Beyond the radio-control model world where he got his boat-painting start, Stephen Miles isn’t known for painting small vessels. Most of the high-performance V-bottoms and catamarans Miles and his crew dress at his shop in Owensboro, Ky., shop are 40-plus feet long. Though he’s painted a slew of Outerlimits Offshore Powerboats in the 50-foot range, for example, he’s painted just one 29-footer—Brian Forehand’s Marker 17 Marine SV 29 raceboat—from the Bristol, R.I., company.
Miles kept things clean and simple with the graphic design for his first 31 Sutphen paintjob.
There are exceptions, of course, the most recent one being a 31-foot Sutphen V-bottom built by Richie Sutphen himself in the 2018 and powered by twin Mercury Racing 400R outboard engines he painted for then-owner Todd Turner of Virginia. During the 220-man-hour painting process, Turner sold the boat to Sean Falls, who lives in the Chicago area.
“It’s finished and the new owner already has the boat,” said Miles. “He ran it last weekend.”
Now, it’s back to the big the stuff for Miles, though later this year he’ll paint a new 30-foot Phantom for his friend Jose F. Rodriguez, who lives in Key West, Fla. He currently has a Nor-Tech 500 Sport center console—the second to be painted by Stephen Miles Design—as well as an Outerlimits SL 44 in his shop.
“The Sutphen was a small filler project while we were waiting on the Nor-Tech and the Outerlimits,” said Miles. “Todd was in desperate need of someone to repair the boat because it had gelcoat damage. It was a better idea to just paint it.
“He’s such a cool guy,” he added. “It was just one of those jobs I couldn’t say no to, even though we were pretty busy.”
Recently painted by Stephen Miles Design, this 31 Sutphen V-bottom will be on the water this season.