This is now the second time ART 110 has successfully duped me into going outside, furthermore to the beach for a second time. And once again while I was bamboozled out of sleeping away my entire Sunday morning, I actually had a lot of fun getting to do something I wouldn’t normally think to do. This week, the goal was to paint our name (or better) on a preferably large canvas of sorts (or for extra credit, we could do it on the Venice Legal Art Walls). So even after being up until around 4 in the morning the night before, I woke up early to go buy some spray cans, muscled my way to the beach (pun intended), and met up with my friend Andy. Luckily he and I bought entirely different colors so we had 6 colors total work with.
I started strong by laying down a base purple paint for my letters and touching them up with a green edge shadow. For the letters themselves, I attempted to go for a style I used to use in my graffiti phase in middle school which just entailed some swoopy points at the ends of each letter and a little alien face on the dot of the “i”. The next step was where it started going a bit downhill unfortunately, as the cheaper white spray can I bought had a different spray range and almost required an entirely different technique to control. I rose up to the challenge however and added layers of black and yellow in attempt to make the purple and white really pop. Then as Glenn noticed it was working out, he mentioned that another common obstacle of public art wall painting is to get rid of the noise underneath your own work. I took that into account and continued with black, yellow, green, and white to fill in some of the awkward spaces I had left between my letters and the outlines.
After I was finished pretentiously admiring my own amateur work, I finally walked around to the opposite side of the wall I was painting to see an awesome character by another local artist. I really regret not asking for his name for the purpose of maybe looking up his stuff online, but I really needed to get to work shortly after that. The artist did however talk to Andy and I about a technique called cutting, which is used for achieving really fine lines and getting rid of stray paint splotches. He also said that for things like skulls, you can’t overthink the detail, just let it be cartoony and do it with a few lines. I liked this approach because it allowed his work to contain elements that required a lot of skill and advanced technique in pairing with more comfortable, easy and fun stuff.
In the end I am satisfied with my painting but I know I could’ve done better for sure. Firstly, I didn’t draw it out beforehand, which in retrospect was extremely dumb because I didn’t even think to use any of the marker drawings of my name that I actually held onto from middle school. I had them all in an accordion folder just sitting on my desk and i didn’t even think to grab it. On top of that, this was the absolute first time I’ve ever used a spray can that wasn’t an air freshener or bug spray. Had I made the time to make the trip to Home Depot earlier in the week, I could’ve at least given the cans a test run on some cardboard in the backyard. But once again, I am actually proud of my work because it was a very therapeutic process. It was a struggle that really felt worth it because one could really get the opportunity to create something physically larger than your person. Maybe not larger than life or anything but the wall itself was definitely taller than I was so that counts. Also it actually ended up being a really nice day and Glenn’s iced tea was sweetened to perfection.
On a sidenote, Andy and I will definitely be returning to the art walls with a vengeance soon to slap the Plastic Castle mark on the wall for eternity (aka for a few hours until someone decides to tag over it).