Getting lucky is all part and parcel of photographing and recording street art. I remember when I first started out I never thought I’d actually meet an artist (I naively thought it was all done under cover of darkness) let alone watch them at work. Over the last five years I have met countless artists and would consider myself friends with several of them. One who I met for the first time a week or two back was Subtle, and what an astonishingly nice bloke he is.
Subtle, whose work first entered my consciousness in about 2016, is an artist who has eluded me until now and whose work just seems to be getting better and better with each piece. While I watched him doing this piece (distract I ought to say) he let me into a whole load of tips on technique, the most memorable of which is that he uses a roller and emulsion for the bulk of his work (most of what you can see above) and saves the spray paint for the details. The reason for this approach is driven by cost – a wall as large as this one would cost quite a lot if it was all done with just spray paint.
I really enjoyed my twenty minutes in the company of Subtle and am pleased that I managed to get a reasonably clean completed picture (in spite of Soak and Young’s intervention) a few days later. For sure, this is one artist I’d love to catch up with again, and now that he has moved more centrally in Bristol I think the chances of that happening are greater than before.