This guy just oozes cool. TJ Guzzardi is an amazingly epic sign writer, his signs are memories of a by gone era and are dripping with nostalgia.
How long have you been sign painting? I didn’t start out doing sign painting. When I was 15 I taught myself pinstriping and then taught myself how to do lettering when I was around 19. It’s only the last 5 years I’ve taken it seriously though, trying to hone my skills and then opening my shop
You have a very unique, vintage style – where does this influence and inspiration stem from? Pretty much most of it comes from my head and the other part comes from when I drive around – I’m always looking at letters, signs, shapes of signs, colours and what colours look good together. You could almost say I’m obsessed with signs haha
What are some of the favourite signs you have painted? This is a hard question to answer as I love every art piece I do. I have designed and painted a sign for Uppercut Deluxe, some signs for Sterling Hairdressing Parlour and Barbershop, All the Kings Men, Porteño, Le Bon Ton, that’s only a few
What does your day involve? How many hours a day are you painting? My day is very different every day. Some mornings I don’t start work til lunch time. My wife and I sometimes take our kids down to the park in the mornings and grab a coffee, then I’ll start work . I guess that’s one great thing I love about working for myself, there’s no normal day.
I probably don’t really want to know how many hours I work a day some days.They can be really long depending on deadlines for jobs
Do you do any other form of painting or art in your spare time or is it signage that is your passion? Nah I guess im pretty lucky I have made my passion/hobby into my full time job which supports my family. There’s not much more I would change. When I’m not painting a sign for someone I’m painting and designing signs to hang on my wall in the shop
Does this style of sign writing also reflect your lifestyle? As in what are your other passions in life? Do they go hand in hand? Yeah I’m just being myself. I love art and vintage inspired things. I was born into a hotrod/50s family – my dad builds hot rods so I never knew anything else. I guess now I have taken what I have learnt from my dad and put my flair to it. My dad always said to me as a young child that there’s no good in being a sheep, if you want to be noticed in life you have to be a leader and to have something out there for people to see
When you get a sign painting job, how do you go about making it unique – do you find it easy or challenging to be constantly coming up with something new? Yeah it’s pretty tricky sometimes. I have those days when I’m just looking at a blank piece of paper for ages haha. On other days you have ideas just flowing out. When I have those days, I draw quick sketches of lay outs and put them in a book for when I know I’ll need the inspiration
You have been asked by Movember to be one of their faces for this years campaign. What will this entail for you? Why do you think Movember is important (besides awesome moustaches!) I was pretty excited when I got the call from them, as I have had a mo for almost 6 years, its funny, people always say ‘oh cool mo, so you’ve grown it for movember?’ I’m like nope, this is just me. I’m not really sure what will come out of it but its all in fun and for a great cause. I do like moustaches and dressing dapper