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64 ;e Costco Connection SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2015
An oil painting,
by Lesley White
As project sponsor and the truck’s even-
tual owner, Kwiatkowski supplied some
$200,000 in parts and materials to Peacock’s
five-member build team, which did most of
the mechanical, suspension, body and paint-
work in only six months. The metallic green
vehicle was then shipped to Los Angeles,
where several famous guest custom-paint-
ers, including Steve DeMan, Mike Learn and
Nub Grafix (from American Chopper),
applied the finishing touches.
When it was showcased in the FBS
booth at the SEMA show, the milk truck was
an instant hit. “People went crazy,” says
Kwiatkowski, who notes that Internet
images of the vehicle received
50,000 hits in two days.
Now stored at FBS’s warehouse, the Divco milk truck is
wheeled out for display at
auto shows or private events.
“We keep it low profile,”
Kwiatkowski says. “It’s a
beautiful advertising piece for
our products and artists [and] a
ROBERT KWIATKOWSKI loves cars and
trucks. So when he heard that good friend,
customer and custom-airbrush artist Mitch
Peacock was working on a cool new project to
make a moving billboard out of an old truck,
he wanted to get involved in a big way.
“I love Mitch’s work,” says
Kwiatkowski, a Costco member and the
owner of FBS (Finding Better Solutions;
fbs-online.com), a Port Coquitlam, British
Columbia–based manufacturing agent for
specialty custom tapes and sprayers for
the automotive, industrial, marine and avi-
The restoration project involved an
American-built Divco delivery truck.
Divco—an acronym for Detroit Industrial
Vehicles Company—trucks were best
known as home-delivery milk trucks in
i n ae
their heyday in the 1940s and ’50s.
Peacock started what he thought would
be a two- or three-year-long restoration project that would cost about $30,000. But that
all changed when Kwiatkowski suggested
they enter the vehicle in the 2013 SEMA
(Specialty Equipment Market Association)
car show in Las Vegas.
TELL LESLEY WHITE you can smell the
leather from a saddle in one of her
paintings and you’re paying her the
The Prince George, British Columbia, artist specializes in oil-on-
canvas renderings of rural Western life, complete with Western tack, horses,
“I have a profound respect for people who pursue a rural,
ranch way of life,” says White. “I want to preserve that lifestyle by
recording it in paint and give it a lasting voice.”
The rustic life she portrays harkens back to White’s early
years, when she rode her first horse and collected eggs on her
grandparents’ farm in Oak Lake, Manitoba. The Costco member
eventually made her way to Vancouver, where she trained and
worked as a dental assistant, married and began painting in ear-
nest before moving to Prince George.
A self-taught artist who paints five to six hours daily, White uses
a realistic style inspired by summer road trips she and her husband make
throughout British Columbia, Alberta and the northwestern United States.
That’s where they visit and photograph scenes at ranches, rodeos, dog trials
and shows, cattle brandings and equestrian events. She then pulls ideas from
the photos to design her artwork.
White’s work has been exhibited in Montana, Arizona and at the Calgary
Stampede. She sells art through her website (
oilsbylesley.com), at various art
venues and at an annual open studio.
“Painting is my main source of joy,” White says. “I always have a painting
in my head, and while I’m painting I’m totally entranced.”—Kelly Putter