Pekka Wizzzard Bio
IN THE SHADY SEVENTIES...
up here in Finland we didn’t really have anyone to guide you through the mysteries of pinstriping. My first experiences were in Sweden in mid -seventies, seeing a local pinstriper Ingemar Becker striping in Stockholm Hot Rod Show.
Those little books from Big Daddy Roth eventually found their way to Finland, as well as the single one cherished issue of Hot Rod magazine, with a short introduction to pinstriping and the “Creative Customizing” –book. So it was all learning by doing!
It took me many years first to realize that the model kit paints are not the best for training, or how to maintain your brush to keep it shape. Mail order was the way to get your brushes and paints here, from Seelig auto if I recall correct.
PINHEADS, IMPORTING STUFF and first pinstriping workshops
In the mid-nineties the Pinheads Gazette found it’s way to Finland and I got the membership number 460. Those magazines were highly valuable before the Internet!
When I finally had got in the stage of working for clients in mid -eighties, I also made the decision to spread the word to other want-to-be-a-stripers and hopefully to make their life easier. My first pinstriping workshops took place in mid-nineties, and after that I have made a video/DVD of the basics, a couple of magazines and finally a book regarding the craft. I also imported 1-Shot paints and Mack brushes to Finland up till around 2005.
Arctic pinheads, stripe-o-rama and international collaboration
1997 We held the first get-to-gether for pinstripers, the Stripe-O-Rama. The model for the meeting came from the UK Letterheads-meetings organized by Jon Leeson, that was also the meeting where I met Alan Johnson, Mike Meyer and Rev. Williams amongst the others. This led to visit the Mazeppa Letterheads-meeting and Daytona Bike Week where I met Steve Chazeyka, Russ Mowry and I certainly learned a lot of what the striping can be at its toughest pace. Several other UK and Scotland-meetings tought me a lot about the comradery of letterheads and stripers.
After that my travels have taken me several places from Japan to Grand Nationals Roadster Show and all over in Europe. Our Stripe-O-Rama had it's 20:th anniversary in 2016. When we had the tenth anniversary, our guests were Alan, Jeff and Jon. Organizers today are Ripa Pajunoja and Lauri "Nalle" Lehtonen with friends.
pinstriping and other businesses
The life as a pinstriper is north is may be a bit different than in warm climate, f:ex the season is quite short and the automobile culture is way smaller than in States. Therefore it is pretty much impossible to live only with striping.
I am also working as an industrial designer and design teacher, which gives me the income to fill the gaps. My main interest in design works consisted of Lynx (Ski-Doo) snowmobiles and slot machines from 1990-2004. Last year has been really interesting, working with a children’s animation movie character designer.
about my style -ad hoc -striper
My styles vary, I get easily bored with same kind of themes. My background as a designer have also affected my style, which is pretty simple. I’m not so much of using loads of colors, I rather try to find colors which work with the object which I am working with.
I like to call myself as an “Ad-Hoc” –striper, working on the shows and doing the planning pretty much on the spot. Therefore I don’t really have that many panels to show to you either, I’d love to play with them, but rarely find time to do that. I work on different kinds of striping, from traditional designs to scroll, straight line and lettering. At the moment I’m very interested on Art Noveau –style.
custom cars and hot rod magazines
I also have a long term love for hot rods and especially custom cars. The first connection was in the early seventies and after making my first visit to USA in 1977 I begun to write for the Finnish hot rod magazines. I am still writing, even so that I am publishing my own magazine Old Kool (www.oldkoolmag.com), which deals with kustom lifestyle.
My own collection of cars have contained a 1949 Oldsmobile and Pontiac fastbacks, 1939 Ford Tudor, 1956 Chopped VW , 1954 Chevrolet Station Wagon and the present one, an airbagged 1972 Buick Riviera Boattail, which I have owned for over 25 years. I have also worked as one of the head organizers on the largest custom and hot rod meeting in Finland, Do-Dads Reunion and Vintage Drags, since year 2000. (www.do-dads.fi).