You may recall me telling you to get over to See See Motorcycles (Portland, Oregon) back in December to check out 21 Helmets. Rewind: 21 white Bell helmets were custom-designed by noted weirdo artists, including photographer Ray Gordon of Throttled fame. Well, Thor Drake and company are putting on another event– The One Motorcycle Show (February 10th-11th) where the the helmets will be displayed again along with 10 new helmets added to the mix– one of which is being done by pinstriping legend Mitch Kim). There will also be bikes by Deus, 4Q Conditioning, and more. Admission is free, so shit– get there! 1642 NE Sandy Blvd., Portland, OR

Also, check out the video at the end of the post on how 21 Helmets came together and the many talented artists and wonderful weirdos behind it.

Corey Smith

Cody McElroy

Juan Casas

Brent Wick

Evan B. Harris

Cheyenne Sawyer

Drake McElroy

Drake McElroy

Matthew Mattison


Greta Anne

Jacob Redmond

Jim Riswold

Lori D.


Nash Motorcycle Company

Joe Signs

Ray Gordon!

Jimi Damone

Matt Stanger

Thor Drake

Tori George


  1. Seriously ?

    They want me to travel all the way to Oregon , to an obscure ‘ Hipster ‘ M/C shop who at the moment is know for ……….. nothing !

    To see this ???

    I’d rather watch paint dry to be honest with y’all

    • Sorry, I should’ve made it more clear that attending the event was optional…

      These guys are creating art, an event, a community. Calling them hipsters is pretty crotchety and close-minded, in my book. I think what these guys are doing / creating is very cool and energizing. So why dismiss it all by calling them hipsters?

      I remember back when I was a kid and my Mom had this motorcycle helmet that she had covered in a collage of photos, dirty words, clippings, etc. and then covered it in clear coat. That thing was a piece of art, I can still picture it in my head as clear as a bell, and wish it was still around. My mom also wore funky clothes, had crazy friends that partied and rode choppers, and went to Woodstock. Sounds pretty similar. There were many folks outside her circle who judged her, and would have labeled her a hipster, if that word was used back then. The world would be a boring place without a few World Shakers… I’d rather watch paint dry than sit comfortably in the status quo to be honest with you.

      “Be curious, not judgmental.” ― Walt Whitman

      And if that doesn’t work…

      “…Live and Let Live… And anyone who can’t go along with that, take him outside and shoot the motherfucker. It’s a simple philosophy, but it’s always worked in our family.” ― George Carlin

      • I agree with GuitarSlinger, a whole bunch of hipster helmets for the kids who ride in tennies and a flannel. Sure, it’s creative, and I applaud them for that…. but I’m just callin it like I see it. I ain’t mad at ya. When the next trend comes along, they’ll jump on that and park their cobbled together bobbers/cafe racers. Some might stick with it and become actual bikers, and that’s great…. I’ll welcome them with a hearty handshake, but don’t for one minute think those of us who’ve been riding since these kids were in tighty whities don’t see it for what it is. A lot of these kids are just bandwagon jumpers, plain and simple. Most of the ones I’ve seen here in LA can’t ride worth a damn either…. which is dangerous and gives the rest of us a bad name.

      • mebbe & CA,

        Maybe you should do your homework first, and you’d actually know that several of these guys are competitive motorcycle racers and would smoke your tighty whities.

        “Those who can, DO. Those who can’t, CRITICIZE.”

        I’m not mad at you either, but your attitude really sucks.

  2. That’s a cool idea for a group show. The most common is skateboard decks these days, but I have seen napkin group shows, clock faces and shows where everyone gets a 12×12 piece of masonite.

    Like any group show, there is some poo, but also some really incredible stuff.Thanks for sharing.

  3. @Slinger and CA, right-on, if you really wanna wince at some newbie hipsters check out his “better in the wind” post(s),.. 🙂

      • You’re the one posting this flavor of the moment stuff and WE’RE sheep??? I suppose you’re a big fan of OCC choppers as well eh?

        FTR JP, I’ve done quite a bit of semi-professional racing myself. Been around bikes 40+ years bubba. I ‘DO’ and ‘CRITICIZE’ ….

    • This will be the Third year of the show, contrary to an eastern belief, the show involves mostly older gentlemen with some pretty amazing machines. I suggest that those who belive we are “hipsters” check out the web site. this year we have over 100 bikes in the show, not excluding 4Q conditioning, Roland Sands, and Micheal Czysz.
      If you feel you must be negitive towards stuff why not focus on something that is trying to make your life worse not better. just a thought?
      peace and motorcycles.

      • Sorry man, kneejerk reaction. When I see 3/4 helmets these days it usually means hipster. I have respect for Michael Czysz and Roland Sands (who I worked with when I was at Honda a few years back).

        Just tired of all the hipsters on their bobbers/cafe racers is all….

  4. Pingback: 21 Helmets – The One Motorcycle Show | Selectism.com

  5. I don’t know if Thor is a real rider but he’s jumped a motorcycle over every campfire he’s ever been near. Ive also seen him pass a whole grid of riders on the shittiest bike out there, crash, pass them all again and win. And I’ve seen him do a 600 mile day on an SR500 and still have a sense of humor–of course he was in skinny jeans and vans, but what are you gonna do? Dude’s a hipster!

  6. This blog is addictive …Have read every article since its discovery. Open minded and well written. I watch every morning if there is a new post.
    Being a foreigner I can enrich my vocabulary : did not know that being a ‘hipster’ was negative. Sounded positive some time ago no ?
    Anyway I’d like to be a ‘hipster’ with anyone of these helmets on this side of atlantic (France), specially with the one done by Greta Anne.

    My gratitude to JP for posting so many interesting articles.

  7. Hmmmm….granted when the Big Throw Down comes along and it is time to “go to battle”, I, Mah Own Damned Self, would not feel entirely ‘reinforced’ with any of the geeks from the video backin’ mahself up and Ah believe some of ’em might not have the corresponding balls out/ball up constitution that their particular designs convey (some of those designs do suggest an adherence to a certain lifestyle/creed that definitely ain’t about The White Cube. Ah’m a painter Mah Own Damned Self….in The Two-Fisted Physical Pollock tradition)….but, aren’t the fuckin’ helmets cool and isn’t it just fuckin’ beautiful that another facet of everyday life can be approached as Art? And wouldn’t it be joyous if we all followed the call of the innate creative spirit and painted up our own helmets(as Ah believe the intent of such a show really is…to foster creativity. Ah don’t think any of the artists are looking for company endorsements)? Also, Ah’m fully in favor of artists diversifying and finding new avenues for their talents…to put some bread which can be so fuckin’ hard to win on the table. The “Biker” mentality Ah used to know back in the states was such a collective institutionalized mind at times that the outlaw stance (and attendant accoutrements) became its own standardized status quo. Ah live in Japan…The Kingdom of The Poseur….you wanna talk hipster? Ah know a Harley rider that has the audacity to wear a Harley Davidson/BEIJING t-shirt without any irony. The film, Easy rider, which brought us maybe our first example of a custom helmet design, is the most misunderstood counterculture movie of all time- the message is true conservatism- status quos within any spectrum of society are entirely false. Let’s all get the paint out and go to work…These guys have thrown down a mighty gauntlet….

  8. Man I had a fantastic time at this show last night. It was much bigger in size and scope than I anticipated. Very cool. Loved the custom 750 Kawi Triples and the vintage dirtbikes (CZ anyone?) especially. This place was absolutely packed and the vast array of rods and bikes outside was almost as much of a show as the show itself. There was definitely something there for everyone

    That Nero helmet is BAD ASS.

    Thanks again for the heads-up, JP.

  9. Well, I’ve embarrassed myself once already on this site, so here goes again. I am really disappointed at seeing a disagreement, among people I respect, over what I think is a matter of semantics and a misunderstanding of how culture has evolved. First of all “hip”, “hipster”, even “cool” to some extent, have been co-opted as words and concepts at least since KMart began selling ripped jeans during the Grunge scene. Some of those kids riding cobbled together bobbers and cafe racers will become what is considered to be a bona fide biker not withstanding their idea of how to dress. These kids have a new and different idea of what is subversive/unconventional. At least they have an appreciation for the idea of the biker style/ethic. These helmets are art, and why can’t a bona fide biker be an artist too; not to mention what has already been pointed out, that many of these artists are older bikers.
    I know the type that is being referred to pejoratively as hipsters but I think a new term needs to be created for them. Maybe it already has “poseur”, like me.
    Don’t forget too, that many of the guys riding today are overweight, pony tailed, baby boomers who don’t really qualify as bikers (see American Iron–the post by XR750 I believe). Now that article contained a more gentlemanly disagreement. Then there are the folk who think Hell Angels’ bikes were funky (see today’s post The Photography of Bill Ray–Flying Merkel and GuitarSlinger). Disagreement is educational for me, I just am sad for the intensity. I’m glad you guys have buried the hatchet.
    So JP, I really enjoy your site, your take on bikes, “fashion”, culture in general. I just discovered your site, and it has become very important to me. Even in disagreement I have immense respect for the opinions and posters on your site–thank you so much for it.

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