Bicycle Project: Part 2 – Custom Steel, Italy

Following on from Part 1 of the project story, Part 2 is the real guts of the project.

Inspiration now qualified, like any change or project development there’s a critical point where ideas must turn into action, Part 2 is all about action.

Three questions arose to prompt clear action: Who will prepare the frame? What images to use? Which organisation has the know-how to print and install?

The first answer came easily, after many years of association with The Freedom Machine Brighton no hesitation was required, they were engaged to prepare the frames. The essential work required was to tap all the threads and finish off the facings for flush fitting of components like cranksets. This had to be performed before the frames were wrapped.

Whilst the frame preparation was activated, thoughts turned to the imagery for the frame. Melbourne is recognised world-wide as a hot-bed for urban art with strong roots and high quality artists. A walk through the CBD any day of the week you might come across new art being created right in front of you.
Street Art Melbourne CBD

Previously, maarq launched the premiere exhibition for two new emerging photographers, Alistair Wilson and Leigh Schilling, specialists in dramatic landscapes and portraiture respectively. For this project, Alistair Wilson was engaged to capture the urban art images.
Stimulate Your Senses Photography Exhibition by Maarq at Cafe Racer
Whilst we arranged a shooting schedule with Alistair Wilson, maarq drafted a Design Brief to collate the high-level concepts and guide the project toward the desired outcome. With up to four parties involved in the project, the Design Brief provided a means to align thinking and create a path and plan to achieve results.

Knowing that the technology existed to print designs on to adhesive materials, maarq sought an experienced organisation in this particular area. An internet search revealed that the only companies providing a bicycle wrap service were based in the USA and did not offer customised solutions. Having come across a capable local outfit earlier this year at the Alfa Romeo Giulietta launch, we put in a call to discuss the potential for custom wrapping a bicycle. This supplier, having wrapped many odd objects such as coffee mugs and coffee machines, agreed that they were set for the challenge.

Next up we toured with Alistair Wilson through Melbourne’s CBD and captured a folio of graffiti images to choose from for the lay up of the frame.
Street Art Melboure Giraffe captured by Alistair Wilson

With the sequence of phases and activities progressing positively and all partner organisations engaged, the potential for the project closed in on the peak.

The frames were delivered to the supplier along with the final Design Brief including all images, and the impetus to Go! After a short time, the bike frame designs circuited two loops of design and review and verged almost ready to proceed to final production.

Here’s a slice.
Maarq Custom Bicycle Design Graffiti Bicycle

In Part 3 we’ll see the final design, representing the culmination of vast amounts of inspiration, action, performance and the realisation of a new design potential.

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