Had to give my vote to Stew for the police guitar.
Here is why, forgive me for being harsh, but after reading nothing but praise on some of these instruments I'm going to be straight.
The police guitar, though probably not the most complex instrument here, is different, graphics aren't done often, and I liked the concept and the execution looks very well done.
De-Fre's SG guitar. Well, first, I don't like SG's, but I don't take that into account. What did strike me as poor was the cutaway's in the horns, perhaps it's in the picture's, but they look very rough. Also, the piece of maple between the pickup cavities makes no sense to me. Don't understand why you wouldn't have painted that as well. Honestly, I'd have given it higher marks without the pinup sticker as well.
Godin's guitar. Well, you've done well with building Godin, and I've read tons of praise, I like your design, but this particular one, to me was not executed well. IF (and that's a strong IF) your headstock is truly designed with the tuners spaced like that, then I'm sorry, but it's a poor design IMO. Not being symetrical is not a big deal, but the uneven spacing of the tuners looks like you screwed up. Next is your finish. I've seen you give lots of advice on achieving great finishes, so what is wrong on this one? There is more orange peel than the last orange I ate. Sorry to be harsh, but I can see it in the pictures, if you can see it in the pictures I'd hate to see how rough it is in person. I've been doing this long enough to know that pictures hide a lot of finish flaws.
Southpaw, There really isn't anything negative I have to say about your guitar execution wise from your pictures. Looks good, I don't like the neck pickup treatment personally, and I hate tele's but the guitar looks good, the reason I picked the Police guitar over this one is that the police guitar, although a strat, was something different finish wise, not another transparent finish on figured wood.
Phil, the bass guitar. This is a great looking instrument, however, whether it's this guitar, conklin, or anyone else, the part that always looks amatuerish to me is when an arm cutaway is done so that the back body wood shows through as in this case. To me, it took the nice smooth curves of your body design, and put a hard edge into it. Killed the look of the lines. Also, to me, it just looks like exactly what it was, the top wasn't as thick as it should have been, however, this is just my opinion, it's something that's been done by manufactures many times, I've just never got it, nicely done instrument though.
Big D, another nice instrument, another tele, but nicely done still. I guess I'm just getting pickier lately, I hate wipe on finishes, had you done a nice high gloss finish on this, I'd have been more excited about it, again, just me, but a nice high gloss finish gives a much more professional look IMO. Can't really say anything negative about the overall guitar though, it is nicely done
Perry, hard for me to pick your guitars bro, only because I expect nothing but the best from your stuff, the only thing taking me away from this guitar was the color really. Just didn't like it personally. But that's certainly not a crack at the guitar, just personal preference.
thegarehanman, I just really don't like the design on this guitar. The upper horn and the F hole look like mistakes to me, the upper horn just looks odd, really odd. And the F hole, I don't know what to think about it, it doesn't flow with the rest of the guitar at all. Just kind of ends in an odd fashion. The "launchpad" of knobs looks weird to me as well, I think with the heavy carve in the top recessed knobs would have looked a lot better, can't knock the wood work you did there though, I know from experience it's not a simple task. Not sure what the inlay looking part inside the horns is supposed to be either, but it doesn't fit with the flow of the guitar IMO either. Just to many things look out of place on this one. Having said that, the work itself looks good.
Cudbucket, Your guitar is very nicely done, I don't care for the color on it, particularly on the back, but color is a moot point. Overall the guitar is very nicely done.
I think it the end, what really stuck out to me with Stew's guitar, is of ALL the guitars this month, it is one of two that was not a transparent finish over figured wood. Figured woods are nice, but everyone does them. Having painted over 300 guitars to date, I would rather see a perfectly executed solid black, or Kandy color done to a transparent finish. There is so much more effort and technique involved in getting the PERFECT black, or the perfectly laid kandy pearl than spraying a transparent. That's not saying at all that a trans finish is easy to do, far from it, it's probably harder when you really have to consider the color and grain of the wood to end up with the perfect color, but the actual spraying, and clear coating is more forgiving than the others. Black means you have to be absolutely perfect in your finish or everything jumps out like crazy, Kandies mean you have to spray perfectly or you will see grain lines in the metallic or pearl from gun overlap. Having said that, as I mentioned earlier, pictures can hide many imperfections in a finish, so you really don't get a great idea of what things REALLY are in the finishes here. More than anything I was trying to judge all the guitars this month based on final execution, some I thought were really good, some really bad. That's how it goes.
No, I'm not becoming arrogant, I think my guitars are nice, but I know they still have a ways to go before I'll be totally happy with them.
Most of it comes down to personal taste, but then really, that's what GOTM is anyway, a popularity contest of sorts. So, I really tried to be objective in this months vote. Sorry if I hurt any feelings or offended anyone, but the only way you really get better, is when people give honest criticism and you can take it and use it to your advantage for the next ones.