We enjoy, on occasion, featuring a modeler who's a consistent winner on the contest trail. Marysville, California's Doug "Doc" Midkiff is one such modeler. "Doc has been a Northern California fixture for years and is best known for his outstanding paint jobs. He's approached regularly for advice on paint techniques or hired to paint display models.
Doc is a professional painter by trade and has worked on many well-known customs. He has been in the automotive hobby all his life, and more recently evolved into the world of customs, street rods, and models. I first met Midkiff six years ago and we hit it off immediately. The fact that we're both car nuts, have a common background, and are both model builders probably has something to do with it.
A model truck painted by Doc at a Goodguys show just blew me away. I'd never seen anything like this quality of work, and I simply had to meet its creator. Doc was available and kind enough to assist in running the model contest at the recent Sacramento AutoRama at Cal-Expo, where we shot the photos presented here.
Doc is a truck fan and enjoys building and modifying a wide variety of trucks. He builds in several different styles and displays trucks painted in black suede as well as killer custom flame/graphics unlike anything seen before in scale. He's a lock for Best Paint when entering a contest. As well he should be-there are few with his level of talent. Those painters who even approach his skill are what would be considered his protges, or students.
We've watched as he deftly hand-striped a 1:25-scale model and marveled at his steady hand and creative designs. Doc also has a wonderful feel for color and his work is always tasteful, with colors that compliment one another quite well. Whether street rod or custom truck, if you've seen his work, you'll spot it immediately at the next show. Like many accomplished artists, nobody's paint is like his. I was surprised to learn that he does not necessarily stick to automotive lacquer; he often sprays plain old hobby enamels and acrylics-like normal people. But, it's all in how he uses them that makes the difference.
The true sign of a teacher is his willingness to help those who ask for assistance. Doc's eager and willing to share ideas, techniques, and experience with anyone . . . and we've asked plenty. Enjoy this small sample of his work.