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Utah_Bench

Where to post general questions?

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I want to learn more about graffiti in general and train art in particular...so where would be the best sections to post some questions?

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I read but didn't really find the answers I'm looking for so, my next question is, are there any website blogs or books you would recommend to give me a history and background on the graffiti world itself and train art/graffiti in particular?

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Brickos, yes I can Google it but I thought I could take advantage of the experience and knowledge on these forums to weed-out the good from the bad without have to wade through all the BS and bad info found on the web. I guess I should have asked where can I find the BEST info on the subject.

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Thanks one Man Banned I enjoyed that and learned a lot. The film is a bit dated but I'm assuming this is the root of the graffiti movement and a lot of the basic principles still hold true.

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The thing about reading this forum: There are hundreds, if not thousands, of threads with corresponding thousands of posts about every facet of this culture/history/whatever.

 

There isn't a single thread that compiles it, graff history is local and regional, with core roots. It would take months for you to read everything here, but it would be a far more complete understanding than you'll find in a single blog post or article. The freight scene isn't the subway scene. LA isn't NY isn't SF isn't any other town. etc. etc. etc.

 

Style Wars is huge. Check out books with Martha Cooper or Henry Chalfant names attached for early stuff. Find some zines. Spend some dollars on books, but know that there are a lot more shitty books about graff than there are good books about it.

 

The Art of Getting Over remains one of my favorite graffiti books ever put out.

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Yes, true to both responses.

 

Style Wars, along with the books Subway Art and Spraycan Art, are like the bibles of graf and all are still relevant today IMO. As far as wanting more recent references that's where it gets tricky. The freight scene has always seemed like a protected scene, even back when mags were running freight issues. One book was made about the freight scene and it seemed controversial at the time for shedding so much light at once on freights as well as for the fact that it arguably left out many key players who helped build the scene. Arguable as well, it put a lot of new writers into the pipeline without the proper sense of ettiquette, knowledge of safety, etc., I mean the book made freights look cool to a lot of people, but then you had this wave of people toying shit up in all manners. So point being you're better off reading online, looking at the references people suggested, and asking questions here or even through DM w/ people as I really can't think of a modern reference to this aspect of the culture that will give you what you need.

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Fist 666, thanks for the response and like you said trying to dig info from the forum is a daunting task and trying to find an answer to a specific question is almost impossible to say the least. I'll have to look into finding a copy of The Art Of Getting Over.

 

The Protester, thank you, I like photographing the trains and sharing here where people can appreciate the flicks. I don't want to get into anything "restricted" or off limits and if I ever ask something that falls into either category, or just something as an outsider I should not be asking, just say so and that will be that.

 

One man Banned, there are no subways where I bench and very little street art that I'm aware of so they are not something on my RADAR. It's kinda hard to believe that with all the train art I see that the scene is still so... "underground" but I guess that's the nature of the art-form itself? As far as online I understand that is my best place to find info but again because of the nature of the art-form itself there seems to be a limited amount of "good" info there, maybe I'm just not looking in the right places.

 

My first question is, I guess, one of the most basic questions that could be asked. When I look at a piece of art on a train car that piece is from a person or group who has taken that word or phrase as their own and every time I see it it's comes from the same person or group? In the video I watched one person who said I don't care if anyone else can read it or not because it's for all the other writers out there and the graffiti culture itself and not everyone else, is this still true? I'm guessing this is still true because as I've said before I can't read 75% of the art I see on the cars. I know that's two question but I think they tie together.

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My first question is, I guess, one of the most basic questions that could be asked. When I look at a piece of art on a train car that piece is from a person or group who has taken that word or phrase as their own and every time I see it it's comes from the same person or group? In the video I watched one person who said I don't care if anyone else can read it or not because it's for all the other writers out there and the graffiti culture itself and not everyone else, is this still true? I'm guessing this is still true because as I've said before I can't read 75% of the art I see on the cars. I know that's two question but I think they tie together.

 

First question it depends what the painting is. There are such things as a crew and these can be one person or it can be a group painting it. Two examples I can think of are a small local crew that had a few members painting in it back in 2012 or so. With time passing they have all stopped painting except for one of them. This guy will occasionally throw up a hand style or two once in a while. Another example I can think of is an older crew with numerous members in it that paint all over and have kept up with it over the years. Now for the second case I've seen instances where they have done collaborations involving multiple painters to get a big final product looking excellently at an area with high visibility and a lot of traffic.

 

Each writer has their own mental construction of why they paint. I know painters who say I don't care if some random Joe on the street can read what I paint, it's all about the style and if other writers can read it. Then to contradict that I have met an older writer who says the exact opposite of that. Essentially, he would rather paint a complex and visually appealing character with a simple straight letter to get his name across to as many average everyday people just walking the street and happen to see his painting on a freight rolling down the tracks. The character is designed to get their interest with his artwork.

 

I hope I answered all of your questions in an understandable manner.

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One man Banned, there are no subways where I bench and very little street art that I'm aware of so they are not something on my RADAR. It's kinda hard to believe that with all the train art I see that the scene is still so... "underground" but I guess that's the nature of the art-form itself? As far as online I understand that is my best place to find info but again because of the nature of the art-form itself there seems to be a limited amount of "good" info there, maybe I'm just not looking in the right places.

 

My first question is, I guess, one of the most basic questions that could be asked. When I look at a piece of art on a train car that piece is from a person or group who has taken that word or phrase as their own and every time I see it it's comes from the same person or group? In the video I watched one person who said I don't care if anyone else can read it or not because it's for all the other writers out there and the graffiti culture itself and not everyone else, is this still true? I'm guessing this is still true because as I've said before I can't read 75% of the art I see on the cars. I know that's two question but I think they tie together.

 

Once you start to pay attention you will realize how much graf you didn't notice before. Your area was able to give rise to a graf mag before so a scene is possible even if you don't see it. IMO freights remain underground at this point because there are to many people who want to do it because they think it's cool or do it because it's graf, but they don't really appreciate freights or bother to learn basics about safety, etiquette, and such, and this fucks it up for the people who are constantly out on the lines. It is a complicated issue, as I see some older/looked up to writers doing moves that would seem to be common knowledge not to do, and that's what others follow.

 

Your 1st question- essentally, yes.

2nd question- people do it for different reasons, and people have different styles that vary from simple to complicated. Sometimes they want to communicate a message for all, other times what someone does is done for anyone who can read/decipher it.

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enteruncreativename, Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. As I suspected there is no easy and all inclusive answer to either of my questions. If a group, or crew, paints a piece will they mark it in some way to show who painted it? I'm betting this question again has no set answer and will depend on many factors but, I would like to hear your response because of your experience in the matter. So the answer to my second question again depends on the writer or crew who do the art and their ultimate goals in doing the piece itself.

 

One man Banned, again thanks to you for sharing your knowledge with me. I'm sure you're right about there being other graf in my area and I have seen a few pieces here and there and, like you said, now that I'm looking I may began to see more. Sounds like there may be a little turmoil within the rail writers community that may stem from people not learning the basics, or being taught the wrong way in the beginning, before writing. It just amazes me that something so visible and prolific remains so far underground. Yes I do understand that we are talking a criminal act that can land a person in jail and that is a big incentive to remain very much underground. My first question is a yes in your opinion, that's kinda what I thought, and the second depends on a lot of factors. I of course being on the outside appreciate a piece I can understand (read) and get some type of meaning from, and I love the addition of something beside letters to make a piece more interesting but, again, that's from an outsider.

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enteruncreativename, Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. As I suspected there is no easy and all inclusive answer to either of my questions. If a group, or crew, paints a piece will they mark it in some way to show who painted it? I'm betting this question again has no set answer and will depend on many factors but, I would like to hear your response because of your experience in the matter. So the answer to my second question again depends on the writer or crew who do the art and their ultimate goals in doing the piece itself.

 

Typically the painter or painters would drop at least a hand style for their name next to the crew name.

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