(Q) How long have you been taking photos of graffiti & what interests you to do so?
(A) I’ve been taking photos of graffiti both on walls and trains since ’88.. I’m in my early 30′s now, so I was a young’un when I seriously pursued both the artistic and documentary aspect of the culture.. Trains on the other hand were an inate part of my existance given that my grandfather was a hobo, ridin’ the rails from Hickory, NC to California and back constantly.. It was/is a natural progression from me as a means to seemingly pay homage to him and celebrate the art that I love..
(Q) Do you own photo albums of actual prints or do you prefer digital??
(A) I prefer digital as it would be impossible to share my visual tales with the entire world if not for this undoubtedly wonderful medium and the coupling of the internet with it.. I own a storage shed worth of hard copies, albums and negatives that would make people sh*t on themselves if they saw what I have.. Wait for the book and you’ll see what I mean..
(Q) How many photos are in your personal collection??
(A) 100,000+ I’m surprised I didn’t bankrupt myself buying film before switching to digital..
(Q) Do you feel photography plays a major role in documenting graffiti culture??
(A) I’m encouraged by the sheer number of video mags out right now that focus on the live action of benching.. Truth is, it’s all photography in some way, shape or form.. But still photography plays THE essential part in archiving the culture.. Without DSLR benchers, what would one place in their albums or adorn their walls with?? You surely can’t manage that with a video..
(Q) Do you have any crazy stories or memorable moments while taking photos??
(A) I could bore you with bull chases, candy-colored sunsets over the yard at dusk to die for, batteries dying at the absolute worst moment; but I won’t do that.. My most memorable moment was cruising Venice Beach in ’99 at the B-boy summit with the homies when a full-scale riot broke out all around me.. I didn’t waivor in shooting while getting pushed around by armor-clad SWAT officers.. In the midst of it all, Crazy Legs from the Almighty Rock Steady Crew, broke into full-on b-boying right in front of these police in a seminal ‘fu*k you’ LAPD! And I was right there 10 feet away from it all snapping away.. Truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience..
Location: Sacramento, CA