The term graffiti referred to the inscriptions, figure drawings, etc., found on the walls of ancient sepulchers or ruins, as in the Catacombs of Rome or at Pompeii. Usage of the word has evolved to include any graphics applied to surfaces in a manner that constitutes vandalism.
The earliest forms of graffiti date back to 30,000 BCE in the form of prehistoric cave paintings and pictographs using tools such as animal bones and pigments. These illustrations were often placed in ceremonial and sacred locations inside of the caves. The images drawn on the walls showed scenes of animal wildlife and hunting expeditions in most circumstances. This form of graffiti is subject to disagreement considering it is likely that members of prehistoric society endorsed the creation of these illustrations.
Methods and Production
The modern day graffiti artist can be found with an arsenal of various materials that allow for a successful production of a piece. Spray paint in aerosol cans is the number one necessity for graffiti . From this commodity come different styles, technique, and abilities to form master works of visual graffiti. Spray paint can be found at hardware and art stores and come in virtually every color.
Stencil graffiti, originating in the early 1980s, is created by cutting out shapes and designs in a stiff material (such as cardboard or subject folders) in order to form an overall design or image. The stencil is then placed on the canvas gently and with quick, easy strokes of the aerosol can, the image begins to appear on the intended surface. This method of graffiti is popular amongst artists because of its swift technique that requires very little time. Time is always a factor with graffiti due to the constant threat of getting caught by law enforcement.
Modern graffiti art often incorporates additional arts and technologies. For example, Graffiti Research Lab has encouraged the use