A TOUCH OF FOOSE AT THE CARS LAND GRAND OPENING
June 18, 2012
We at Foose Design couldn't be more excited about the grand re-opening of Disney's California Adventure this Friday, June 15, 2012. This 5-year overhaul is now complete and we can't wait to experience all the new thrills. The creation of the new Cars Land, based on the town of Radiator Springs from the hit Cars franchise, is specifically near and dear to our heart. And not just because we love all things that have 4 wheels! We were actually involved in the development of certain design aspects featured throughout the land and now that it's open to the public, we get to tell you all about it.
Way back before the first Cars movie was released, Chip was lucky enough to serve as a consultant on the film and produced all the paint schemes for the character of Ramone, a 1959 Chevrolet Impala Lowrider who owns his own paint shop, Ramone's House of Body Art. He also designed a special paint scheme for Lightning McQueen, the movie protagonist, and assisted on wheel designs. Pixar called Chip again to help on the sequel Cars 2 and he delivered, creating more paint schemes and creating new character concept sketches.
Back in 2007, it was announced that Cars Land, a new themed land inspired by the Cars franchise, would be the centerpiece for the Disney California Adventure multi-year expansion to the property. Chip was there on Day One for the groundbreaking ceremony, he even painted the hard hat for John Lasseter, chief creative officer at Pixar and Walt Disney Animation Studios.
As the completion date neared, Walt Disney Imagineering reached out to Chip and the team at Foose to give certain props and displays within Cars Land that authentic automotive design touch. Full sized hoods from iconic vehicles ranging from 70's era Cadillac's to 50's era Chevy's were dropped off at Foose Design Headquarters in the spring of 2011, with the instructions that Chip customize them as Ramone from Cars
would. Chip worked with talented Swedish artist Ray Hill to create 11 unique designs. The hoods are prominently displayed in and around Ramone's House of Body Art retail shop in Cars Land and can also be seen during the ride experience itself on Radiator Springs Racers. See if you can locate the Hidden Mickey's, each hood has one!
Chip also custom mixed the colors (with BASF paint, of course) and designed the wheels featured on all the vehicles that race through Radiator Springs Racers. Additionally he custom mixed and painted new colors for the Ramone Color Shapes that appear during the ride. If you look closely you will also see a number of renderings throughout that were done by Chip.
All of these fun projects allowed Chip to get involved with the Disney Theme Parks Merchandise team. They asked Chip to complete 4 original oil paintings, providing his take on the Cars characters as real cars! The result were four unique designs featuring the main residents of Radiator Springs; Ramone, Lightning McQueen, Tow Mater and Doc Hudson. These paintings and associated prints and giclees were released at the Disney Gallery last summer and they've been previously mentioned here on our blog.
With Cars Land receiving its finishing touches in the spring of 2012, Chip and his team of pinstripers were called on to further customize the retail shop inside Ramone's House of Body Art and the Ramone area of Radiator Spring Racers. All those little extra details you see inside, whether it be the custom logos beneath the lighting, Ramone's tribute to Flo, the splatter painted and pinstriped riser boxes, the splatters in the paint booth or the stripes on the cash register, all were done by Chip and his team. We can't thank our stripers enough: Dennis Rickleffs, Brad King and Jeff "Styles” Overman.
Currently Chip is working on another round of paintings for Disney Theme Park Merchandise and new Foose-designed Cars merchandise that will appear in select retail shops at Cars Land in Fall 2012. Prints and giclees of Chip's previously release Cars inspired artwork are on display and for sale right now at Ramone's House of Body Art.
We can't thank Disney enough for all the great opportunities they provided us. We know we're a small part of a tremendously huge project and we're just so happy to be involved. Chip and his family have been able to visit Cars Land over the last couple days and they can't stop raving about it. Congratulations to all the Disney Imagineers! Please be sure to check out the new expansion at Disney's California Adventure as soon as you can, it turned out great!