Paper Jam | Born-Free Hardcover Book


Gestalten are working hard to keep up their profile as one of the leading automotive book publishers. From the two-wheeled side of the fence, their latest offering shines a light on the hugely successful Born-Free motorcycle show held in California every year.

The book is a collaboration between Ben Zales, Shane Markland, Gestalten and Dean Micetich of DicE Magazine. We had a chat with Dean to find out a bit more about this mammoth book…

For sales details, head to the Gestalten website.


FT: How did this project first come about?

DM: The project was started by Ben Zales, the photographer and Shane Markland, the creative producer of the project. They had the idea to shoot a book about Born Free as it had never been done before, shooting each builder with their bike and also photos of the show to summarize how great the event is.


After they approached me with the idea of publishing the book with DicE, we jumped at the chance to do it. During the planning stages, I met Maximilian Funk at the Mooneyes show in Japan and he mentioned the idea to collaborate on a DicE book with Gestalten. We then decided to all work together and produce the beautiful book that we have now.

Tell us a bit about the Born-Free event and why it means so much to you?

For us, the event is one of the greatest in the world. The best motorcycles from around the world, in an amazing location, with all our family and friends. It’s hard to beat.


How would you describe this book? What are readers going to glean from ‘Born-Free’?

It's a beautiful book that sums up the entire event and gives you the feeling you are actually there. We are hoping it inspires people and makes them build a motorcycle and have fun with their friends.


What was the process like, putting together such a book? Was it similar to working on DicE?

The process was very similar to working on an issue of DicE. Jimmy Dean Horn is my right-hand man, and he handled the layout beautifully and did us all so proud. He killed it!

There are so many great bikes and builders in attendance at the Born-Free show, how did you decide which ones to showcase in this book?

We showcased all of the invited builders.


You must have seen styles and trends come and go through the bike-building world whilst working on DicE. What ideas and changes are you seeing coming through from builders right now?

Yes, we’ve noticed that most common bikes being submitted to the magazine these days are black ‘n’ flames Harley-Davidson big twins.