Can you tell us a bit about your background?
I write SNARL BCF. I have written, KH,DC, DBT, SWB, WL, and GBS. I can remember when I was about 6 and all the breakin movies came out, every kid at school was into it, and then kids started tagging. I remember 'buying' a tag off a mate and him showing me how I had to do the letters exactly how he had been doing them, then the next week 'Micro Machines' came out and everyone moved on to the next fad.
My grandfather is a painter and I remember him complaining about having to buff all the RCF tags down his street. He lives right next to a park which was a notorious hang out for a lot of oldschool Sydney writers. I remember SEVN's circle tags being one of the first tags that I started to notice everywhere.
It wasn’t until I hit high school that I really took notice of graff again. I was playing drums in a death metal band called 'maggog' and I used to copy a lot of metal logo's onto my schoolbags, I guess this was when I first got into lettering.
How did you choose your tag, any special meaning?
There’s an electronic group called 'Sub Bass Snarl' and I remember noticing the flyers for their gigs all over Newtown. I don’t know why, but the word just seemed to stand out to me. I was also a big Transformers fan as a kid. 'Snarl' had an aggressive feel to it which appealed to the head banger in me. It also means an entanglement, which I thought was appropriate for graffiti lettering.
I nearly wrote 'Snare' which would have been appropriate, being a drummer, but another guy at school who was tagging at the time beat me to it. Anyway, I think having an 'L' at the end forced me to try and balance things out creatively. I’m glad I don’t have an 'E' at the end, a lot of people have E's at the end.
How did you get in to graffiti?
I used to jig school with 'Fumen' and did a few tags along the way. Fumes used to tell me mad stories about bombing which helped me get a bit of an insight into the way things worked. I did my first piece in 1995 with the bass player in my band who was writing 'Jungs'. He was an incredible drawer but he didn’t stick with graff, which is a shame because he had mad potential. I grew up next to a freight yard so I would watch all the stuff that would roll in there and started rolling a few out of there myself....
What is it that you love about graffiti that keeps you writing?
I think the fact that I wrote, keeps me writing. I have always been creative in some context, and I can’t just turn off the tap. I may not bomb anymore, but I still get out and do my thing here and there.
Graffiti is to art, what death metal is to music. I don’t listen to death metal constantly, some days I feel like the blues or some reggae. Sometimes I feel like doing some throwups and then other times I might do a portrait in my studio/garage/mess. To me graff is a great positive outlet that allows me to forget about the fucked up world we live in and return to my own 'happy place'...
Tell us about your style and how it has developed over the years.
When I started piecing I was just doing my own interpretations of graffiti based on a mental image created by a conglomeration of all the graff I had seen, with no specific style direction or style elements. I hooked up with Days and we painted a lot of pieces but still I hadn’t found my direction. Fsute tried to show me some style which helped, but it wasn’t until I met Phib and Dmote that I started to pay attention and try and focus on what direction I was going to take.
For a while I was doing the spiked serif style and that’s when I feel my brain clicked and people started to dig my stuff. No one was doing the 3D style so I turned my energy in that direction in an effort to stand out. I love 'Sydney style' and thanks to Dmote I can do it, but a lot of people do the Sydney style and I wanted to stand out from the crowd. How and Nosm gave me a lot in terms of technique which freed me up to focus on my letter development.
My style is currently a combination of two technique approaches. 3D letters and shading with a traditional outline. I am happy to say that it is my own individual style that I have developed through trial and error over the years.
Who have been your major influences?
Paint brand of choice
For graff, anything goes, but for commissioned work I use Molotow.
Cap of choice
NYC fats, black dots
What music motivates you to paint?
Black Sabbath, Death, Slayer, Necrophagist, Mastadon, Cannibal Corpse, Nile.
Memorable mission moment
Getting raided in Germany.
We legged it to the all night takeaway joint and tried to fit in amongst the locals. After a while the sirens stopped and we crept back to Pino's place where we were expecting to find him. His nerdy flatmate let us in and asked us where Pino was. Fuck. We explained what happened and his mate told us to start grabbing everything from Pino's room and chucking it in his room. Pino had prepped him well for this particular situation...
So we sit up waiting for Pino all night and eventually pass out on the couch.
Anyway they found some flix that we had missed and they were all standing around laughing when I noticed they had discovered our mate’s homemade porn collection! They took a box full of his stuff and film from my camera which had shots of me in front of my panel in Munich. After checking our passports they left us there, wondering what just happened?
At about 6 in the morning Pino comes home with a big smile on his face and his box of evidence which he had argued, was all personal family stuff which had nothing to do with graff. Cool, those cops were as dumb as we thought! Next thing we know Pino is getting calls from his friends saying they just heard what happened on the radio. He smiles "That’s cool". Another call informs us that we made the paper. Then his friend that works at the local TV station invites us in to help edit our own story for the 6 o’clock news! WTF? Kind of cool seeing Dmote throwups and my nearly finished piece on the telly, but after Pino translates that the police are still looking for two other suspects that got away, we decided to head to the airport....
Any tips you're willing to share to the next generation of writers?
Have fun, be humble. Attitude gets you nowhere, trust me I know.
Anything else to add?
G’day Big City Freaks and friends, thanx to those that support and buy my art love to my other half and our beautiful daughter.