Phlegm Paints Rotherham September 13, 2010

Phlegm is a Sheffield based painter/illustrator/comic book maker whose works can be found in many of the corners of both Sheffield and Manchester. Recently he painted several walls for the Rotherham Open Arts Festival. 95 hours of painting have been squeezed into this ten minute film.

It’s really cool watch your process of painting in the timelapse. When it comes to blocking out your images on these large walls do you plan it out before hand or does it come to you there? How much do you let the space dictate the piece?

I’m painting a comic so I do have to have an idea of what I want to do. Generally I go to a wall with five or six frames I could paint and just hope that the space suits one of them. I tend to work form my head so as not to make the picture looked forced into a space. Like you say, let the building dictate it.

Telescopes, trees and people in strange hoody type things feature heavily in your work. Where does it come from?

I started using the simple hooded characters for cartoon strips first, they where just simple featureless faces that where easy for me to draw over and over. After a while they became quite stylised and they came through in my wall work.  Most of my inspiration is passed down from my drawing. I tend to be heavily influenced in my by old etchings like Hogarth or pen and ink work by Gorey and old medieval maps and things like that. This influences my drawing and then gets passed down to my wall work.

The video has got all over the place since its been up, what do you make of it and being internet famous?

It’s nice when you capture peoples imagination I suppose, it’s what artists are meant to do. It’s easy to get carried away by people’s reaction but at the end of the day there’s videos on youtube of cats falling over that wipe the floor with anything I could do.

Bonus image. This is Phlegm’s latest pieces from down Sidney Street, the area I wrote about last week, what is quick becoming one of the best spots in South Yorks.  The photo almost does it justice, this thing is huge!


Ema sorts Sidney Street August 26, 2010

Between Sheffield train station and Decathalon Sports store is Sidney Street. By all rights this should be the coolest street in Sheffield. There are empty warehouses, a handful of galleries, some artists studios, a dodgy boxing club, band rehearsal rooms, vacant lots, and it is all centrally located! Unfortunately, a total lack of shops, pubs, bars, cafes, clubs (although Niche used to be here), there is not much to do. What with Urban Splash having their hands full redeveloping Park Hill, the likelihood of Sidney Street becoming the new Northern Quarter are slim.
Fortunately a few people (Kid Acne, Phlegm included) are putting it to good use. Sidney Street is quickly becoming The Place for Sheffield graffiti. Central location, warehouses and complete civic disinterest in the area make it a prime spot.
Recently, French born, formerly of NYC, and now Paris based artist Dr.Ema has been putting up some excellent mustachioed teardrop paste ups. I’ve been cycling past them for the past couple weeks and thought it was time to share.


Issue 11 February 13, 2010