Bonnet Painting Competition Finalist Profile – Agnieszka Szenfeld
Motofix, High Wycombe & training at Babcock in Milton Keynes
How did you get into painting cars?
I was looking at the government apprenticeship website and it shouted at me because I have always been interested in cars and I liked the idea of restoring cars to their former glory. I had been stuck in retail for about three years and before that I was working in a factory and I had had enough of moving from one dead end job to the next and wanted to see if I could get a career going.
Eventually I would like to move on to fine detailing/airbrushing. The first time I tried it was for the Farécla competition. It was a completely new thing for me. I just borrowed a brush gun from a tutor at Babcock. In my spare time I design tattoos and portraits of pets, I love drawing animals. One of the things I have been able to do because I work here is to use the excess paint, which usually gets thrown away, for painting at home on canvasses and I use it for designs on helmets and get creative with it.
I love everything about this job; working physically not just being sat at a desk or on a shop floor. I like the atmosphere here. I feel I am in my element and I love the fact that I am constantly learning and that I can progress with this so much. I am so glad to have joined Motofix because they are absolutely brilliant.
Who have been the biggest influencers on your career so far?
My old mentor, who has unfortunately left to become a fire fighter, but he helped me out a lot in the beginning. Stuart Hathaway too, my supervisor, has been amazing and is constantly praising and encouraging me. And my manager too, Chris Johnstone, has always been very supportive towards me in this competition. They have all pushed me to get it done because at first I was struggling as I was suffering with really painful wisdom teeth. Then I was in college for a week and by the time I got back I literally only had five days to do it before the competition entry date closed.
What is the design idea behind your bonnet and how did you come to it?
The design idea is linked to everything to do with the bonnet competition and directed to Farécla. My first thought, Stallions, came from the quite obvious connection with cars, but not everyone seems to relate to it, horse power. So I decided to go with a black Stallion because they are known to be the fastest horses, the middle one which is Farécla branded, they are meant to be racing and that one is winning the race, it is crossing the finishing line first so it is the best and they are the leading company and then it is a finish line because they specialise in finishing/polishing products.
If your bonnet was the overall winner, how would you spend the £1,000 cash?
Unfortunately, I have a bit of debt which I am slowly paying off and winning £1,000 would enable me to pay it off quicker and not have to worry about it, and I would put the rest into savings as I need to save for a deposit to rent a place of my own.
Agnes’ Mentor: Stuart Hathaway
I think what she has done has been fantastic. Painting horses on bonnets is not part of her day job so she has used skills beyond her job by far which is really her all over. She has taken to the job very quickly. She has only been painting with me six months and usually my painters don’t start painting cars for the first couple of years but because of her artistic background, we thought we would give her a go and she has progressed very well. She has been fast tracked in that direction. She has her own Facebook and Instagram accounts with all her artwork on.