2010-07-16 / Community

John Casatto’s Airbrushing Expertise

By Amanda Grannis

An example of a 9/11 firehouse memorial airbrushed by John Cassatto. An example of a 9/11 firehouse memorial airbrushed by John Cassatto. The craft of Arverne’s own John Cassatto is the result of both extraordinary talent and a keen eye, resulting in a type of art with an unconventional twist.

Ranging from 9/11 memorials to pinup girls, Cassatto’s work is fueled by fine detail and raw imagination. Yet Cassatto does not labor with stone, clay or canvas. Rather, this local artist creates scenes on the likes of cars, trucks, boats, even airplanes, with the help of an airbrush.

Cassatto notes that before entering this field, his creative energy was abundant but lacked a specific focus. His talents would eventually become inspired by hotrod magazines, which led him to pick up an airbrush at age 14. He would later attend the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan.

Now Cassatto has built a business based on his talent. For 15 years, he has been working on a personal level with clients and fuses their vision and his expertise to produce custom pieces of art.

Cassatto’s talents can cover anything, even boats. Cassatto’s talents can cover anything, even boats. “Everything is one of a kind,” he emphasizes. “There’s no rubber stamp with this.”

While much of his work is playful and fun, Cassatto produces memorial pieces as well. He has worked on 9/11 projects, as well as commemorative portraits of late loved ones. Though more somber in nature, remembrance works have a power that is often healing and therapeutic. Tributes displayed in firehouses or the hoods of cars help sooth deep wounds, Cassatto says.

Though his clientele ranges from local firemen to rock stars, Cassatto handles each request with equal care, despite their differences.

“Everyone leaves happy, so they are all my friends when we’re done,” he says.

Whether painting bike helmets or full scale murals, Cassatto is essentially a one man show. He prefers the benefits of working alone, stating “Do everything yourself, that way, you have nobody to blame.”

Cassatto’s amazing work is surely a source of pride for Rockaway and its residents. To request a custom piece from John Cassatto, contact him through ipaintfx.com.

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I enjoyed reading your

I enjoyed reading your article, Amanda. Thanks to Patrick Clark of Sunlites Stained Glass for letting The Wave know that John Cassatto is the local "mystery artist" who decorated the storage trailer in The Wharf's parking lot with a picturesque marsh scene, complete with local birds and native vegetation. We need more patrons of the arts in Rockaway, like Bob Leckie and Jim Bulloch, proprietors of The Wharf!

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