What do you write?
Tell us a little about yourself… How long you’ve been painting, etc.
I started bombing in 1988. Didn’t start piecing until 1990.
^Classic Piece Breakdowns: Mone, RIS. Krylon, ‘Teal Blue’ action shot!!
So what brands of paint did you use most frequently in the early years?
Mostly Krylon, and Rusto, but I would use whatever I could get my hands on, I would even use Testor model paint cans.
Are you a can collector?
Not anymore, but I still have some good vintage cans. I got swept up in the whole paint collecting thing about 12 years ago when it became really popular. I have since lost the motivation. It’s much harder to find old paint these days, and that to me was a lot of the fun. The whole hunting aspect. Paying $300 for a can of paint on Ebay doesn’t interest me, so I retired that hobby.
^Mone, RIS – can collection from 1996. ‘Sandstone’, Rusto Speedy-Dry ‘Lime Green’, Krylon, ‘Spanish Brown’, Rusto ‘Fed Safety Green’, Krylon ‘Burnt Orange’, Krylon ‘Chippewa’ & others. Note the Rickel pound can ‘Silver’ with the black & red label mentioned in the interview!!!
Can you still find old paint stock in your area?
No. The well has been dry for quite sometime. The last time that I was able to get some old paint in this area was back in 2002. That was thanks to my boy Maze, TMC. He found an old hardware store that had some good Krylon cans. Old ‘Coral’, ‘Rose’, ‘Slate Blue’, and others. We were getting a dozen cans for $10 because they wanted it out of the store.
Any good racking stories?
I racked for years upon years. I learned from Vet early on who was a racking legend in the Bronx. I have lots of good stories. One that sticks out was back in 1991. My old partner Zeo and I went racking in Yonkers. Neither one of us had a car so we took the bus. We went into this old art store. There was only 1 person in the store. A lady who was very old. They had the paint stocked in the back. There were great colors like Krylon Avocado, Bonfire, and others, but there was also a bunch of this no name paint as well. We asked the lady if we could try spraying the paint to see how it worked. She said that we could, but asked if we could please take the paint out the back door to spray it. She said that she didn’t want the fumes in the store. I couldn’t believe it. We took as much paint as we could hold and went outside to the back like she had asked us, then loaded our bags up. It was the easiest get over. We had to catch the bus home which was directly across the street from the store. It took forever for the bus to come, and I pictured the cops rolling up on us as we stood there. It never happened though. A few months later I went back to the store, and it had closed down.
^Classic Piece Breakdown: Mone, RIS w/ Case 2. Fill: Rust-Oleum, ‘Avocado’ & Krylon, ‘Teal Blue’. Designs: Krylon, ‘Colonial Blue’ & ‘Grape’. Outline: Rust-Oleum Woodsaver, ‘Black’. Highlights: Krylon, ‘Flat White’. Background outline: Krylon, ‘Terracotta’.
^CN freight e-to-e. Wolf, Ich & Mone on damage duty!!
Any favorite old paint stores?
Martin Paints, Pergament, Rickels. Even department stores like Caldor, and Woolworth. Franks Nursery & Crafts also. Not the greatest selection, but they had some choice Krylon.
Best discontinued paint, and why?
Damn man… First, the silvers. Martin Paint silvers were the shit, they cost only a buck and coated great! I think that everyone in the Bronx misses those. Rickel pound can silvers as well. Rickel was a big store similar to Pergament out here. They had pound can silvers that Key turned me on to. Only $1.19 each. They went out of business a good 14 or 15 years ago. Aside from those I certainly miss a lot of the discontinued Rusto and Krylon colors. Too many to name.
Any good racked cap/can combos?
Testor caps worked great for outlining. I used to use WD40 caps for bombing also. I would get a lot of paint on my hands, but aside from that it did the job. I don’t remember their names, but some of the old oven cleaners had nice caps. I also can’t forget about Kitchen Magic. It’s amazing how sacred caps were when you couldn’t buy them. I could make 1 cap last a few months. I would soak it in paint thinner, or nail polish remover after using it and never loose it. A good cap was like gold back then.
^Mone, RIS… “Bringin’ the Bronx to you”
Worst paint ever award goes to?
Krylon “Living Color” line. Every color! I remember being on a racking mission with Vet somewhere upstate NY. We saw the whole line of colors for the first time in Pergament. They hadn’t made their way down to the Bronx yet so we were psyched to be the first guys to get them. We drove around the entire day looking specifically for those cans. The colors themselves looked beautiful. I couldn’t believe how horrible they worked though. They didn’t take any other kind of caps and the paint itself sprayed out like confetti. We tried to sell the cans off to other people at a cheap price, but word spread quik and we got stuck with them. It’s the only time in my life that I have ever thrown full cans in the garbage. Floral Life paint takes a good 2nd place spot as crap paint to.
What are some of your best painting experiences?
There are way too many to name. Painting a live subway train for the 1st time. Some of the end-to-end freight cars that I did with friends when I was younger. Experiencing and painting a lot of the popular spots in the Bronx (238th Street Bridge, Pelham Bay Amtraks, etc) in the early 90s when they were still happening. Having the opportunity to paint along side some of the older legends in this game. Even some of the legal walls. Just hanging with good friends, and having good times.
^Classic Piece Breakdown: Mone, RIS semi trailer. Misc. Rust-Oleum, American Accents.
How do you feel about the brands of Euro paint and their impact on the scene?
It’s cool stuff, I use it from time to time. It gives you the opportunity to paint a lot cleaner, and the color selection is amazing. The pressure and flow is nice. It’s almost like drawing with a pencil. In many ways it feels as if I am cheating when I use it. The impact of the paint is huge. It really helped to push graff to another level. On the same hand I know a lot of people that mainly use American paint and can produce just as good work. It might take more patience, but it can be done.
If you could choose a few cans to have on your shelf, what would they be?
I would love to have a Krylon, ‘Icy Grape’, and ‘Hot Raspberry’. I’ve seen pictures of them but have never held a can of either one in my hands. Krylon, ‘Teal Blue’, and Rust-Oleum, ‘Festival Green’ too. I took those two colors for granted. You could find them at any rack in the 90s. I had so many cans of both that I was sick of looking at them. It’s been years since I have had either one and I really miss them.
Any other comments?
Thanks for hitting me up for the interview. Peace and respect to everyone I know!
^Classic Piece Breakdown: Mone, RIS 1990. Fill: Krylon, ‘Hot Pink’, ‘Pastel Yellow’ & ‘Baby Blue’. Outline: Krylon, ‘Cherry Red’.