Jiver is a London based artist who has been making his name in the global graffiti scene since 1997 when he first picked up a spray can. Since being a student at London’s Central St Martins he has gone on to paint artwork all over the world, including; New York, Barcelona, Prague, Milan, across the UK and most notably Dubai, where he worked as part of a world renowned team of artists who successfully broke the Guinness World Record for the largest graffiti wall ever painted.
ONE TAKE UK – Who / What inspires you?
JIVER – Friends, family and my surroundings.
ONE TAKE UK – How often do you draw and paint?
JIVER – I draw/paint every day in my studio and paint walls at least once a week.
ONE TAKE UK – How important has tagging and sketching been to your artistic process?
JIVER – I am not sure how important tagging has been to my artistic process but it has been crucial to my progression as a writer.
ONE TAKE UK – Who are your top 3 artists atm?
Artists: Franz Kline, Basquait and Mark Rothko.
Writers: Tors, Rainman and all the other people I paint with.
ONE TAKE UK – Do you come to a wall with a sketch or do you freestyle?
JIVER – Sometimes I will do a really rough drawing.
ONE TAKE UK – How would you describe your process?
JIVER – Layers, brandy, layers, brandy, layers.
ONE TAKE UK – Does your finished article end up as you envisaged or do you let your creative process take over?
JIVER – The creative process will always take over.
ONE TAKE UK – What’s the best way to layer your piece/mural?
JIVER – Everyone has their own way of painting so there isn’t a definitive answer for that.
ONE TAKE UK – How do you come up with your colour schemes?
JIVER – It’s always sporadic and mostly to do with what I have most of in the studio.
ONE TAKE UK – How do you know your work is finished or how do you avoid over doing it?
JIVER – Sometimes I over do them, sometimes I don’t. Fear of over doing a piece is something a lot of people have and it isn’t healthy, it is to become afraid of adding extra layers which could be the making of a piece/painting.
ONE TAKE UK – How do you time manage you piece/mural, do you take intervals?
JIVER – When I am painting my abstract walls I like to get into a certain mindset and don’t like being interrupted from that so will stay at the wall. With my letters I will talk and drink all day with breaks for Morleys and the off license.
ONE TAKE UK – How did you come up with the style you have now?
JIVER – It has been a constant progression over the 21 years I have been painting.
ONE TAKE UK – Where did your name come from?
JIVER – No idea, I get asked that a lot and I wish I could remember.
ONE TAKE UK – How long does a piece normally take you to complete?
JIVER – Depends how big it is, how much alcohol I have consumed, how much talking I have done and various other factors. I will always finish in 1 day.
ONE TAKE UK – How did you get into Graffiti/Street Art?
JIVER – My gran bought me the book Spraycan Art when I was young which got me hooked.
ONE TAKE UK – Is typography important when developing your letters?
JIVER – Depends on your style, typography doesn’t have much relevance to my style or the way I work.
ONE TAKE UK – How do you develop your style and not become stagnant?
JIVER – Constantly painting and being productive.
ONE TAKE UK – What have been your favourite pieces you’ve done?
JIVER – I don’t think I have got any favourites, I don’t usually like anything I have done after about a week.
ONE TAKE UK – Where do you see your art in the future?
JIVER – I want to do some much bigger walls and some bigger gallery shows. Those 2 objectives will never change.
ONE TAKE UK – What caps do you use and why?
JIVER – Extra splatty splatter fat caps.
ONE TAKE UK – How did you develop the can control you have now?
JIVER – Practice.
ONE TAKE UK – How many cans do you go through on an average piece?
JIVER – Probably about 15/20.
ONE TAKE UK – What type of paint do you like using best and why?
JIVER – In the studio I use acrylic mostly, I am impatient and I like that it dries quickly.
ONE TAKE UK – What are your likes and dislikes about Graffiti/Street Art?
JIVER – I love London graffiti because it is raw and dirty but at the same time I dislike it because of the amount of unnecessary negativity. Street Art, haha, no comment.
ONE TAKE UK – Where do you draw the line between biting and inspiration?
JIVER – Pablo Picasso said ‘Good artists copy, great artists steal’.
ONE TAKE UK – What can you share to inspire up and coming artists?
JIVER – Persevere, don’t listen to the negativity, stay inspired, make sure the people around you are inspiring you and don’t neglect your family and friends.
ONE TAKE UK – What are your thoughts about UK Graffiti/Street Art compared to other countries?
JIVER – I think there are some great artists here but we have a long way to go before we reach the stage that certain parts of the world are at.
ONE TAKE UK – What’s the best advice you’ve been given?
JIVER – Pick my gallery shows wisely, be careful who you trust and always be humble.
ONE TAKE UK – What motivates you to be committed to the scene/culture?
JIVER – It isn’t the scene I am committed to, it is my sanity.
ONE TAKE UK – What are your thoughts on illegal vs legal Graffiti/Street Art?
JIVER – I would rather see a tag on a wall or a train than see a legal wall.
ONE TAKE UK – Is travelling, seeing other work important to evolving your style?
JIVER – Travelling is definitely important, meeting and speaking to people abroad is always inspiring. In every country artists have different ways of thinking, different painting techniques and different challenges to overcome.
ONE TAKE UK – Is an online presence important in getting your work seen?
JIVER – It depends how you use social media.