BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — Jesus Perez has been adding a bit of a Pablo Picasso touch to Kern County football fields for the past three seasons.
Working as a groundskeeper at Shafter High School, Perez had the idea to paint a logo on the school's field after seeing a painting on the wall. That's how his business, Illusion Paint and Design, got started.
For Perez, the players using the field is what keeps him going.
"Overall the kids are the ones that get the most excited, so that’s kind of cool," he said.
Perez gets calls as soon as one season ends for reservations the following year. This week, West High School and Garces Memorial High School are the lucky two who have their 50-yard line decked out in paint.
“They’re gonna be extremely thrilled with the way it looks," said Scott Davisson, West's athletic director. "Typically we put a 'W' on the field so it changes the whole complexion. It's very visual from any part of the stadium right now so everyone will get an opportunity to see it”
3 schools in a week. Good luck on your games. @CentennialHawks @MiraMonteKHSD @IHSFalcons #IllusionPaintAndDesign @BVarsityLive @KHSDAthletics @KHSD_Official @BakoSportsNews pic.twitter.com/55PSPbR3A8— Jesus perez (@Esjebus) September 20, 2019
Perez would like to expand into other sports, but for now, painting the fields for Friday nights is good with him.
“I’m a big football fan myself," he said. "Even when I’m watching the NFL games I like to look at the fields and picture how hard they went through all that work, so when I see my field put together I enjoy seeing the overall finished product.”
After 10 to 15 gallons of paint and a full free-hand job, Perez can wrap it up and call it a day.