The Art of Noah Emhurt Words + Photos by Noah Emhurt My work seems to be a culmination of my life and surroundings. I pull from the culture of living in major cities from Tokyo to New York to Los Angeles and now Pittsburgh, where I currently reside. Having earned a degree in fine art, I utilize that with my spirit as a rebellious youth who constantly painted on bedroom walls and spray painted on the streets of my hometown. As far as the actual process, I often start with a background full of “experiments” or a chosen image. I’m constantly searching for new looks and ways of applying paint. If it doesn’t work, it’s painted over and replaced. It’s a constant process of failures. After all, painting is basic math: addition and subtraction. Juxtaposition has always been at the forefront of my work. It’s as if there’s an internal struggle of letting things be wild while at the same time balancing it with a pleasant appeal. Initially, I try to keep things as chaotic as possible. I “bury myself”. From there, I hope to make sense of it all, digging myself out with each subsequent layer. I’m definitely into the imagery of the piece. This seems to be a driving force for me. Finding the next, best image to explore. It’s as if the iconography of the artwork is the core belief. Here is the time I pull from all sources in order to find the right image. Everything available to me becomes fair game when choosing. What I had in mind when making these prints... My youth when youth was enough. Skipping school to learn more about life. Hands covered in the blood and guts from a motorcycle. Thinking about that next tattoo and where you’re going to get the money from. Drinking beer behind Mom’s back. Smoking glorious cigarette after glorious cigarette. Bedroom walls completely covered in the greatest artwork the world will never see. Outlier, 2021 - ink on paper Helmet Head, 2021 - ink on paper Hellion, 2021 - ink on paper Fatboy, 2021 - ink on paper Leathers, 2021 - ink on paper Cafe, 2021 - ink on paper Featured in Issue 11 NOAH EMHURT www.emhurt.com instagram.com/noahemhurt Words + Photos by NOAH EMHURT
An Evo Chopper Emerges from the Shadows Words by Kurt Diserio — Photos by Alexa Diserio Something tells me that the life of Logan Allison is much more interesting than anything a quick chat about a custom chopper can deliver. As someone who has traveled around the country, living in different places and getting by in whatever way he could, it only felt appropriate that he’d build a bike as tough as his 1998 Harley-Davidson Evo. Eventually, after numerous motorcycles and all of the exhausting work needed to keep them running, Allison made the jump into a personal project that had been sitting in a storage bin in the back of his head for a little too long. Piece by piece it started to come together, rightfully taking its place on the floor of Glory Daze this past September. Alexa and I met up with him at the Allegheny Cemetery this winter to get the lowdown on the bike and how he came to call Pittsburgh home. Did you want to jump into the story of your past and how you ended up here? Logan Allison: I moved to Pittsburgh about ten years ago and had a bunch of buddies that rode motorcycles, so I started riding, too. At first, I just started customizing shitty Sportsters and never really did a nice build. I didn’t even plan to do this build well, but I just kept getting a nice part here and there. It snowballed from that point. I kept getting the parts and pieces and figured I’d do the bike justice with a full-on makeover. I inherited this bike from my dad. When he passed it along, the only thing he made me promise is that I never sold it. The bike was a total dad chopper that was almost impossible to ride. Basically, the drivetrain and frame are the only things I kept. I stripped it down and completely rebuilt it from there. The process was slow, but after about four years of collecting parts, I finally got the kick-in-the-ass this year to finish it. The motor had been sitting for four years, so I crossed my fingers when I fired it up. I have a little more tuning to do with the carburetor, but otherwise, It’s treated me really well so far. Knock on wood. There are a few things I have in the works to help make it pop more. It’s a never-ending project. Was this your first Evo, and could you run through the bike?LA: Yeah, my first Big Twin. It’s a Paughco frame with a 1998 80-inch big twin Evo motor. For the drivetrain, I’m using an Ultima 6-speed transmission and an Ultima open primary. The 39mm front end is 2-over. Josh Howells at Uptahn Metalworks did the custom exhaust and a lot of other fab work to get things to fit right. He was a big help, and I couldn’t have done it without him. Lunation Leathers made the sissy bar cover. It’s hard to give somebody an image of something you have in your head that you want them to make. She hadn’t done anything like this before, and it’s nothing I’ve ever seen. To have her listen to everything I said and knock it out of the park was a huge relief. The same goes for Tyler Elliott of TE Customs who killed it on the paint. I just handed the pieces over and gave him my idea. It was nice to see his eyes light up and get excited about something other than typical pinstriping work. He handpainted all of it. Where did you live before moving to Pittsburgh?LA: I traveled around for years before I settled in Pittsburgh. Basically, I didn’t live anywhere for more than a couple of months for nearly seven years. I was a commercial fisherman in Alaska for a while, but I got tired of not having somewhere to lay my head. So, I ended up here. What are you doing now that you’ve settled here?LA: I work crazy hours in the art department on set decorating for TV shows and movies. The intense hours come with big gaps between jobs, so when I get free time I’m either in the shop working on motorcycles or out ice fishing, fly fishing, or hunting. I try to be outside and on the road as much as I can. Was there something about motorcycles that drew you to them?LA: I’ve always worked with my hands, so it made sense that I got into motorcycles. It was always second nature to me. I enjoy just being able to piece everything together. They’re like a big puzzle where you get to see your vision come together in the end. It looks super comfortable as something to rip around town. Was that what you were aiming for?LA: I’ve always liked this stance. It was exactly what I was going for. I didn’t want to delete my front brake, especially with these Pittsburgh hills. Riding and putting on some miles is more important to me than building them. Did you do any fun trips during the pandemic?LA: Typically, we’re super busy with work, but everything got locked down. I had time in the summer, so I jumped on my FXR, threw my fly rod on the back, and road up to Vermont and Maine. From there, I went down to the FXR jam in Maggie Valley, North Carolina with my flyrod and just fished and camped along the way. You don’t need much. Any plans for next year?LA: I definitely want to make it to Apocalypse Run in the upper peninsula of Michigan. That’s a nice little trip and has always been a great time. I have a bunch of friends in Detroit, and I’ll usually link up with those guys, spend the night, then head up the rest of the way. Featured in Issue 11 1998 Harley-Davidson Evo Built by LOGAN ALLISON instagram Words by KURT DISERIO Photos by ALEXA DISERIO
A Classic Triumph Gets its Time to Shine Words by Kurt Diserio — Photos by Alexa Diserio Sometimes fate has your back and offers you an opportunity you didn’t plan for. Sometimes that opportunity looks like a rusty old box of parts and a whole lot of work. The Triumph project you see here was born from a situation like this. Pittsburgh’s Jeff Wichman stumbled onto the beginnings of this 1952 Pre-Unit when his friend decided to sell all of his belongings and travel the world indefinitely. After endless research and some challenges along the way, Wichman was able to bring new life to a motorcycle that had been sitting in pieces for quite some time. The combination of problem-solving and creative thinking is a skill that needs to be exercised from time to time, and what better test than a classic Triumph? I talked with the builder about the process and story behind the bike. Where did this motorcycle build start?Jeff Wichman: I originally got the bike from a friend of mine. He and his wife wanted to travel to Venezuela on motorcycles, so they bought a pair of Suzuki DR650 street and trail bikes. He was selling all of his stuff so they didn’t have to move it. To get some extra money for the trip, he asked if I wanted to buy an old Triumph that was sitting in their basement for twenty-five years or so. They had this frame, the engine, and some odds and ends. I cobbled the parts together and built this bike out of those pieces. Very interesting backstory. Was the couple able to do the trip?JW: They rode from Pittsburgh to Venezuela and back. After that, they went from here to the Arctic Circle and back, all around the continent of Africa, and now they’re living in Slovenia. What was the timeline and how did the build process go?JW: I got it done in early 2020. Triumphs are difficult to build because anything you need takes four weeks to get, so you almost have to build two bikes at once in order to occupy your mind. This probably took a year and a half to finish. It was really a big research project for me after getting a box of parts and not knowing where everything goes. As far as the process, it was a rusty mess at the start. I got three big Rubbermaid totes and the frame. The engine was stuck, so I had to beat the pistons out of it. There’s a guy down off of Route 79 with a shop called JRD Cycles who sells a lot of old Triumph parts. I had him do the engine and transmission work. He has a history of racing flat track, so when he puts something together, it’s correct. Wicked Stitch in Sewickley did the seat. For the paint, Lucky Strike Designs did the tank, and Palermo Auto Body painted the frame and some small pieces. It was nice to meet local guys who would help me out. One neat part that can get overlooked is the billet aluminum rear fender mount that’s hidden under the frame. I fabbed up an idea, and a local machinist did that and the little spring mounts for me. Did you have a past with motorcycles that led you in this direction?JW: I’ve been into motorcycle racing and used to race carts and the GNCC series. I raced SuperMoto for a little bit, too. I got hurt a lot, so I started doing this as a side project. I’d love to build hot rods, but the garage is too small. Motorcycles fit the space well, so I figured I’d try it when this just kind of fell into my lap. Was there anything interesting you learned during the build?JW: One cool part about this was when I was rifling through the parts and found old receipts from 1970. The guy I bought it from had originally purchased it from a widow, and the man that passed away was in the process of building an Easyrider style chopper years ago. Unfortunately, he must have passed away before he could finish it. I’m still finding receipts from Butler Cycle for things like $1.50 cables. Some of the parts on this were from this original owner, like the clutch cover and exhaust pipes. It was pretty cool to find the old receipts, especially when you can’t even get a candy bar for the price he was getting some parts for back then. Were there any challenges worth mentioning?JW: I had to make the front headlight mount about five times until I got what I wanted. I also had to make the rear fender brackets a couple of times. I don’t have the fancy equipment, so I constructed the mount for the speedometer using straight stock that was twisted for rigidity. It’s like that on all of the mounts, just pieces of straight stock that I twisted and bent into place. Really, all I had was a MIG welder, a grinder, and a drill. Any plans for another Triumph build?JW: I have another Pre-Unit but with a swingarm frame. I’ll probably make it a slightly more modern street tracker look that I could use as a daily rider – a different style than this. At least that’s the idea. I think eventually I’d like to build my own frame, but I’m not to that point just yet. Featured in Issue 11 1952 Triumph Pre-Unit 650 Built by JEFF WICHMAN Words by KURT DISERIO Photos by ALEXA DISERIO
A Menacing S&S Panhead Words by Kurt Diserio — Photos by Alexa Diserio Some people just have a passion for doing things the hard way. Depending on your perspective, the challenge of learning new skills and techniques can either be overwhelming or rewarding. Our brains operate around efficiency, and it takes a great deal of willpower to dig deeper. Compared to days of the past, modern culture celebrates shortcuts as a way to get more done in less time, often sacrificing authenticity and the benefits of experience. There were no shortcuts on the custom panhead chopper built by Brian Deltorre of Irwin, Pennsylvania. It was something that I would see progress photos of from time to time, and in each instance, I’d notice more handmade details that caught my eye. I also recognized an obsession with the technical side of motorcycles and how things worked. Every inch of this build demands your attention. The more you look, the more you’ll appreciate the craftsmanship and dedication put into a project that Deltorre carefully constructed in his own time. How did this build come about?Brian Deltorre: I used to work together with my buddy, Steve Simqu. (You might recall Simqu’s Yamaha XS650 from issue Number 002). At the time, I was thinking about building a Triumph bobber. I showed him some pictures of different Triumphs I had saved, but he talked me into building a Yamaha XS instead. I ended up picking one up and started making a bobber out of it. I was in my thirties with little free time, so it ended up on the backburner. One day, my wife encouraged me to finish the bike, so I got to work and completed it in time to display at World of Wheels that year. At the show, a guy named Tony had a really nice bagger set up next to me and came over to ask who did the welding on my Yamaha. He needed some welding done for a project of his own, so we started bouncing ideas and skills off of each other. Tony mentioned, “When we’re done with this, why don’t we each build a bike for ourselves?” I told him to not pay me for the welding work I was doing then, but rather just pay for my materials on the bike build. We ended up getting roughly twenty-five feet of tubing and some prints before making a frame jig. We altered the prints to suit us, with this frame being 4-up and 2-out. All together we made three frames, two were mine, one was his. He went one direction with his build, and I went another with mine, chipping away at it a day or two a week. So the frame is completely custom?BD: Yeah, it started as twenty feet of tubing. Tony bought a tubing bender, and we made the frame jig and some patterns that worked. The frame was the first piece I made for this bike, with the wheels being next. Was this a few years ago?BD: I’d say we probably started this in late 2017. Then two kids later, I finished it. I see quite a lot of handmade parts. What else would you like to point out?BD: The only Harley part on the bike is the headlight, and it’s from a Softail Blackline. I tried to make as many parts myself as possible and hide as many bolts as I could. I made the handlebars, pipes, and oil tank. The back fender was bought but reshaped. The exhaust started as six feet of tubing and consisted of thirty-three pieces. When I was building my XS 650, everyone had a telescopic front end, so I put a girder front end on that to be different. For this bike, I wanted to do something I haven’t seen in a while, so instead of a regular springer, I made an inverted style. It works exactly the same as a normal springer front end, but all of the action takes place down low. For the gas tank, I bought a huge six-gallon chopper tank that I cut up and reshaped for the look I wanted. I removed pieces of it, added pieces to it, and changed the radius on the bottom. The oil tank has the same radius as the gas tank. Is there a particular reason you went with the S&S engine?BD: Panheads were always my favorite motors. I looked into getting an original but really wanted to hammer on this thing and avoid as many issues as possible. After some research, I ended up with the S&S P93 engine with a Baker 4-speed transmission. It just made sense. They’re bulletproof. What kind of clutch are you using?BD: It’s an internal twist clutch I picked up from Exile Cycles. This isn’t an ordinary 1970s style transmission. It’s a Baker to start, but I had it made with the 1990s ball and ramp style clutch actuator. Traditionally, the older style had an arm that came out of the top of the transmission, and when you squeezed your lever, the cable would pull the arm toward you. With this style, the cable goes into the transmission, so when you pull the cable, it moves that ramp with a simple twist action. It’s exactly the same as the internal throttle but twists the opposite direction for the clutch. Any other parts or pieces you’d like to mention?BD: Phil Williams of Bridge City Paint did the paintwork. I couldn’t decide on a color at first, but at the last minute, I chose red. When I went to Phil, I told him I’d like the tank to be symmetrical without being completely symmetrical. He knew exactly what I meant and did a great job. The underneath of the tank looks just as good as the top. I’m using a fixed axle. So, instead of having the axle go through the frame and using a nut on one side, I built the nut into the frame. You screw the long axle and threads into the right side of the frame and use a set screw to lock it in. Is there anyone else you’d like to shout out for helping with the build?BD: Along with those previously mentioned, Steve Simqu helped out a lot with this bike. We’d work on stuff in the evening until about 9pm, then go out to the local bar for a couple of beers. We’d get some good ideas while having those beers, then forget them by the morning. How does it ride, and are you happy with how it turned out?BD: I’ve only gone to a couple of places with it so far. It goes in a perfectly straight line if I let go of the handlebars, so I’m happy about that. I’ll take it out sometimes when I get home from work, but I’m still giving it some shakedown miles for the time being. I’m glad that I was able to build a lot of it myself. It typically costs more money to make your own parts because you have to make stuff to make stuff, but I’m proud that I was able to create so much on my own. Featured in Issue 11 CUSTOM S&S PANHEAD CHOPPER Built by BRIAN DELTORRE instagram | youtube Words by KURT DISERIO Photos by ALEXA DISERIO
Mixing Art & Gasoline at Clientele Art Show Studio Words by Kurt Diserio — Photos by Alexa Diserio Seven years ago, William Wallace closed on an empty space in Wheeling, West Virginia, with no real direction as to what it would become. In time, things started to take shape, and by the end of 2018, Clientele Art Studio was born with its first official gallery show. Wallace was a friend of ours from Alexa’s music-making days, so it was great to see someone create an attractive space that gives artists in the Ohio Valley a place to showcase their work. Shortly after in January 2019, we were asked to be part of the first Cold Start art show, a three-person exhibition that combined the photography work from Daxton Scholl of Drift Pizza Media, photography from Alexa Diserio of Pittsburgh Moto, and the psychedelic chopper art from myself. Those who attended and stayed late were fortunate to witness an intense drift car burnout by painter Nick Perricellia, who closed the night off with a bang. We covered that first show in Issue Number 005 and returned for a second show in January of 2020 before the pandemic shut everything down. After having to call off last year’s show, we were fortunate to continue Cold Start when the three of us returned this year to a space that has seen considerable upgrades since the last round. Clientele is now a full-time gallery space open to the public with a solid schedule of events, artist exhibits, weekly yoga classes, and much more. It even serves beer and has a retail section with clever goods created by amazing artists. Year three picked up right where we left off. It’s unlikely to hear of an art gallery exhibit consisting exclusively of psychedelic motorcycle art and photography. When you mix in drift cars, lots of beer, and a big group of bikers, it takes things to another level. A space like Clientele Art Studio allows people to be themselves and let loose for a night. For me, seeing the evolution of Alexa and Daxton’s work from a different perspective was inspiring and something I hope ignites a spark in those with a creative passion for motorsports. Big thanks to our local motorcycle family for making the trip and filling the place with love. We hope to see yinz again next year! Clientele Art Studio in Wheeling, West Virginia Kurt Diserio, Go with the Flow, 2021 Kurt Diserio, Sliding Through, 2022 Alexa Diserio, Pittsburgh Moto photographer Daxton Scholl of Drift Pizza Media Drift car photography by Daxton Scholl Kurt Diserio, Ride the Wave, 2022 Kurt Diserio, Go Beyond, 2022 Kurt Diserio, artist Clientele Art Studio in Wheeling, West Virginia Kurt Diserio, Shovelhead, 2021 Kurt Diserio, Day by Day, 2022 Kurt Diserio, Chasing the Edge, 2021 Kurt Diserio, Borrego Sky, 2021 Featured in Issue 11 COLD START ART SHOW JANUARY 22, 2022 CLIENTELE ART STUDIO43 15TH STREETWHEELING, WV 26003 www.clientelestudio.com facebook | instagram Words by KURT DISERIO Photos by ALEXA DISERIO
A History of Paint and Pinstriping Words by Kurt Diserio — Photos by Alexa Diserio + John Jackson Custom-built motorcycles are sometimes referred to as functional art pieces. The platform allows for layers of work and intricacy that are only limited by a builder’s abilities, time, and dedication. While we all love going over a bike and seeing the attention to detail that went into each piece, the paint job is typically what people notice upon first glance. Bold is often better if you’re looking to draw attention or express yourself in a unique way, and Jeremy Seanor of Lucky Strike Designs specializes in just that. If you want to get an idea of Seanor’s paint style, just check out his personal Harley bagger he calls “Lucky No. 6”. It’s a wild, colorful work of art that he often takes on extended road trips around the country. We were fortunate to meet up at his garage before he left on one of these long trips down south. How did you first get into painting?Jeremy Seanor: I got started when I was really young doing hand-lettering and custom signs with my neighbor. We did a ton of plumber and mechanics trucks, but whenever the vinyl cutter came out, it kind of killed that business overnight. So, I had to figure something else out. One thing led to another, and I went from simple pinstriping and painting work to eventually laying out graphics and painting everything from the start to finish. I got my name out by doing helmets, motorcycles, and SEMA vehicles. Things snowballed from there, and Lucky Strike is now celebrating fifteen years in business. You mentioned earlier that you also worked at PPG for some time. Did that contribute to your knowledge of painting?JS: My career at PPG definitely helped me get better. We painted tons of stuff, and I was there for almost twelve years. I taught a lot of custom and restoration classes, showing others how to use PPG products correctly out of their training center in Allison Park. The experience contributed to my knowledge of what I call the nuts and bolts of paint. It’s the part of the business that a lot of people don’t pay attention to—the fact that you can’t use this product with that product and so on. I got to learn a lot of the finer details. Things changed when the pandemic hit, and here we are. Is there a meaning behind the Lucky Strike Designs business name?JS: It’s actually inspired by my grandfather who was into motorcycles and smoked Lucky Strike cigarettes. He used to have these old tins that I kept my first sets of pinstriping brushes in. Were there any artists who inspired your work?JS: I grew up watching the hot rod world come around, so I was inspired by people like Ed Roth, Von Dutch, and Gene Winfield. Instead of sketching bowls of fruit in art class, I was that kid drawing Rat Fink hanging out of a hot rod. Over the years, I’ve painted a bunch of show cars that were similar to what I enjoyed looking at when I was younger. Now, with social media, it’s nice to see what everyone in the business is doing. I like to think that we’re all friends who bounce ideas back and forth, taking inspiration from each other. Do you have a history with motorcycles?JS: I’ve always been into motorcycles. I grew up riding dirt bikes in Latrobe before moving to Beaver County. I got my first, a Honda MR50, when I was five years old. My father and grandpap have always rode, too. As my interest in bikes grew, I realized I could mix my passion with making a living. I was always into art, so I just smashed all of that together when creating Lucky Strike Designs. Was there a pivotal moment that you went into motorcycles full-time or was it just something that happened naturally?JS: A little bit of both. It mostly happened through word of mouth and dealing with customers who built bikes. A lot of builders don’t do their own paint work, so they kind of require guys with my skill and vice versa. I’m not one to build a bike from the ground up, but I have good friends and customers who would help me build a motor or whatever is needed. Doing the paint work keeps my interest in the art side of things. As far as motorcycles, is there a type or style that you prefer, and do you notice the industry swaying in any particular direction?JS: I will pretty much paint anything. It doesn’t matter if it’s a bagger, chopper, bobber, or whatever. It’s just the canvas, and if a customer has a good idea, I’m interested. Right now, from my perspective, I feel there’s a growing interest in performance baggers. The comfort level is different, and we’re doing all sorts of things from crazy suspension to big motors but still able to ride them wherever. I’d also like to get more into the custom chopper culture. You paint a lot of helmets, is there something that you enjoy about that platform?JS: I think it comes down to the point that a lot of customers might not want to spend several thousand dollars on a whole bike, but they feel comfortable with getting a helmet done that still has a lot of character and fits their personality. The helmet aspect gives free reign on ideas, subject matter, and colors. The sky’s the limit, and it’s a simple process of shipping me the helmet and letting me know what you’re thinking. A lot of people are treating them as pieces of collectible art. I’m doing one for a customer now that has had six helmets done over the last year and a half. What is the typical turnaround time, and how could someone contact you?JS: Usually, a helmet takes about a couple of weeks depending on colors and work involved. Baggers take anywhere from a month to two months. People can get in touch through my website and Instagram page. I’ll pretty much paint anything if the customer has a will for it. Photo by John Jackson Photo by John Jackson Photo by John Jackson Photo by John Jackson Featured in Issue 10 LUCKY STRIKE DESIGNS Jeremy Seanor www.luckystrikedesigns.com instagram.com/luckystrike_designs Words by KURT DISERIO Photos by ALEXA DISERIOJOHN JACKSON
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