UVU students sweep Paint the Plane design contest

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Jeanette Blain | News Editor | [email protected]

Gabi Campbell | Art Director | @gabicampbellphotos


Record holding speed pilot Mike Patey showed off his new plane design July 16 at UVU’s Hangar B at Provo Airport.

Earlier this year, Patey held a Paint the Plane contest for a design for his new speed plane, Turbulence.

The contest was won by three UVU students. Jacqueline Herrera won first place, Rachel Everett won second place and Samra Lovelady won third place.

The paint job, which incorporates all three winning designs, curves around the body of the plane so that one side of the plane is silver and the other is dark red.

The winners were invited to sign the side of Turbulence as part of the event.

“I never thought I’d even get third place. It was a big surprise when Mike told me I was a winner,” Herrera said.

Patey said he was particularly pleased with the way the design turned out. The contest was national and included entries from design schools and aircraft design companies.

“This is a great contest which engaged students, who came up with a design that Mike loved and actually ended up putting on his plane,” said Brad Mertz, director of development for the Woodbury School of Business.

Patey said, “UVU is one of the greatest schools for aviation instruction. I see UVU ads at airshows all over. It’s fun that I got to be a part of this.”

Graphics instructor, Patrick Wilkey teaches a branding class at UVU, which Herrera and Lovelady are a part of. He said the class worked on the designs for about five or six weeks.

“We played with a lot of different things related to speed and flight and record-breaking,” Wilkey said.

He likes to have his students work with metaphor in their design concepts. He said it’s an evolutionary process.

“Once they have the concept down, we had them do plane graphics that weren’t just pretty but that actually had some kind of conceptual basis,” Wilkey said.

As a thank you to the students, Patey presented UVU with a signed and framed poster of the finished plane design. He also signed photos for event participants.

Before arriving at Provo Airport, Patey flew test flights with the new plane. He did a couple of flybys at speeds up to 200 mph before landing to speak to spectators.

In addition to the paint design, the plane has unique features that haven’t been used before. Patey hopes these innovations will make his the fastest plane out there.

After the event, Patey was scheduled to fly from Utah to OshKosh, Wis., in order to race the new plane in the EEA Airventure Oshkosh race, which is billed as the world’s greatest aviation celebration.

Patey hopes his new plane will help him break the speed record for a turboprop plane. His goal is to have the fastest single-engine, turbine-powered aircraft on the planet.