Join our mailing list and keep up-to-date with all the news from Wacom!

Sign Up

Where the Rubber Meets the Road: Professional Designer Draws His Passions

Jeremy Lacy has a not-so-secret double life. By day, Lacy is the lead designer at Ideations, Inc., a design-build firm focused on producing environments and exhibits. To share his ideations with his clients during meetings, he uses the Intuos Creative Stylus and the iPad for visual note taking called, sketchnoting. 

 “I’ve actually won projects because I was able to show my clients my initial thoughts and layouts during the meeting.” After the meetings, Lacy uses Sketchbook Pro and his Cintiq to fine tune and complete his work.

By night, Lacy turns to rubber-burning vintage bikes. In 2008, his two lives met during the recession. With less full-time work, thanks to the downturned economy, Lacy began using his extra time sketching hotrods and bikes. His tools of choice are the iPad, our Bamboo Paper app and the Intuos Creative Stylus. Creating hundreds of illustrations, he needed a place to host and share his work, leading him to launch Lacy Rods and Bikes on Tumblr. 

Inspiration on Two Wheels

Vintage motorcycles and hotrods have been Lacy’s passion since he was a kid. Growing up, his father was an avid vintage car collector and enthusiast. 

“I remember our family would hop in his 1930 Ford Model A and go on trips. Cars are ingrained in my blood. Even today, it’s a big tradition for my wife and three boys to go pull my father’s cars out of the garage during the holidays,” he says.

Lacy first found his interest in motorcycles when he saw an early 80’s Katana roaring down the street. Shortly after, he bought his first bike, a ’92 Suzuki Bandit 400. Fifteen years later, he’s owned around 10 bikes, including two vintage motorcycles he re-built to fuel his hobby.

“Building vintage bikes makes my artwork stronger. It gives me a fundamental understanding of how the parts I’m drawing actually work and fit together.”

Now Lacy travels around the country to follow his passion for building and drawing bikes. In February, 2014, Lacy visited Portland, Ore., to experience the vintage motorcycle show, The One Motorcycle Show. Motorcycle builders from around the world trek to The One Motorcycle Show to share their vintage, custom creations with other road warriors. He and his wife experienced a rare time for the city. Snow fell, ice covered the ground, the temperature dropped to single-digits in the wind chill, and Portland was a ghost town. Weather couldn’t keep Lacy’s spirits down, the only thing that could is if his two-wheeled addiction slid out from under him. 

Passion Project Drives Commissions

Although Lacy’s illustrations started as a fun hobby, he recently received his first commission to sketch a custom builders’ Kawasaki 750 called the “Saki Bomb.” The client enjoyed Lacy’s loose style, so Lacy started sketching. As his first commissioned piece, Lacy wanted to deliver an illustration that goes above and beyond his normal work. After completing the image in Bamboo Paper, he exported the image out to iPhoto and transferred it to his Macbook Pro. From there, he uploaded the file to Sketchbook Pro and used the precision of his Cintiq to finish the linework of the wheels and add extra detail to the bike.

Lacy’s new workflow from mobile tablet to desktop brings his two, diverse, worlds together to fine-tune his work. He is planning his next adventure and will be displaying his original art for the first time at the upcoming Hand-Built Motorcycle Show in Austin, TX on April 11 - 12.

We asked Lacy for tips on sketching and drawing using the iPad. Check them out below:

Wacom Intuos Creative Stylus, Bamboo Paper, iPad Tips

  • I usually start sketching using a light/thin pencil line to begin working on proportions.  Start by working light then gradually darken your lines as you begin refining your sketch.
  • When importing photos, I usually use the iPad’s on-board camera app then import those photos into Bamboo Paper.  I’ve found that if the photos are taken directly in the Bamboo Paper app they don’t get saved to your camera roll.
  • To keep from getting unwanted marks in your page while zooming (in Bamboo paper) I usually pinch to zoom in an arch motion.  It usually works every time.
  • I like the option of setting the Stylus buttons so that the eraser is the bottom button and the top button is “undo” this helps speed up my workflow.
  • Don’t forget that if you hold the stylus down on your page without moving it brings up your color pallet. This is handy if you are working in full-screen mode.
  • Selecting the “[]” button really helps you focus on your work and allows you to use more of your screen real-estate by clearing all other buttons and commands. With this option, you will get less accidental page turns.
  • I back up my notebooks by exporting them to Dropbox as PDF’s.
  • Bamboo Paper allows me to share my notes with co-workers and clients by emailing them the exact pages they need.
  • I email only portions of my notes to share with co-workers and clients.  It’s fast, easy and convenient.
  • I stay zoomed in most of the time while taking notes.  And I usually only use the fine-point pin for note taking then switch to pencil and the marker for doing a quick sketch during meetings.

Lacy found an engaging and interesting way to bring his two passions together, and he’s being noticed for his work. Stay tuned for more of Jeremy Lacy and Wacom coming soon.