The Boot Shop boasts 
local artist?s work


Humble?s Ray Gatica used an airbrush
on some of the Arizona desert scene he
created for store owner David Radowick

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Radowick has lived in Texas for most of his adult life, with the exception of about in Hawaii where he worked for a shoe repair service called Joe Pacific.
   ?I hung around the beach every day,? Radowick recalled.
   Radowick loved life there, but his pay was fairly low and the cost of living was high.
   When former Houston-area employer Marino?s shoe service asked Radowick to come back in the mid-1980s, he accepted the offer. HE went to work there nearly one and half years and then worked for Sundowners Western Store in the Woodlands until the owners sold the business in the early 1990s.
    Radowick took over the shop?s shoes/boot repair service began his journey as an entrepreneur. He bought his current business, formerly Pennington?s Custom Boots, in the mid-1990?s . He operated from Old Town Spring until moving to Humble about eight years ago.
   ?I still come out here six days a week,? Radowick said, adding that he enjoys getting to know his customers.?
   ?I?m a people person,? he said. ?I like talking to them. I?ve been doing this since I was a kid. ?And I like working on boots and shoes. ?I?m up at 4:30, 5 in the morning thinking about what I?ve got to do that day.?



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New perspectives
It has been nice to add new scenery to the business, Radowick said, referring to the mural. ?I wanted a different look in my shop. It took Ray about a week to finish it.?
   Gatica?s Houston area commercial art projects have ranged from hand-painted graphics for the gym at George Ranch High School in Rosenberg to a 17-foot leaf patterns on the outside of a bank building in Katy.
   ?When I?m not doing things for other people I like to work on my own ideas,? said Gatica who has been experimenting with stucco sculptures lately. ?I like to see how things work.?
   Gatica also teaches in the community from time to time. Earlier this month, he presented an airbrushing demonstration to children at the Michael?s Art and Craft store in Atascocita.

Detail: About Gatica?s work, visit About the Boot Shop, 7231 FM 1960,Suite B., call 281-446-1950.

Flori Meeks is a freelance writer who can be reached at




By Flori Meeks  
July 31, August 6, 2011

    David Radowick, 56, has been making boot and shoe repairs since he was 12, and he?s been working from the same location in Humble for more than eight years. So it has been refreshing for the owner of the Boot Shop to get a change of scenery ? a western Arizona sunset.
    The new view is the work of Humble, artist Ray Gatica, who created a mural in Radowick?s shop by airbrush earlier this summer. ?So, now we have a cactus, mountains, a pair of cowboy boots,? Radowick said. ?It?s a desert scene.?
    The image, a semi-abstract, Impressionistic style painting, incorporates shades of gold, yellow, brown and a spectrum of dark colors, almost black. It?s a western scene,? said, Gatica, whose wife is a regular customer of Radowick?s.
    ?A lot of it is done with airbrush, I do it with cut card-board. It?s kind of interesting to watch. It?s an old technique.?
    Gatica, a commercial artist, said murals have a way of brightening the day of the people who see them.

Lifetime trade
   Radowick, who lives in Spring, also repairs boots and shoes, along with suitcases, purses and other leather products. He learned his trade from a friend of his brother as a boy in Youngstown, Ohio.
   By high school he was working for his mentor and in a local shop.




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