A common criticism applied to graff from outsiders is that it should "mean" more. It often gets compared to the music side of the culture. They feel it should be more "political". I think people associate art and especially lettering in public spaces with either advertising or politics and anger. Because writing on walls has this political history they expect to see some form of political content. There is nothing wrong with style for its own sake. Who said art has to "mean" something? Thats generally an attitude of people who consider theirselves to be one step above the average bloke on the street. What really fucks me off is when some joe public is like "Thats quite good". What qualifies you to judge a writers work? Say you like or you don't, thats fine. But don't give me your pretentious attitude.

"Ain't nuttin' to it but to do it!" Birmingham 1997


I'm not really into telling people my influences too much- I've always found it a bit disappointing when you find out how people came to create something that you thought was bad. Like you saw it and couldn't even see where the fuck it had come from.. but what i will say is that apart from looking at graff itself and pop culture, if you can get to the right mindset then almost anything you see can become a style, and explain what I mean by that. Theres a quote about our art from Phase2 i always liked- he said it should be "Seen done and not done seen" (I think!) That sums it up well. It looks best when there is that air of mystery about it, like it just appeared out of nowhere..

I see most peoples career in graff as almost following a blueprint. At the beginning they spend some amount of time doing stuff thats either obviously derivative or just not very nice to look at, then find their own style and pretty much do that style and develop it only a little bit from there... Maybe have a "mid career" crisis and start doing something different halfway through. Why is it like this? Well, I suppose that having quite a restricted definition of your style makes it easy to recognise, and one a writer gets known for a style they are reluctant to move away from it in case people don't recognise it or like it as much as the old one. Or maybe some people just run out of creative steam?

"Props the hard way" 1993

Bus, Wolverhampton 1998

For me, the fun has always been that point where you've got something new to try, but yours shitting it a bit because it might come out toy. Its the biggest buzz for me when it comes off. If I try something new, I try to put some elements from my older stuff in it too to give people a connection so that hopefully it still looks like I did it. The best thing I could hope for would be to make a new style that doesn't look like my previous styles but doesn't look like anybody elses either. Thats creative! Whether I've ever done that or not, I don't feel I'm in a position to judge. Drax (with that New York state of mind once again) summed this up well when we were in Ireland. I had run those black and yellow hazard stripes for a while. He said that he liked it but that some obscure writer had probably done it in a panel piece back in '70- something. Thats New York depth of thinking. Thinking about origins.. Who did what first. Somethings will be invented and re-invented. I try to do really weird ideas that nobody would think of. Look at whats out there and then do something I haven't seen. That doesn't mean I've necessarily broken new ground, because some many writers have done so many pieces that probably something similar has been done somewhere. But if I've made it up in my head and I've never seen it before then even if someone else did it first, i've still made something new for me.. Thats whats important to me- to keep trying to test my creativity and imagination.

"Street SINphony" Dunkerque France 1998. Raw/Skore/Kilohw/Skire

For me, a lot of graff, although it is wicked, lacks imagination. the pieces that often stand out for me are the ones where you can see some fucked-up line of thinking. Don't get be wrong, I've got loads of respect for nice clean pieces with good colours, flow, etc. But so many people are so nice with that now that maybe something more is needed to stand out...

I have a few styles that I'm working on now.