Keep Learning: Fill your blank canvas with colour

This year, as part of our Make It Happen project, we’ve been encouraging everybody to step out of their comfort zone and experience culture in completely different ways. And why should learning be any different? We’ve all felt that warm, fuzzy feeling when we’ve accomplished something we never thought we could, so let’s get out there and try something new.

Paul Benson, a Hull 2017 volunteer and robot enthusiast, had never sprayed a graffiti piece in his life, but jumped at the chance to learn the tips and tricks with a team of aerosol artists. Here’s how he got on…

We caught up with Ollie Marshall of Spray Creative, the Hull artist collective who provided Paul with this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

He said: “Spray Creative were keen to get involved in the Make It Happen campaign, creating a workshop for Paul that covered everything from initial concepts to fills, outlines, lettering and highlights. We tried to cram our years of experience into a couple of hours and genuinely didn’t expect Paul to take to it so easily. He was like a sponge, taking all of our advice on board to create his piece. And you could tell he really enjoyed himself, which is amazing for us.”

And what would Ollie say to somebody who isn’t quite sure if graffiti art is for them?

The beautiful thing about graffiti art is that there really are no rules. There are so many styles and everybody’s work is unique to them. Even if you’re not happy with the piece you’ve created, you can just spray over it. And it’s easy to get started – you can paint on legal walls, set up your own canvas with plywood, anything really. I couldn’t recommend it enough. It’s a great way to help you switch your mind off and it’s something you can be proud of.”

If you fancy trying your hand at graffiti art, Spray Creative will be offering workshops around the city in the coming months, so keep your eyes peeled on their Facebook page. The guys can be contacted directly by anybody wishing to set up a workshop of their own, and are always happy to stop for a chat at their spray painting sites for those interested in finding out more.

Discover more about our Make It Happen campaign, providing simple ways for you to make small changes and explore culture differently during 2017 and beyond.