One Shot Enamel Paint

Rich and vibrant, this paint is intended to never need a second coat. You get the job done in “one shot.” It is a gorgeous medium, slick and luscious and it must be painted on with a slow and steady hand by someone with the experience to be patient. Like this gentleman that I met at a car show in Bastrop, Texas.


In the hands of sign painters, the paint turns into large-scale symbols of consumerism. Massive metal frames come alive, lethargic brick walls rise up and greet you, invisible sheets of glass become glamorous posters for their shops like shiny candy that tempts you into looking again.

It is a commonplace medium, but only because most people don’t really see it. They bundle it up in their minds with vinyl graphics and advertising made by machine and not by hand.

Pinstripers have used it to create long lean lines and improvised ornament that camouflage the imperfections and scratches in the hand-built metal facades of cars and motorcycles. At least that’s how it started.

Pin striping has turned into a divine skill. It’s the kind of beauty even the dirtiest old school greaser can get behind.

If you’re interested in digging deeper into pinstriping and hand lettering, I recommend this video of Big Daddy Roth interviewing Von Dutch, two legends in this field. Its history and technical video combined.


I chose One Shot for many reasons. First, it adheres to metal, and my choice of substrate at the moment is copper. Next, it takes about a day to dry completely. So I have time to turpenoid (erase) it if I hate how it looks. But the thing that I love about it the most is the intense color. And color is equal to joy in my mind. It catches the light in such a strict and graphic manner. It forbids me to make a dull painting.

Sarah JonesComment