Interview with Vivi Hoffmanns – The 3rd Place Winner


Title: John Petrucci from Dream Theater

Dimensions: 40 x 60cm

Base: Schoellershammer 4G

(Reference photo by Bert Treep)

Vivi Hoffmanns, The Netherlands DSCN4668 (2)

This was a very expressive and fascinating portrait of musician, John Petrucci. The emotions were transferred very well onto the canvas with delicate airbrushing skills; earning it the 3rd place prize from our judges. In our interview with the creator, Vivi Hoffmanns from The Netherlands, we learn about her background, inspiration and experience.

Sparmax: Tell us about your artwork.

Vivi: I tried to capture musician John Petrucci’s passion and soul in this portrait. When I choose a photo, It has to be a photo which tells me about the person’s character on stage or how I see this person. The reference photo was taken by Bert Treep during a concert.

Sparmax: Tell us about your background. When was your first time to know airbrushing? When did you start learning and where?

Vivi: In 2012 I went to Henk van den Hooven to try if airbrush would be my cup of tea after seeing a photo of an airbrush work from a friend on social media. Once a  week during a three hours group course with a long coffee break (due to having lots of fun), Henk taught me the airbrush basics. I didn’t attend a lot of classes because of my company’s activities (I give floral workshops, workshops how to make sculptures, create bridal flowers and mourning pieces etc.) and soon I had to quit the course due to lack of time. I bought my first Harder&Steenbeck airbrush and used my husband’s compressor. In our garage I spent some hours of airbrushing and from January 2013 on I’ve been airbrushing on a regular basis. I started airbrushing portraits because  I wanted to really understand the airbrush art (sort out what happens if you put layers on layers, mix colours in the cup or on the board, how to create effects etc). In September 2013 I attended Marissa’s portrait class and I learned a lot and I bought an Iwata airbrush! In September 2014 I attended Marissa’s Fantasy class and that’s it, I haven’t attended more courses yet. I like to think that you control and understand airbrush if you are capable of painting a realistic portrait and if you are able to capture a character. I see these portraits as my studies to learn all about airbrushing.

Sparmax: What inspires you for your airbrushing works?

Vivi: In the first place: Music! I love to catch a musicians’ soul and passion in my portraits with my passion for the (airbrush) art. I had banned music out of my life for twelve years due to circumstances but since 4 years (progressive rock) music has been a significant part of my life. Marillion brought music back into my life and was the first band I listened to. “Beautiful” was the song that made me crack. Dream Theater was the second band I started listening to. “Vivi meets prog” was my theme for the exhibitions I attended in Rosmalen and Grefrath and it was to honour the bands who’s music helped me to give things that happened in my life a place.

Sparmax: What’s your dream/target/goal for airbrushing? What do you try to achieve?


-Create from within myself (and I have started already), inspired by life in its biggest meaning and stop being a copy machine

-I would love to touch people with my artwork

-It would be a dream come true if artists/writers etc. would come to me and want my art on their albums/books or merchandise etc.

-I would love to have my own exhibition in a gallery!!!

Sparmax: What does Airbrushing mean to you?

Vivi: Airbrush means everything to me. Creating art in general is very important to me. It helps me put things in the right perspective and keeps me focussed on what is really important to me in life.

Sparmax: How do you know “when” you finished an airbrushing artwork?

Vivi: I don’t know when an airbrush artwork is finished… I think when I’ve captured what I intended to capture… but it is never perfect because I ALWAYS see what could have been done better! So still loads and loads to learn!

Sparmax: Please give some advice to the beginners who just enter the airbrushing world.

Vivi: Don’t rush, airbrush thin layers and add LOADS of layers.

Interview with Roland Thurnes – The 2nd Place Winner


Title: Morgentau (Morning Dew)

Dimensions: 50 x 35cm

Base: Schoellershammer 4G

Roland Thurnes, Austria Roland

Seeing the caterpillar hanging on the green grass/leaves with the fresh dew over the lake floating slightly by the breeze in the early morning is like seeing the real natural scene, breathing the fresh air, also feeling breezy and peaceful. A well-balanced composition, with colors and shadows which came out and captured the elegant atmosphere – Roland’s Morgentau caught the judges’ eyes, earning it the 2nd place prize. In our interview with the creator, Roland Thurnes from Austria, we learn about his background, inspiration and experience.

Sparmax: Tell us about your background. When was your first time to know airbrushing? When did you start learning and where?

Roland: The first time airbrushing caught my eye and I became interested in airbrushing in 1998. Then, since February 2012, I started learning the airbrush technique and had 2-year Intensive course at Handwerkskammer Ulm. I work as a painter for a church, especially working in the field, ‘Restoration and Preservation’ and of course, my hobby is airbrushing.

Sparmax: What inspires you for your airbrushing works?

Roland: In my airbrush work, I’m inspired by different things, such as: Animals and nature, design and embellish objects, or just “learning by doing”.

Sparmax: What’s the color you use the most while airbrushing and why? Or the color used depending on when/what?

Roland: The colors I used are mainly: Pro-Color by Hansa, in the field of fine art, because they can be the one with small nozzle sizes (0.2mm), over an extended period of time it works without any major problems and they work on cardboard and paper very well too. IFor range object design and Kustom Painting I use Auto-Air Colours, because they have better adhesion to plastic and metal substrates.

Sparmax: What does Airbrushing mean to you?

Roland: Airbrush is a wide range of possibilities for the design of all kinds of things for me.

Disclaimer: The interview was conducted in German, however, contents have been translate and the translation has been approved by Mr. Roland Thurnes.

Interview with Thomas Olczyk – The 1st Place Winner


Title: Lowin

Dimensions: 17 x 9cm

Base: Turkey feathers

Thomas Olczyk, Germany Foto

This was a stunning, gorgeous piece of artwork, done with delicate airbrushing skills and creatively combinating it with real turkey feathers. The judges recognized the originality and difficulty with this piece and awarded it the 1st place prize. In our interview with the creator, Thomas Olczyk from Germany, we learn about his background, inspiration and experience to share with you all.

Sparmax: Tell us about your artwork

Thomas: I have sprayed this image of a lioness on two glued turkey feathers. The size of the image is approximately 9 x 17 cm. With the help of stencils that I cropped as I needed, I built on the subject, step by step, without a previous sketch. It is very difficult and takes a lot of time (about 40 – 50 hours).

Sparmax: Tell us about your background. When was your first time airbrushing?

Thomas: My first contact with an airbrush was in the 90’s. At that time(and to thisday), I was very fascinated by airplanes; more specifically by aircraft models. To paint them particular, I bought a simple and inexpensive airbrush. As my interest in the airbrush techniques grew, I bought a new and better airbrush which I used for creating my first images on paper. To expand my knowledge around the airbrush subject, I have attended various courses and workshops. Over time, I’ve done less of the building of aircraft models and dedicate myself to the airbrush technique until today, both of which are still my hobbies.

Sparmax: What inspires you for your airbrushing works?

Thomas: The fun, the interest in this technology, and the challenge to paint a picture as detailed as possible are my biggest inspiration reasons. Also the works of other artists, eg photos from vacation, visits to exhibitions, and just from everyday interesting conversations as well. This award also contributes to the fact that I continue to be motivated again and again.

Sparmax: What’s your dream/target/goal for airbrushing? What do you try to achieve?

I want to try out much more, as new or different techniques, but also different or unusual substrates.

Sparmax: What does Airbrushing mean to you?

Thomas: Airbrush is primarily a hobby for me. Here I can relax and power off from everyday life. But sometimes it can also strain my nerves! Especially when I do not know how to composite the next step. In such cases, I put the image for a day or even more aside and try it later again later. The motto is: die hard!

Sparmax: Please give some advice to the beginners who just enter the airbrushing world.

Thomas: The airbrush technique is used in many areas; for example illustrations, Body Painting, Custom, nail art and more. Therefore, it is important to find the right tool for your own application and learn to master. Certainly it is not necessary, but you can save yourself a lot of time and nerves by doing an airbrush course. You can find out if you like this kind of painting. In time, everyone develops his own style and technique which will suit them best.

Disclaimer: The interview was conducted in German, however, contents have been translate and the translation has been approved by Mr. Thomas Olczyk.

Winners of the 2014 Sparmax European Airbrush Competition Announced!

Congratulations to the winners in our Fine Art category! You can see the winning entries below.

The 1st Place Winner


Thomas Olczyk, Germany

Lowin – Turkey feathers 17 x 9cm

The 2nd Place Winner


Roland Thurnes, Austria

Morgentau – Schoellershammer 4G 50 x 35cm

The 3rd Place Winner


Vivi Hoffmanns, The Netherlands

John Petrucci – Schoellershammer 4G 40 x 60cm (Reference photo photographed by Bert Treep)

A big thank you to all the participants in the inaugural Sparmax European Airbrush Competition. We were thrilled to see the variety of creations sent in, ranging from stunning creativity to epic beauty; it made it very difficult for our panel of judges to only pick 3 winners from the submissions!

We would also like to thank the judges, consisting of 3 talented artists who are active in airbrushing world, our exclusive distributor in Germany – Harder & Steenbeck, which is also a professional leading brand in airbrushing worldwide. We here at Sparmax also represented one judge. Below is a brief profile of our airbrush artist judges:

Ariel Castellaro perfil 2

Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, as a child, Ariel was influenced by his grandmother, who was a painter of oil canvases.

Ariel himself started painting in 1995, using an airbrush to paint models, and soon ventured into shirts, and by 1997 his works were being sold in clothing stores. In 1998 he received intensive training in “free-hand” technique to work for an airbrush shop within a mall which eventually led him to start his own airbrushing shop.

Today, after expanding his business, Ariel regularly teaches and instructs in airbrushing for over 25 students, in groups of up to 8 students. He is a member of the APA (Professional Argentine Airbrush), an organization which plans and hosts several competitions and events for airbrushing, that draws many participants and has garnered world press.

So far he has delivered 2 seminars; “Airbrushing on dark surfaces” and “Introduction to free-hand airbrushing.” At present he is working on some custom paint projects for motorcycles and hot-rod cars.

He is also planning a series of seminars to deliver in Europe in 2015.



Website: (under construction)

Eddy Verpuylt eddy

Eddy Verpuylt, residing in Londerzeel, Belgium discovered the airbrushing technique 22 years ago. He is well versed in at different techniques, including kustom painting on vehicles, and realistic works on paper and canvas; despite these achievements, he is always still looking to explore and experiement with different airbrush techniques. In the past 12 years, Eddy has been teaching and instructing various arts such as airbrushing, pinstriping and kustom painting to both beginners and advanced students in the workshops of Artobi. Eddy is also a very talented photographer.


Evrim Duyar 997076_10152547503579285_7691494748200010466_n (2)

Evrim Duyar is a Turkish artist, currently also working and residing there. She is a member of IAA/AIAP, The International Association of Art and has designed and painted the helmets for the Acroteam pilots of the Turkish Air Force and was also part of the design team of the F-16 “SOLOTURK”, which is the only F-16 in Acroteam.

More than 300 F-16 pilots in the Turkish Air Forces are wearing flight helmets designed and painted by Evrim Duyar. She has performed airbrush work for four F-104 airplanes as well.

Throughout her career, she has taken part in countless events and roadshows with her highly impressive performance shows, organised for global companies including Mazda, Renault and Rexona.

She has painted a large amount of murals, autos, motorcycles, etc throughout her 11 years of professional experience.



Stay tuned for our interviews with the winners in the coming posts where they’ll share their experiences and tips. Keep an eye on our gallery;-)