I owe so many people a huge thank you! This SEMA was a hard fight to the finish. Fortunately after setup on Tuesday at SEMA I could look at the various projects with complete satisfaction. Some may love or hate the two cars I designed, but once I saw them complete I felt personally satisfied that I prepared the very best GT-R I was capable of at this very moment in time…and I did it twice in two different styles/concepts (Mobil 1 car and Toyo car).
Between my satisfaction in the successful completion of my two big projects of the year, along with the satisfaction of seeing so many of my clients and friends at SEMA whom I worked with to get their parts in time for SEMA…it was a wonderful week.
I pride myself on working with the best in the industry. This means: the best factories, the best designers, the best installers, the best brands, the best clients, the best staff, etc…I think the quality showed this SEMA. I may not be the best on my own, but I can sure pick the best. I consider the skill of identifying quality much more valuable than the skill of creating quality single-handedly. Sure I had a big part in these projects, sure I drove myself to the brink of destruction in the production of these cars…but they would not have been anything without my partners and friends.
Manabu, Nakane, Ito, Brandon, Anthony, Shibuki, Shin, Andy, Neil, Kurita, Nagata, Kobayashi, Bun, Dom, Kent, Ben, Jonathan, Jun, John, Seita – you are a few of the many that I owe my extreme gratitude to. Thank you for your friendship and support. Without you this SEMA would not have been the same.
Here’s a couple of highlights of the show for me:
Both Brandon and Anthony were kind enough to offer me full creative control of their car builds. Both of them did not know a single thing about their cars until they saw them first hand Tuesday morning. Brandon knew his car was Midnight Purple but thats about it… There’s a TV show called Extreme Home Makeover where the owners of their home freak out when they see how their home has been “pimped” if you will…The expression of Brandon and Anthony as they saw their cars for the first time was priceless, and reminded me of that show…Whatever confidence I had that I did right by them, it meant nothing until I saw their reaction. That was the true validation of a successful project. The above picture is Brandon with his car for the first time since he shipped a stock silver car to me by boat from Hawaii not even 4 weeks ago.
Never in my life did I think I’d have my name on a billboard. Seeing a PDF of an image from Mobil 1 is one thing…seeing a billboard on Las Vegas Blvd is something entirely different. Mobil 1 has been far too kind to me, I will continue to work hard to keep their confidence.
Next To The Best
The above picture link I left in 2600 resolution without watermarking (a file so big I cant even show it here). I’m still humbled that Toyo gave my GT-R project their best/front placement in their booth. Regardless of how great of a job I could have possibly done, there was no way humanly possible to beat ASI’s Bentley GTR. I was proud to have my car next to what I felt was one of the most impressive cars of the show. Plus, earning the respect of ASI and forging a new friendship was priceless…
More later…Give me some more time to catch up. I’m 1000s of emails behind right now.