Kustom painting is the most fun you can have with paint, with your clothes on. Whether you are flaming your motorbike, helmet, car, surfboard, boat, or even your wheelie bin or letterbox . . . custom painting is awesome.

Dani’ with her guitar after only 16 nights of training.

The creative possibilities are endless.  Flames, skulls, ghouls, dragons, warriors, pin-up girls, flying eyeballs, cartoon characters like Ratfink . . . the only problem is, that to do it well, to be able to make good money from it, there is an awful lot to know.

People buy dvds and books, they watch endless YouTube videos, they do courses with professional custom painters . . . all in the hope of learning the “tricks of the trade”.  But there are no tricks.  There is simply systematic step by step training based on logical methods and you being taught the automotive refinish industry standard operating procedures.

So the question is . . . what are you looking to learn? How far do you wish to take this? How good at custom painting do you wish to be?  

Learning traditional flames or realist flames might be more than enough for you. But not for us. We are going to train those of you that are willing to put the effort in, to produce show quality custom painting. You are going to enter cars, bikes, helmets, boats, surfboards and more in shows across the country . . . and you are going to win these competitions.  We are going to train, guide and assist you every step of the way. We know this is a bold statement, but all we can say is “watch this space”.

Ben with his striped panel – after 8 x Saturday mornings of training. He red basecoated the panel, applied a layer of Ditzler red flake and applied a gradation of violet kandy around the edge before clearcoating it and finally striping it up.

The Kustom Kollege courses ultimately cover all of the below topics:

• Drawing & Designing
• Panel & Design Preparation 
• Paint systems
• Airbrush & Brush 
• Correct striping & spray equipment setup
• Artwork Finishing 
• Show quality finish
• How to work with clients to design & quote

• Drawing & Designing
In other words, we will teach you to create your own original drawings to work from.  You do not work from any photos in any of our courses – you only work from your own drawings.  We will teach you to draw.  You will be surprised by how systematic and enjoyable the drawing part of the courses are.

• Panel & Design Preparation 
Each course has different levels of surface preparation training.  The beginners courses only teach simple sanding and degreasing.  The intermediate and advanced courses teach different levels of knowledge that ultimately will train you to do bare metal preparation.  Other specialist areas such as the use of Scansealer are taught at the advanced level.

It is one thing to be able to draw flames, skulls, or anything, it is another to learn to fit them onto a car, motorbike or helmet.  We will teach you the process of laying-out  your drawings for maximum effect on different surfaces.  This is one of the reasons that we invite you to bring in surfboards, motorcycle guards and tanks, fridges, etc to airbrush on.  You will work with the other students as a group to look at working on all these surfaces for maximum effect.

Laurent with his flamed surfboard – after his intensive 5 days of training in South Australia. 

• Paint Systems
There is a lot to learn about automotive basecoats.  
• Transparent and opaque solids.  
• Metallics
• Pearls
• Candies
• Marblizers
• Prizmatiques & other special effect PPG Vibrance paints

Standard solids can be used in all sorts of ways according to their opacity.  Some can even be used as candy substitutes, to avoid bleed-back once the artwork is clearcoated. Metallics behave very differently over different colours, as do Pearls. Pearls on a black base look very different to being applied over coloured bases. Candies are a whole knowledge base in their own right. Candies over solids, candies over metallics and pearls . . . you need to be taught it all.  We have developed unusual systems for doing marblized effects with a wide range of paints.  You will love Prizmatiques and the whole family of special effect paints in the PPG Vibrance range.

• Airbrush & Brush
Complete beginners right through to advanced Venturian’s can do our courses.  Beginners come into class 20 minutes before the experienced students and complete airbrush control exercises. Week after week, these 20 minute sessions build your airbrush control skills to a highly developed level. We also grind you throughout the entire course to control the airbrush in a precise and measurable standard.

This includes all the masking materials and their associated procedures.  We will train you to use fineline tapes, app. tape, sign vinyl, masking vinyl and loose stencils.

In later courses we will be offering pinstriping programs that go into detail about all the different styles and techniques. 

• Artwork Finishing
As you progress through the different levels of courses you will go from basic blend-clearing, to proper 2K clearing to ultimately learning to block sand and “flow-coat” your artworks.

Ultimately you will be taught to prepare a custom paint project to show-quality finish that includes using cutting and polishing equipment and compounds. 

• How to work with clients to design & quote
This is the hardest part of the entire process to learn.  But having said this, the more developed your custom painting skills are, the more you know how much effort is required to create what the client is asking for and to better understand what is do-able and what isn’t.  Many people get themselves into a lot of trouble by agreeing to create things that turn out to be extremely difficult and time consuming; things that they probably should have said “no” to.  We will teach you to say “no . . . but I can do this” more often and with greater confidence. 

Travis with the biggest striping job he has ever completed (with assistance from Stu).