Gnarly Magazine’s 19th issue, scheduled for release in July, is filled with fascinating stories and profiles from the kustom realm. With engaging narratives and stunning visuals, it promises to be a captivating tribute to the creativity, craftsmanship, and passion that epitomize kustom kulture. Take a look at what’s inside issue #19…
HBO’s “The Fastest Woman on Earth” is a powerful documentary that goes beyond Jessi Combs’ pursuit of the land speed record, capturing her unique and inspiring essence. Filmmakers Chris Otwell and Graham Suorsa spent nine years crafting an authentic portrayal of Combs, emphasizing her message of audacious dreams and positive impacts. The film showcases Combs’ versatility as a fabricator, racer, and artist, while highlighting the profound connections she made with people from all walks of life.
Craft of Speed is a documentary film by filmmaker Ming Lai that explores the intertwined stories of Dean Moon, Shige Suganuma, and Chico Kodama in the world of kustom kulture. The film showcases how Suganuma and Kodama preserved and enhanced Mooneyes, uniting contrasting cultures and overcoming resistance. With a focus on the origins and legacies of these individuals, the documentary aims to inspire and reignite people’s passion for handmade craftsmanship within the kustom kulture subculture.
Renowned moto culture ambassador Roland Sands, known for his exceptional design work and racing background, continues to garner recognition and push the boundaries of the motorcycle world. Transitioning from racing to custom motorcycle designs was a tough decision, but Sands found solace in executing his creativity and maintaining his commitment to moto culture. From resurrecting his father’s crashed ’46 Indian chopper to collaborating with Buell on the innovative Buell Super Cruiser, Sands’ passion and talent shine through, resulting in remarkable builds that capture the essence of elevated design and speed.
Cristian Sosa, the founder of Sosa Metal Works, draws inspiration from unlikely sources like famous watchmaker George Daniels and furniture design to create futuristic motorcycles with classic accents. Starting from his early days dumpster diving for low-rider magazines, Sosa’s passion for kustom kulture led him to pursue automotive repair and welding, eventually working at Count’s Kustoms before starting his own shop. Collaborating with Royal Enfield and Harley Davidson, Sosa continues to push boundaries in his handcrafted creations, aiming to elevate the perception of kustom kulture as a form of expressive art.
Yamasha, a Ukrainian artist, overcame the challenges of living in a war-torn country to become the first Ukrainian kustom kulture artist. Inspired by her husband, she delved into the subculture and discovered her passion for photorealism and painting motorcycles and hot rods. Despite initial obstacles and lack of demand for her art inn her home Ukraine, Yamasha persevered, honed her skills, and eventually won first place in the Art on Deck Skateboard Contest, hosted by Gnarly Magazine and the Flying Piston Benefit charity, solidifying her position as an international artist. Through her journey, she emphasizes the importance of practicing relentlessly, pursuing one’s passion with love, and striving to become the best version of oneself.
Mike’s 1940 Mercury, originally customized for Harold “Buddy” Ohanesian, remains a testament to the ingenuity of early American car customizers. Built in the 1940s by visionary craftsmen Harry Westergard and Dick Bertolucci, the car features impressive modifications such as a reshaped hood, frenched headlights, molded fenders, and custom bumpers from various car models. The standout feature is the handmade steel “removable” top, expertly crafted from parts of different car models. Despite its age, the car is still operational and continues to impress as a historic and visually stunning piece of automotive art at local shows.
Ramone Sketch, an artist and illustrator from Spain, has always been drawn to the imagery and vehicles of kustom kulture despite being far from its California origins. Inspired by skate and surf magazines, Ramone’s art reflects the iconic elements of the subculture while adding his unique stamp to captivate his peers. Balancing homage with originality, Ramone’s work features flying eyeballs, monsters, and bold colors, and he is even working on launching a toy line of kustom vans. With a list of diverse clients and the freedom to express his creativity, Ramone embraces a true DIY ethos, continually exploring different mediums to keep monotony at bay.
Kelsey Chelesnik of Moon Rider is on a mission to shine a spotlight on the often-overlooked art of kustom upholstery, believing that it can make or break a build. With a family tradition of sewing, she takes pride in carrying on the legacy and perfecting her craft, drawing inspiration from her great-grandmother’s work at Starlight Theater. Through Moon Rider, Kelsey has built a reputation for her attention to detail, collaborating with builders and creating unique motorcycle seats and vehicle interiors, with the goal of elevating the craft and seeing car shows recognize the craftsmanship behind interior work.
Steve Pierce’s lifelong love for Buicks and cars in general was fueled and supported by his mother, who dedicated her life to raising her children. In honor of her, Steve built a stunning 1940 Buick named “Pamela” over a four-year period, pouring in over $100,000 and his exceptional talent to create a timeless masterpiece. This meticulously crafted car, featuring custom modifications and a vintage-inspired small block Chevy engine, has garnered widespread acclaim and numerous awards, becoming a symbol of Steve’s dedication to family and honoring his mother’s memory.