Art110-2016-Fall-banner

Schedule

Need Help?

  1. Ask online
  2. Come to before class OH on Wed 11:30-12:30 @Robek’s / Coffee Bean umbrella tables
  3. I can go to AS-120 (AS building is next to The Beach Hut, next to The Library) after class on Wed, at 3:45 and help anyone with anything.
  4. Make an appointment to meetup another time
Patricia Arienne Avendano with a pastel on paper drawing

Patricia Arienne Avendano

Artist Conversations

Points on BeachBored

All points through Week 4 are now up on BeachBored. Be sure to check your points and know where you stand! So far we’ve had 209 points possible. Here’s how many points you should have to be on track for each grade level, and how many peeps in 1p / 2:30 are currently at each grade level:

A = 188 points – 56 / 47
B = 167 points – 4 / 4
C = 146 points – 1 / 3
D = 125 points – 1 / 3
F = 124 points – 3 / 5

  • 1p GPA = 3.68
  • 2:30 GPA = 3.37

Leaderboard

Top 5 @1pm:

  1. Stephanie Arciva, 282
  2. Maritess Anne Inieto, 264
  3. Carlos Villicana, 250
  4. Janis Vernier, 239
  5. Selena Lara, Hannah Adams, 238

Top 5 @2:30:

  1. Lydia Chang, 295
  2. Jamie Van, 284
  3. Yesenia Hernandez, 263
  4. Samantha Gomez, 249
  5. Nathan Davalos, 247
Samuel De La Cruz with a pastel on paper line drawing

Samuel De La Cruz

Activity Wk 5

Beautiful work on last week’s Automatic Drawing activity! You’ll see some samples of your classmates work and some of what they wrote below. Congrats and thanks for giving the unusual project a try and for getting such varied and awesome results! 😀

This week we move from Drawing to Painting. Once again it’s not quite the “standard” painting. This week we’ll try Graffiti Writing. And to go with it, as you’ll see at the bottom of this page, our Art Talk Discussion is the excellent Graffiti Writing documentary film Bomb It.

  • You can paint anywhere that is legal
  • A piece of cardboard or plywood in your backyard is great
  • I know the Venice Art Walls are far, but it’s a very eclectic, diverse place where you’ll see a lot of culture mashup, and also at the walls you’ll see a lot of great work!
  • Don’t be intimidated by the good work at the Venice Art Walls! Just think of it as a white board in a classroom. Plus you don’t have to paint up front, you can “hide in the back!” 😛
  • The Venice Art Walls are open Saturday & Sunday from 10am to 1/2 hour before sunset (closed during the week)
  • I’ll go this Saturday from 10am – 1pm. And I’ll bring 3 gallons of iced tea in case anyone’s thirsty!
  • Use at least 2 colors of paint
  • Paint your name in bubble letters (drop shadow type lettering)
  • Your Art Kit came with 2 colors of Montana Gold spray paint, and a fantastic set of tips that will help you paint thin, tight outlines, broad fills, and in between.

Full Details:

Automatic Drawing

Such beautiful work you guys! Here’s a sample of some of your drawings and a little of what some of you said about them:

Andrew Nguyen's friend holding a pastel line drawing they made on Rives BFK paper

Andrew Nguyen

When I started the Automatic Drawing with my boyfriend, it felt like there was no thought process to it, our hands just flowed. We let the pen talk and just kept going like if our hands couldn’t stop going. I thought this activity was awesome! We had so much fun doing it, even my boyfriend wanted to keep going. The end result happened to be a bunch of loops and circles and ongoing lines. I decided to go “beyond” and we both colored it, without putting thought to it. Automatic drawing is a good way to just let your emotions out and relax!
Aleah Lomeli

Alex Miramontes' sister Taylor with the Automatic Drawing they made together

Alex Miramontes’ sister Taylor with the Automatic Drawing they made together

I decided to ask my annoying little sister, Taylor to be part of my art experience and she was excited to try something new… We were sitting across from one another on the floor with our legs crossed and had blue on our right hand and orange on our left and drew with both hands simultaneously. After, we used yellow and had all four of our hands on the yellow pastel and started drawing. We had the radio turned on in the background to create a relaxing environment, it helped us focus on the art. At first we couldn’t stop laughing because it was difficult to come to an agreement with what we were going to draw, I kept feeling a force that prevented me from navigating the way I wanted to go. In the beginning we could not sync up with what direction we were going to draw and we broke a couple of the crayon pastels. However, after a minute or two we both just started drawing and it felt automatic. I found it weird how towards the end we did not need to verbally communicate about the drawing, it was like we were reading each others minds and knew what we wanted to draw. I really liked how our drawing turned out… I enjoyed this weeks activity and it allowed my little sister and I to bond together!!
Alex Miramontes

automatic drawing by Amanda Martinez featuring heavy pastel marks on a large sheet of paper

Amanda Martinez

As we were drawing it was very relaxing we took turns guiding the pastels. I really liked how we did not have to say a word to each other while drawing it just happened so naturally. After all of the blending and adding a few lines it looked like a tornado with a man standing at the base of its path. To me the tornado was a metaphor for his life unraveling before his eyes. He is a powerless man and eventually the mess in his life will consume him. I could also see the drawing in a positive way if I were the figure at the bottom of the tornado. Lately I have been stressed with my new job and school, however, somehow I am keeping it together and I am still standing as the tornado as it heads off into the distance. Overall, this was a cool experience and I would recommend people to give it a try.

Amanda Martinez

a hand holding a broken pastel over a sheet of Rives BFK paper with a sketchy drawing on it

Ana Maya

We began our conversation by talking about something simple–how our day was. Then, we moved onto talking about when we went to drink boba tea earlier, and I told her I’d taken a sip of her drink without her looking, which caused her to make a hard streak onto the paper. We switched pastel crayons often, considering she broke the yellow one. We managed to never looked down on at the paper, since we wanted to be surprised at what the final result would be. Five minuted had gone by, and we ended up laughing about the fact that tomorrow is my birthday and she doesn’t have a gift prepared for me yet… All in all, I enjoyed this project. It may not look like much, but it gave my sister and I a reason to have a nice conversation.

Ana Maya

Maritess & Brian blending pastel lines on an abstract drawing on Rives BFK paper

Maritess Anne Inieto & Brian Sath with the automatic drawing they made. Apparently automatic drawing takes a lot of Starbucks. And a little Twix, of course.

you could either go with the flow, or make the flow. When our flows would match, we would make very wide, circular shapes. When one of us would try to take more control than the other, we would end up with jagged edges because our hands couldn’t tell where the pastel would go. When one of us would try to take control over the other, we would also end up breaking the pastel. We broke the pastels multiple times, actually… I would suggest anyone who is undergoing some stress to do this activity because it definitely relieved some stress while I was studying for my midterms.
Maritess Anne Inieto


I wanted to create a dragon like in the video that I had watched. After noticing that it was hard to create something by going with the flow, I gave up. I tried to draw RNA Polymerase I,II, and III. Sorry if you can’t tell, but I had been studying for my Molecular Cell Biology class all day. The black was the RNA that was being transcribed. The bottom parts were the section of the DNA
Brian Sath

Briana Garcia leaning over an "automatic drawing" or abstract line drawing, that she made with her boyfriend

Briana Garcia

I did this activity with my boyfriend and I must say, out of the five years we have been together we have never done anything like this before. We did the automatic drawing in my living with the lights dimmed while we listened to Coldplay. Who knew so much emotion could be the end result of drawing. This experience was different for me. It was an unfamiliar feeling and I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or bad thing, but it was interesting to see how such a simple task can turn into something more. This experience turned out to be so different than what I had imagined. But maybe I learned something about my relationship or we both learned something about each other.

Briana Garcia

automatic drawing by Jacqueline Sanchez. Pastel on paper.

Jacqueline Sanchez

at first it felt more like my sister and I were fighting for control of the chalk rather than working together, but we got the hang of it eventually. After finishing the first set of lines we decided to give it a try with another color. It was much more than just random squiggles, it represented a connection between me and my sister in that every curve of that line, and the direction it took wouldn’t have been the same if it weren’t for both of our contributions.

Jasmine Figueroa

pastel drawing on paper

Kayla Tafoya-Sablan

we were on the floor having a couple beers and Hot Cheetos while I played Johnny Cash on my laptop. We just sat there with eyes closed, sometimes peeking as we let the pencil and the movement of our hands draw a bunch of random lines and shapes, but we weren’t getting much on paper just by our breathing and involuntary movement causing the pencil to slide across the paper. Then the song Ring of Fire came on, and we both started to wiggle a little as our way of basically saying “this is my jam.” We were getting a lot more movement by our dancing so we wiggled in place and sang to the entire song. It was hilarious and really fun…

Next thing you know, I was like, “Oh my god. I’m gonna find Johnny Cash’s name in this…” It took me about 10 minutes to find each letter – ones that looked the most like the actual letter. I then decided to color in random shapes and empty spots in and around the entire ball of scribble with the two other pastel colors I got in my art kit which were a lime green and yellow.

Kayla Tafoya-Sablan

yellow and black pastel markings on paper that make a sort of heart shaped image

Marlene Rodriguez

Completing this activity made me realize how honest and how creepy the energies of people can be… My boyfriend being the jokester that he is decided it would be funny to rub his hands all over the poster after we scribbled on it which made me pretty upset because I thought it was ruined. So i grabbed the black pencil and began scribbling over everything once more. As you can see the top of the photo was the side I was sitting at and it’s pretty dark. I’m guessing it was because I was upset so I put more pressure on the pencil. Eventually I wasn’t so upset anymore because it actually looked pretty cool and I thanked him and apologized for over reacting. Then the crazy thing we realized was that it almost looks like a heart.

Marlene Rodriguez

pastel drawing by Selena Lara and her sister

Selena Lara

Awkward! This week I thought I would use this art activity to reconnect with my younger sibling Leslie, who recently simply was not having it with me. Even though I could’ve done it with anyone else I chose to do it with her because I was tired of the tension between us. My mother practically forced her to do it with me. It was the only way I thought the tension between us would be released.

I think it was the first time in two weeks that I’ve seen her smile at me again. It was also the first time in two weeks that she giggled endlessly because of how awkward a silly automatic drawing was for both us. At first, it wasn’t getting either of is anywhere so we decided to play some music to help us. I played a couple of our favorite songs including, Paranoia by A Day to Remember, Cynical by Blink 182, and Not Good Enough for Truth in Cliche’ by Escape the Fate. Our hands started moving towards the beat of the music! Finally we were getting somewhere!

Through the activity itself and the songs we realized how much better things are when we are both laughing and having fun with each other. I honestly felt that this activity was gift from whatever force there is out in the world! In the piece itself I think you can really see all the feelings between us. In the black you can see the release of my sister’s frustration at practically being forced to do the activity. In the green you can see the beats of the music playing in the background. In the yellow you can see our laughter and at last the reconciliation between the two of us. Overall an activity, that brought peace between two siblings.

Selena Lara

pastel covered  hands resting on top of a pastel drawing

Selena Lara

two people sitting across a large sheet of paper and holding a pastel stick together

Jamie Van

We were giggling a lot as we let the colors move themselves and it was a lot more fun than we expected. We had snacks and brownies on the side and we were all hyped up on our sugar high, which could have explained the craziness in our art piece. After we had our fun, our piece looked very interesting. It had an abstract feel to it but at the same time, it seemed very organized. There were loops and circles and it ended up becoming a giant figure of black and green.

Jamie Van

Juli Yoshinaga making a pastel "Automatic Drawing" with a partner

Juli Yoshinaga

At first, it was difficult to draw because we both did not know what direction to draw in and we hesitated to be assertive in where we wanted our pastel to go next. However, we both were very relaxed and did not get frustrated because we found this as an opportunity to create something freely without direction.

After multiple turns, swirls, and spins, we were getting the hang of the art and it flowed naturally without much effort. I’ll admit that it was difficult having our eyes closed because I wanted to look and pick my next move. However, closing our eyes forced us to focus on the movement rather than perfecting the piece so it was a nice change for once.

Overall, the experience was great! It was not once stressful or hard, rather, a fun and carefree one. I very much enjoyed this project because it felt as if it united two people because we were only allowed “one” hand to draw. By one hand I mean that we had to put all hands and force into one pastel to create our piece. I’m more than happy with the results because this is the most natural art experience I have ever had and I am proud of the art. This piece will always remind me of the fun laughs, and good memories I made. Sometimes it’s about the meaning behind it, rather than the actual visual image, and that’s why I love this piece so much!

Juli Yoshinaga

pastel drawing in yellow, green & black

Linney Sar

I asked my boyfriend Connor to be my partner for this activity and he was very excited to help. He is an Animation major at California State University Fullerton so he always enjoys getting to help me with my art projects…

We did this project with our eyes closed so that our product would be a surprise. After a couple minutes we agreed to open our eyes. It is hard to explain why I like this piece, because it does look like a three year old made it. I just really enjoy the idea behind it. Me and someone very special to me made this together without thinking. I feel in a way it reflects our relationship. We work together to create something that can sometimes feel a little crazy but overall is something beautiful. While it may not be the most appealing work of art to others, it has now become one of my favorites.

Lizzy Stiller

colored marker on paper color field drawing

Picantha Im

I did this week’s activity with my boyfriend. We looked around the house and drew whatever we saw: my cat, a pumpkin, random shapes, and scribbled our names. Without looking, of course! After that, we decided to color everything in.

Picantha Im

sitting on the sidewalk on the CSULB campus and making a tandem pastel drawing

Raul Silva & Erika Perez

We finally decided to sit in front of FA-2… I am glad we did, it was plenty peaceful and it was nice to be in the natural shade of the trees…

Here Erika and I are in the zone, letting our subtle unconscious movements guide the pastel across the paper… The greatest difficulty was to not break them. Four hands on the fragile pastels was not the ideal condition for them. Breaking all three of the colors that we had (Yes we made a pastel graveyard). I will admit it was not in my comfort zone to let go of my conscious effort to create something instead of just squiggles and lines. I was continuously tempted to consciously use a greater portion of the paper. But i let go and our hands decided to stay in the center.

We looked at it and I noticed that one of the curves we made looked like a dragon head so i grabbed the black and began to draw the face. Erika quickly proceeded to draw some of the body, the tail, flames and a surrounding. Even using the pathway as a canvas from not leaving the center with our eyes closed. Astonished at what the final results were. This is where I felt most comfortable, improvising to create something impressive out of completely random and seemingly chaotic.

Raul Silva


After my last class on Thursday, I met up with one of my classmates, Raul Silva, to work on the art project together. It took a few minutes to find a place but we ended up in a nice shady spot under the trees by the Fine Arts buildings. We then brought out our pastels, laid our paper, and sat ourselves down to begin. The location helped tremendously in helping me ease my mind and letting my hands draw on their own. As cheesy as it may sound, it was the switch of focus to the sound of students walking by, the birds chirping up above, and how the breeze felt on my skin that played a major role in relaxing me. However, brief moments where I was snapped out of my relaxing stage occurred as the fragile pastels broke beneath our hands.

Our pastels were tragically murdered, but that did not stop us from exploiting them as we continued to use them. Our finish product was squiggly lines toward the center area of the paper. Surprisingly, it felt like we spent a good amount of time with the drawing process, yet the result seemed minimal to me. Nevertheless, quickly after we stood up and admired our work, we remembered that we could get a little creative with our work. Raul took initiative in the first step as he defined a dragons head amongst the squiggles. I then went off his inspiration and created some of the body, tail, fire, and surrounding area. With true teamwork, we were able to bring alive “Doodle Dyno.”

Erika Perez

pastel drawing on paper in yellow, green & black

Raul Silva & Erika Perez

two hands holding a pen and drawing on paper

Stephanie Valdivia

For this activity, I had the help of my girlfriend. We went to our local Starbucks to work on it. She’s the more artsy one in the relationship so she was pretty excited to lend an artistic hand. This was new to me and I wasn’t sure exactly what to do. She had done something like this before so she knew what to do. She explained how easy it was and I got it. It was actually a really fun project. I always start these projects intending to finish as quickly as possible but I always end up spending more time on it because it’s so fun. Unfortunately, the pastels in my art kit were an ugly combo: yellow, lime green, and black. Black was messy so we had to leave it out. Yellow and green are okay colors but it could’ve been better with other colors. We went over our markings two or three times. We wanted to color it more but with our two unappealing colors, we decided to leave some color out. This activity was so much fun and made for a really nice date!

Stephanie Valdivia

pastel drawing in black, yellow and green

Stephanie Valdivia

staccato lines in yellow, green, and black pastel on drawing paper

Yesenia Hernandez & Jessica Obrique

I did the project with my best friend Jessica. We met up at my house. We sat on these comfy chairs and put this big Atlas book on top of our legs as the board for our paper. At first we felt funny and laughed. After a bit, we got into the groove of things and just started conversing.

Our final product conveyed our emotions as we started discussing some frustrations we were having at work. Even the colors are dark to me. At first I thought of a bumble bee because Black and Yellow.

This art activity seemed chaotic but I think it was actually the opposite. It was meditating and soothing although it does not appear to be. I would definitely do this again to help release built up anguish.

Yesenia Hernandez


One of my high school friends, Yesenia, is taking Art 110 with me and we decided to do the automatic drawing activity together. The key point of automatic drawing was to let the art come automatically. So we sat on the floor, closed our eyes, and let our markers do their thing!… When we first started Yesenia and I started laughing because we felt a little funny doing this. The markers moved with both our hands on it and we created something pretty awesome. We loved how it turned out. It reminded me a lot like a cell’s nucleus; most likely because I’m taking biology right now haha. Overall it was a great experience! I plan on keeping it for memories’ sake.

Jessica Obrique

Yuliana & Omar holding a pastel drawing on paper

Yuliana Torres and her nephew Omar

Art Talk OTW

  1. 3 Million Years of Art History
  2. Joseph DeLappe
  3. Mahsa Soroudi
  4. The Mind in the Cave
  5. Graffiti Writing: Bomb It

To go with our Graffiti Writing activity this week, our Art Talk Discussion will be the documentary film Bomb It. It’s one of those weeks I told you about where the video would be longer – in this case 90 minutes. I know that’s long, but I hope most of you will like the film a lot! It’s a world tour of Graffiti Writing, starting in Philadelphia & New York, going around the globe, and winding up in Los Angeles. It also includes an interesting discussion of Public Space.

Written by Glenn Zucman

BA, Psychology, University of Hawaii, MFA, Intermedia Art, Long Beach State. Host of American Public Media's "Border Patrol." Host of KBeach Radio's "Strange Angels." Interested in Identity Art that explores our Oracle-at-Delphi-like straddling of corporeal and virtual realms in our new media century. Civil rights in online space. 10 years...
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90 Comments

Marissa Sar

Marissa Sar
Before watching the documentary, I thought the video would be all about the history of graffiti. However, the documentary was definitely more that. I thought it was interesting that there were different graffiti artists being interviewed, such as Cornbread. It was daring for Cornbread to even spray paint on an actual elephant even though it is illegal. Also I admire that women can be represented in the graffiti field because I guess society usually associates men with it. In addition, before watching the video, I would have associated graffiti with more of a negative connotation to it. However, after hearing the graffiti artists’ perspectives on how graffiti is a way of expressing identity, and expressing their creativity on how their artwork can be, whether it’s stretching or 3D-ing the alphabet letters. I also thought it was a great analogy to compare graffiti to Jazz Music. Interviewees in the documentary has mentioned about the controversies that involves doing graffiti. It’s about the authoritative power that the government has to determine the “quality of life” of people. Some people may think that a “clean” neighborhood does not necessarily mean is increasing the “quality of life,” but rather makes the area dull or exclusive. In my opinion, I think that it’s great graffiti is a way to express oneself, and is another art form, but I don’t like the idea of someone risking their lives to go on top of high buildings, or be consistently chased by the police. However, I also don’t think that graffiti artists should feel like they have to hide what they love to do. I guess that is a topic that needs to find a middle ground. Overall, watching this documentary has definitely changed my perspective on what art can be.

Reply
Nathan Davalos

I agree with Marissa, before watching this documentary I also associated graffiti with violence and with a negative connotation. I thought that graffiti was just something that gangs used to mark their territories, but after watching the video I found out that graffiti is not only used for that it is also used as a way to show an artists artistic ways. Graffiti is an art and it takes a lot of practice to perfect it. Watching one of the artist in the video do his graffiti, he did it with such ease and perfection. I also do not like the aspect that the artists have to hide or run away from police officers, and that they risk their lives trying to get to some hard to get places to tag their names. I do appreciate graffiti when I see it. Driving in Los Angeles I see graffiti everywhere, most times it is gangs marking their territories but sometimes I come across some pieces that I have to stop and admire for a couple of minutes.

Reply
hrandonbong

Brandon Hong

Hey Marissa Sar! I just wanted to say that I agree with you that graffiti is definitely a way of art. Living in Los Angeles and driving around in it I get to see a lot of different kinds of graffiti. It always impresses me to see the graffiti especially in places where you don’t normally think a regular person can get to. I really admire graffiti artists especially because their form of art is just so risky! You have to admit it’s really impressive how some artists can paint such intricate designs with just a paint can and a few hours. I think its really cool how once you master painting with graffiti you can make it look so easy like some of the graffiti artisits that were featured in the film. I believe graffiti isn’t always negative, but it can be used to express problems of life or the country just like the infamous Banksy. Graffiti is an art that truly expresses oneself, and I absolutely love it.

Reply
adrianagmaciel

Hey Marissa,
I also liked that there were so many artists that the documentary focused on. The reason being that you can determine what it similar between artists but also how they are different from one another. Each one of them had a different story but some parts were very similar. I also feel that I had also disconnected the idea of women doing graffiti. After seeing quite a few of them in the documentary I was pleased to see that women are out there creating art in a male-dominated activity. The woman that stuck out to me the most was the grade school teacher that compared graffiti writing to playing, I thought that was an interesting thought from her behalf. All these artists are admirable and have such amazing and detailed art that it is so sad to see the world associate their creations with criminal activities.

Reply
megansalinas11

Hey Marissa, I really liked how you touched base on the safety of these graffiti artists when they go out and paint their pieces. Most people just think that they’re hoodlums or gang members but what they’re doing is very artistic and very brave, to go up onto these huge buildings and paint their pieces is a very brave thing to do and it obviously shows that they are extremely passionate about what they do. Some may say that they’re not brave or artistic but my counterargument would be to look at the art that they depict, really try to comprehend and understand their thought process and what they are/were trying to portray and also think a little deeper on the guts that it took to climb these buildings or trains; this is something that should be looked at as a form of confidence in their abilities to show just how art-savvy they are.

Reply
Nathan Davalos

Nathan Davalos

Graffiti writing was started in Philadelphia and New York. Graffiti is an art that took the alphabet and stretched it (exaggerating the letters).However the aspect behind graffiti writing has been around since the early days, when people wanted to mark their territory or mark what is theirs in a way is graffiti. In 1977 New York became the graffiti capital of the world, taking the crown from Philadelphia. Artists that graffiti do not ask for the space on which they wish to graffiti on, they just take the space. It is illegal to graffiti on most public property but people do it anyways to get their names out there on the streets. Lots of people from different backgrounds do graffiti all across the world. Cornbread is said to be the first graffiti artist, coming from just doing graffiti locally in Philadelphia and New York, his graffiti can now be seen all over the world on many public walls. He started doing graffiti when he was in juvenile detention. His name was beginning to spread in there and when he was released his name was beginning to be spread all around the town. With graffiti art comes violence. Violence is started when someone marks over someone else’s graffiti or if they are at the wrong place at the wrong time and some gangsters approach the artists.

Reply
Raul Silva

Art by definition is “the expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form such as painting or sculpture, producing works to be appreciated primarily for their beauty or emotional power.” Graffiti is art, however it is a very controversial form of art because of the places were it is practiced. Graffiti art is done all around the world and it varies in widely style but is done for mainly two reasons, self-expression or to bring awareness to a problem. The goal is to put the art in public places so that everybody sees it (although some may have their places where they practice out of sight). The artists feel that they absolutely must change the environment around them to make it their own and to give the “boring” city a personality. Arguments against this art form include that it is a destruction of property, leads to city depreciation and is seen as a “gateway crime”. Many of the artists have been to prison for varied crimes but give graffiti credit for keeping them from falling into old habits and instead use their emotions .o create art. In terms of city depreciation they have the idea that public advertisement “ugly” and that their art is there to bring personality and color to the city. Graffiti is a way for the artists to show the world that they exist and go to great lengths to write their name in places where many don’t dare, such as the backs of freeway signs, bridges, and subway tunnels. Although I respect graffiti artists for their talent and creativity I am against having graffiti filled cities. My reason being closely related to one in the film, I think that if everyone was allowed to write his or her name or “tag” all over the place then it is anarchy. Advertisements are in designated locations and the people that own the building or location are compensated for it. From personal experience I know how inconvenient it is to remove undesired “tags” from private belongings. Everything has a time and a place; Venice and Sunken City would not be as amazing as they are if it was not for the graffiti. It is a beautiful creative way to express the things that make humans individual and can deliver a strong political message and I support the artists that do it responsibly. The film introduced us to the world of graffiti artists and inspired us to express ourselves but we must remember that this is not just our world to write our name on we share it and we must understand something that we find amazing many will not, so we must respect private property.

Reply
Tiffany Phan

Hi Raul, I definitely agree with you, graffiti is a very controversial topic because even though it is a way to express how someone does art, it becomes a problem when they do it somewhere where they shouldn’t. From my knowledge after watching the video, I believe that graffiti artist do go to great lengths to get their name out and who they are, and where they’ve come from, but they don’t realized where they are doing it at, is not the right place to do it. Other than the issue of the places, graffiti artists and any artist just wants to be able to get their name out into the world and their work as well. Just like the brand Obey and there logo for it and it’s come a long way to get there. I’ve tried to become more open-minded about why graffiti is done in illegal places most of the time and I feel like one of the reasons could be is that, there’s too much expectations for how art should be. When trying to get your art displayed at an art gallery, for example, there must be certain expectations to actually get your work in there whereas if you do it somewhere where someone doesn’t want you to do it, people are going to notice. It’s kind of sad to see how people view it negatively.

Reply
hrandonbong

Brandon Hong

Before watching the documentary I tried to think about what it would be about. I thought the movie would be a documentary about the history of graffiti. However, the documentary was definitely more than that. I liked how the documentary interviewed several graffiti artists, such as Cornbread. He stood out the most for me because he spray painted an elephant. Who would do that? I never had a negative view on graffiti writing unlike most people, because growing up in Los Angeles I got to see many different kinds of graffiti. Most of them were a work of art, but some were pretty bad. I remember there was this one graffiti of a punk grandpa screaming right before the entrance to the 2 north freeway, but some loser decided to deface that work of art just because he could. I got really mad that such a detailed work of art was tainted. All those hours that must have gone into making that graffiti painting gone to waste. Graffiti writing is a risky form of art especially because it is illegal, but I believe it adds life to a neighborhood when you see graffiti especially when its nice graffiti like the punk grandpa. If I ever meet one of these graffiti artists I would want them to come to my neighborhood and add some life to it.

Reply
Alfredo Gonzalez

Hey Brandon,

I had the same reaction to graffiti growing up, as I never looked at it as negative as many people did. I grew up in the Los Angeles area as well, and I would see graffiti everywhere and it was never a big deal for there to be graffiti. It was always weird to me when I would go to different cities where there was no type of graffiti at all, I always felt like cities that did not have any were missing a piece of great art and history. As a kid there was a park nearby where every year a new artist will come and make a new graffiti piece and I would like to see him do his work. This piece was made up the neighborhood and I felt it would not be the same without it. I have seen many great pieces on different business that have been defaced for no reason, which it sad to see because the pieces that were usually defaced never had any type of negative message or had any gang activity involved with.

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Fatima Negrete

Over where I live, in Compton, graffiti is everywhere. Over there some of the people do not care about where they are allowed or not allowed to do graffiti they’ll do it anywhere. Even though they will get in trouble of damaging property they don’t give a rat’s ass. As long as they tag up something. I usually see graffiti of gang names, so the people and other gangs know that, that area is their turf. Also, at my high school there would students who’d tag their names on the wall of the school and say ____was here. This is very popular in my hometown. In comparison, the video said that people who are graffiti artists or who do graffiti usually tag their name as a way to say that they have traveled from place to place. Now, I know in Downtown L.A. there is a bunch of graffiti and it is beautiful. All the colors, characters, and messages are just stunning. At times I’m just how the hell did they put that up there? I like the graffiti art over there. The art in Downtown L.A. has so much emotion and passion that I can feel it. I was pretty shocked when the documentary said that society gave them the title of graffiti, because the people they did this form of art called it bomb it; I found this interesting. In addition, how the documentary said the artists make their letters pop, but by still being legible. They are making their own unique style just as any other artist.

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Bunny Horn

Hi Fatima,

I agree that some people still do graffiti everywhere even if that place do not allow graffiti. To me, doing at someone else house or a new construction is not a good graffiti because they are doing it without thinking. Sometimes it hard to understand or read graffiti. Now, I understand that some graffiti had their name to show that they are travel from places to places. It’s very interesting because they can come back later to that place to see your name there. When I went to LA, near the freeway there are a lot of graffiti and there’s some that I saw that have beautiful color and design with details. I agree that some graffiti has so much emotion and passion that I feel it. I also found it interesting that society gave them the title graffiti. Graffiti is an art because people can express it in a different way.

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Janett Moctezuma

Janett Moctezuma

Hi Fatima Negrete,
I agree with what you said about graffiti in Compton. Most of the graffiti writing is done by gang members and usually it’s just them fighting with other gang members. They tend to cross out rival gang member’s names and write their name next to it to show who crossed the name out. This only create problems between people. I don’t understand why gang members don’t enjoy graffiti writing for what it is, a form of art. The meaning behind graffiti is totally different in this documentary. The artists in the documentary did graffiti to express themselves and show their work and who they are, not to cause problems. I wish the meaning behind graffiti in Compton can change and maybe there can be less problems between gang members. They should do graffiti to express themselves in a positive way.

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megansalinas11

Megan Salinas
I actually really enjoyed watching this documentary. It kept going to different graffiti artists and I was really able to get a sense of each of them and hear and comprehend their backgrounds and history. I never really understood graffiti, because where I come from graffiti is seen as vandalizing gang action rather than an art form. Back in my small town, it was ways to claim certain areas of the town for the various gangs that were around, so it was never something that was seen as “art” but something that was looked down upon. But after watching this documentary and all of the interviews of graffiti artists, I was able to understand why people go out and paint graffiti on trains and walls. I was able to see the thought process of these artists and what really goes on through their heads as they do these pieces. These artists are frowned upon and I could see why (given where I come from and how I grew up), but I really did get a new understanding and sense why they do what they do. They go out to these trains and walls of buildings and tag up the different logos and slogans and I really think that it’s an awesome, although it is illegal, way to represent themselves. I think that this was the perfect video subject to watch to get us all in the mood and mindset to complete this week’s activity.

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gabrielg454gmailcom

Gabriel Gonzalez
I definitely agree with Megan. Where i grew up, although it is not much of a city, there were still a lot of graffiti on walls and boulders and anywhere you can imagine, and everybody sees them as frowned upon art. This was because of the relations with gangs and territories. Yet although some were gang related graffiti, others were pieces of work of individuals expressing themselves. Graffiti artists are always misleaded by their work and it is kind of sad that they have to keep their art to themselves, or anonymous since it is illegal in most places. I find their work inspiring and pretty awesome, simply by the fact that i myself have used a spray can before and know how hard it is to get something meaningful and aesthetic out of a can

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adrianagmaciel

Adriana Maciel

I thought that this documentary was very interesting and informative. I grew up in the South Bay and I lived in a mildly bad neighborhood. There was an alley behind my mom’s house where people from different streets would tag their names and their street on and sometimes when they had ‘beef’ they would cross out other people’s names/streets and write theirs over it. Graffiti has been around for a really long time and it has always been an outlet for people to express themselves and a way for people to rebel against a system they don’t believe in. I had never seen graffiti to be a negative form of art because I would always see ‘bombings’ on freeway signs and wondered how the hell they even got up there, let alone create a masterpiece in the dark from really high up. Something that really stood out to me from the documentary, though, was how proud each one of the artists was of their art and how giddy each of them got when they shared the details about their first time writing. One one hand, it’s really cool to see that they really love doing what they do and have no problem with people knowing. However, it is also somewhat frightening that they will admit so nonchalantly that they have gone to prison for graffiti or gang-related violence. Society did play a huge role in criminalizing graffiti artists’ art with just even the name ‘graffiti’ alone and it is tough to pick a side regarding who is right. These people are still artists expressing themselves and creating their own style and leaving a mark in the world.

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leslie2213

Adriana Maciel
Hello, so i just wrote a reply to you but it got erased :(. i agree in the interest of the video. The way the artist express their interest for graffiti and share their experience of ending up in jail because of it is pretty amazing. Most of these artist seem to be motivational and feeling proud of the work they’ve done. Although there work was gang related the art part of it never goes away. As i read your post i laughed when you stated how they tag on the freeway walls because i wonder the same! Its so crazy how they do that I’ve always imagined one of them being tied to a rope or something because they’re writing always comes out perfect. Where i live there is some graffiti but that as bad as other cities. Most of the graffiti writing down in my neighborhood are of known little gang members. This one time a friend of a gang member passed away and they tagged it on the wall of a nearby supermarket. I thought it was pretty dumb because i know there are other ways people can express themselves. However, now that i am taking this class it is amazing how mostly everything that surrounds us is art whether it is illegal or not.
– Leslie Meza

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Bunny Horn

Graffiti Writing started in Philadelphia and New York. It was interesting that graffiti can be an art. Back in the day, you can see graffiti everywhere such as around walls in school and bus windows. There are steps to writing graffiti. Some people explain graffiti as a rap. In the graffiti writing you can write your name and added some design. One man explained that graffiti is like jazz to him because he takes the basic of the letter and stretch it and add an extension. Also, takes a letter and your name and exaggerate it. One person explains that doing graffiti is like playing. In London, if the person is recognized by the police then the police will think they are criminals, so they will end up in jail. The surveillance camera is everywhere to see who is drawing graffiti. So some may think there are no more public after putting a surveillance camera. In Berlin, Karl Hennig believes that once you grant the sprayers the exception that they do not have to care about the law and it becomes an attack on the constitutional state, the law can punish them with a fine and 2-3 years in prison. Japan is controlled, but some may think that there’s no resistance. Some don’t care and filled the space with graffiti drawing. One person explains that she feels like she need to accomplish something and she did by drawing graffiti. For example, she drew a strong women character. In LA, a girl says that graffiti take her to do things that she never experiences before like chasing by gang and police. She believes that she would do graffiti in a legal spot rather than somewhere that will cause to end up in jail. Overall, there are negative and positive of doing graffiti. My family and I view graffiti as related to gang. In the alley, on my garage door we would see graffiti everywhere. My mom would get paint to paint over the graffiti. To me, doing graffiti to someone else property is not respect that person property. Maybe this is the reason why some people view graffiti as a bad things.

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Henry Pham

I see what you mean by graffiti can be associated with gang affiliations and danger, however there many times where we do not have to fear graffiti. Graffiti doesn’t necessarily have to do with gangs. Some people use it as a form of media for their art. Just as how we have brushes for our paint, cans fulfill the same purpose. It serves to transport the paint onto our canvas which, instead of paper, is the side of a building. Many people use it in an insightful way, just like the woman who drew strong women. She had a message she wanted to convey and painting a building was just her way of doing it. People can then walk by and appreciate the art. On the other hand, it’s a shame how some people only use tagging for gang signs. It’s even worse how most don’t do so artistically. At that point, you’re just removing the art aspect for the point of tagging, which I don’t believe in. Overall, I agree with how you say that there are negatives and positives of graffiti, however I believe that we can’t fixate on the negatives.

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Janett Moctezuma

Janett Moctezuma
I am not a big fan of watching documentaries because most of the times I find them boring. When I seen this one was 90 minutes I didn’t really want to watch it since it was so long. However, I found the documentary very informative and interesting since it began. I really enjoyed learning about graffiti and its origin. It was very interesting how different artists around the world were interviewed. These artist were able to share their experience and what graffiti means to them. For many artist graffiti is a form of expression especially for those who do not have much in life. People have the opportunity to express themselves and show who they are to the world. Also, graffiti for them is their own personal signature. I was able to understand the whole meaning behind graffiti. I remember there were these two artist that were interviewed together and as they were showing their work there were people telling them how they don’t like that they write on the walls. They seen there work as vandalism because they were talking bad about it. I was able to relate to this specific scene in the documentary because where I live that’s how people see graffiti. I live in Compton and many people tag in the area, especially gang members. I really enjoy watching graffiti writing just not the ones where people are fighting against each other by crossing their names. Gang members tend to do that and I just wish they would just enjoy graffiti as art not as a form of competition and ownership. Overall, the documentary was awesome and I really enjoyed looking at the the amazing pieces that each of the artist created.

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Fatima Negrete

I agree with you Janett when you said you said that you don’t like graffiti that is affiliated with violence, especially “when people are fighting against each other by crossing out their names”. Violence and innocent killing shouldn’t occur just because someone crossed out their graffiti. People should just feel and appreciate the graffiti that someone else did because it is art. Since we both live in Compton I get what you are saying. Gangs should see graffiti as art (not as territorial), and appreciate each other’s style when they tag. Because I am pretty sure that those who tag and do graffiti can relate to one another; therefore, they should bond and not bang against each other.

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amazeeana23

Ana Gomez
Hi Janett,
I definitely agree with you I felt it was going to be boring, however I was even late to work trying to finish watching it because it was so interesting to me. It is labeled as something bad. My parents are very old fashioned and they fall into this trance that everything the law says is bad, they think is bad. I just like that it’s kind of like a unique signature of each individual.

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Jose Perez

Jose Perez
Hey Janett,
I had the same exact reaction when I saw the duration of the documentary. Much like you, I am not a fan of documentaries, but found this one to be very interesting from beginning to end. It gave an extreme amount of information involving graffitit art. To me, listening to the word graffiti makes me think of writing in neighborhoods that claim territory, but watching the video made me realize it was much more than that. Everyone has their own unique way of expressing themselves through art, but for some it is done by Graffiti.

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Tiffany Phan

Before watching this video and when I was younger, I used to think graffiti was bad because people talked about it as if it is so negative and that people graffiti illegally and that’s why graffiti is viewed negatively. However, growing up and understanding different types of forms of art, I feel like it’s just another way for someone to do art. I believe that art is a way to express yourself without actually telling people how you feel and I believe that if someone can do that by creating a sculpture or painting on a canvas, than why not graffiti. After watching this video, I learned that there was a writing/graphite movement in New York, how people do graffiti, why they do graffiti, and how it became a way for others to communicate with one another. I feel like people view it negatively because when you take a look at it, it not something that you see everyday and some people might not understand the meaning behind it and they just assume its’s all bad when it’s really not. Graffiti is very creative because in the video they talk about how if one person would graffiti there name somewhere, another person would come up and tell them some thing like, “this is great, but THIS can make it more great” and then the other person would do something to the name that makes it look even better and it would be a continuous cycle that would happen. It is kind of like an art project that isnt just made by one person but it create by many people. So when someone see it one day and covers up the work, they’re covering up something great that was built within all those layers and all the hard work is ruined. Just like if it was a painting and someone were to go up to it and splashed it with black paint, they hard work to the artist who painted it would be gone. Graffiti is viewed so negatively and it really shouldn’t be.

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itsjazelle

Jazmin Mejia

In response to Tiffany Phan

My views on graffiti completely evolved like yours did. When I was young, I always assumed that graffiti was bad mostly because that’s what my parents believed and because people had to do it on the down low and illegally. As I got older and moved to a sketchy part of LA, I was exposed to graffiti on a daily basis which made me realize that it was their way of expressing themselves and their views on societal and government issues like police brutality. I believe that it is kind of a brilliant idea to express themselves and their beliefs through graffiti because it will for sure catch people’s attention and can help spread the word to whatever they are trying to convey through their art. Also, like you said, graffiti can be like an art project created by numerous people that may or may not know each other so when someone comes and covers it up it can be devastating to all those people who collaborated in that art piece. Finally, I believe that there should be more places like the Venice Art Walls where it is legal to graffiti in the walls because it is time for graffiti to be viewed in a more positive light.

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Zjlinney

Linney Sar

Growing up in a developed country everything that surround society seem like things are normal and meant to be that way. My perspective on Graffiti if I think back to my childhood was always negative. I never thought about why people would tag or should I say bombing. Anything associated with graffiti I would automatically assume it is related to violence, gang, and territory (tufts). As a child I would avoid areas with graffiti and I would feel uncomfortable. The documentary Bomb It shows that bombing means many things to people who enjoy tagging on walls or anything. What stands out the most to me from the documentary is that people are creating messages to show the world that they exist. Under all the nice and pretty things that are organized and controlled, people are trying to speak out through a form of creativity of bombing. All lives matter with the rapid spread of bombing throughout the world the message is clear that something is wrong and people who are neglected are lost along the pretty things. Relating back to the cave art people strive to survive an art is a representation of the person trying to show to the world they exist. Through art people can share feeling and relate to one another and understand existence. Bombing is a form of art that is expressive and freelance that creates a deeper understanding of society also giving a straight point of view of the struggles of the world through different perspective from different individuals.

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lizzystiller

Hey Linney,
I also had a similar childhood experience. When driving through certain rundown areas, I noticed they were always covered in graffiti. I connected graffiti with poverty. After all there was no graffiti in upscale rich neighborhoods. Graffiti would scare me as a child because I would also connect it with a feeling of danger. That by seeing graffiti, I was no longer in a safe area. I have now come to learn a lot more about graffiti, and my views have changed. I have more of an appreciation of it. I never viewed it as an art but by taking this class and learning just how many things can be considered art and by having my own on hands experience with spray paint, I now understand that it is indeed a form of art.

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Alfredo Gonzalez

This documentary was fun to watch as I have always had a love for graffiti since I was a kid. My first experience of graffiti was in my neighborhood seeing the alley walls filled with graffiti. Growing up in Long Beach, there are a lot of gangs so you would see different graffiti of different gangs claiming their neighborhoods. But not all graffiti were gang related, there were many graffiti I saw alongside business and at the parks. There were always big beautiful art pieces, and it made it feel home to see these pieces being put together. Also being a big fat of rap music, I would always see graffiti in the music videos so graffiti had a big meaning to my life. It was interesting to find out about the origins of graffiti and how it started in Philadelphia and New York. The artist never ask permission to write on a wall, they just take as the video describes it. It showcased who was the first graffiti artists, an artist from Philadelphia who goes by the name Cornbread. The documentary did give me more insight on the thinking process of how they come up with certain ideas as well as the risk they take doing this. Also it really shows that graffiti artist are not people who deface properties as some people believe they do. Yes, there are some people who does do graffiti with bad intentions like gang activity, but there are many that do it in a positive way and make beautiful and creative art pieces. Overall documentaries like this are very informative and just give me a greater respect to all the graffiti artists.

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melissapassarelli

Alfredo Gonzalez,

I agree with you that not all graffiti has bad intentions because I have seen beautiful art pieces as well. I found it interesting that you mentioned the music videos because now that I think about it, there is many graffiti is music videos trying to portray a message. The artist in the movie do take so many risk and I respect that because they do it for positive things and create beautiful art pieces. I really liked the documentary because it shows individuals that graffiti is a form of expression instead of gang related that many people think graffiti is all about.

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Linney Sar

Hi Alfredo,

Thanks to this special documentary I understand graffiti a little bit better. I didn’t know that graffiti started in Philadelphia and New York until I watched the documentary. I agree with what you said that some graffiti are done with good intention, however there are others graffiti that are done with negative intention. Everything has a good side and bad sides. Watching this documentary proves that artist who do graffiti wants to express themselves and the struggles they go through in their lives. I like how artists are motivated to pursue their art with the risk involve and the dangers they face. Next time I pass through an area with graffiti I will try to take it all in and enjoy the graffiti.

-Linney Sar

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Dabidlai

David Lai

Let me just start by commending the artwork that I have just witnessed in this hour long documentary. It was really awesome when we are able to look at the graffiti artist’s piece as a form of self expression. Growing up, my parents and relatives were typically afraid of graffiti. To them, graffiti is a warning sign, like someone owns the whole place and are unwelcoming into the community. It must come to no surprise that I used to associate graffiti with danger.

“Gangs are often seen in places with graffiti” my father says being an LA native for almost two decades now. Fear is in irrational feeling and I think that sometimes being driven by fear often leads people to having closed minds. I did not judge my parents on the way they felt toward graffiti when I found out about the other side of the coin because times were tough when they first moved to America.

Growing up, one of my best friends dropped his education to purse a career in art, and he also happens to be very skillful with the spray paint. He has made several marks in Venice Beach and different locations in East LA. His signature with the spray paint is “VOCAB” in case anyone has ever seen stumbled upon his work. My friend is an aspiring rapper, poet, and artist and he tells me how much he appreciates graffiti art because it has a “retro-vibe”. Ever since I met him, my interpretation on graffiti has shifted to another level, a sense of appreciation for these works of art due to the effort that goes into it.

There are some drawings like presented in the video that are the size of a torso, to pieces that require a whole wall as the canvas. However the artist may put it, I see it now that graffiti says more than people make it out to be just because it can involves unique symbols and images. In the video, one of the artists says that “When you have a pen or chalk… you’ll naturally feel it gravitating toward a wall” or somewhere along those lines. We can see that it has a connection to the Paleolithic drawings in the Lascaux cave in the last assignment as well because of cave art bearing a strong resemblance to the tendencies to create graffiti today.

I appreciate the graffiti as an adult of the twenty-first century who seldom sees it anymore. Communities have erased a lot of the graffiti in areas that I use to see around my hometown mainly because of the association it may bear. It seems judgmental that I say that, but sometimes the community’s consent is much more significant than a few people like myself who appreciate the art. I know that graffiti is a universal act of expression and that sometimes it’s to represent a person’s ideals or to express a societal concern that is lingering. Graffiti has been a ubiquitous form of art that has taken on a universal level of understanding and I feel it is the bridge relaying information in a creative way that is more… noticeable.

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gabrielg454gmailcom

This documentary was really enjoyable and interesting to watch for me. It is always hard to understand what people have going through their minds when they just go and spray up a wall or anything else in the city for no reason. Yet it is a form of expressing themselves, and who they are, where they came from, and simply their passion. When most people think of graffiti, including myself, they think about territotrial marks, and danger, and gangs, but there is a lot of graffiti that has nothing to do with any of that and is forbidden. I personally assume the same thing, but regardless, i also think to myself, how crazy it is for someone to be able to do that type of work with a couple of spray cans. I remember as a kid trying to spray paint a bike, and after several attempts finally getting a decent product. But the difference is that i had the bike frame to base my paint off of, while these people have nothing but a blank wall or train to commence their work. Just watching this video makes me want to get more into this type of art. Not only is it unique, but it is also really hard to do. In the future i look forward into learning more about graffiti. Although i now think graffiti is really awesome and would like to get into it myself, i still also believe there is types of graffiti that should be restricted. For example anything gang related or simply stuff that give a negative input to the city.

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beansartblog

Hi Gabriel,
I have also tried spray painting something. I haven’t spray painted a bike, but I did spray paint my board. Although it was still a difficult task, it was a lot more simple than free handing street art like many artists do. I used to think that graffiti was vandalism, but after watching the documentary I have become more open minded and I now understand that graffiti is a form of self expression. I think it is wrong for society to negatively view graffiti artists when all they want at the end of the day is for their voice to be heard.

Arvan Arguelles

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itsjazelle

Jazmin Mejia

“Bomb It” begins with a lesson in graffiti history, starting from its origins in late 60s Philadelphia and its gradual development through the 70s and 80s on New York City subway system. Then, it embarks on a survey of world graffiti, stopping off at Paris, Berlin, Barcelona, Cape Town, Tokyo and São Paulo before arriving back in LA. This trip round the world documents not only the various different styles, but also the attitudes towards graffiti and the attitudes of the artists themselves like why they write their names on walls, legally or illegally. Furthermore, one thing that all these acts of exterior decorating share is that they all challenge notions of public space. One great argument brought up was that we tend to label graffiti as vandalism but we don’t label billboards, posters, ads, flyers, postcards, and more litter that is spread across our cities as vandalism. All these advertisements provided by major corporations are all trying to sell us something and don’t have anything meaningful behind them like how graffiti does. Graffiti can be about poverty, conformity, urban decay, amongst other things but they are still being labeled as vandalism when in reality they are just a form of self-expression.

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Justin Pham

Justin Pham

Hi Jasmin,
I really liked how you brought up the argument of having different billboards is not considered vandalism but graffiti to be vandalism when both are both meaningless. I would like to further analyze that by saying that if graffiti walls were legal, then both would be considered not vandalism. In an effort to compromise with the artists, the city should section walls off to these artists not only to satisfy their residents, but to showcase their art to the world and have the city become more attractive. I also liked how you explained the different types of graffiti and how the art tells a message.

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amybecerraart

Hi Jazmin!
In your post, you talked about how the documentary talks about all the different kinds of grafitti around the world, as well as the different opinions of the people who reside there. I thought this was so interesting because I never realized that grafitti isn’t something just in the United States. Graffiti is popular to many people from a multitude of different backgrounds. I also thought it was very interesting how you brought up the point about ads being allowed but art not. I thought that was a really interesting point and it made me rethink a lot of my views on grafitti.

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Henry Pham

Society seems to have an unnecessary notion and sense of importance for cleanliness. Many, whether they be city council members, citizens, or architects want our buildings immaculate. Don’t get me wrong, that’s a great way for us to express the art of the building, however there is much more that we can do with those buildings. The practice of using buildings for art, for murals, has been around for a long time and has been common since the 19th century. Famous and influential works of art have been painted on ceilings, such as the Sistine Chapel. While the canvas, which are buildings, remains the same, the form of art has changed. Today many people look down on graffiti, but it is a form of art just like any other mural. It has a message and theme just like many other forms of art. However, that doesn’t mean that every tag you see on the streets has some sort of meaning. We have to embrace meaningful, artistic graffiti instead of being scared of graffiti in general. When driving around LA the artistic components of the graffiti next to the I-110 is apparent. They aren’t there to “tag” the buildings with their gang affiliations. Many convey a message that is insightful for the youth while emphasizing art.

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Dabidlai

David Lai

Hey Henry, I agree with you completely on the notion that LA bears many artistic values in regards to the graffiti next to the I-110. Art is a broad term with many definitions, but due to the availability heuristic, we associate art with drawing or painting; we tend to forget about graffiti as a form of art. Meaningful graffiti not only brings satisfaction to the artist who created it, but can also benefit the public with an illustration of a world that they probably have not ever come to realize.

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lizzystiller

Lizzy Stiller
Growing up, I never thought of graffiti as art. I would always connect it to poverty. When driving through LA I would connect graffiti to a bad neighborhood as in contrast the super upscale rich neighborhoods were always fresh and clean. Now this class has been all about learning that art can be just about anything, so I now have a new perspective on it. I also have a new appreciation as when I was doing the graffiti project in my backyard, it was really difficult! I now have much respect for those street artists that are able to create enormous master pieces, as I struggled just to write my own name. However, graffiti is still super controversial because it is illegal. People have conflicting ideas about having a public piece of property changed with paint. Some see it as art while others see it as vandalism. And I think there is a difference. Graffiti can either be used to create a beautiful impressive piece to be shared with everyone, or it can be abused to just write offensive slurs over buildings. In the end we are never going to come to a universal agreement on whether graffiti should be embraced or not. However, learning about it through this documentary and doing my own first hand experience, has given me a better appreciation of it.

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Mark Nguyen

Hello Lizzy,
I agree with how graffiti is viewed in today’s world. A lot of people associate it with crime or just something bad. I think that people should watch this video to gain a new perspective on it though. It is more of a beautiful art style than it is a crime, and that video kind of gave me more of that realization as well. I also agree with how the art activity gave me a better appreciation for how these graffiti artists do their work. While trying to tag my own name, I found it difficult to even use the can of spray paint. Seeing how effortlessly these people are able to write their names is something that is admirable and quite amazing. I do agree that there are some places that should not be tagged, but I think for the most part these people should be able to express themselves and their art, in a legal place of course. I have also come to a better appreciation of graffiti as well. It is not only beautiful artwork, but it also has a deeper meaning behind it.

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cslabell

Hey Lizzy, i agree with you; unfortuanelty we are not going to come to an agreement about this issue. Its crazy how even on this level there are still such strong and enormous dissagrements and consequences around it. But icurrentlt live in aouth Central and sometimes i do get upset about what i see. I wish that there were more murals and art pieces that made a positove impact or made tou question things. I wish the gang or negative related graffiti would stop, its hard to see it in neighblrhoods. But yes this documentary trully made me iappreciate the art form more. I was really happy when i saw female artists on there. I hope they make a bigger mark on the subject. But overall i think that this art form represents the anger and frustration of people, its just the manner that its done in is what causes trouble. But great documentary!

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Mark Nguyen

Mark Nguyen

I’ve always been interested in graffiti, but I never really knew much about it. I always thought that graffiti had originated in New York, but it was interesting to hear how it came from Philadelphia. The first known graffiti artist was named Cornbread, and it was very crazy to hear how he had gone to jail for tagging an elephant. I was very surprised to hear that who we call graffiti artists call themselves bombers. They consider themselves to fighting their own war. They map out their locations and form their strategies on how to bomb it or tag it. I thought it was really cool how we were able to see females also painting graffiti, and not just have males doing it. The graffiti on the trains was also very surprising to see, but it was also super cool to see how the trains were transformed from something so boring into something so eye appealing. Despite efforts by authorities to stop graffiti and this art, graffiti still survives out on the streets everywhere today. Even when they tried to criminalize it, the culture still lives. That is kind of like our culture today, as i feel that we view graffiti as a kind of crime or related to criminal activity. This doesn’t necessarily have to be true though. Graffiti could just be people trying to express themselves. As they say in the video, graffiti is just them writing their names on walls. All of the graffiti in this video is very awesome and seeing how effortlessly they do it is quite mind blowing.

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Daniel Martinez

Daniel Martinez
Many people view graffiti as a talent, a hobby, and like many drawings, a style of art. An art style that has traveled around the world and continues to do so for many years. People in the video said that graffiti is attitude, something that it’s inside of you and it just comes out. One of the artists in the video describes that this type of art is even bigger than the Renaissance period. Like many others, he says that graffiti kept on motivating him to keep on writing more and more. He said it kept him off of jail, and out of trouble. Even though to many artists Graffiti is a way of expressing themselves, there are still people who oppose to that point of view. They say it is a criminal act to be doing such things on property that they don’t own. People have been jailed for such acts, and artists oppose to that decision saying it is not a crime, it is simply another language. While cities have attempted to stop graffiti writing by consistently taking off the paint off of trains, buses, walls etc., people have refused to stop writing. Such artists say that it is much better to be writing around the city making it more unique, rather than being in the streets doing much more serious and criminal acts. After watching the video, I see those artists’ point of view. Graffiti is just another way of expressing themselves. It is a way to communicate, and it says a lot about the cities too. Even though perhaps it isn’t the best to write on other people’s property, the city can always come to an agreement. Perhaps having public places or objects like walls or monuments where graffiti is allowed won’t seem so bad. Graffiti however, shouldn’t be called a crime when people back in the day would draw and write on caves without being judged.

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Justin Pham

Justin Pham

I’ve always found graffiti to be a very controversial topic, where I could see relate to both sides of the argument. On one hand, you have the artistic graffiti artists who try to bring life and color to the city, such as the ones in the document, and on the other hand you have the ones who represent their gangs/groups and purposely defame the city. Therefore as a city board member, grafiti is not allowed because of the defamation chances. This document explained the origins of grafiti in Philadelphia and New York and how it evolved since then. It was nice to see actual artists talk about their views, since grafiti is illegal and it’s refreshing to see someone to talk about their motives even though it’s not allowed. I think there should be some common ground for these artists to express themselves, such as having a designated graffiti wall might be a good compromise. Although people would continue to graffiti illegally, I believe some compromise might help with the current situation.

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Jessica Obrique

Hi Justin,
I think the point you brought up about the controversy of graffiti being either defamation or art is interesting. The documentary did a good job in bringing the two perspectives to light. For me, I believe that graffiti is good where its legal and appreciated by the citizens. So having a compromise of something like a designated graffiti wall would work well. I went to the Venice graffiti wall and it was awesome. I hope we can make more of them!

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amybecerraart

This documentary was pretty insightful for me. I was raised to see grafitti as a fully negative thing. I was raised to see grafitti as related to gangs and to bad people. Although I still believe that some graffiti is bad (such as on other people’s property), I now perceive grafitti in another way. Now I see that grafitti is an art form and has a certain significance. The documentary compared modern grafitti to ancient cave paintings. When they made that comparison, I realized that grafitti was about the same thing, just done in a different style, era, and culture. I do think grafitti is an art and I believe it’s unfortunate that people who do it to purposely deface things give it a negative stigma.This documentary brought up a unique perspective to me and allowed people who create grafitti to voice their opinions. I really enjoyed that because I believe its important for everyone to give their perspective on controversial topics such as this one.

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lyds chang

Hey, Amy. I was raised the same way- graffiti = bad; it’s for thugs and gang members & not to get caught in it nor to really think about it. After this documentary, I also agree that the graffiti movement has a big significance and meaning behind it. Although, there are some “bad graffiti” such as property defacement and pointless tagging, I think that there are many more meaningful works. Moreover, the cave painting comparison is also interesting because I haven’t thought about that (nor did I notice that comparison). You’re right that, if one actually thinks about it, it is generally the same idea except there is a more strict, negative stigma around graffiti compared to other forms of art. I think that the whole graffiti movement is a very controversial topic with numerous supporters and antis, but overall, it is a very interesting topic that, in my opinion, many people should discuss and be open to both sides of the argument.

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leslie2213

Leslie Meza
This documentary was long. I thought it would be boring but as i watched it it was pretty interesting. The fact that there was different people explaining their reason behind graffiti writing was amazing. To begin with the first thing that caught my attention was when one of the artist said that they felt happy seeing the trains pass with their names on them. At first i thought that every graffiti writing done in the street was gang related but after watching this video my perspective changed. One of the artist explained how seeing his name on the train motivated to keep on writing his name on the trains because not only will that allow people to be talking about him but people would know who he is. Also the artist in Barcelona really amazed me. The two artist from Barcelona explained that they drew graffiti as a way of expressing themselves. They stated it gave them some source of relief. The two Barcelona men made me think how graffiti is not always a bad thing. Although it is illegal in California many artist have used it as a way of relieving any pain or thought in their minds. Another part of the documentary that i enjoyed was when the old lady from Barcelona stated that she loved the graffiti from her block because it looked pretty. She stated that graffiti brought life to her block. In connection to graffiti being illegal, graffiti is an art that some people appreciate. I found it pretty interesting how this older women liked the art in compare to other older people who complain about the work. Made me wonder if she might of had done graffiti at a young age. Overall i enjoyed this video. The different experiences every graffiti artist had whether it was joining a gang or sneaking out their house to tag was amuzing. I enjoyed knowing that not all people hate graffiti in the streets. This video has influenced me to view graffiti differently.

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melissapassarelli

Melissa Passarelli

The movie “Bomb It” is an interesting documentary because it documents different styles and the different attitudes that the artist have of their own art. I found it really interesting to know why artist themselves write their names on the walls and that many different people do graffiti from different economic backgrounds and ethnicity. The movie starts with the history of the culture’s roots in Philadelphia and New York during the 70s and 80s but then transcends into the present day and starts documenting the best graffiti around the world. I really liked Cornbread because he had a passion for graffiti that he sprayed paint on an elephant and he knew it was illegal but he took a risk anyway. This movie reminds us that graffiti is still an underground art and just how much the artist are passionate in making sure graffiti stays true to it’s roots.

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Valeria Gonzalez

Hi Melissa,

I also found the documentary to be very interesting as it gave us the perspectives of different graffiti artists from all over the world. I have seen a lot of graffiti in my life, but I never knew or realized that it was the name of the artist on the graffiti. I think it’s because the designs tend to be very intricate which makes it difficult to read from a moving car. I liked that the documentary depicted graffiti artists as human beings who dream and struggle like the rest of society. Like the Dutch woman who is a primary teacher by day and a graffiti artist by night. The fact that she enjoys graffiti does not make her any less of a teacher nor a criminal. Cornbread was one of my favorite’s too as he didn’t let society’s definition of what’s right or wrong stop him from doing what he loves. In my opinion, he didn’t harm anyone, so he did not deserve to got to jail. Today, I can think of people who have committed crimes that were never sent to jail for their crime. Hopefully, this documentary opened the eyes of some people and graffiti stops being seen in such a negative light.

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Valeria Gonzalez

Before watching the documentary, I had no idea what to expect. I found it interesting that graffiti started in Philadelphia and then spread all over the world. I think it’s very fitting that the first graffiti artist, Cornbread, went to jail after tagging the Philadelphia Zoo with graffiti. I wasn’t surprised when they described the city of Bronx as an ugly city that offered its’ kids nothing to do. It was because of these factors and environment that graffiti flourished as a form of self-expression, much like the cave paintings and Alexander the Great writing on the pyramids. It’s clear to see that graffiti writers loved doing what they were doing as they would literally put their lives in danger by running and carrying a heavy bag in order to tag the train. This passion for their art work explains how some of the graffiti in seemingly impossible to reach places gets there.
Just like some people find graffiti to be art, some consider it to be a crime. As soon as graffiti began flourishing, lawmakers didn’t know what to do so they began criminalizing bombers. Typically, people think that graffiti on the walls indicates that the authority is not in charge of that certain city. Some people view it as a stepping stone to committing more serious crimes. However, they’re just looking at the surface and are not thinking beyond the bubble of their own lives. They don’t realize that not everyone has the luxury to entertain themselves, because they simply don’t have the money. That’s why I think it’s important that the city and government commit to building more parks and programs for kids as well as providing spaces where graffiti is legal. The Venice Art Walls are a great example of such a space. Overall, I love that the documentary showed how judgmental society is toward graffiti artists. Society should judge less and try to understand more.

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beansartblog

Arvan Arguelles

This documentary definitely changed my point of view on graffiti. Usually I see lots of graffiti around westside long beach, Watts, and LA. The image graffiti was negative to me due to the fact that I always thought that these were gang related activities such as different gangs marking their turf. This may be the case for some areas but I never saw it as art. After watching the interviews in this documentary, my eyes were opened another perspective. For artists, graffiti is more of an expression of their feelings, passion, and creativity. The art of graffiti is illegal, many times cities have to take it down as it is seen as a disturbance in walls, and billboards, but artists still do it to express themselves, which I think is awesome. I found it more amazing how when other artists modify other people’s graffiti to make it better. Overall, graffiti is something that shouldn’t be viewed as something bad, its something that should be appreciated just like any other piece.

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giancarlovento

Giancarlo Vento

Hey Arvan, I also had a negative view of graffiti before watching this documentary. I always associated graffiti writing with gangs but I learned the is not always the case. I thought it was cool how the graffiti artist were able to share their expressions with everyone else in the city. The way that graffiti writing transformed the subways was awesome. Collaborative efforts within the graffiti writing community showed how tight knit the community is. I also agree that graffiti shouldn’t be looked at in such a criminal way, graffiti at the end of the day is another form of art.

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giancarlovento

Giancarlo Vento

Graffiti is often seen as something negative because it is often associated with gangs and criminality. I went into watching this documentary with this bias because I associated with graffiti art with vandalism only. This documentary was very insightful because I was able to get a glimpse into the mind of a graffiti artist. For instance, I was able to understand the reasons behind painting “Cornbread Lives” on the side of an elephant. Although it was illegal, Cornbread did this in order to commemorate his friend’s death. It was also very cool to see how Taki 183 brought mass attention to graffiti art by painting in many different parts of New York City, taking advantage of his job as a messenger. The documentary helped me understand the mentality of a graffiti artist. To them what they were doing wasn’t graffiti, it ws “bombing” and bombing is about total destruction. Their artwork is a bomb, they are dropping their bombs on society. I also learned about the intricate different styles, the change in lettering is how graffiti artists can express themselves, by morphing and twisting the letters in their graffiti monikers allowed them to express their feelings through the art. I was intrigued by how the artists had to study the train schedules to know when they could write on the trains. It was awesome to see how the graffiti writers changed where they wrote when the city cracked down on graffiti. Graffiti writers have been forced to evolve because graffiti writing has been criminalized, and it is good to see people stand up for what they believe in even if someone tells them that it is “wrong.”

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lyds chang

Seeing how long the video was, I initially tried to figure out how to get around watching the whole thing. (I didn’t, though.) I was glad that I decided to sit down and watch the whole thing, however. The whole graffiti movement is a compelling statement of self expression and I think this documentary does an excellent job of showing some of the minds and thoughts behind the whole thing.
(13 min pink) Growing up, I had a mixed exposure to graffiti art. My dad’s side is full of very conservative Korean adults who tended to shun and look down on graffiti [and people affiliated with it] saying that it’s for “thugs who have nothing for them.” My mum’s side, however, was the opposite. My cousins used to be in gangs (they’re reformed now zz) and would practice and draw on pieces of wood boards in their backyard. Even on the way home from church or tutor, I would see some good, some bad works and was always fascinated by the art. Of course, I used to think that nearly all graffiti were done by these “thugs” and that they would usually be names or tags of people claiming their territories or marking their existence. Later on, I learned that that’s not all there is to graffiti. One can use it as a canvas to create artworks or one can use it to spread a message (the biggest example I can think of would be Banksy).
Throughout the documentary, there were many people who piqued my interest. The first being Pink, a female graffiti artist. The reason she caught my interest was because she was a female artist making a name for herself despite her family telling her that “girls don’t do this kind of stuff.” The second would be another female artist from New York. She called the city boring, which many would beg to differ. New York is seen as a tourist hot spot and a city of dreams and attractions. Instead, she called it a “Disneyland, cookie-cutter land for the rich.” The third one would be the man from France. Instead of tagging his name throughout the city, he instead uses graffiti for a social cause. He uses it to bring life to abandoned areas or bring light to the people with no voice (ie, the homeless population). Also, the group of the younger generation and their “I tag therefore I am” just stuck to me, because they use graffiti to express themselves as the young are also a very outspoken group. And so that I don’t mention nearly everyone in this documentary, I think the thing that stuck to me the most is the dedication that these people have to the movement. They would go over obstacles and break laws just to make a mark for themselves, for their crews, for their gangs and families.
All in all, I think that this documentary helped me to realize that there’s more to graffiti than meets the eye (aka that graffiti is just tags and names), and that there’s a story to [most] the artists behind them and there’s a reason that they do what they do. I think that graffiti may be one of the most misunderstood forms of art but I think that it is also one that can undeniably bring light to the unknown and start movements of knowledge throughout the world.

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amazeeana23

Ana Gomez
When I opened up the video, I thought it was going to be about the history of graffiti, but I was so wrong. Graffiti, in today’s society and as well as in past times, has stereotypically been labeled as a crime. In reality is another form of art as anything else, like a drawing or a painting on a canvas. As someone who comes from South Central, LA, I grew up seeing a lot of graffiti. My first year at CSULB, I would take the Blue Line, and passing through, Florence, Watts, and Compton, as well as some parts in Long Beach, there were so many different forms of graffiti, and I would always think to myself, these are gangs marking property. I love that the documentary depicts how a simple article in New York, led to the Bronx having more graffiti than Philly. Graffiti in the video is illustrated as writing; it’s basically their name written but they add “funk” to it, just like they did with jazz, that evolved into something so much greater. Overall I really enjoyed this documentary.

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Jessica Obrique

The introduction to the documentary left a strong impression on me. I never really understood the reason why people tagged. It’s interesting to learn that to others its a way of leaving their history and telling their story. Graffiti has come a long way from its basic beginnings. Graffiti lettering has become more and more complex. Many people consider it an art form that mainly focuses on typography. I thought the quote, “Don’t lose the basis of the letter but lose the letter” really summarized the concept of graffiti well. I liked that the documentary offered two opposing viewpoints on graffiti. One that it is related to crime and the other that it adds character to the city. I think this documentary helped make me appreciate graffiti more. When I went to Venice Beach to visit the walls, I thought it was so cool and that it really brought the beach to life.

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Felix Huynh

I agree, after watching the video, it made me realize that some people use graffiti as a way of showing that they are there, that they are a person in life that wants to leave a mark in history. I believe that it is a good way to show their artistic side and to be able to fulfill what they want to leave behind in life. I find it interesting that the city wants to stop all graffiti, but that won’t stop people from wanting to leave behind a version of themselves as art. Many people want to show that they were there in history, so that they aren’t forgotten in the passing of time. I respect that, and I’d want them to continue with their graffiti to help the community they are apart of, not just leave a mark in history for themselves, but for all the people who’ve helped them up in life as well.

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reynareal

Reyna Real
I really enjoyed watching this documentary their are a lot of things in this video that I learned about graffiti that I didn’t know before. I always saw graffiti as something negative and I always associated it with violence and gangs marking their territory but after watching this video I realized that graffiti is just another form of art. Graffiti writing started in Philadelphia and New York. Graffiti has always been around and it has been used as a way for people to express themselves and a way for people to go against something they don’t believe in. Graffiti has always been seen as something negative but after watching this video it really isn’t if people knew and understood the meaning of graffiti writing they would understand that it is just another creative form of art that people use to express themselves and communicate with others.

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Jamie Van

Jamie Van
Hi Reyna,
Similar to you, I was also intrigued with graffiti art and writing. In the past, I had never really looked at the pieces with much consideration but now I have a newfound appreciation for a lot of the graffiti pieces. I take more notice of the graffiti that I might pass by and I really enjoyed watching this documentary too. I also found that the beginning roots of graffiti, being from Philadelphia and New York, were quite interesting because it demonstrates that the individual that is creating the artwork would have most likely come from a tough life when they were growing up. I also interpreted that the works of graffiti were means of artistic expression and communication to other people in the world. With that in mind, it seems that graffiti art and writing is unappreciated and I think it is an important means of having artistic creativity brought to life.

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Jamie Van

I thought it was interesting how the documentary introduced the world of graffiti art. I always thought that the drawings and graffiti that could be seen around town and when I travel were simply random doodles of art but as I was watching the film, I came to realize that a lot of those pieces were actually depictions of art. They represented more than just a shape but a way of being as people would make themselves known to the world with ease by spraying their name, such as Cornbread’s display of his nickname. He became well known and he was proud of making himself known to the world and everywhere he went with his nick name, highlighting his sense of self beyond a name on a piece of paper. Furthermore, graffiti art back then was depicted to be a means of expression, giving people a place to express the feelings in their soul and also giving them an outlet to release the tensions from their daily lives. Graffiti art is more than the perceived picture of delinquency but of artistic expression and communication, illustrating the depth of a individual in a simple piece of art work.

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meganchung07

I completely agree with you. Also, after doing the week 5 graffiti assignment, I appreciate graffiti art more. I didn’t realize how difficult it is. I would just look at graffiti and think oh that’s cool but if you really look into it, it means so much more. Even just the way they spell their name represents their style and it allows the artist to express themselves.

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meganchung07

Megan Chung
Watching this documentary was very interesting! According to the video, graffiti started in Philadelphia. It’s interesting how there could be different perspectives to graffiti writing. Some people view it as art while some may see it as vandalism. Graffiti allows the artist to be very expressive because of all the different things that they can do with it. I think that one of the reasons why graffiti is frowned upon is because since graffiti is required a large canvas, artists would draw on buildings or billboards. People may view it as “messy” or “inappropriate”. I think that if a graffiti artists sets boundaries and respect private property, graffiti is awesome! I love going around cities and viewing the art painted on buildings

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curlyhairboy

Darryl Nguyen

Responding to Megn chung, I wholeheartedly agree how graffiti has many ways to express an artist. I think it’s quite sad that it can be seen with a negative light and be associated with vandlism. I like how you said if the artist has “boundaries and respect” for private properties, graffiti would be great. I would definitely agree. I hope there will be more property or areas in the world where peopel can feel free to graffiti a large brick canvas or wall. I’d like to see what type of people live there and what type of art we would see.

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reynareal

Reyna Real
In response to Ana Gomez I agree with you that graffiti has stereotypically been labeled as a crime. Graffiti is mostly always looked at as something negative that portrays violence and is often associated with gangs and criminality. Graffiti is much more than that people use it as a form of art and as a way to express themselves. It is also used as a way of leaving history behind and telling a persons story.

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Felix Huynh

All my life I’ve lived in a bad neighborhood, one that most would consider the “hood” or the “ghetto”. These areas are covered in graffiti and they are signs of power for gangs or small time criminals. All my life I have never considered graffiti art, as I related them mostly to violence, which I commonly see. I’ve had people I know join gangs because of the graffiti advertisements on the walls, and people I know die because of that decision. However, it is nice to see that some graffiti is used as a way to show love for a community, to create something out of their hearts and to show it to the world. A nice change to what I normally see. I can understand the city wanting to stop more graffiti from happening, but I personally don’t think it’s a bad thing if it’s meant for a good cause. I’ve grown tired of walking past graffiti about hate and violence, many times written on the wall of my house. It would be a refreshing change to see more about the artist’s love for the community or their passion for art.

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Zack Ngov

Felix Huynh.

I agree that it is nice that some graffiti artist’s do what they do to show love for their community. Some graffiti art can actually be pretty nice and aesthetic, but emphasis on some. Doing it to show the world is also probably good reasoning. If not for doing it on public areas/places, it would have been highly likely that no one would look at their art. Doing graffiti on a public area kind of guarantees an audience. I was also tired of walking around the graffiti of my neighborhood as a kid. It is hard to accept that graffiti can be a good thing sometimes when it mostly has a negative effect, but the documentary can change the overall negative view on graffiti.

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linruiwen

Ruiwen Lin

In response to Felix Huynh. I agree with you that the Graffiti artists use Graffiti painting as a way to show love to the community, and it was very nice and it’s arts. I was like you that thought Graffiti as a negative behavior, but thank for this video letting us know more about Graffiti and the artists, know more about their passions and their art forms.

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Emily Tomasello - Art

Hi Felix!
Like you, I also grew up in an area that was filled with graffiti. I still see it everyday, and sometimes it makes me really sad to see it on buildings of local businesses and even on people’s own homes. I knew a lot of kids in high school that would do graffiti writing in the bathrooms or the outside walls of the school. It was just plain disrespectful in my eyes. However, like I mentioned in my post, San Pedro is known for an area called Sunken City, a beach side area covered with graffiti. Locals either love it or hate it. Even though I thought it was cool explore this area, I used to hate it because it was filled with graffiti, but after this week’s art experience, I do have to say that my mindset changed a bit. I now have a little bit more of a softer side with Sunken City because I do think the graffiti art in that area makes the city unique. I think it’s become such a popular tourist attraction that people just want to contribute to the graffiti that’s already there and say that they were a part of something. I still would say that I have mixed emotions about graffiti, but they definitely aren’t all negative like they were before.

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Zack Ngov

I lived in a “ghetto” neighborhood for the first half of my life. I was exposed to a lot of graffiti art. It was part of the reason why I did not go outside of my house much when I was kid. I was scared to run into the people doing it. I have always thought that graffiti was about gangs leaving their mark on an area or people just doing it because of the thrill of it being illegal like how people do drugs. Ghetto neighborhoods already look unappealing just by the construction and layout of the streets and buildings. Most times, graffiti makes it look even worse. From the video, I have learned about people who do graffiti with a non-negative intent. Some people do graffiti to express themselves, add character to a city, get attention, protest, etc. I respect those reasonings, but even good intentions can have negative effects. Regardless, the documentary was very interesting because it gives us insight from graffiti artists themselves, so that we can see their point of view on the issue/subject.

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belenbarragan

Belen Barragan

Hi Zack,
I totally understand where you are coming from. When I was younger we would constantly go visit family in the east LA area which is very covered with graffiti. Although Ive always thought it was really pleasing to look at, (especially after my failed attempt of graffiti) it is unfortunate that we have such negative associations with it. On the contrary, Ive seen really cool work also being done specifically in Downtown LA. A lot more graffiti art, compared to simple gang lettering. If you haven’t looked into it already, Bansky has made some really cool ones throughout LA County. He even made a stop in Downey, my home town, and his stencil art graffiti of a cute young girl has actually been left up for quite some time on the side wall of a restaurant.

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Stephanie Valdivia

Stephanie Valdivia
Hey Zack. I also lived in a not so nice neighborhood that had a lot of graffiti. Growing up, I lived in a mostly Hispanic neighborhood. I lived in an apartment complex that also housed a few delinquent kids. I would always see the alleyways painted with “714” or “WSA.” These paintings were definitely there for gang related reasons. These graffiti paintings kind of ruined my feelings for graffiti for a while because seeing any sort of graffiti would bring an uneasy feeling. I didn’t want to get caught up in gang related incident or be at the wrong place at the wrong time. However, I have been going to LA a lot because I love the culture there. I now run into a lot of graffiti that isn’t necessarily a sign of territory. I can now see how graffiti is a way to express for some.

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belenbarragan

Belen Barragan

I always liked graffiti. Im fascinated by the different lettering and the mural type graffiti art that could be seen sometimes. I think this video is quite entertaining and very informative regarding the graffiti culture. Although I think that graffiti writing is super nice to look at, I’ve heard from multiple sources that in some areas of downtown LA, graffiti is used to show gang related area territories. I think its sad that something so artistic could be correlated with such a negative part of the community. I particularly enjoyed this video because of the positive light that they shine on graffiti artists. I think that in some sense graffiti beautifies the city with its intricate lettering. It especially beautifies the city when the purpose of graffiti is far beyond the bad light that is constantly shone about it.

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artsykilo

Gustavo Portillo

Relating to Megan Chung, it’s true that many Graffiti artist do their best to represent their feelings or be as expressive as they can with their art. Some words can’t be spoken, so I believe that Graffiti artist use this form of art to tell stories. while watching this Documentary, it made me realize that some of these artist just do their work to leave messages to society. It can be either good messages or bad ones, depends whose actually making the statements. In short, this documentary is both very educational and exciting to watch because I never viewed Graffiti Art is a form of an actual Art piece. However, after watching this it definitely has a lot or if not everything with art.

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curlyhairboy

Darryl Nguyen

I’ve always been fascinated by graffiti art. When you see it brighten up the environment by someone’s personality, I find that truly beautiful. I find it quite sad that graffiti art is so regulated and limited. Yes, I do like a clean area to live in, but I’d also wish there were more life around me. It’s sad that graffiti art has somewhat of a negative connotation to it because people relate it back to gangs. Graffiti art can also be a form of writing. Another way of holding a pencil. I find that analogy to be magical because with graffiti art you can speak volumes in many ways such as form and color. There’s an endless possibility on how a person wants to portray their graffiti art. I am glad that a place like Philadelphia has produced such wonderful art such as Graffiti.

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linruiwen

Ruiwen Lin

According to the video about the Graffiti Writing, which I tried on Saturday too, it started in Philadelphia and New York. And people tried to use Graffiti Writing as art form to express their art cells. I have never considered about Graffiti Writing as arts, and always put it into negative behavior. So I was very surprised that it has a long art history, and it is actually arts. In the video, there are several graffiti artists were introduced, and the video really changed my thoughts about Graffiti. Now I know the meanings of Graffiti and how people express themselves to public, or to prove their signs of life. I see the passions from Graffiti artists and how the arts can be expressed by different forms.

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Emily Tomasello - Art

Emily Tomasello
Like a lot of you, I grew up in a city that was and still is covered in graffiti art. Growing up in San Pedro, I was definitely exposed to it at a young age. I saw it everywhere; outside the grocery store, on people’s fences, on bus stop benches, you name it. San Pedro is know for Sunken City, a beach side area closed to the public, yet the rocks are covered with graffiti. Locals either see the area as a work of art or a space that needs to be cleaned up and taken care of. I grew up with the mindset that graffiti art was disrespectful and unnecessary. Driving the freeway, I would see it high up on bridges and high walls and wonder how somebody could have possibly gotten up there to do that. Now, before I watched this video and saw how long it was, I thought this was going to be kind of a history lesson on how graffiti came about, but I was mistaken. What this documentary did do was show how and why people go and do graffiti art. For a lot of people, they get some kind of rush from seeing their name and their work on a public space. They talked about the different methods they use to successfully get get their jobs done without getting caught, including escape routes and other tactics. I have always associated graffiti with a negative connotation, and to be honest, that feeling is not completely gone. What has changed after watching this video is my level of respect for the people that write graffiti. Everybody has a reason for doing it and their stories and backgrounds are all different. Writing graffiti is a way for these people to express themselves and their creativity. I did like the idea mentioned in the video that just because a neighborhood is “clean” with no graffiti, it does not mean that the quality of life is also clean and good. I do believe that graffiti art helps people express themselves, and I respect that, but I do think that there are a lot of other ways to express yourself without putting your life at risk and without disrespecting other people’s property.

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Stephanie Valdivia

Stephanie Valdivia
Prior to watching this video, I had seen Exit Through the Gift Shop, another graffiti documentary. It’s so interesting how graffiti differs for every person. Some people see it as vandalism while others, like Cornbread, see it as a form of expression. I liked how they connected graffiti to art dating back centuries. I never realized that the drawings on cave walls were pretty much graffiti. What makes graffiti any different than these famous cave paintings? Like some of the artists in the video said, graffiti is a way of story telling. I thought graffiti was only for gang members and only as a means of being territorial. Seeing it in a new light, I’m definitely more appreciative and amazed by graffiti work. Another thing that I liked about this video was how they said that graffiti is almost instinctual. Someone said something along these lines: “Put a marker in a child’s hand and they’ll immediately go to a wall.” And it’s true! Graffiti is just another method of art and it’s so creative. Maybe we are living in the greatest art movement the world’s ever seen, a period of time that’s even greater than the Renaissance. Maybe the graffiti work today will be something of greater value in the future.

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Daniel Martinez

Hello Stephanie,
Like you mentioned on your post, I also find it very interesting how people take graffiti as vandalism and say that it should be a crime; on the other hand, there are other people who view this as a style of life, and a way that they can express themselves. On the video, there was a lot of discrimination saying that people doing this type of art should be put to jail. Contrary, there were people like Cornbread saying that graffiti is what kept him off of jail. So it is very interesting how there is two different viewpoints. Personally, I really don’t think it should be considered a crime since just like you mentioned it, people wrote messages and drawings in caves before. Great post.

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Jose Perez

Jose Perez
Throughout the video, I learned much more than what I new about graffiti. When I hear the word graffiti, I usually think of gang activity. The graffiti I see around my neighbor are the ones that represent claiming of territory, but the video depicted it as something much different. Despite whether graffiti being gang related or not, it’s still considered a form of art to whom ever it was drawn by. The video made me realize that graffiti can be a form of art because the artists are simply expressing themselves. Although some people may or may not do it legally, it is still considered art. I am not saying it is good to illegally do graffiti art, but people have their own way of expressing their feelings and beliefs through art.

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nkechiokoroma

Hey Jose,

I totally agree with you. Graffiti is definetly a way for others to express their feelings. It is a beautiful form of art and I wish that there wasn’t this stigma of drugs and gangs attached to it. In fact, I wish that there were more legal places for people to do some LEGAL graffiti art. People who love to spray paint should never feel limited to do so.

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nkechiokoroma

Graffiti writing originated in Philadelphia and New York. Even though many people associate it with drugs and violence, that is far from the case. In the video, it shows how many people all over the world in fact see graffiti art as a beautiful thing all together; without the usual stigma that is attached to it. It is a form of expression done by many people. This visual expression is sometimes the best way to put out how someone feels when they can’t do it in any other way. As stated in the video, it is one of the biggest art movements to date; even bigger than the renaissance. Even though that statement is based on opinion, it still shows how big this movement is in comparison to others. It was interesting to see how cornbread first started his graffiti writing and how many years later, people are inspired to follow his footsteps.

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chknalfredoart110

Alfredo Reyes
At first in the beginning of the video i thought it was going to be a documentary of the history of graffiti art. Eventually at the start of the video it was showing people getting interviewed. It also talks about graffiti writing started in Philadelphia and New York. Some interviews discussed how it all started for them with graffiti but in some cases it would be gang related. As i got into the video interviewers of the graffiti artist explained how they were identified as from society about their graffiti. In the video it also showed how graffiti writing is used in different creative form of lettering to stand out even more. in a way graffiti artists perspective on how graffiti can express their identity and their creativity associated to their work. The creativity used in lettering such as three dimensional or stretching. Also how the video showed the perspective on whether graffiti it is a necessarily a “clean” environment to some people. Cornbread was discussed to be as the very first graffiti artist locally in New York and Philadelphia, as is work is to be seen all over world. As it started for him when he was at juvenile detention. Eventually graffiti was turned into a violence situation as either writing over someone else’s name or being approached by a gang to decide to join in or take a beat down.

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jbpena

It seems that in our modern day society we typically associate graffiti with gangs or vandalism when they are really an underappreciated form of art – a way to express ideals or emotions of an individual in a manner of artistic methods by applying shadowing effects or 3-dimensional effects. Graffiti is almost around us, from alleys, to bridges, to walls, to trucks – but were they for the sake of art or to promote violence? This is why people look away from graffiti because our society has witnessed several graffiti done by such people. I did wonder at some point of whether graffiti is considered “clean” to some people as you had mentioned, but since I grew up in a society where they are mostly biased regarding such things I cannot answer that right now; however, I do believe that it is a small underappreciated branch of art. This is why there are murals and walls provided at key certain locations – it is in order for people who are passionate for graffiti to go and express their emotions.

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jbpena

I had never understood graffiti, I grew up in a society where such acts were condemned and branded as what “sinners would do”. Years has passed and after watching this movie, it made me think more about graffiti and how I should interpret it. I always asked myself whether I should admire the amount of work the person put into making their work display an excellent demonstration of shadowing and 3-dimensional look or appreciate that graffiti serves as another small portion of art for those who are passionate about style, text art, and many more. It is truly a pity I realized or rather acquired this way of thinking rather than earlier. My community judged too quickly regarding those who create graffiti drawings; I wish they should have been more… lenient. Then again I cannot blame them, most of the children that attempt graffiti back in my country and in here only write “fancy” or “cool” looking letters and call it graffiti. No purpose, no emotion, no work was put in – it was a form of graffiti for the sake of looking like a graffiti. Moving on. I will be honest, even after watching the movie I am still left wondering what graffiti is to certain people, is it suppose to symbolize rebellion? Is it suppose to be an expression of one’s emotion. Whichever it is I will be looking forward to deciphering graffitis from now on.

-Justin Pena

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cslabell

(oops, accidently posted this on 1pm’s discussion board)
Do you ever feel like you are torn between your decision. Im sure all of us have felt that before! This is def one of those times for me. This documentary seriously had me rooting and scoulding at different times. Look, i LOVE art and appreciate many many forms of it but there is something about crossing the boundary of someones property and “tagging/bombing” tour name on it that really urks me. I live in South Central and i pass streets that are bombarded with weird, unreadable and ugly streams of grafitti, its the worst! It honestly makes the streets look horrible. Ij the film they talked about something i learned in a sociology class; “the broken windows theory” its all about how if a building (for example) has severly brokem windows, taggs, is run down and abandonded than evenrually the building next to it will become tje same way. So if we see neighborhoods full of grafitti and run downed it will grow and spread. Thats how i feel when i see certain graffiti in my local streets. I find it disrespectful and stupid that little teenage kids put their names on someones house just to look tough and “in charge” Im sorry but its wrong and i do see it as vandalism. Maybe because i see it first hand and dont see these kids being other than trouble makers it really isnt something i support. What i do support however are the amazing colorful MEANINGFUL art pieces that certain artist have created around the world. If its colorful (or black and white) and it represents something real and important and brings emotion or makes us think that by all means create away! I love it and applaud it. But a silly gang name on a hard working family’s house; No. In the film i love what the artist from Barcelona said “we do art with the sun with the moon and stars, its not meant to be in a room, its free for all” i love that and absolutelt think they have an awesome mind set. I enjoued the piece on Los Angeles; i love my city and i think seeing the latino origins of Olvera Street was a great addition to the film. Love anything that deals with day of the dead; his legacy has made such an impact. I also got really happy when i saw female artists. I thi k it showed a bad ass woman doing her thing in a place where she may not be very welcomed. More power to them, they do something unconventional and trully awesome. Overall i think it was a great documentary. I think graffiti meams different things to different people. To me its art when its in the right place and with a good mindset. If its to stir emotions and make you question any part of life i think its on the right track.
-Claudia Sanchez

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