In 1992 Mick Neil began his journey into the realms of automotive paintwork. From an early age he always had an interest in art, and got into a little bit of trouble due to the graffiti art he used to produce on a regular basis, "I never visualized it as vandalism, I loved to produce artwork!!" he exclaimed. Although at present it is accepted in our community and widely used to decorate so many areas, he had already took to a change of direction towards the Custom Automotive Scene.
Having an older brother who was massively into American muscle cars and Hot rods, Mick began to take notice of the paintwork that adorned these vehicles and by the age of 13, had already designed the logo and signs for his Paint shop he dreamed of.
Of course at 13, there wasn't a queue of customers wanting their motorcycles or cars painted by him at this stage, but there were friends that had push bikes that needed 'jazzing up' and adding a little bit of custom touch was always in the back of his head.
At 16 an advertisement in a local paper for an apprenticeship at an 'automotive Customizer' was spotted, and 5 lucky people would get the chance to learn from some of the best in the trade that year. Well ........Dream Job or what!!!!
But.....it wasn't the exact type of customizing he had in mind. The company were a bespoke coach builders who manufactured all sorts of 'Custom' vehicles, to which he quickly learned we limousines, armored vehicles, armed forces etc, etc......to which a fair few were built for the Prime Minister and H.R.H. Queen Elizabeth II.
Standard of Work
No it wasn't hotrod flames, or candy paint work, but the most important thing about this apprenticeship Mick stands by is the quality of work. There was no escape from Quality Control. The inspectors had to inspect the vehicle in an area covered floor to ceiling in daylight bulbs, picking out any, and i mean ANY imperfection in the paint work. This became second nature to Mick to produce work to this high standard, "I don't know any other way" he exclaims.
Due to the launch of American chopper and Overhaulin TV shows, Mick had seen the paint work involved in the shows including the airbrush artwork, and having a graffiti background decided he would like to include this type of work and more custom stuff into a new hobby, after all, at this stage he felt he had the paint work side sorted, and had completed his apprenticeship, and was a full time painter for the company he was employed by.
After producing painted and airbrushed motorcycle helmets for around 5 years, demand for his work was coming in thick and fast. At the age of 26, and with around 6 months of bookings as a cushion, Mick Opened Custom Paint Studio. Always striving for perfection, Mick has spent the last 10 years perfecting his skills to produce some of the Highest standard Automotive artwork in Great Britain, and is widely considered one of the very best in his field, always pushing the boundaries, and always with a mind to create truly one off custom paint work.
In 2014 Mick expanded the paintshop again, and moved the business to Evesham in Worcestershire, during this time he became in demand from other custom paint companys for his airbrush work, you never know, you may already have Mick Neill Artwork on your motorcycle.
The Airbrush Academy opened its doors, a full time learning facility dedicated to pure airbrush art. The state of the art facility is already attracting student from all over the globe, with student flying in from Australia, Finland, Germany and Spain.