The 7 main styles of graffiti

Having existed even in ancient times and not just being being a medium of artistic expression, graffiti has also had many underlying tones of political and social messages/satire as well.

Enough examples of graffiti have been found all over the world, particularly at archaeological sites of the ancient Egyptian, Roman and Greek empires. Clearly even back then, graffiti was very much a worldwide phenomenon.

It has however, acquired a touch of sophistication over the past few years with the advent of the digital graffiti wall. Now that’s truly something special to behold as its use can be anything from exhibitions to business meetings as well. Even the inauguration of a particular store or place can use the idea of a digital graffiti wall to great effect.

Gone are the days when graffiti was looked at as being just a few random scribblings on a derelict wall. Nowadays, more and more people are beginning to take it seriously, looking at it as an actual canvas to depict one or even several works of art at once. Yes, hard as that may be to believe, it is true. Nowadays, the very term “street art” evokes so many images in our minds, that it’s almost easy to forget just how popular it has become.

  • Tag: Being the simplest and easiest style of graffiti, it basically involves a single colour along with the name of the artist concerned. No excessive frills or art, this style keeps things as simple as they can get.

  • Throw Up: This is basically a more complicated tag. Involving two or more colours along with a specific bubble style lettering as well, this style can be done repeatedly and quickly. In this regard, it is just like a tag.

  • Blockbuster: Being a variation of the style mentioned previously, blockbuster is basically a massive throw-up which is basically used to cover a large area in the smallest time period. Made using blocky letters, this particular style is mainly painted with rollers.

  • Wildstyle: Being a more elaborate version of a throw-up, this particular style is the hardest to decipher in terms of reading the words or message. This style mainly involves the usage of spikes, curves and arrows, thus giving it a slightly inaccessible touch as compared to the rest of the styles.

  • Heaven: True to its name, this type is a piece of art in an extremely inaccessible place, like somewhere really high up, for instance. By doing this, an artist will earn the thorough respect of all this peers.

  • Stencil: Being an easy way to put up detailed pieces, a stencil can also be drawn as well as sprayed over over to make it more detailed.

  • Piece: Short for masterpiece and referring to a picture that has been painted free hand, these take the longest to paint and contain at least 3 or more colours.

With regard to the sheer variety in styles of graffiti, there is truly no end to creativity and what styles you can merge to call your very own. Furthermore, graffiti has actually become a very highly competitive art in the last few years. With artists and crew who compete for the best sites, going out of their way to create art that is more prolific and risky, there is little doubt regarding the truth of the previous statement.

No longer is graffiti about a couple of rambling teenagers spraying paint over the art of others. With a great many commissioned pieces and legal graffiti sites in cities all across the globe, it would not be much of a stretch to say that we are in the middle of a very exciting and innovative phase in the art of graffiti.


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