GIANT: Over 10 years. I took most of ’99 off to concentrate on tattooing.
L-L: What is your favorite surface to paint and why?
GIANT: Smooth concrete, with a good coat of latex paint as a base. That’s just the best surface to work on.
L-L: Have you ever traveled outside the US to paint?
GIANT: Yes, I painted in and around London a bunch when I lived there in ’98. I also got to paint in Japan in ’97 when I was on tour with Tribal Gear.
L-L: Have you had any run-ins with johnny law for graffiti?
GIANT: I got arrested once in Albuquerque in ’92. I was painting under a bridge during the day and just got caught red-handed. I did 75 hours community service, picking up trash on the freeway with serious felons.
L-L: What do you think about the documentation of graffiti on the web?
GIANT: I think it’s a great resource for exchanging the work we do. It’s helped make graffiti writing a worldwide phenomenon.
L-L: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
GIANT: Probably doing the same stuff, with the addition of a family.
L-L: What is your current occupation?
GIANT: I make tattoos, that’s about 90% of my income.
L-L: Which do you prefer doing, black or colored ink work?
GIANT: I like making tattoos. I don’t think I prefer one style over another. I let the client decide how it works out.
L-L: Do you consider graff a part of your lifestyle or just a hobby?
GIANT: It’s definately a lifestyle. It affects how I think, so it’s much more than just a hooby.
L-L: What area of graff is your strongest?
GIANT: I try to be really well rounded. I’d definitely say I’m known more for clean wildstyle pieces, but I love throw-ups, tags, and simple styles equally. It’s all graffiti, and it’s all important.
L-L: What is your biggest graffiti related accomplishment?
GIANT: I don’t know. I just keep doing graffiti because it’s fun. I don’t really have a goal in mind. I’ll just quit when it isn’t fun anymore.
L-L: Do you think using brushes/markers/rollers/wheat paste takes away from the original concept?
GIANT: No. To me, as long as you’re putting stuff out there without permission, you’re doing it right.
L-L: Was there ever any static between you and Shepard Fairey?
GIANT: Not really. We started around the same time, so when we finally heard about each other, we were pretty established in our own styles. I like the stuff Shepard does. It gets on my nerves a little when kids think I put up the “Andre the Giant” stuff, but I’m sure he gets his share of confusion too.
L-L: Do you see a difference in East/West coast graffiti?
GIANT: Subtle differences, but in the big picture we’re all doing the same thing, no matter where you are.
L-L: Any productions planned in the near future? if so, with who?
GIANT: I don’t plan productions anymore. I’m pretty happy painting by myself. If the crew hooks up a big wall and wants me to get down with it, I’ll hook it up. But it’s not something I seek out anymore.
L-L: San Francisco is a fabulous place but, if you ever moved from there, anyideas of where you would go?
GIANT: Well, I’m planning on moving to Oakland soon. I’d like to live in Amsterdam for a little while to check that out.
L-L: Your favorite web-site?
GIANT: I’d have to say Art Crimes. I still dig around on there a little every month. I also spend too much time on thehun.net. What’s the internet without free porn?