When you photograph street/graffiti art two or three times a week, every week, you become very used to and familiar with ‘Bristol’ art, even if you can’t identify the artist. That might sound strange, but Bristol art has a look and feel, even across the diverse range of artists and styles, and anything that is not Bristol art, stands out a mile. When I saw this piece, it stood out a mile!
Qwynto is an artist based in the UK, but I am not entirely sure where, but I note he has painted in Haringey and Brighton recently, so I am guessing he is from the south-east of England. He took a trip to Bristol and left behind this wonderful piece. It has something that remind me of Mudra and Kid Crayon, and although there are similarities, there are also differences. His use of colour and tone is fantastic, bringing about a very soft pastel effect, and the writing incorporates a portrait and some other contextual elements, such as the car tyre and plants. This work is right up my street, and I am thrilled that Qwynto visited us in Bristol. Fabulous.
What an absolute stunner from The Hass. There is little more to say about it really. The portrait piece is a little bit similar in style to some of the recent pieces by Hazard, combining a photorealistic portrait with repetition and abstract ideas, and some interesting colour tones as well.
The more I look at the piece, the more I see. The incomplete portrait tricks your brain into completing it. It is quite incredible to think that this has all been painted with spray cans and not a paint brush in sight. I really don’t know how these guys do it. A masterpiece from The Hass.
This is definitely one for the cat lovers. Last year, the walls and shutter of ‘For the Pets’ pet shop on East street were adorned with some ultra-cute animals painted by Roo – a difficult act to follow, but Taker One has taken up the baton and excelled.
There are three cats painted on the sides of the corner shop in a photorealistic style and using mono colour tints, creating a fabulous effect. The cats are absolutely gorgeous and full of character.
Each cat is painted in a different colour tone, but my brain doesn’t interpret this as in any way strange, they simply look like cats. These cats definitely deserved a permanent wall, and it is reassuring to know that they will be here, most likely, until the next Upfest.
Taker One is a mural artist from Hungary, and these cats add to his spectacular negative/positive portrait piece from Upfest 2016, which was a real hit. I sincerely hope that this extremely talented artist is able to return again to Bristol and wow us with his incredible art.
A noticeable difference between Upfest and the everyday street art scene in Bristol is the ratio of character pieces to graffiti writing. At Upfest I would guess that there are three character pieces to each graffiti writing piece, whereas on the street, it is much more like a 1:3, 4 or 5 ratio the other way round. This is just a brief explanation of why there are so many character pieces from Upfest on Natural Adventures.
This is a rather touching piece by Elf, featuring a creature cuddling a little baby. I don’t know much at all about the artist, but her full moniker is Elfkunst, which translated from the German means Elf art, so I guess she is German speaking (German or Swiss).
The work is eye-catching and beautifully presented. All the lines are neat and tidy. The little details and patterns bring the whole thing to life. Cute, cuddly creatures, with a touch of mystery and edge.
You get to meet an awful lot of colourful characters at Upfest, both participating artist as well as other visitors. One of my favourite people to meet is Octofly, a wonderful character artist from Italy. Octofly is always up for a chat and has an infectious cheerful disposition.
This is a witty piece featuring a dinosaur sipping on a cup of tea, entitled Tea Rex. To be witty is one thing, to be witty in a foreign language is next level. The whole piece on a rather slender board is delightfully well composed and sharp as anything. A really great piece from Octofly.
I thoroughly enjoyed this year’s Upfest, which was made even better by my daughter accompanying me on one of the days. It is the first time that any family member has shown any real enthusiasm for my passion and I felt very supported. Fortunately there was a really good mix of works in progress and completed pieces for my daughter to enjoy.
This gorilla piece from Jay Sharples is a classic piece of character street art. The background is in complete harmony with the portraits which are perfectly clean and crisp. It is always a pleasure to see his work when he visits Bristol for Upfest.
It will take me all year to post everything I want to post from Upfest, so you will have to be patient. I have to intersperse the Upfest pieces with the contemporary work that appears on the streets of Bristol every day. This is a wonderful piece from Koop, an artist I have seen a fair bit on the Festival circuit.
Korp creates these rather endearing creature characters – I think that they are worms – and this is quite the best one I have seen to date. There is something about the colours in this one that work so well. The feathers are beautifully worked and the whole piece is very neat and tidy with crisp, sharp lines. Look out for more from Korp, coming soon.
One of the great joys of the long hot summer has been the frequency of pieces and collaborations from Acer One and Andy Council, two of Bristol’s best established and well know artists. Their sharply contrasting styles seem to work so well together, and this piece is one of the best examples of a truly collaborative effort.
Acer One is responsible for the incredible geometric background and the rainbow curve (with all the right colours in the right order), creating a perfect backdrop for Andy Council’s prehistoric creatures. Andy Council has been painting these ammonites an awful lot recently, but these ones are absolute beauties. I love the way the tentacles of the ammonites interact with Acer’s rainbow line. A very classy piece indeed.
I am pretty sure that when I last posted a Hypo piece I said that his work was somewhat underrepresented on Natural Adventures, so I hope this post is in some small way addressing this.
Painted in the tunnel alongside his friends, this piece is a real beauty and pretty much on point. The letters spell Hypo, and have four tones of red making up the fills. There are some nice details and accent flashes, and a 3D drop-shadow with a disappearing point in the middle of the piece, something that Hypo certainly seems to favour. This is a really decent piece of writing from the artist.