Mitch's trucking metal art takes off
WHEN he started his career as a metal fabricator creating commercial kitchens, Gatton-based metal artist Mitchell Agate never thought he'd end up in the world of trucks.
But, to his surprise, that's where he is now and there's no rig he can't replicate.
The artist, whose family is heavily involved in race car driving, ventured into making truck models about a year ago and business is booming.
"I've been doing metal art for about five or six years but then I did a truck and it just went off from there,” he said.
"We've got well over 80 (truck replicas) ordered and I've made 45 now.”
And many of those replicas are heading overseas to places like America and New Zealand, as well as all around Australia.
When asked why he reckons they took off as well as they did, he explains: "I think it's the fact I can replicate people's personal trucks”.
"I don't think anyone's ever done replicas of particular trucks in a metal style. That's honestly all that I can bring it down to.
"They look pretty cool too.
"The photos are cool but, when you see it in person, the photos just don't do it any justice.”
Mitchell said he mostly sold his models through word-of-mouth and on Facebook.
"There are a couple of different businesses that want to purchase them consistently but I have to be careful about where I post them because I get inundated with orders,” he said.
"I've got my father working with me, helping me now too.
"He's given me the OK to put in the hours (to make the models) and now it's got to a point where he's helping me because he's got the time to do it.
"I definitely enjoy spending time with him, we're drag racers at heart.
"I've always been into fast cars and that's where I started my metal art.
"Being beside my dad, it's a mega bonus getting to work with him.”
Depending on what kind of truck it is, and how many trailers it has, Mitchell said it took him roughly 10-20 hours to create one model.
"The hardest thing in getting them to look correct is to make the bends look right from the photos that I'm supplied with,” he said.
"But it's like anything, you do it a few times and it gets easier. I feel like there's no rig I can't replicate.”