BASF Announces Winner of 2016 Middlecott Sketchbattle Experiment Los Angeles

BASF Announces Winner of 2016 Middlecott Sketchbattle Experiment Los Angeles

John Frye, a principal designer and digital modeling group leader for Honda R&D Americas, Inc., was named the winner of the event known as the “Fight Night of Design.”
2016 Middlecott Sketchbattle Experiment Los Angeles winner John Frye receives his championship belt.

BASF announced that John Frye, a principal designer and digital modeling group leader for Honda R&D Americas, Inc., was named the winner of its Middlecott Sketchbattle Experiment Los Angeles. Known as the “Fight Night of Design,” the Sketchbattle experiments, which originated in Detroit, are held to help identify emerging automotive design talent.

The Los Angeles event, which marked the first time the Sketchbattle was held outside of Detroit, coincided with the Los Angeles Auto Show. Seventeen contestants competed in the automotive sketch battle, which was held in a high-pressure format in front of a live audience.

“The Sketchbattle competitions not only emphasize the skill and creativity of future talent, they also offer an energizing platform to help build enthusiasm for the automotive design community,” said Paul Czornij, head of design for the BASF Color Excellence Group and one of the event judges. “As a leader in color design for the auto industry, we enjoy supporting such a creative and thrilling event.”

The winning sketch by John Frye from the 2016 Middlecott Sketchbattle Experiment Los Angeles.

The Sketchbattle competitions consist of three rounds, with each round themed differently. Approximately half the contestants are eliminated in each round as their sketches are judged by a panel of automotive design experts.

Judges for the LA event included Chief Judge Chris Benjamin, head of Interior Design at Fiat Chrysler North America, Bryan Thompson of Bryan Thompson Design, and Paul Czornij. Additional special guest judges for each round included Michael DiTullo, chief of design for Sound United/Polk Audio, Scott Robertson of Design Press and designer Camilo Pardo.

For the final round, the four remaining contestants were asked to incorporate BASF’s 2017 Color of the Year – Reflexion Nebula, a color that transitions from blue to gray depending on the vantage point – into their sketches. The four finalists were Frye, defending Sketchbattle champion Omar Gonzales, Rodrigo Galdino, a designer at Karma, and Chris Lah, a student at the Art Center College of Design.

“During the final round, I didn’t have a specific plan other than using the BASF blue on something like a hot rod – adding future thinking to a reinterpretation of classic proportion,” said Frye, who also studied at the Art Center College of Design before starting his career. “Winning the Sketchbattle was stunning and energizing for me. I feel the experience is an endorsement of the skills and encouragement from the teachers and supportive people in my life. As designers, we do not evolve in a vacuum, we owe a lot to those who teach us and mold our creativity.”

You May Also Like

Top 5 Stories of the Week

A recap of the top five stories on during the week of July 15.

Maaco Opens 16th Location in Illinois

Maaco announced that Bobby Kehagias has opened Maaco’s newest retail center located in Waukegan, Ill.

Read more here.

Crash Champions Expands in New Hampshire

Crash Champions announced it has expanded its New Hampshire footprint with the successful acquisition of Auto City Collision Center.  

PPG Recognized as Best Place to Work for Disability Inclusion

This is the third consecutive year PPG has earned this recognition from the Disability Quality Index.

NABC Donates Recycled Rides to Denver-Area Military Families

The NABC, GEICO, Allstate and Crash Champions recently donated refurbished vehicles to two military families in the Colorado State Capitol.

Tesla Model Y Secures Position as World’s Best-Selling Car in 2023

Sales of the Tesla Model Y totaled 1.22 million units globally, up by 64% from 2022.

Car ADAS Announces First Licensee in Las Vegas

Owners Tanner Scott, Cam Scott and Aja Domingo are proud to unveil their first calibration center addressing the increasing demand for ADAS in the region.

Other Posts
I-CAR Announces 2024 Board of Directors Election Results

Four members have been elected to join I-CAR’s board of directors.

Purnell Body Shop Joins CSN Collision

CSN Collision has announced the addition of Purnell Body Shop of Elkton, Md., to its network.

Repairify, NAPA Launch asTech Mechanical

The new device enables repair shops to connect directly to OE tools operated by certified technicians.

Professionals Auto Body Announces FCA Certification

Professionals Auto Body of Duncansville, Pa., announced that is has achieved FCA certification, which includes Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, Jeep and Ram.