Behind the scenes at JMD

We get a behind the scenes look at JMD studios where Formula One helmets are designed and painted.
By Tom Bellingham
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An impressive collection
A collection of helmets at Jens Munser's JMD studio in Germany.
An impressive collection JMD boast an impressive CV, having designed helmets for Sebastian Vettel , Michael Schumacher, Fernando Alonso, Mark Webber, Giancarlo Fisichella, Nick Heidfeld and many, many more. Munser keeps a collection of his favourite designs in his office. © Tom Bellingham/Jason Croxall
Michael Schumacher’s helmets
A collection of Michael Schumacher helmets at JMD studio in Germany.
Michael Schumacher’s helmets JMD were behind Schumacher’s subtle helmet changes throughout his career. “Michael told me that everyone knows he is German, so we don’t need the German flag anymore.” said Munser. © Tom Bellingham/Jason Croxall
Golden boy
Sebastian Vettel's German Grand Prix helmet
Golden boy JMD are known best for creating Sebastian Vettel’s helmet designs, all 54 of them. “I show Sebastian a long list of ideas,” said Munser. “If he likes the idea then we start with the design on a computer and once done, we show him before it’s made.” © Tom Bellingham/Jason Croxall
In the beginning
Jens Munser's first motocross helmet featured an Iron Maiden design.
In the beginning Munser started his business after designing his own Motocross helmets. “I asked where I could get a helmet painter in Germany but there wasn’t any. So I bought my own airbrush beginner set and got to work.” © Tom Bellingham/Jason Croxall
Night Fever
Sebastian Vettel's helmet from the 2011 Race of Champions. The Red Bull logos light up in the dark.
Night Fever One of the most original designs Munser has done was Vettel’s helmet from the Race of Champions. The Red Bull logos flash on and off! “It’s important for a creative company to showcase our ideas.” © Tom Bellingham/Jason Croxall
The early stages
Staff at JMD studio designing helmets on the computer.
The early stages After gathering ideas, different designs are created on a computer. “Every customer gets a mock-up of their design before it’s made, it’s much cheaper this way.” © Tom Bellingham/Jason Croxall
Blank canvas
Plain unpainted helmets at the Jens Munser JMD studio in Germany.
Blank canvas The helmets look pretty dull until Munser and his team get to work! © Tom Bellingham/Jason Croxall
Design is applied
Plain unpainted helmets at the Jens Munser JMD studio in Germany.
Design is applied After the base coat has been sprayed, sections are covered up before another layer is sprayed on. © Tom Bellingham/Jason Croxall
Here’s one I made earlier
Helmets left to dry in JMD studio in Germany.
Here’s one I made earlier Helmets are left to dry before the next layer is sprayed. The helmet aero parts have to be painted separately. © Tom Bellingham/Jason Croxall
Applying the sponsors
Sponsor logos being printed at JMD Studio in Germany
Applying the sponsors Sponsor logos are printed and carefully applied to each helmet. “I remember one time we created a Nick Heidfeld helmet around the logos,” said Munser. “When he was at BMW Sauber they had so many sponsors on the helmet we decided to create the lines around it.” © Tom Bellingham/Jason Croxall
Chrome effect
A chrome helmet at JMD studios in Germany.
Chrome effect One of JMD’s specialties is their chrome helmets. “Tora Takagi wanted his helmet design with a chrome base. He couldn’t get one in Japan, so he asked me to do it.” © Tom Bellingham/Jason Croxall
Keeping busy
Jens Munser's team work at the JMD studio in Germany.
Keeping busy Vettel retires his helmet design after each race he wins, which keeps Munser and his team very busy. “The helmet is like a trophy for him. 2011 he won so many races, I was counting down, and realised he had no more helmets so we had to make some new ones really fast. Last year we did 16 helmets" © Tom Bellingham/Jason Croxall
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