psychiatric evaluations, in-patient stays, family and individual counseling it seems there was a form of PTSD that Collin suffered and decided to file away in the back of his mind. To make a long story short Collin’s father and I were in a bad marriage and Collin witness some things no child should ever witness. Collin’s father and I eventually ended up separating for good when Collin was 4 and I filed for divorce, I was 4 months pregnant with my second son, Collin’s brother, Cody and it was during that time I really started to see that things were not right with Collin mentally (pre-diagnosed as ADHD). Though Collin’s father and I filed for divorce, our divorce was anything but amicable. The dysfunction continued and without divulging that whole story it ended badly. Collin’s father was killed in 2005. So why am I telling you this? Because, maybe this will save a life... a child, a mom, a dad, a family. After his father’s death Collin’s behaviors spiraled and I was on a mission to save his life. It was, at this point, Collin started to vocalize thoughts of wanting to die. It was, at this point, I was on a mission to seek out practitioners to get Collin through this and still the diagnosis was always ADHD.
He embraced his school work and excelled, he embraced meeting new people and evolved socially, he embraced getting into clubs, service work and leadership and eventually he embraced his spirituality when he went on retreat. The school retreat was mandatory for seniors as part of their graduation requirements and Collin did not want to go, however, eventually the head of leadership at the school, who Collin was very close to, was able to convince him to go. Collin was saved and accepted Jesus as his Lord and savior and from that point on Collin continued to blossom. I kept him in counseling and he was starting look into colleges, specifically Christian colleges, in which he had several full ride offers on the table. It was truly amazing and I would hit my knees every night and thank God for his work in my Collin’s life. He started to post reference to scripture on his instagram and text me bible versus and just randomly give me cards with bible versus for me to look up. The last 8 months of Collin’s life were the best months of his life... but that all changed on the evening of March 30th, 2017, he and a friend had gotten themselves in some major trouble and though he seemed to be in good spirits through this bump in the road, in his head the depression had set in but this time he hid it and on the morning of April 17th, 2017, when I left for work, Collin made the decision to end his battle with depression and took his own life. Collin’s life was not all doom and gloom but when the moments of darkness came they hit hard. In between the moments of darkness Collin was a normal boy, he enjoyed music, video games, playing soccer, long boarding, hanging out with friends, and watching Grey’s Anatomy. Collin was on the soccer team and played the goalie position and he was good, really good. Collin also loved to travel and I traveled with him and his brother often. He loved exploring new places and seeing what the rest of the world looked like. He had goals, hopes and dreams just like every other child. Collin had always talked about being an mechanical engineer. He loved to take things apart and learn more about how things worked, however, as Collin became a teenager he interest changed and he became fascinated with the brain and how it worked and he decided he would go into college with his focus on pre-med and eventually pursue Neurology. I championed those goals for him and continuously reminded him that he was capable of anything he put his mind to and that I would always be here to support his dreams and do anything possible to help him meet his goals. I wanted so badly to see him graduate high school and meet his goals... I love and miss him so very much. Those who know me, I mean really know me know that I spent just about everyday of my life trying to save his. I fought a long and hard fight... trying every option I thought would help... I never gave up, I never stopped fighting... there was nothing I was not willing to try in an attempt to save him, absolutely nothing. In the end, I lost, I failed... but I know that God will use Collin’s story for good and that is why I have started this fund because though my beautiful boy is no longer walking by my side, I know his spirit lives on God will give me the strength I need to help others and NEVER STOP FIGHTING!!! -Kelly Patureau. Collin Archuleta’s mother, Kevin’s ex and still best friend.
Kevin Kempf Owner of PG NOLA and his son Collin
God will use Collinâ€™s story for good and that is why I have started this fund because though my beautiful boy is no longer walking by my side, I know his spirit lives on God will give me the strength I need to help others and NEVER STOP FIGHTING!!! ...but I know that
Interview By: Alvaro “Ace” Armenta
Photography By: Armenta Signature
hen you first walk up and meet Mr. Torosian, you definitely feel that this dude lives up to the first syllables of his last name “Toro.” Toro in Spanish and Italian is translated to bull. He’s built like a Mack truck and has tattoos that are reminiscent of the Japanese mafia style, Yakuza. Jack Torosian looks like a few of our childhood heroes, Hulk Hogan, Rambo, Schwarzenegger and Jose Canseco. He’s not known like our heroes but Jack is a neighborhood celebrity in our own Hollywood. So I decided to have the photoshoot and interview at his place of business on the world famous Hollywood Boulevard to capture that magic. Or maybe it’s more for nostalgic reasons, because as a child my grandmother, mother and I would eat at this same location back when it was a major food chain. Nonetheless as we are setting up for the shoot Jack offers us something off his menu. He quickly disappears and reappears with the softest, most squishiest, sweetest thing I have ever seen. It’s juxtaposition! Jack’s yoked and his business sells pastries (most likely using egg yolks, oh God). As I finish taking my first bite I quickly look up cause I can feel this heavy stare and its Jack looking at me, like a child that’s cooked a special breakfast for their parent. We make eye contact, there’s a slight hesitation on my part because I’m thinking of my daughter that’s highly allergic to peanuts and there’s a slight guilt that I’m feeling biting into the pastry. Since I will only eat what my princess can eat. Sorry baby girl. Well, I finally snap back into reality and tell Jack, “Delicious!” He smiles softly and says thank you. I look over at Big Al and by the confectioners sugar covering his face, I’m sure he seconds my emotion! Jack begins telling us about his business Papillon Bakery, his family and how his wife and Jack are expecting twins. Finally we move into talking about his Spider-man vs Venom BMW i8 and when we get to talking about his inspiration, Jack lights up and the biggest smile cracks his face... “My son, he’s my inspiration, I did for Niko!” You can find his son Niko Torosian on IG, he’s a mini celebrity!!! Let’s roll. WRAPERO: Jack you want to let them know a little something about yourself? JACK: My name is Jack Torosian. I’m a local business owner, an entrepreneur. I’m a car lover, I love my cars. WRAPERO: You know we’re coming with those vinyl wraps. So what inspired you to go Spider-man with it? JACK: My boy. I have a two year old, he’s a superhero guy. His first superhero was Superman and then Spider-man. Superman I didn’t think it would look cool on this but then I said Spider-man would do it. WRAPERO: This is some artwork. What was your input on this artwork? JACK: I wanted to be as close to the last Spider-man as possible. It was based on the movie, we went off of whatever had. WRAPERO: You hit right on the notch, right on top.
“It’s all about being original and coming out with creative ideas. Separating yourself from the rest, that’s where the wraps come in.”
You just got to be original, you know what I mean? Do something different. It gets a lot more attention then anything else out there. -Jack Torosian
WRAPERO: What are the pro’s of wrapping your vehicle? JACK: When I first bught this car nobody had it. They were expensive and then they started doing the special leases and killed the market. Flooded it, every kid was driving an i8. So I was like I got to do something to be different, to change it up. So I don’t fit in like everybody else. WRAPERO: We’re here on Hollywood Blvd, one of the most famous streets in the world. How’s the atten tion for you when your driving? JACK: Amazing! You just got to be original, you know what I mean? Do something different. It gets a lot more attention then anything else out there. WRAPERO: Have you had any feed back from any BMW followers or enthusiast? How do they feel about you wrapping your vehicle? JACK: Since it’s a i8, it’s a newer ones that they don’t really focus on much and everything I’ve heard so far has been very positive. It’s one of a kind so really can’t go wrong with that. WRAPERO: Let me tell you it’s a beautiful car I don’t see where anyone will tell you anything different. WRAPERO: How was your experience with the applicator and the shop? JACK: All man, Elevated Auto Concepts there amazing. I’ve never had a bad experience with them. WRAPERO: What we see are a lot of performance luxury vehicles wrapped. How do you feel it making its jump to different genres? JACK: I got my Jeep wrapped and I got my truck wrapped (Dodge Ram). It’s all about being original and coming out with creative ideas. Separating yourself from the rest, that’s where the wraps come in. The fact that you keep your car original underneath it all and you can change up at anytime you want to, as much as you want to. WRAPERO: You want to give a shout out? JACK: Let me shout out to my boy’s at Elevated. Mickey and Garo for doing what they did, I think there one of the best in town. Big shout out to my boys for always taking care of me.
Vehicle Name: Spider Man vs Venom | Year: 2015 | Make: BMW | Model: i8 Wrap Shop: Elevated Auto Concepts Wrap Designer: Armenta Styling Vinyl: 3M Silver
WRAPERO: Jack, It’s been a pleasure brother. JACK: Always. Appreciate you guys. -WM
o need to reintroduce the Champion… Wrapero covers Exotic Graphx and the “Toxic Rat” in this same very issue! So yeah, Nick, Rocky and the Exotic Graphx team walked in as champions and they bounced as champions! “Rocky it’s the chance of a lifetime, you can’t pass it by, what do you say? Yo Adrian it’s me Rocky!” We had to go there! But hey, what a fitting name for a wrapping champs father!!! After passing on a Chevrolet C10 pickup they decided to choose a car that would make the wrapping process extremely difficult. So they decided on a 1963 VW Beetle because there are no straight panels on it. After searching, Nick and his father Rocky found a car in Strussfer, Australia. With only 6 weeks to go before the competition started they had to push it to the limit and it was game on! I truly believe that the four shoulders that are carrying our industry into the future is both Nick Caminiti from Exotic Graphix and Kevin Kempf from PG NOLA™. They’ve not only mastered the installation process, along with a strong sense of what will work according to the vehicles bodylines but above all else they possess an artistic gift. A gift that you’re born with, it’s not learned, period. This is what will ultimately separate the diamond from the zirconium! Practice does not make prefect, stop lying, practice only makes improvement. With both these two gentlemen we see two figures that are in the trenches and we should tip our hats to what they have done and are doing for our industry. They’ve taken it further than any magazine, trade show, polo wearing vinyl rep, or any other showcase has taken it. Where have they gone? They’ve stepped up and are going toe-to-toe with the paint industry, and by God they’re winning! -WM
Photography BY: Caprice Photography
Vehicle Name: Leiâ€™d Low Year: 1963 Make: VW Model: Beetle Wrap Shop: Exotic Graphx Vinyl: Avery
LET’S MOVE THIS MOUNTAIN!
CREATING REALISTIC 3D WOOD - Get a photo of timber - Grey-scale it - Break it down into layers - Like elevation contours on a map - Where each layer had to go - Where the highlights had to hit - Finally settling on 11 layers - 20 hours of cutting time - 2 days of weeding out the vinyl - Avery 900 Black | 15 microns thick - 1105 64/60 Laminate - Framed the wood with PVC boards - Creating a varnished look by printing on the 64/10 - Cut the heads of the bolts and glued them in to achieve that look of real bolts FINDING OLD PARTS - They hit the junkyards!
TEMPLATING BEGINGS - Brainstorming about the design: Knew it was going to be a woody. - Dad Rocky pulled the car apart to begin templating - Wherever paint would go they wanted wrap to go - They started with the roof - After having problems with the heat-gun. Rocky created a jig where they could use an inferred-light to have consistent heat - They setup a laser to get a horizontal line so when the print file was setup they knew it would be in the exact same spot BODY AND PAINT - Wanting a perfect surface they decided to take the Beetle over to a body shop where they would do bodywork and apply three layers of paint THE DASH - After thinking that it would have to be done in several pieces it was templated in one full piece and installed as so - The deign goes around the dash and landing the wood with pin-lines, all in one piece THE DESIGN - After having all the templates done they were scanned in and the design process begun - Not wanting to go as wild as last year’s entry Nick decided to go with a soft palm tree design to compliment the wood - To get that custom paint finish they decide to go with Avery’s Supreme Wrap Diamond White
ROOF - With the car being so low they wanted to compliment the design with a mural - After research Nick decided on a Tiki design to go with the wood finish - Brian Designs teamed up with EG and banged out an amazing design - Nick’s graphics team would tie it in with a vine design that flowed down the back of the Beetle THE STANCE - Narrowed the front beam by 4inches with the original wheels - Widened the real wheels by 8 inches THE WHEELS - After powder coating they wrapped the wheels with a wood finish - With the original center caps of the VW ACCESSORIES - EG found a swamp cooler and ordered it in from Las Vegas and it too was also wrapped - Adding a roof rack. When receiving the rack the slates were in a pin finish. So EG decided to have them wrapped in a timber finish - EG also got Venetian blinds for the rear window and too had those wrapped with a black & white image - Rocky extended the gear stick and that too was wrapped with a timber finish - Adding a windscreen visor with graphics - Would not be a woody without a surfboard. Ordered up a handcrafted board - Tinted Glass was achieved by printing the desired color on laminate and installing - The chrome bumpers were sent out and re-dipped - Tying in the steering wheel with a mother of pearl and timber finish. To add another level of durability they had it sprayed - Finally slapping some Mexican blankets over the seats Excerpts from the documentary: Exotic Graphx WLK 2017 Entry “Lei’d Low” To View The Documentary In It’s Entirety Please Visit YouTube: Exotic Graphx WLK 2017 Entry “Lei’d Low” WRAPERO MAGAZINE
rapero links up with The Professa to school y’all once again in this creative art form. While taking the time to watch the short film on the creation of “Because ‘Merica,” you realize the artistic ability that goes into a wrap. It starts way before the vinyl is ever unboxed. For The Professa a name that he was christened with back in his high school days, it started as a graphic designer that opened a company Professa Grafix, he then shortened it to PG NOLA™, Professa Grafix New Orleans Louisiana. Who else has a self designed mascot cartoon character in our industry that looks badass but The Professa? If y’all read our other piece on PG NOLA™, I’ll write it again... Show us your range! From an exotic to an oldie! Now, American born and bred muscle! Our beautiful and glorious stars and stripes fits perfect on these American twins! No one else could of done it better. Chrome is no easy vinyl to work with, now add a design that needs to be seamless, yeah You can really make a mess of things quickly! This design, like any piece of art; art is in the eye of the beholder. For us, it’s always good to see that we’re a nation that’s patriotic, that we’ll never forget those that lost there lives for our safety and freedom, for those that continue to protect and serve. We got the most beautiful flag in the world, why not show it off on some of the most beautiful body’s to roll out of Detroit, designed and applied by the master Wrapero The Professa! A lot of us were raised to love God, Family and Country. So thank you Kevin for this beautiful piece of art and for honoring our U.S. of A! AMERICAN ME!!! Here’s to PG NOLA™, The Professa and the new team player Cody and to Collin watching from the balconies of heaven!!! You know we’ll be here brother, bang it my boy! From the state of candy paint and chrome dripping, show them and us how it’s done! -WM KEEP READING FOR: Excerpts From The Short Film: Exotic Graphx WLK 2017 Entry “PG NOLA™ “Because ‘Merica” To View The Short Film In It’s Entirety Please Visit YouTube: PG NOLA™ WLK 2017 Entry “Because ‘Merica” WRAPERO MAGAZINE
Hey y’all this is Kevin “The Professa” Kemp out of New Or-
leans with PG NOLA™. We’re here today to show y’all “2017 Wrap Like A King” entry. This year we had the incredible pleasure of working on not one but two, not only one and two but thee number 1 and number 2, 2017 Z06 Supercharged Callaway Corvettes. Dynoed at 850 horsepower, for two incredible clients.
Clients came to us because they know what to expect. Creativity, wildness something unlike anything else. So there only request was, they wanted to scream America. They just said, God Bless America, red white and blue. Simple request. That’s all that they asked for. After that they handed off the keys, told us whenever it’s ready just let me know, we’ll pick them up. So of course this being an Avery contest, nothing but Avery products were used. We printed on the HP 365 Latex, on silver chrome, and we also used 1105 with 1460 laminate and 6460 laminate.
We went above and beyond like everything else. The how idea for this project was seamless! The design from the fender had to match the hood, the hood had to match the bumper, the bumper had to match the fender again. The rear quarter, the rear hatch met the roof, continues, seamless. All the jams are done, inside and out. Hopefully y’all enjoy it just as much as we did. -Kevin “The Professa” Kempf
“Clients came to us because they know what to expect. Creativity, wildness something unlike anything else.” - KEVIN “THE PROFESSA” KEMPF
RMENTA STUDIOS & WRAPSTAR introduces host and head judge Kevin “The Professa” Kempf of PG NOLA™. Known for his award winning artistic designs and flawless wraps that cover the bodies of cars, trucks, exotics, classics, hovercrafts, boats and much more. With more than a dozen New Orleans Saint’s players. Gracing the covers and being featured in countless magazines. However he’s also known for his charitable help from flood victims, paraplegic assistance, terminally ill children and bringing awareness to breast cancer and autism. The Professa not only brings his wisdom and knowledge but also possesses showmanship, an edge and look that are needed to lead a competition like WRAPSTAR. ABOUT WRAPSTAR WRAPSTAR will be an American reality television competitive series that will feature a General Wrapper and there team of vinyl artist and installers. The wrap teams will compete in various challenges, showcasing their design and installation skills. The wrap teams will be judged by renowned wrappers from the USA and from around the world. Each episode will feature a new challenge proving more difficult in the design, installation process and timing. One or more contestants will be eliminated from each episode. The final contestant and there team will receive a grand prize and the badge of “The General Wrapero.” For More Details Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org CREATED BY: LOUIS A DeLOMBRE PRODUCTION BY: ARMENTA STUDIOS Stay informed by visiting: www.ArmentaStudios.com Follow us at: instagram.com/armentastudios Follow Kevin Kempf: instagram.com/PGNOLA
PG NOLAâ„˘ ACCOLADES FOR 2017 3M Preferred Graphics Installer 3M Endorsed Knifeless Tape Installer 3M Endorsed Architectural Installer (DiNoc) Orafol Certified Vehicle Wrap Installer Sott International Front Soldier DUB W-Rap Star installer
e’ve been blessed to work in the graphic arts industry for the past 23 years. Within the automotive design and styling world for the past 13 years and wrapping for the last 9 years. From the moment my high school professor and mentor Mr. Hersey Fortenberry, told us to prepare ourselves with business cards and hit the road and find businesses that we could do work for, it was on! I would go on and design the cards on a computer, waxing the print design, photographing the artwork, burning the plates, running the presses, cutting the paper down to its trim size and packaging my business cards. Armenta Styling was birthed in that high school print shop 21 years ago. By the age of 24 we opened up a home-based studio. Our first customer was in the classic car community and our next was Cadillac. It was difficult early on, how can companies trust you with no portfolio, you know you’re own capabilities and what you can deliver, but no show no go. So we reached out to a community that we had grownup around, classic automobiles. They believed in our ideas and our portfolio was ready. Running into a marketing manager from Cadillac, I present my work and the next thing you know I’m meeting with the GM, he takes a look at my concepts for Cadillac and approves them within minutes! Tells the manager, pay the man and he’s off.
Photography By: RyanQ Wang 129
SECTION 1: THE SIT DOWN First we get to know the customer and we talk about what colors they like, artists work they may be familiar with, art genres they may be interested in, do you want to say something with your wrap or is it just for show? As the artist I will need a clear project description and vision. SECTION 2: CRAFTING AN INNOVATIVE CONCEPT: THROUGH PENCIL Yeah you need to push a pencil! A computer is only as good as its artist. The pencil is mightier then the mouse! So if you have too, take an art class. SECTION 3: DESIGNING A designer needs to understand how the graphics will translate into the form of the vehicle once it is installed. TEMPLATES At times the company will provide the template. If not you can find templates online or finally if you’re provided the vehicle you can have it photographed and measured out to have a precise sized canvas. PRESENTATIONS Make it clean and simple. Concepts lay out against a white background. APPROVAL AND SIGN-OFF It’s a matter of a simple signature on a printout or an “approved” response through an email. PHOTOS All photos used should be high-resolution, 300dpi plus. TURNAROUND Varies from design complexity but we put it within a week for the first rendering to be designed.
SECTION 4: THE PRINTING Find yourself a print house you can work with that understands our business. Customers like it when you can offer a full service, I have a print shop that’s my go to and installers that I trust enough to raise my hand for their service. COLOR MATCHING If it’s corporate, allow the company to provide you with their corporate colors. My printer uses a Roland, so I’ve been provided with a Roland print book of colors. It means printing a Coke red or a Miami Vice hot pink! Not only knowing what printer your pressman uses is important but also knowing your Pantone colors is extremely important! RESOLUTION We’ve worked with templates that when reading for print drop to 72dpi. We’ve experienced blurriness on test prints. The higher the better! 300dpi plus. KNOW YOUR VINYL’S It’s always good to have swatch books on hand when meeting with a client or for a conference call. Again, offer a full service. SECTION 5: THE INSTALLATION Did I stress it enough, full service! Make the job of your printer and installer’s life easier. These steps allow them to better serve; offer a faster and more precise turnaround. INSTALLATION KEY A wrap is collaborative process up until the time the vinyl gets applied to the car. You need to be on call and provide a copy of your printed panels and where they should be installed. It allows for an easy install or you can make the installation process difficult if not properly prepped for print! Yes the design is your job but a lot of designers fail when it comes to completing the job and that’s file preparation for press!
Template printed with pencil design. Topped with color pencil to show seperation of colors.
Template scanned and traced in Illustrator. Blue shows shade one.
SECTION 6: THE TOOLS OF DESIGNER Here are the tools that I normally use to design a wrap. If other forms of art are requested I have a team that can produce any style, even if it’s a fine art painting, we can produce this off canvases that we can then scan or photograph, drop into a template and print for a wrap install. HARDWARE Apple iMac. Second monitor. Wacom tablet. Light table. SOFTWARE Adobe Creative Cloud. Our go to: Illustrator and Photoshop. ART SUPPLIES Rulers, geometry stencils, colored pencils, led pencils, inks, erasers, etc. LEARNING THE HARD WAY: BACK UP YOUR HARD DRIVES WITH HARD DRIVES After having a hard drive take a dump on me. Then having to pay a crazy amount for data recovery! Just purchase a backup and a backup for the backup!
Traced in Illustrator. Red shows shade two. The third shade is background.
SECTION 7: THE BUSINESS Take your training, experience and reputation into consideration. How complex is the design and what is your time worth. PRICING I guarantee you’ll be haggled on price. Remember the most unappreciated worker is and will always be the artist! Since the computer does all the work for us! My great grandmother would tell the family, “If you can’t charge then you shouldn’t have a business.” After the death of her husband, she went on to start a business that supported 3 toddlers and her, so yeah I’ve listened to the lady. WHEN TO GET PAID? Immediately. Once you begin brainstorming. Time is money! CLOSING TIME Our biggest lesson in business is to always keep the faith.
ARMENTA STYLING: THE ART OF THE VINYL WRAP TUTORIAL We’ll be offering an online tutorial of our process in designing a wrap for a vehicle. The same design that we used on this very car that’s featured. So make sure to hit up our website at: www.ArmentaStyling.com for more details!
Big thanks to Henry, owner of ESCC Motorsports for commissioning us for this piece of artwork. Give him a jingle: ESCC Motorsports | 2338 Peck Road | City of Industry, California 90601 626.838.3722 | www.ESCCMotorsports.com Designer: Armenta Styling | Wrap Shop: ESCC Motorsports | Vinyl: 3M | Photographer: Ryan Q Wang Car: BMW | Model: M5
ithin the high fashion world, you choose the most beautiful dresses, to cover the bodies of the most famous models, to walk the runways of the most viewed fashion weeks, that ultimately make the covers of the top fashion magazine’s from around the world, that inspire styling consultants, to wrap their A-list celebrities in these dresses, that made there way from the fashion houses, of the most renowned designers, to be worn on the red carpet, by the most viewed artist. Now these celebrities are cars and their threads are the vinyl wraps. Every vinyl wrap needs a dress studio and we present to you Garo’s wrap studio, GK Customs. Now steps in Garo. He’s cut from the same cloth. Both his parents’ work in the fashion industry and you can see where Garo gets his trained eye for detail. As Garo walks in you’ll notice right away, his heavily tattooed arms, stocky built and height that could be intimidating to some but he’s quick to offer you a drink or a bite of his meal preps. By the way he speaks, in his joking manner, he makes you feel right at home in his shop. We talk a bit about cars; he works on a fleet of exotic cars but where we find a common ground is talking about classics. Garo then begins to open up; “I built my first go cart at the age of 12. By the age of 14 I purchased a 1990 Chevy. By 17 I owned a 2000 Civic Si, which my grandmother helped me purchase. I owned these cars before I had a license to drive. I’ve always worked. When I was 15 I had saved up 10,000 dollars from my lawn business. At 16 I was working at a gas station and by 17 I began working at a wheel shop where I stayed for 5 years before working with my childhood friend Vic at Elevated. It was now time to open up shop and run my own business.” Garo’s very big on family. I’ve been blessed to meet his brother Sako, we talk about small things like Peeky Blinders. He’s wrapped his sister’s car. His wife helped him to finalize his business’ logo. He’s proud that both his parents work in the fashion industry. When I tell him that that’s where he must of got his gift for customizing cars. He lights up and says, “Oh yeah, my father’s a master!”
Photography By: Emil Minasian
When we ask him what’s the biggest service he can offer his new customers? “ No cheap way out! I do on someone else’s car like my own. No half ass jobs!” says Garo. It’s time to chop it up at the shop!
“Just go for it! Learn the craft, look for a spot, and open up shop. You’ll never know if you don’t give it a try.” -Garo
“The experience was overwhelming. You see it’s a childhood dream that through hard work, the support of family, friends and my wife, I’ve been able to make into a reality.” -Garo
WRAPERO: Hello Garo, please tell us how you got into vehicle wrapping and for how long have you been in the business? Garo: Well I started working on cars in my youth. Ultimately this all transferred into wrapping vehicles. However my gift lies in having a designer’s eye for customization. WRAPERO: What was the experience like opening your own shop after so many years of working for others? What emotions did you feel? Garo: The experience was overwhelming. You see it’s a childhood dream that through hard work, the support of family, friends and my wife, I’ve been able to make into a reality. About my feelings, man that’s private, lol. WRAPERO: What’s been the hardest obstacle that could have derailed your dream? Garo: It’s not allowing the obstacles to stop you but to build you up! Whether it’s employers, people or yourself unbelief on whether it’s time to open shop. WRAPERO: Who has been your biggest motivation? Garo: My wife and my family. WRAPERO: You have an impressive shop. How important is it to have a well-manicured wrap shop? Garo: Super important! If you want people to trust you with leaving their cars over night, you have to literally show your customers by your shops appearance that you first care about your property. Ugly shop equals ugly work. WRAPERO: What’s the turnaround for a full wrap install? Garo: Well from disassembling, to preparing the surface, washing and claying, to installing the wrap to assembling the vehicle. We’re looking at 3-4 days, longer if this includes door jams or any other hidden body parts. Like interior pieces. WRAPERO: How big has vinyl wrapping become in your area? Garo: It’s become huge! Not only your daily drivers but exotics also trust us with this fine process of wrap. Man, we even have American custom cars and motorcycles coming in for a wraps! It’s insane bro. WRAPERO: Your shop offers both color change and themed wraps. What else do you offer to compliment the wraps? Garo: We’re a one-stop shop. We can lower your car, custom rims, performance tires, audio and video, window tint, anything that can go on your vehicle, give us a call. WRAPERO: What advice could you give other aspiring Wrapero’s that are looking to open up a shop in our industry? Garo: Just go for it! Learn the craft, look for a spot, and open up shop. You’ll never know if you don’t give it a try. WRAPERO: Do you want to add anything else to this interview? Garo: Yes. Visit us at www.GKCustoms.com, we offer all your automotive custom needs.
Wrap Shop: GK Customs Year: 2018 Car: Mercedes Benz Model: AMG GT Vinyl: 3M Color: Sheer Luck Green
Yes there is a lot of needless competition, some friendly but at other times hurtful. Base your design on the ability to create innovative designs! Not only the medium that it’s being printed on. You see, what sets wrap shops apart isn’t only the type of vinyl that’s being used, nor how big you talk but what sets the great ones apart is the flawless quality and designs that you can deliver your customer. Will you turn heads or will you just turn stomachs. So instead of tearing down a fellow wrap brother or wrap sister in our closely-knit community we need to bring light to our industry. We need to take it to the world, not keep it in our industry and build a wall around it to keep those so called new wrap heads out! It happens at all levels. Blessings Garo on your new venture brother! -WM
Photography By: Heather A DeLombré for Armenta Signature
s my photographer and I walk into Giovanna’s secret headquarters, Greg quickly greets us. I tell Greg that I’m looking for Art, “oh yeah that’s my brother.” Art walks over and tells us that Diko will be arriving shortly. Art like only great businessmen do begins to tell us about the history of Giovanna. How they’re a cut about the rest and that Diko is always one to help those in the automotive industry (even though he’s not reciprocated or forgotten by some) and is a beacon of light for the automotive entrepreneur. You can hear the love and passion that Art has for the Giovanna family. He’s been with Diko since 1999. Greg now walks by and ushers us into their office area, where the air-conditioning feels like heaven in this California heat. Greg offers us the conference table and out comes the equipment and the camera starts snapping. The workers are quick to organize the cars for the shoot. Not to long after we arrive walks in this dude with the energy of a wild buck. He’s wearing pilot sunglasses, blue shorts, virgin white shoes with a pinch of red and a white linen type shirt. The shirts unbuttoned from the top to about the breast area and you can see a gleaming crucifix hanging from its chain. He’s quick to offer us water; he looks like he needs it more then us but we are quick to accept (remember the California heat). This is the first time we meet Diko in person, if you’re in the automotive industry you either heard about him or his company WTW Corp. So now we’re standing directly across from him, he still looks like he needs that drink of water but orders us to write, “I only take my cars to Mike from Elevated Auto Concepts to have them wrapped, make sure you include that in your article.” Diko is now in front of the camera, there is no down time here at Giovanna (as we can clearly see with his workers, that bounce from cleaning rims, sweeping the showroom area, maneuvering the forklift, to moving his exotic cars). The last photo snaps and we are now sitting down for the interview, he’s soft-spoken, polite and has a very polished way of speaking. Later on we meet his father and you can clearly see and hear from where Diko has inherited his etiquette.
Diko Sulahian is no stranger to the automotive industry. After almost having a dream crushed by the European wheel companies that Diko had brought to the states. He had designed, fitted and coached these manufactures in what was hot in the market. Making a cool 5 million in his first year of distributing wheels. The manufactures after witnessing his immediate growth decided not to renew his contract, bumping him off after only a year. Diko was now married and with the birth of his first daughter Giovanna, he set out to do what he does best, reinvent the wheel! Diko’s one of the most talked about wheel manufacturer in the world! He’s christened himself “The King Of Wheels.” Known for designing some of the most beautiful and most recognized luxury wheels from around the world. Giovanna wheels can be seen rolling on the vehicles of A-list celebrities to professional athletes. Diko’s his own designer, with the gift to design a wheel that not only fits one make and model like a factory rim but has the ability to craft a look, fit and finish for a variety of vehicles. This is as difficult as designing a shoe that can compliment both a designer suit on the red carpet, to your favorite lucky blue jeans. No wonder Giovanna Wheels would be an inspiration for Avery Dennison to create vinyl films that would revolutionize the wrap industry. WTW Corp and Avery Dennison is now headed back to SEMA 2016. Should we expect more colors from the innovative mind of Diko Sulahian and Avery’s ability to deliver the vinyl? The wait is over let us find out.
“...Why wrap that car?... The tuner people that are so into the factory cars will always think that way. Thank God that’s less than 50% of the market place...” - Diko 143
WRAPERO: PLEASE TELL US ABOUT YOUR FATHERS BUSINESS? DIKO: We are originally from Lebanon. My dad was always in the tire business since I was a kid, so I grew up in the tire business. He was into cars always. So it was in my bloodline. WRAPERO: HOW DID YOU GET INTO WHEELS? DIKO: I had two and three year contracts with these companies; they were non-existence in the United States. I was bringing them in and after marketing their brand; I created a demand for their products. All three of the companies I did this with decided not to renew our contract, and said we’ll give you California as a territory, when I brought the brands to the United States. Around this time I got married, so my story is, I started manufacturing wheels when my daughter Giovanna was born. So they weren’t renewing my contracts, I was the small guy that did five million dollars a year of business at that time, which was a ton of money and still is a ton of money, but to these snobs I wasn’t good enough. They thought if this little guy can do five million dollars, we’d go to the United States and do more then that. The way I grew up it’s all about loyalty and relationships. I thought to myself, God is it this bad? This is real life? So when Giovanna was born it just inspired me, I said I’m designing these wheels for these people, I’m telling them what the engineering is, I’m telling them how it needs to fit, I was basically teaching the manufactures how to market it to the United States and after creating their brands they just cut me out. So I thought I could do this myself. I have the financial backing to do this. That was my motivation to start my own wheels manufacturing company. I started Giovanna and two years later my other daughter was born, Gianelle, and I started Gianelle Designs. GFG is a combination of Giovanna Gianelle Forged. KOKO couture is my 9-yearold son, his name is KOKO, and he’s named after my dad. All the inspirations are from my kid’s names. The main inspiration was getting screwed over by these European snobs that no longer exist in the United States. What goes around comes around. WITH THIS EXPERIENCE HOW DID YOU NOT ALLOW IT TO MAKE YOU BITTER? DIKO: You have to be intelligent about it, you got to be business minded. My dad taught me the business since I was a kid, I’ll laugh all the way to the bank. I didn’t allow it to emotionally get to me. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t upset but I’m not going to let anger inside of me. Not allowing me to do what I have to do for my family.
It was more of an energy source that they gave me by doing that and gave me the motivation to do what I have to do. It was a good lesson learned because it instilled in me to maintain my integrity and loyalty with all my customers because you have to be that way. You have to go thought the motions and learn this as you grow up and make sure you don’t bite the hand that feeds you. Support the people that are supportive of you, good or bad you have to go through it. We all go through good days, bad days, wealthy days, poor days, healthy days, sick days, so you got to just roll through the punches. WRAPERO: WHAT IS YOUR INSPIRATION FOR THE WRAPS? DIKO: I trust Mike completely with my cars. So I just let him do what he wants to do. I do have certain ideas that I give him. A lot of my ideas are not real and they can’t come to reality but he can some how manipulate it. Like the Lamborghini SV that we did. I said I want to do some light details to it, I want to do that because when we did the P1 a couple of years ago we did the complete TRON effect, that TRON effect didn’t even exist at that time. So we did that TRON effect on this P1, where we laid the wrap and left the natural outline of the car color on the edges. When I got the Aventador SV and the car was black with white detail on the inside, I said I want to do white details to bring out the white in the car and he came up with that theme. It’s a combination but he’s the master at it, so whatever he says I go with. I’m very loyal to my customers, I’m very loyal to my business partners that I do business with, who I collaborate with like Elevated Auto Concepts. If it’s a 50 thousand dollar Camaro or a 1.5 million dollar P1, I allow them to touch and wrap my cars and do what they got to do. It’s more about relationships and whom you trust, who you’re going to go to the next level with. WRAPERO: GIOVANNA AND ELEVATED AUTO CONCEPTS, HOW DID THIS REATIONSHIP COME ABOUT? DIKO: Art, he’s like my little brother. He’s been with me over 10 years now. Art introduced me to Mike from Elevated. He told me, Mike’s new and they got a small place, they do good work, I trust them, see if we could get them some cars. I was hesitant at first, who’s this guy Mike in Pasadena?
Cars: MB + Lambo + Camaro + Rolls Royce Vinyl: Avery
I don’t know him; I’m not a snob with my cars but I was like are you sure? Yeah, Yeah these guys are good. The vinyl color matte red was just introduced. So the first car he did for me was in 2011, the Ferrari FF, it had just come out. Mike wrapped the new Ferrari FF with the vinyl color matte red, which was a huge hit! Plus Mike also wrapped a 458 Spider matte yellow. So to say the least I had faith in him, I gave him million dollars worth of cars and said here and Mike didn’t let me down. Since then it’s been carte blanche. WRAPERO: WHAT DO YOU TELL SOMEONE THAT SAYS YOUR TAKING AN EXOTIC CAR AND COVERING UP A BEAUTIFUL THING WITH A WRAP? DIKO: We’ve had a lot of haters and they say why ruin a perfect car? Why wrap that car? Why put wheels on that car? The tuner people that are so into the factory cars will always think that way. Thank God that’s less than 50% of the market place, if not then we’d all be out of business. I don’t let shallow people get to me; I do what I have to do. I have blinders on most of the time. I do what satisfies me and what keeps me happy; I don’t pay attention to anybody else. WRAPERO: HOW DID THE GIOVANNA LICENSING COME ABOUT WITH AVERY? DIKO: Couple of years ago Avery wanted to push the envelope and come up with some additional colors that they wouldn’t normally do. After meeting a few times they decide to do a Giovanna edition Avery line. That’s where we collaborated. What I brought to the table was my vision of the colors and how they need to be. There are a lot of colors that are 20,000 or 40,000-dollar options. That matte grey that we have, that was on my P1, is a factory Lamborghini color.
It was a new color that Lamborghini was introducing and I had ordered it on a Lamborghini roadster. Because I have a relationship with the factory of Lamborghini, I requested a sample of the color. I told them what its for and they were happy! So I borrowed the color from them and the blend that they had, paint with chrome flakes. Avery was the only company that was able to pull this off. Creating a vinyl wrap that was able to have metallic flakes in it. Avery was the first ones to start that, now I believe other companies are introducing it but we’ve had it for two years. So Avery was able to do a satin black for me, with silver pearl, where under the sun you see the silver pearls popping and Avery was able to do a matte grey with a little bit of gold metallic inside it. The Giovanna Edition vinyl wraps that we have, all the colors are detailed like that with some sort of metallic or a pearlescent effect. That normal other wraps don’t have. Avery was able to pull off what I was envisioning in a wrap. So this is what separated us from other lines. WRAPERO: DO YOU HAVE MORE COLORS COMING OUT WITH AVERY? DIKO: We’ll be introducing them for SEMA 2016. We have new colors that we’re going to bring out. They’re very tough with that… (Diko stops and smiles as to say this is all I can expose) WRAPERO: There’s a gag order with that? DIKO: Yeah, BIG TIME. WRAPERO: WAS THIS ALL LUCK OR WAS THIS GOD? After noticing the crucifix we had to ask. DIKO: I’m a big Christian. Staunch supporter of the Armenian community. It’s not luck and I can’t say it’s God neither. You have to have a drive and you have to have Gods blessing.
He knows what’s best for you and when its best for you. I can’t say I’m going to stay home and lie in bed and let God give me something because it’s not going to happen. Definitely without God I would not have done it and nobody can do nothing with out God. Constantly believe in him and He knows when it will happen. When the right moment is and when the bad moment is. When something bad happens you cant blame Him, He knows why He did that. Maybe you deserved that maybe you needed to learn a lesson. It’s 80% God I would say. He knows best. WRAPERO: WHAT’S NEXT FOR GIOVANNA? DIKO: I’m happy where I’m at, just have to stay on top and always get creative. WRAPERO: NO GIOVANNA FASHION LINE? DIKO: Actually my two daughters do that, Giovanna and Gianelle. Funny you nailed it on the head. That’s what they’re working on. They’re also going to school. Giovanna’s nineteen and Gianella’s seventeen. Both are into the fashion. They want to do fashion stuff with there names. I have a lot of friends in that business. We’ll see where it goes. I always hear them out, I always listen to what they have to say, give them all the right advise. Keep them close! My daughters don’t brag, their very grounded and humble. I’m fortunate with that, thanks to their mom too. Their mom’s good with that. It’s how you raise your kids. My son Koko is nine. They grow up fast. WRAPERO: WHAT DO YO WANT TO TELL YOUR CUSTOMERS? DIKO: Keep rocking them wheels! WRAPERO: DO YOU WANT TO ADD ANYTHING ELSE? DIKO: Thank you, you guys are awesome. As we finish our interview, Diko gives us our space to pack up. Koko, his father walks over and sits directly across from us and begins to tell us about how large Giovanna’s other factory is. You can see the pride in his eyes for what his son Diko has accomplished. Diko is now searching through his desk, “I’m looking for my business cards so you can have my contact,” says Diko. No sooner then he finishes this sentence, his father appears with a pack of business cards. “I don’t think those are the ones with the new location.” Oh but they are, Koko is still sharp for 82. As we walk out of Diko’s office, he tells me to ask Art to bring in his car for the photoshoot. Diko’s Camaro is wrapped in Avery’s Giovanna Edition color grey. As I look for Art, I walk into the warehouse and whom do I see? Papa Koko, he’s backing up his son’s car in for the photoshoot! I’m sure the Sulahian family will have many more years of success in both the automotive and fashion world. This is our definition of the American Dream, God, family and love. Thank you Giovanna Family. -WM
Diko and The Grigoryan Brothers
Master: Chucky â€œCourtyâ€? Courtois Title: Professional Wrap Installer Experience: 29 Years Category: Color Change / Printed Wraps / Specialty Wraps Certifications: Avery Certified Vinyl Installer | Knifeless Accredited | Arlon Certified | ClearPlex Certified | Wrapify Certified Hook-Up: www.instagram.com/ecdcustoms_chuck Repping: Canada Affiliation: Masters Of Branding MOB & Canadian Wrap Masters Get At: email@example.com | 705.702.0747
Owner: G.i. Service -Ohio Make: Chevrolet Model: Duramax Year: 2015
hen you touchdown onto the Las Vegas strip you can’t help to think about the gamblers and ramblers that fill the casinos. A place known for its beauty and also know for its blood. At the end of every year hundreds of companies go to gamble. They don’t head neither towards the gambling tables nor to the slot machines but enter The Las Vegas Convention center to display their products or creations to over 70,000 potential buyers from all around the world. If you’re in the car industry, well this is the place where you come to show face! Designers, creators, builders have been known to ride onto Paradise Road as a nobody and leave here as a somebody. A place where a grease monkey and suit can have a sit down and break bread over wine and close a million dollar deal. However before you can make that deal you need to know when to hold them and when to fold them. This all happens back home wherever you wrap your rides.
Wrapero was invited to spend the full month before SEMA with the team Michael, Vic, Garo, Henry and Alice from Elevated Auto Concepts. With the heat turned up the Gregorian brothers from Giovanna Wheels would also show up to pitch a helping hand. The days were long with only stops to eat, hit the head and the occasional break for vaping. (At which point the shop looked as if you had stepped onto a stage with Metallica. Ugh that was not cool. Lord healed these allergies!). The days started around 7AM and would end early the next morning, pushing 1-3AM! Most of us live near by Pasadena where Elevated Auto Concept is located. Eagle Rock, the Valley, Glendale and myself coming from Silver Lake, all live with 20-30 minutes from the shop. However the captain Michael, he lives an hour away from his shop! So yeah that’s two hours lost for the day and more stress added onto what already seemed impossible.
So what is due on the to do list? A Ferrari 488: The body was pre-striped by another custom shop and delivered to Elevated. This Ferarri needed to be fully wrapped in A.P.A. Lime-Gold, with black color accents by 3M. The Giovanna triplets that were inspired by “The Phantom of The Opera” were wrapped in Avery and 3M used for the accents. These beasts were a: Mercedes AMG S65, Rolls Royce Dawn, and another Ferrari 488. The bodies would be wrapped in an interesting design. The mastermind of Diko from Giovanna Wheels ordered that his cars have 50/50 wrap. Black on one side and white on the other and capped off with a printed stripe that would run down the middle of the wrapped vehicles. Another vehicle that was not heading towards SEMA but a shop has to keep their customers coming and happy. A Chevrolet Silverado 4500 that needed not only to be wrapped with SunTek’s frosted vinyl but also had to have custom paint and powder coating done. Finally the Lamborghini Aventador: Themed wrap with full installation. Photography By: Armenta Signature
The Lime-Gold Ferrari was not such an easy wrap. If your not careful with chrome finish you can experience fogging, fading and/or stretch marks. This can be caused by not properly applying or over heating the material. Giovanna’s cars all had to be dismantled by Elevated AC’s master mechanic, Garo. He’d be dismantling a vehicle in bay A and would race over to bay B in-order to complete the assembling of another vehicle. Back and forth he went, as he was needed! Michael and Henry would handle the entire heavy wrapping. While Michael is the only one allowed to cut the vinyl that’s already been installed onto the vehicles. You need a hand surgeon’s and that can clearly be seen as you watch the dude work. The Giovanna triplets had to be completed around the same time for shipping and preshow booth armaments. So the cars arrived within days of each other. This is where it gets crazy. Now Garo has to go into full speed racer mode, which is not possible when you’re dealing with these types of vehicles. They push and push until the job is complete. Armenta Signature is called into design the cherry on top, the line monogram patterned print of the Giovanna logo that covers the seam that presents itself from where the black and white vinyl meet. Now as the time is running short back up is called in and come into the picture the Gragorian brothers from Giovanna they come in and lend that helping hand that’s desperately needed! The chrome accents are blacked out by using 3M. The smaller things are getting wrapped now, mirrors, skirts, badges, etc. They look freaking amazing!!! No time to celebrate Michael and his team move onto the next vehicles. The Chevrolet Silverado 4500 begins to get wrapped. The parts that were custom painted and powder coated were already delivered. All that was needed was to complete the wrap. Now that was a mission! From buffing the body, removing parts, to stripping badges. Now for the wrapping itself, the body was moving along but the bed with it’s dually body would use a single piece of frost vinyl from SunTek. Now this would mean; No seams, no sticks, no icky, um, never mind. Now you know what? The dude Michael Corpus banged that wrap out! Michael and his team are the true definition of a Wrapero. Hey but what about that Lamborghini Aventador? You win some and well… until 18! -WM
l 3M EDGE SEALER ll 3M PRIMER lll OLFA KNIFE + BLADES lV SQUEEGEEâ€™S ( A LOT!) V BLADEHOLDER Vl AVERY SUPER STRONG MAGNETS Vll KNIFELESS TAPE Vlll EMBLEM REMOVAL TOOL + CORD lX 3M ROLLER FOR VINYL X AVERY APPLICATION GLOVE BONUS: DO NOT FORGET THE VINYL!!!
Special thanks to AeroTect for these photos. AEROTECT 1935 McKinley Ave Suite F La Verne, CA 91750 AeroTectFilms.com | www.AEROTECT.net B: 909.596.0053 | F: 909.596.0054
LOCATION Make sure you have a clean, dry, well lit and climate controlled area to work. Dust and dirt are enemies when it comes to wrapping. If a tiny particle of dirt or another contaminate, such as a stray hair, get under the vinyl, it will be magnified and very visible in the wrap. Wrapping indoors out of the wind is essential to high quality. Climate control is very important - too hot and the film becomes very soft and difficult to work with. If it’s too cold, the film becomes stiff and hard to apply. The ideal temperature range is around 70-85℉.
CLEAN AND PREP CAR The type of wrap you are doing can dictate what is needed in terms of removing parts of the car in preparation of the wrap. If you are doing a color change, it is ideal to have no seams showing at all. This means you want to take off anything attached to the car, so you can wrap behind it as well as wrap that object off of the car. This includes mirrors, door handles, shark fin antennas and sometimes even doors and bumpers. Removing doors and bumpers is pretty extreme, but it is done to accomplish a complete color change where the door jambs are wrapped. If you go to this extreme, be sure to charge accordingly. For most commercial (printed) wraps, taking off mirrors and maybe door handles is likely all that is required. This step is as much to help make your installation easier as it is to avoid seams and improve the overall look of your wrap. Once you remove the necessary parts, then it is time to remove all dirt, bugs, tar and other road grime from the car. You may need to use cleaners other than isopropyl alcohol for this. I like to use the Avery Dennison surface cleaner or even the heavy duty cleaner for this. These cleaners work well to remove bugs, tar and other difficult-to-clean contaminants. Once the vehicle is clean, do a final cleaning with isopropyl alcohol. Make sure to get around all the doors, windows, body lines, etc. Dirt can easily ruin an install.
CHECK FOR DAMAGE Film manufacturers have guidelines for where the film is and is not warranted. We do not warrant against paint damage if the vehicle is beyond a certain age, if the paint is in poor condition or not OEM paint. This is because the paint on these cars is susceptible to damage during install or when the film is removed. To protect yourself, please be sure to read the Product Data Sheet for the film you are using to better understand what is and what is not covered. Also, before doing an installation be sure to inspect the vehicle and look for existing damage. Instructional Bulletin 6.40 provides information on installation for vehicles, as well as an inspection form. When a car comes in, do an inspection and document any issues on the vehicle. Take photos, and let the customer know these are potential areas for damage to the vehicle when the graphic is removed. It is important to show your customer these areas of concern and have them sign off that they understand before you begin your wrap. You can use your own form if you choose to create one. I have seen forms shared on various forums. This is to protect you, the installer.
MAKE A PLAN Take a few minutes to plan your install. Look at the bumpers. Do you need inlays? Where will you use Knifeless? Are there areas where you will need to pre-stretch the film? Where will you start your wrap? Can you work alone, or do you need a second set of hands?
GET EDUCATED Learning how to install from a professional is the quickest way to get up to speed. Wrap classes like the Avery Dennison classes with Justin Pate are an excellent way to learn firsthand from a professional, as well as get hands on time with the film. The advantage of a wrap class is you can practice and have an expert available to provide guidance. Online videos are also helpful. The Wrap Institute is an excellent resource as well. This is a subscription based program with hundreds, if not thousands, of videos at your fingertips to view anytime you choose. Installers from all over the world have found this to be a valuable source of information.
LAY IT OUT If you are doing a print wrap, make sure you lay out the graphics before starting the install. I’ve heard stories from installers that a different model of vehicle showed up instead of the one for which the wrap was designed. It is better to know what you are getting into and that you make adjustments before you install the first piece of film. If you are doing color change, it is a good idea to precut and label your pieces, as this helps to avoid handling unnecessarily large pieces of film. To learn more about Avery Dennison Graphics Solutions, visit us at graphics.averydennison.com. Connect with us on social media at @ADGraphics_NA.
LEARN TO DESIGN A CUSTOM WRAP WITH OUR ONLINE TUTORIAL! VISIT www.ARMENTASTYLING.com FOR FURTHER DETAILS
Wrapero Magazine focuses on automobiles that are wrapped from around the globe. The ace publication in automotive wrap.
Published on Dec 8, 2017
Wrapero Magazine focuses on automobiles that are wrapped from around the globe. The ace publication in automotive wrap.