Your evolved 3-D foil graff pieces have become well recognized on the street art and gallery scene for a few years now. Your transformation to signature pieces began in Berlin with a Vinie Graffiti collab and then on to London with your work in Star Yard, Brick Lane. Can you tell me how you have worked to perfect your unique style over the last few years?
Basically the first “foil” type balloon was a bright pink music note that I painted next to a Vinnie Graffiti piece in East London. Before that, I painted the foil or Mylar type balloons. I was painting standard latex balloon letters and animals. I taught myself how to paint simple shapes to start with when working full time as a prop maker for Nickelodeon. The balloon dog worked so well- it looked 3D. Back then I was the only guy painting balloon inspired graff. There are a fair few doing it now. More than I can count. It’s a good thing I think but far too much negativity surrounding such a harmless family-friendly style of painting! Ha!
You have had solo shows in NYC and London and you are now beginning to think about your 3rd solo show. What does your creative process look like when you are prepping for a gallery show as opposed to creating street pieces?
My creative process is the same for both my street pieces and my canvas/show pieces. I just sort out which ideas might work well on a smaller scale (some really don’t transfer well). I’m constantly coming up with new ideas. I let them sit all around me- scribbled on bits of paper or random plastic/glass/inflatable things sit on shelves. Eventually, they all find their place with whatever is next to come from my mind and onto a wall/canvas.
You have no fear in the realm of creative experimentation with mediums, including sculpture. As you work to perfect your artistic style are there any new techniques or mediums you would like to try in the future?
Regarding experimentation and pushing things forward, I’ll be going back to my sculpture roots as soon as I can get a slightly bigger studio. I used to sculpt and paint for famous contemporary artists and TV shows as my full-time job and I’m looking forward to using those skills combined with my street art much more this year.
Photo by @zurbaran
You are no stranger to collabs with other artists. Do you have any killer collabs planned for this year? Who would you love to work with this year?
I love painting with artists I respect. My favourite so far being a collaboration last December 2017 in Miami with Nuno from Portugal. I think we have a few more things planned for this year. The most recent collaboration with Nuno had to be figured out over email as we are both usually traveling. I think I wanted the piece to be as large as possible but very simple, yet quite a powerful image. I love the latex gloves that he paints and also his paper airplanes. He has a great eye for detail. I’ve painted latex gloves before and he had painted chrome objects before so it seemed like an obvious idea that we paint a crushed spray can ( mine) and paint covered glove ( his) encompassing both our styles yet looking like a piece either of us could have painted alone. It just worked! I’m rarely 100% happy with a piece but I think that one took it. Much more planned !
Photo by @halopigg
You have spent quite a lot of time traveling this last year between NYC, Miami, Switzerland… Where are you headed next? Do you have any upcoming projects you are looking forward to?
My next job is in Vegas and I’m looking forward to that one. Then I have a very busy year traveling and working towards my 3rd solo show. In August this year, we celebrate 150 years since the discovery of helium so I’m putting on a show in London of my balloon inspired graff with recent sculpture and a few collab pieces. I can’t wait!