Are you in love with the art of graffiti? Think you can make it as a professional artist? That is an awesome dream to have! We were recently made aware of one cool creator who goes by the name Alec Monopoly (otherwise, Alec Andon, if you want to find him on any relatively formal outlet).
Looking at this dude and his rising success, we filtered through the tricky roadmap of a budding artist and funneled it all into these condensed pills of wisdom for you. Just getting started with doing graffiti is relatively easy. You can get some awesome tips for it in this useful article. Making it a full-blown career is somewhat harder. Take it from the top:
Getting a Grip on the Situation
Familiarize yourself with the history so that you can argue your right to creative expression. You probably already know a lot about the street art culture from the 1980s onward. But did you know this concept can be traced back to Ancient Greece and the Roman Empire? Frankly, you could argue that cavemen were the first mural artists.
Nowadays, the biggest question is whether this is vandalism or not. Graffiti is everywhere: on public walls, on private property, on trains, etc. Some of it is immature mischief or even gang tagging. Most of it is not. The line between legal and illegal graffitiing is blurred, but essentially it boils down to consent and permission.
If you create a beautiful piece on a wall somewhere, but you do not own the wall and do not have a written agreement with relevant people, you might face charges of vandalizing their property. However, if you contact the owner of the property, explain what art you would like to make, and then get a mutual agreement in writing, you are good – your mural becomes legitimate, legal, officially sanctioned art. You can find legal graffitiing walls around the world at this link: https://www.legal-walls.net/
Acquiring and Improving the Core Skill Set
Being creative and knowing how spray cans work is not enough. You will need to learn the fundamentals of painting and drawing, such as perspective, depth, composition. You need an understanding of basic visual art concepts: shapes, colors, shadow, and light.
Consider investing in 3D art skills, computer graphics, typography, and digital image manipulation. It will make composing your pieces a lot easier. Also, do not disregard calligraphy, and study different materials you might paint on later.
Graffiti is an art form, and art is business in today’s world. Your business would be classified as “craft and fine art” under the United States labor legislature, and this umbrella covers you whether you make art to sell or to display in exhibitions. The fundamental aspect of this business category, in terms of classification, is that the art created is primarily for an aesthetic purpose, and rarely or never for a functional one.
Looking at projections for the foreseeable future, the chances of your big break are expected to grow at just 2% in the current decade (looking at data for the 2014 – 2024 period). So, considering your chances are relatively low, you should be smart with where you aim to find work. There is a long journey ahead of you if you are aiming to become as well-known as Alec Monopoly art.
Public space repainting is one big booming niche in recent years. Look around your town or city, or even county. People in high places are always happy to remove or cover up unacceptable drawings and messages in public places. Are there lewd doodles in your area? Hate speech scrawls? Relatively artsy stuff that was put there illegally? Submit your talent to public service and get paid by your local authorities to paint over the undesirable content – you promote yourself hassle-free and get money for it.
Of course, these are not steady gigs. It would be smart to invest in your brand development and find a way to grab attention for yourself. In recent years, the graffiti subculture has been integrated into major marketing campaigns, as a way of reaching a younger audience.