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Sol Grande
My Art Truck


Here's a little information about my Art Truck, which I call "Sol Grande", or "Big Sun".

Big Sun is a 1983 chevrolet half-ton pickup. In the early 80's the EPA made several car manufacturers change their paint formulations to less toxic mixes. General Motors had trouble getting theirs right, and many Chevy and GMC trucks made from 1982 thru 1985 experienced the paint flaking off the vehicle in big chunks within a couple years of purchase. When I acquired my truck used in 1988, the paint on the hood was already flaking a lot. Over time it began to flake away to the point where it not only looked bad but began to rust thru as well. That's when I began painting the truck. At first it was just the hood: a simple starscape on dark blue if I recall correctly. I have always been a do-it-yourself type person and since I am an artist I never even considered having the truck commercially re-painted.

Within another year or so of the hood being painted, the front sides began to flake, so I painted them: a sort of meandering "pottery design" in reds. Then the cab began to flake. And I decided at that point to just go ahead and paint the whole truck as a sort of ongoing project and make it into an art car.

At first I bought paint to use: an oil-based rustoleum type paint, and I do try to stick to that type for the cab and hood. But I don't usually have to buy paint anymore! I have discovered that people THROW AWAY gallons of perfectly good paint, both oil and water based, in every color of the rainbow, all the time. So now I use only discarded paint on the truck. Most of the paint on the rear and camper is water based paint. I use a mix of textures and finishes of paint all together, and one over the other too. I've never had a problem with flaking or cracking or anything else. Perhaps the Arizona Sun bakes it on, I don't know... It's certainly been a lot more durable than the factory paint!

I have repainted the hood 3 times and the sides and cab twice, because I wanted a change or thought of something to improve. I'm pretty satisfied with them now, though. But if they get scratched or something, then they'll get painted again, probably with different versions of the imagery.

My imagery is drawn from the natural world: favorite animals, plants, and celestial bodies. The art on the truck pretty much reflects the style, color, and subject matter of my other art: paintings and sculptures. I chose a sun for the hood because it seemed to symbolize the power underneath as well as the Sun overhead, which I think is probably the most powerful entity you can think of when it's the Sonoran Desert you're talking about! So I named the truck for that also.

As stated above, the truck is really a work in progress, as I'm sure I will always be adding to or altering the paint job!

My Truck was recently in an Art Car Show! Click the back of the truck to go to a page about it.