Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Ken Long has been painting since childhood. He began a career in the sign industry when he was in his early teens, riding his bike from neighborhood to neighborhood painting addresses on mailboxes for a small fee.

    This talent later developed into his career after he was introduced to some of the old veteran sign painters in the Kern County area of California. These  master  craftsmen took him in as an apprentice and taught him some of the many trade secrets that he uses in his pieces to this day.

    Later, Ken was asked to take on the management position at Kern County’s premier sign company, Baker Signs. He was a working manager though, never wanting to stray away from keeping his “hand in the paint” as they say. Ken hired and trained some of the best in the business, many of them moving on to open their own sign shops across this country. From Oregon to Florida, from Chicago to New York and parts elsewhere, Ken's influence in the sign industry is immeasurable.

         In 1980, after working for other shops almost his entire life, Ken decided to start his own sign business. With only a roll of butcher paper, some paints and his brushes, Ken was able to develop Ad-Craft Sign Company into Ventura County’s only full service sign shop with all of the work being done in house.

     Ken’s career spanned over forty years until the late 1980’s when he was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease and unfortunately had to retire from his business and painting.

     A passion of his since childhood, as soon as his illness went into remission, Ken started painting again, except this time he concentrated on pieces of art that were “affordable to the working people”, to quote him.

     Recently, Ken started work on a series of special pieces and has dedicated the profits of the sale of their prints to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America, a charity which his son and daughter-in-law work with to help raise awareness of these debilitating diseases.


  1. What a great blog, very well put together, I look forward to seeing more of Dad's paintings, thanks so much J, for the link

  2. Thanks. I'll try and post one piece of his work here at least once a month.

  3. Thanks John for creating this Blog for me. Don't post my paintings too'll run out of paintings to fast. I might have about 30-40. But really, have fun and thanks again. Ken Long

  4. No problem Dad. I plan on posting about one per month. There has already been a buzz in the CCFA community about this. Let's see what happens.