A Little History....
Shorty began her business during the 1970's & the era of the Grateful Dead, when murals,
cartoons & striping on vehicles was the ultimate of expression & personalization. Born with the
eye & hand that only natural talent can explain, she drew & painted all the time. But while working
as the office manager in a motorcycle shop a customer came in and asked where he could get a
cartoon painted on his tank. Someone said "Shorty's good at art!" and the wheels were in motion.
Automotive paints are a totally different type of medium, which meant learning from the school of
hard knocks what paints worked with what other paints, what kind of brushes to use & then the
introduction to the airbrush!
Then someone said, "Who can paint the name of my bike on it?". Time to learn how to hand paint
The same thing happened with gold leafing, sign making, etc. The task would be suggested & it
was time to learn how.
Gradually building her own business in various buildings that she rented, she moved gradually
south through southern Maryland finally purchasing a commercial building in White Plains,
Maryland in 1986. After 21 years there she made the decision to move one last time to
Mechanicsville, Maryland. Planning this to be her final move her hope is to have a little more
personal time, less commuting, less traffic.
Billed as "semi-retirement" she knows that there is the chance that there are existing customers
that may find this move inconvenient & is hoping that offering pickup & delivery to those
customers when it's feasible will help ease the transition. She also hopes that there will be
customers in the Mechanicsville area that will find this a pleasant convenience for their auto, cycle
& signage needs.
Shorty has had a variety of people work for & with her, but in 1985 Cheri came to work as a
part-time receptionist/clean-up person. This position changed & evolved over the years & she is
still there, on a part-time basis. In January 2011 Cheri left for a "real" job full-time locally, but
comes in to keep the office semi-organized once or twice a month. Whenever possible she
comes back for jobs that require extra hands, making signs or lettering vehicles.
More important than Cheri, there is Frank. Shorty & Frank have been "a couple" for more than 10
years. Also in the sign business since he was a young man, Frank specializes in photographic
silkscreens. Almost a forgotten art in the age of computers Frank still offers this service to his
own customers. Along with the almost continual tutoring to Shorty & Cheri on computer programs!