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Guest Ted Wakowski

Freights Compared to Subways

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Guest Ted Wakowski

There's so many people doing freights these days and newcomers coming up constantly, it reminds me of what the subway days might have been like.

 

Does anyone else get the same feel from the freight scene -- seeing trains roll through your town or yard and checking for pieces like you were at a bench in a subway station back in the day? A lot of trains are even starting to build up layers, a few times I've had a hard time finding room to fit something.

 

I think it's hot, hopefully they'll remain paintable for a lot longer.

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I dont think freights will ever have the density of pieces, or that feeling of activity you get from being cramed full of people. But what the hell do we know? with a few exceptions none of us were around for the subway era, so it just guessing...

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waiting for the freights are soft subways are hard comment.

 

 

 

freights are fun, i love watching them, seeing what wierd cars might turn up, whos gonna be on them, and whatnot, maybe someday itll be like the subway days, who knows.

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I get all of that out of the freight scene. It has the basic elements of the subways: a wall on wheels that will roll past an audience. You have to put in a lot of work to get noticed. You can run lines and spots. You can bench a lot of locations and see who's up. Toys trying to get in on the action piss people off and get dissed and abused. And for those who weren't doing subways back in the day, this IS our "back in the day", or it will be, since the subways aren't the same anymore.

It's always good to see that subways and clean trains are still getting hit, even if they don't run. I always respect the rawness of missions on today's transit, worldwide. It's hardcore, it shows heart. But I have mixed feelings when I hear dedicated transit heads diss freights, especially North American freights. For all their wholecars and razorwire injuries and chases, they're missing what was the whole point of doing the trains back in the NYC days: to see them run, to be up on the lines, to bench and flick. To BE SEEN by people, writers and civilians, on the train and make them react.

In some cities around the world, there is no place you can go to guarantee a faster demise for your work than the clean train yard. If you don't love hitting transit SOLELY for the adrenalin rush, then you might as well throw your paint into a volcano. I hear some Euro writers boasting of 500 wholecars in a year, and I think of all the paint that got hurled into that, versus the number of people who saw the finished product live, and I just shake my head. Again, I have a lot of respect for the sheer hardcore effort. I just can't believe a writer is willing to hurl themselves against the buff that many times, with that much paint, over and over, risking it all, for an audience of 2 rail cops and a 3-man buff squad. In a way they are dinosaurs, stubbornly sticking to the NYC recipe in a changed world where they've lost sight of what it was for.

I'd do subways if it were 1982. But it's not. They don't run. So maybe a couple for the rush, and for the nostalgia, but the rest of the time I'll take freights. Yes, they are a different flavored soup. They're not as smooth (most of them), they're not urban as a subway necessarily is. I'm sure people can come up with all kinds of ways to insist that they aren't the same, and those are the people I'm not gonna reach anyway. I prefer to embrace the differences: freights travel further and on more varied routes. (Which, for those who say freights are wack, means you have to put in a shitload of work to run a line or a region.) I've never been to Mexico -never been within a thousand miles of Mexico - but I'm up down there, because I got somebody to hook a locomotive onto my piece and run it down there. Same with Cali, Florida, Alaska, Texas, you name it. But the best difference of all is the plain old longevity. Shit doesn't get buffed the next day or the next week...or even the next year or the next decade. I don't know why that doesn't carry more weight with people who want to be seen on the lines.

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freights are nowaday subways

continuing a train writing tradition

is what all freight writers are doing

 

 

king of the yakety yak yard

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ok here is my perception and i'll try to make it fair as possible.

1. i think a clean train running with passengers one run to the buff is better than a freight running for a year.

 

2.i like doing freights myself because they are easier than clean trains,but not for the fact they dont get buffed,they are just fun to paint.

 

3. i think u.s.a writers get into freight a whole lot more than other countries around the world because n.y.c is in america and they think well its all gone now lets do freights.

 

4.actually riding your clean train panel is the biggest rush ever because u can sit right next to it and watch everyones expressions about it,u cant do that with a freight.

 

5.i'll end this now because i dont want to be too biased but bottom line is a flik of a clean train that no one saw is better than a freight 1000 people saw because the flik lives on stronger anyway.

 

thankyou.

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I would like to ditto most of what IVO said. No disprespect to frieght painters, I have even painted some in my time and I have no problem with them, I can see they are another way of getting up. but...

 

NOTHING can compare to the feeling of seeing your train pull in at a station slapped in everyones face. seeing the reactions and just having a massive grin on your chops.

 

They are MUCH more exciting to paint than frieghts. More hardcore goes without saying. :P ;)

 

Graffiti looks so damn fresh on commuter trains, they are made for each other. IMO Frieghts look ugly.

 

To the comment made about painting trains is like throwing your paint down a volcano is compleate and utter rubbish. Belive it or not there are now things called cameras, they alow you to duplicate an exact image of your chosen subject in the form of what we call a photograph. There is a big network amongst train writers, people know who is doing what. There are also vast amonts of media puplications to get your trains seen in that way if you wish (supprisingly enuff this is one here! omg!).

 

My final words; if everyone is constantly smashing trains, some things ARE GOING TO RUN. and trust me they do!!!

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i don't think anyne has said this in this thread yet, but to americans freight trains i think have more of a meaning in our culture than maybe europe.

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Guest Ted Wakowski
Originally posted by Fox Mulder

i don't think anyne has said this in this thread yet, but to americans freight trains i think have more of a meaning in our culture than maybe europe.

 

I agree. In America, freights are kind of a subconscious reminder of the industry and time that created our modern landscape. We probably wouldn't be the same country if the industrial revolution had never occured, and freights are a connection from that era to the current one.

 

Not that other places don't have a freight scene of their own, but going along with what Fox wrote, it seems more deeply rooted here.

 

"Art within industry."

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Guest krowteN

take it from someone who lived through both eras. nothing will ever replace the days of ny transit between 1969 and 1989. Freights are just what came after that, a sort of a "passing of the torch" I cant say i liked either one better than the other. i think the subways had to die out. it was inevatable. but that is what influenced people to paint freights. And lastly whats up with these foreigners. I mean i love fliks and all trading checkin out peoples albums yadda yadda yadda, but thats all bullshit in the big scheme of things. if you cant see graffiti in real life, moving on a train then it is defeating the purpose. if all you have to show for your graffiti is a photo album of pieces that ran for 2 hours than so be it. what if you loose that photo album, or that shoe box...then your fucked

you foreigners can talk all the shit you want, but come to any american city with a transit system and we'll see just how many clean trains you can do, over and over again.

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Guest krowteN
Originally posted by Cracked Ass

But I have mixed feelings when I hear dedicated transit heads diss freights, especially North American freights. For all their wholecars and razorwire injuries and chases, they're missing what was the whole point of doing the trains back in the NYC days: to see them run, to be up on the lines, to bench and flick. To BE SEEN by people, writers and civilians, on the train and make them react.

 

even thoug the whole post is right and exact i had to take an excerp from this because this sums all the foreigners up in a nutshell. ny transit had its time. with freights we've captured the essence. bombing trains in the 70's and 80's wasnt about doing a piece, catching a horrible night shot and posting it on the internet. it was about BEING SEEN, in real life, by all writers who were looking. so before you run off at the lip about all this "oh im hardcore transit" bullshit you need to get the full story. there was more to it than just doing a piece and catching a flick. if nobody sees it, if you havent pissed some straphanger off or some fool waiting for a train at a crossing or made some writer turn his head when it rolls by then you have missed the point of the whole thing. you should go paint a canvas and at least make some money. i hate to beat the dead horse but internet and flik fame is for homosexuals, word up.

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as a writer. one shouldnt really tell themselves and others, " i only paint freights or vice versa in context, i only paint passenger trains."

just get out there. dont be afraid (ie: homework; Surveillance ) to put together a late night mission once in a while and go get that photo to share with your friends.

 

dont be a lazy graffiti writer. I understand how routine is comfortable but it is that attitude that will ruin your love for the art. change styles. why not change your name (there are so many great words). humans recognise repetitous patterns like your walk into the yard every sunday.

 

dont get up this weekend and go to one of the same freight spots you painted last week just to get your weekly train-panel in, because it is you who is heating out your own spots.

 

 

 

we are a mysterious breed.

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FR8s are cool but to be honest i would want to see a drippy insides tag or some motion throw ups over a bombed fr8 train,,,,there is a certain energy that cant be had when a train is filled with people and they have nothing to look at but the floor or your tags ,even the site of some buff marks me hyped up

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Guest TrustEvil

most of this has been summed up....

 

some of the old heads used to boast that one day fr8s would be the subway system of North America....and they were right to a certain extent. It's a rolling showcase that brings together countless dedicated (as well as in-it-for-the-minute) writers from across 3 countries. Granted, this internet thing hot shotted the whole phenomena about 5 years ahead of its time with all the flicks and chatting and networking and whatnot and so on and so forth blah blah blah bullshit. It may not be as hardcore as clean trains, but one must keep a very important fact in mind when comparing the "hardcore" aspect of one vs. the other. Not everyone paints fr8s in easy layups all the time. Many writers go to serious lengths to get over on trains. In fact, some of them have it tougher than certain subway kids had it back in the day....those stories of the nyc subway bombers painting wholecar productions all night while having a pizza party in the tunnels wasn't a joke...it happened. Now tell me how hardcore is that ? Obviously it was easy enough for them to get over that they could afford the time to relax and spend all night. Granted, it wasn't like that every night, but keep that in mind when you dismiss fr8s as being too easy...because not everything is painted in a 20 minute ninja mission. By no means am I trying to downplay the tough-as-nuts aspect of the subway movement...that shit was very much real...but there is two sides to every coin, so its important to keep looking while you're flipping it.

 

I will say this...now more than ever (and it's only gonna get worse), the fr8 scene is following in the tradition of the subway scene as far as beef and beatdowns and dissing is concerned. Things are getting out of hand. Fr8 writers and certain crews are taking themselves way too seriously and have begun to regulate in disgusting proportions...not even as a means of protecting spots or dealing with certain undesirables on the lines....its getting to the point where people are ragging shit just cuz they think it makes them tough as nuts....well, we'll see where that goes.

I have a few people on my agenda who are about to lose a lot of work, and frankly, i don't give a fuck if i lose every piece i have ever painted...i never see them anyways, i never look at the pictures of the work i've done, i don't give a fuck...i did it and its done. next !

 

last word: there is nothing like the feeling of seeing a clean train rocked solid roll into the station....the look of it burns the eyes and the satisfaction of doing it warms the soul.

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Guest NATO
Originally posted by chester copperpot

anyone that paints 500 wholecars on anything in a year, even 500 wholecar sized things on legal walls, is trying way too hard.

 

thats 1.36986301369863013698630136986301 wholecars per day.

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Guest imported_b0b

To the person that said 'what's the point of doing transit, it doesn't run', well if enough people did them, they would run. When I was lucky enough to visit Copenhagen in Denmark the writers there were paintbombing trains (a bottle or ballon full of emulsion/latex paint) so the train companies were forever having to pull train out of service which meant painted trains were more likley to run. It is just nothing compares to the commuters shocked reactions when a wholecar pulls into their platform and the piece is just shoved right in their face, with the paint on the train still smelling wet from the night before. But that all said fr8s in America are in a much better position to be like "the new subways" as they are so visible. They run by the side of roads, they lay up in much more visible areas and so on. In Europe you hardly ever see fr8 train unless you go looking for them. A trackside piece would get more exposure than a fr8 over here.

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Guest Ted Wakowski

^^ What he said is definitely true. In my town I catch freights rolling through all the time and in pretty heavily populated areas. At least 2 or 3 times a week I get stuck at a crossing where a freight line is moving through. There's also a lot of industrial mini-layups right on the sides of streets with pieces out in the open -- stopped my car and got out the other day to catch a hot little end-to-end. Good shit if you ask me.

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Guest MyTeeMexican

Freight trains, and subway trains are 2 totally different things. You really cant compare the 2. Its like apples and oranges, Carrots ,and Spinach,etc. There is nothing like watching a group of people standing on the platform waiting to go to work, and a train comes in just bombed and you see their reaction. Theres nothing like looking up 30 feet in the air to the elevated track and seeing your stuff running on a train. Forget clean subway trains. At least in NYC that is a waste of time. Sitting on a platform back in the 80s and watching trains come to the station left and right was the shit. Now i think people are just trying to relive something that is in the past by doing MTA trains in this day and age. The whole purpose of doing trains was to have the whole city see them, not for them to get buffed a hour later just so you had a pic. Do you think NYC Subway graffiti would of gone anywhere in the 70s if as soon as you put a tag on the train it would get cleaned off?Nope. The whole purpose was so that people all over the city saw who u were and saw you were up.You dont get that now, so in my eyes its a waste of paint. I think that fr8 trains are a better alternative when comparing to a clean train. People will see your fr8 which is the whole reason that NYC transit got hit for 20 years. I give people props for doing fr8s. Yes the feeling must be different than a subway train but it will run and people will see it. Its not like having a Subway train forced in your face with people riding it ,and having to see it everyday, but at least some people are able to see it. NYC transit graff died in March 1989 when the J line went. RIP

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i dunno, someone should tell you guys this stuff's illegal. call me 'knitting-at-home-oholic' from now on...

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Guest Ted Wakowski

This is a bit off the subject but I'm kind of glad the subway scene died out in New York. Not that subways weren't amazing things to paint -- it's the deeper street mentality which came after the subways that I appreciate a lot. I'd personally rather see writers approaching every possible canvas within the urban and (to some extent) suburban landscape than staying intensely focused on painting one type of object.

 

I think more writers came out with a harder street bombing mindset after subways were null and void, at least in New York and a few other cities where subways were rocked.

 

Freights seem to be taking a little bit away from the streets now too. A grip of writers are more interested in hitting freights religiously than rocking cities that way. But the freight scene is dope and I'm not complaining, there's still a lot of ridiculously on-point street and wall heads holding it down.

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to counter ted, i think it would be excellent if subways were running all over the country consistently. there could still have been that crossover onto the streets as well regardless. it might've taken longer but it still would've occurred.

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