Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Mike the Sign Painter

Mike said he’s been a Sign Painter for more than 30 years. “I’m probably the last sign painter you’re going to see,” he said. “The signs now are all plastic or vinyl, machine printed.”

In Jersey City, there’s still an appreciation for hand-painted signs. With his steady hand, Mike was working his art for the Twin Mart, a new bodega/convenience store due to open by early September. It’s located on the corner of Erie & Ninth—the portion of Ninth renamed Father Fitzgerald Way—the space used to house Newport Pharmacy, which moved across the street.

“I just met him in the neighborhood,” said Tony, the proprietor of the soon to be opened store. “He’s done a few signs around here.”

The sign looked classy and distinctive. It glistened. Tony said, “Looks great, doesn’t it.”

“Yes,” I agreed. “Why Twin Mart?"

“My brother just had twin boys. I thought it was a good name. They’re really cute.”

Spoken like a good uncle.

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