We first saw my Graffiti skills (or lack thereof,) in August 2010, when I spray painted a spartan on the side of a building available to graffiti artists because it was about to be torn down.

Well I had another chance to try my hand again at a little graff, for there was a blank wall on the side of Discount Dave’s in Old Town, Lansing. The adjoining property had burnt down, and the walls on either side were cleaned up but left bare. A local graffiti artist noticed this, and having grabbed a business card, contacted the owner (Dave) and asked if they could paint there, like they had before. As it turns out Dave, although old-fashioned, has quite an optimistic outlook on life, and said yes to this modern and sometimes frowned upon art form. Graffiti artists usually don’t ask for an invitation, and now that they again had one they took their time.

This was done by the artist who contacted Dave, and he spent the most time on his out of anyone there. I believe says “pizza” based on what it says on the right in orange. The “P” looks like it’s backwards, the “I” is small, and I can make out the “A” at the end.

I have no idea what this says, but I thought it was awesome, so I took a picture of it. There were a total of twenty or so pieces on the side wall and back wall combined, but I am just showing a couple so you can the idea…

This one says (and was done by) “Disco”.  The “I” and the “O” are substituted by the Oldsmobile logos. Dave had requested that the graffiti be in a automobile theme because Old Town used to be a car manufacturing hub. Graffiti artists, however, seem to be an egotistical bunch, ad almost exclusively just paint their name (or logo) everywhere. The Disco was one of the rare exceptions in this group.

The skull to the right is mine. As I was painting it, a bird flew out of the light post above me to the left, and so I decided to paint the skulls gaze in that direction. The Holy Spirit is often depicted in paintings as a dove, and although I didn’t see what type of bird it was I still liked the idea, so I ran with it. I made the skull’s eyes blue and gave him a halo as well, turning a normal skull into a sort of commentary about our mortality. I was going to stencil up a verse from the book of Revelation, but I couldn’t find a verse I liked.

Here is a closer picture of it. By the time I heard about what was going on, all available space on the side wall (which was perpendicular, but clearly visible from the street) was taken, and I had to paint on the back wall, which was actually on a side street, but was more of an alley and does not get a lot of traffic. Most of the graffiti pieces on the side of the building are at least eight feet wide, mine is only about three feet wide. Even so, I am still pretty jealous of their can control, and it is something I would definitely like to try again.


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