My name is Jae Bueno. I am a freelance photographer here
in the Southern California area. I contribute to a few magazine titles
like Lowrider Magazine and DUB Magazine and I also publish my blog on
my web site JaeBueno.com. I have been into cars since a very young age.
When I decided to get into photography at a more serious level I chose
the Lowrider Culture as my main subject. Lowriders are full of color
and chrome which happen to be two of my favorite things. When Mike
approached me to write a guest blog for SpeedHunters.com, I thought I
would introduce one of the top clubs if not the top club in Lowriding,
Los Angeles’ Lifestyle Car Club.
the 1970’s in East Los Angeles California, Lifestyle Car Club is one of
the oldest and most prestigious car clubs in the world. Yes, you read
right; the world. That is no exaggeration; the club attracts the best
of the best in members and vehicles. The club boasts members from all
walks of life. The club also has members from different generations of
the same family. It takes a tremendous amount of dedication to be part
of the club. The members of Lifestyle strive for the best and accept
nothing less. There is a hierarchy in place with President Joe Ray
leading the club along with a set of officers.
The club has standards
in place not only for its members but for the cars that fly the
Lifestyle plaque. Lifestyle’s car committee oversees the build of club
cars and must approve everything from paint schemes to who will perform
the work on the cars. Lifestyle has been featured in numerous
publications, television shows, music videos and movies throughout the
world. With standards like Lifestyle’s, it’s no wonder they are known
throughout the custom car culture. Let’s take a look at a few of the
rides that fly the Lifestyle plaque.
Fernando “Big Fern” Ramirez’s 1958 Chevy Impala is named Moonflower. This is one of the more popular Lifestyle cars. It has been seen in numerous music videos and television shows.
You would never believe that the paint job on the Impala is over 10 years old! Big Fern is also the “go to” guy when you are looking for a car to buy or use in your music video or movie!
Mister Cartoon is one of the many members of Lifestyle that have more than one Lowrider in the club. His 1962 Chevy Impala is called Soul Kitchen and boast murals that were done by him. This year he busted out two new rides for the club.
His 1979 Chevy Monte Carlo is called Motel Hell and his 1961 Chevy Impala is called Dr. Greenthumb.
Both cars have been touched by Mister Cartoon and feature many custom touches.
Albert “Fireman” Gonzalez owns “Two Face” the 1963 Chevy Impala Convertible shown here. The ragtop is one of the more unique club cars. It happens to have two different paint schemes on the car.
The paint schemes are carried throughout the car including the dash and underside of the trunk. Fireman is also one of the Sergeant of Arms of the club and ensures that the club members don’t get out of hand.
Danny D Galvez owns this 1966 Chevy Impala called “Panty Raid”. Danny D Galvez is the principal painter and pinstriper for Lifestyle. Danny D is responsible for a lot of the paint jobs you see in the club. His patterns and pinstriping are sought after by many. He has been profiled in magazines and television shows.
Panty Raid will be featured in a major motion picture staring Aston Kutcher, George Lopez and Julia Roberts.
Check out Danny’s latest creation called Drag.u.la. It’s a rolling ice chest!
Club President Joe Ray owns two of the most recognizable Lowriders in the club.
His 1979 Lincoln called ”Las Vegas” boast murals by Mister Cartoon, and many of the games you’ll find in the Casinos in Las Vegas including a pair of slot machines.
Joe’s 1971 Buick Rivera called “Dressed to Kill” has a coffin in the car and the steering wheel is the shape of a coffin as well. Joe is a member of the Lowrider Hall of Fame and the editor of Lowrider Magazine.
Sean Hodges completed his 1982 Cadillac last year right before the “Super Bowl of Lowriding”, the Las Vegas Super Show.
Danny D Galvez worked his magic on the Caddy and the hard work paid off as Sean and Danny took best paint at the Las Vegas Super Show on its first outing.
Tattoo Tony owns this 1969 Chevy Impala called “Tattoo You”. Tattoo Tony is a tattoo artist by trade so the name if appropriate for the car.
The 69 features custom interior, murals and of course custom paint!
Tim Rodriguez cruises the streets of Los Angeles in his 1957 Chevy Bel Air called “Gold Digger”. The 57 rag turns heads wherever it goes!
From the custom hydraulic installation to the jewels placed in the murals on the body Tim has every base covered. Rumor has it that the 57 is going to be torn down and given a full make over.
Pete Macias aka Ragtop Pete is the proud owner of this electric blue 1961 Chevy Impala Convertible. Pete’s rag features custom paint, pinstriping, and interior. It is perfect for the beautiful Southern California climate.
Pete named his car after the classic Led Zeppelin song “Stairway to Heaven”.
John Herrera’s 1976 Chevy Caprice Landau is also named after a hit Led Zeppelin song, “Kashmir”. Do you see a common theme when naming Lifestyle cars? Like many of his club brothers, John has built other cars for the club and has another project in the wings.
John will pass this Glasshouse onto his daughters once they are of driving age. Hey John, need a son?
Rick Ortega’s 1984 Cadillac Coupe De Ville called “Eyes without a Face” is the current cover car of Lowrider Magazine.
Like all of the cars in Lifestyle, Rick left nothing untouched. He went through the whole car and added his personal touches like murals, shaved door handles and lots of candy paint and chrome accents. Rick also built the legendary 1964 Chevy Impala called “Aladdin” that set the bar for craftsmanship and detail.
These are only a fraction of the cars in Lifestyle. There are 80 plus active members and most members have more than one car in the club.
We could fill a few months here on SpeedHunters.com with Lifestyle cars!
I’ve have quite a few friends in the club so I have been able to capture quite a few of their cars at events over the years.
I leave you with a shot of the club at a meeting earlier this year. Like most car clubs, meetings are for members only and outsiders are not permitted unless they are invited. This meeting was taking place at the Grand National Roadster Show in Pomona. I was there covering the event for Lowrider Magazine and happen upon the meeting. I took the shot at a distance that would respectfully honor their privacy. The result is the image here. I named the image “Riders on the Storm” after the 1971 Doors song.
Lifestyle car club has weathered the ups and downs of Lowriding over the past 30 something years so the image title is fitting for the legendary club.
I hope you enjoyed my guest blog and I’d like to thank Mike Garrett for allowing me to be a guest blogger on SpeedHunters.com.