Enn Kay is an artist who appeared on the scene about a year ago and has been very busy ever since. His characters can be found all over Bristol, and his artwork improves with each one.
Enn Kay’s latest favourite character appears to be this dragon/crocodile figure, which seems to have superseded his octopus character. It is always good to see artists move on and develop ideas, especially character artists who can at times be seduced or locked into producing a single character and adapting it with decoration or colour or details. A nice piece painted during a paint jam in the grubby underpass.
This piece from Enn Kay (NAK) demonstrates just how far the artist has come in a relatively short space of time. There are qualities in this piece that are not present in some of his earlier works, which provide texture and depth, rather than a flat solid monster with an outline.
This sophistication advance can be seen in the shading on the ‘dragon’ character, with different tones of green creating more of a 3D effect. The whole piece has more of a pastel feel to it and is less harsh on the eye than a solid fill monster. I love the way the character is spraying a little monster on the edge of the piece. A great work from Enn Kay.
I have not missed my routine tours around Bristol photographing street art, while I have been away, it is good to have a break from routines, but it is one of the things that will soften the blow of returning home.
Shortly before leaving Bristol I managed to photograph the curved wall in Dean Lane, with this fine collaboration between Zake, Conrico and Daz Cat. The Zake portrait is a fine 3/4 profile of a woman with fine blonde hair. Very nicely done.
The main part of the wall is slightly crazy and brilliant all at the same time. The dragon hatching from an egg in front of a mountain and desert scene is by Conrico, and the cats, but Daz Cat, although I am not sure if the larger orange cat is a cat. A refreshingly different kind of collaboration from these three.
Conrico, or Conrico Steez to give him his full name, is going through a bit of a purple patch and is both painting alone and collaborating in spots all over North Bristol at the moment. This Chinese dragon character intertwined with the word Conrico harks back to a dragon piece I photographed in August 2019 (pre-Covid, remember that?).
I say this every time I write about Conrico’s work, but he has a certain quality and style that makes his work look like it has been painted using a brush rather than a spray can, there is a certain texture and depth that he manages to get that is fairly unique. There is much to admire in this piece, and I am enjoying his high productivity at the moment.
Of all the newer artists in Bristol, I think I know the least about Skronius. Keeping a low profile seems to be the order of the day, or maybe our paths simply haven’t crossed yet. Skronius certainly favours this spot, and since I only visit about once every three weeks or so, the likelihood of meeting are pretty slim.
I would say that fantasy creatures and worlds are favoured by Skronius, and this dragon head is quite fabulous. His style really doesn’t look like spray-painting, and this piece in particular looks like it could be a watercolour. I think Skronius achieves this effect by laying down the character colours first and then adding in the detail with the black lines. However it is done, it is an unusual effect. I love the way it is signed in the smoke in the top left-hand corner.
Sometimes it is the originality and impact of a piece that draws attention, and this dragon’s eye by Wilter Worm, a Bristol artist who also goes by a more familiar name – Eman. I am not sure why he paints under different names, it is something some artists do, but I will ask him when I next see him.
This close-up detailed piece is so compelling and the scales, horns and eye really nicely done. A labour of love which I expect took a little while to complete. I am a big fan of this kind of work, and once again it shows off the versatility of the artist.
In life, you just know when something special or significant has happened, there is that supernatural sense that kicks in, the one that heightens your senses and gets the adrenaline pumping. For me, I would class finding this masterpiece (a word I rarely use on Natural Adventures) by Laic217 was one of those special moments.
Adding to this special sensation was that I didn’t know the piece was here and I hadn’t seen any posts on social media – it felt like a proper discovery rather than seeking a piece out.
Laic217 has smashed it. The familiar skeleton figure is set on a sumptuous red background with a fine yellow border framing the piece nicely. A bucket hat with a yin yang emblem and a blue dragon made of smoke dancing round the skeleton’s head. The cherry on the top of this extraordinary piece is the short-sleeved shirt. Laic217 is known for his incredible portrayal of different materials and fabrics and here he has taken it to another level. The black shirt with its creases and two dragon designs is utterly awesome, and I love the vest poking through the vee of the shirt.
This ‘ice dragons’ piece was the second painted by Tizer on his lightening visit to Bristol about a month ago. I was lucky enough to watch him for a while painting both pieces on consecutive days, and while he painted this one I had a chance to chat with him for quite a long time. Tizer likes to talk and is a really friendly guy. He also self-discloses without apology and in just a few minutes I learned a lot about his childhood and what motivated him to pick up a can.
One of the most remarkable things about the two pieces in Bristol is that he paints freestyle, which means that the idea is in his head, but he doesn’t follow a draft drawing or plan. The way he works is to sketch out the fills in different colours before adding hard edges in black, like reverse colouring in. You should be able to make out the letters TIZER so beautifully written.
It is interesting to note also that Tizer seems to work from left to right in a systematic way, when many other artists will approach their work from all sides at once or by colour selection. This is a man who knows what he wants to do and just goes ahead and does it. A giant of a man with a giant heart.
I’m not entirely certain I have seen a collaboration between Andy Council and Soker before so this recent piece on North Street is something of a wonderful surprise. The whole thhing is beautifully balanced and the colour selections work perfectly. The Soker burner in the middle is book-ended with the front and back of a dragon with parts of the back running the length of the whole piece for continuity.
I’ll start with the Soker writing, which as ever is top notch with a five colour horizontal fill that works really well and some pink/mauve 3D shading that adds real depth to the lettering. On its own this is remarkable.
The front end of the dragon by Andy Council is made up of individual components stitched together with pink looping thread. There is movement and power in this dragon, but its form is a figment of our imaginations. Very clever.
The rear end of the dragon is more of the same, but some of the component parts begin to resemble feathers flutteing away, which I am sure is no accident, because Andy Council’s usual preference for dinosaurs woud include scales and primitive feathers (derived from scales). A wonderful collaboration from thes two godfathers of Bristol street art.
I have a feeling that this might be another Monday Club collaboration, this time from Conrico and Rebecca Prince with what might be her debut street piece. (Actually if I had bothered looking properly I’d have noticed the words Monday Club – d’oh)
Conrico has really impressed me since he appeared on the scene a few months ago. His work has such a strong narrative about it and his illustrative style is imaginative and creative. I believe that he painted this dragon on the M32 roundabout but it didn’t last very long, the turnover on this wall isn’t quite as high.
Rebecca Prince is a Bristol artist whose Instagram feed would suggest that she has only very recently started painting walls. I think she has yet to find her touch, but I am very much looking forward to seeing her develop and translate her lovely drawings into great wall art. I love people giving it a go and having the courage to take to the walls.