Last Saturday, I spent in Bushwick Brooklyn, doing something different. You know me I love doing something new and different and inviting you to tag along. This time it was a graffiti art workshop with Brooklyn Unplugged Tours!
I’ve written about the Bushwick Collective where I went to see the best murals in Brooklyn, well the best that I have seen anyway. I love the creativity of street art, the subject matter, and the vibrancy of the colors. So who wouldn’t want t learn how to do that themselves? And this workshop would allow me to achieve my unspoken dream of becoming a graffiti artist for the day, legally.
What Happens In the Graffiti Art Workshop, Anyway?
The class was held outdoors in the lot of Bushwick Marketplace for ventilation of course. The class is held by the owner of Brooklyn Unplugged Tours, Jeff Stirewalt and an experienced graffiti artist. Depending on the class size you will have one or two canvasses of cotton cloth to work on hung from the fence. The canvas is attached to the fence and spread out to give you space to work.
First, we learned to control the spray from the aerosol can and then tag (a tag is graffiti work that is simple and uses your initials, like claiming them) the canvas with random initials. Then we moved onto writing block letters and filling them in.
After we finished our block letters (throw up) and filled them in, we took and break to look at some tags and example of throw ups (a throw up has more detail than a tag, ex the block letters we did, a simple work) on the next block giving the paint time to dry before we added to our collective masterpiece. So we went to look at the graffiti car for examples.
As you can see in the pictures, the side view of the car is an example of a masterpiece or piece for short. It is well done because of the combination of colors, the shading and the gradient of the colors going from a lighter color at the top of the letters to a darker color at the bottom and the smoothness of the gradual color change. There is also great shading creating shadow and use of a contrast color.
On the trunk of the car has a piece of block lettering with a thick black shadow and highlighting in silver, representing sunlight gleaming on the letters. If you notice there are also patterns within the letters made with a contrasting color.
After the paint dries we got back to our canvas and start working on the techniques that we just looked at on the car. So we begin another collective piece and it spells out “New York”. So we picked our favorite letters and started filling in the background. Then we added contrast colors and designs.
You can probably see the black lines of the large letters that we were filling in. We got to be extremely creative with all the different colors of the spraypaint.
We are getting instruction at every step from Jeff, just in case you are timid or feeling unsure about your technique.
And this is our end result, special piece and look how colorful it is! At the end of class, you are asked if you would like the keep the canvas and you can let it dry for a while and take it home. It is pretty big in size, at least five feet tall. If you are interested in taking this class please contact Brooklyn Unplugged Tours ,+1 (866) 431-5393, email [email protected] to schedule a graffiti art workshop or a tour. Tours and workshops are given every day.
I think this is a great way to spend the day with family or a date because there needs to be communication and creativity. Or you can be by yourself and meet amazing people the way I did when I went. I had a great time! Book a class and tell them that I sent you!
Would you consider yourself creative? Have you ever taken a workshop like this before? Would you ever try out one like this? Tell me your opinions in the comments below!
Until our next rendezvous…