I recently went on a spur of the moment trip to London courtesy of an awesome friend who travels all over the world for work and has lots of miles to spare. Thanks again, awesome friend! I loved just about everything in London – the architecture, the accents, the history and did I mention accents? Those doorman with tuxedos and top hats on weren’t bad either – way to make a gal feel like royalty. And, it was sunny the entire time I was there which like never happens. So, all in all, it was a pretty magical time. But when people ask me what my favorite part of my trip was I have to say it was taking a walking tour of Shoreditch, the mecca of London’s street art culture.
Being an avid Hip Hop and graffiti enthusiast stateside, when scoping out things to do across the pond I immediately thought: Banksy. I figured there must be something graffiti-related to see there so I took to Google and found there are numerous street art tours. By way of TripAdvisor testimonials and my wonky schedule, I ended up booking a tour with Dave from Shoreditch Street Art Tours. What a good thing too, because he ended up being quite an authority about the artists and the scene in London having covered it in his blog for the past 10 years. If you don’t believe me, just ask Complex.com, who enlisted his help for this piece on Shoreditch’s top 25 street artists.
I left with a new understanding of what street art is vs graffiti (different audiences, different techniques, different messages) and a slew of new European artists to follow online. After the outing, I caught up with Dave who besides being principal tour guide of Shoreditch Street Art Tours is a photographer and writer to learn how he got his start. Check out what he has to say about Banksy, the newcomers he is excited about, and see some of my amateur pics below.