DISK is a graffiti writer from Canberra. He first got into graffiti in the early 90's & is a member of TCB & ML CREWS. He's painted countless fresh panels and tracksides alongside some of Sydney's best writers. He is also the creator of the infamous All Stations Magazine one of the best graff mags to come out of Australia. We caught up to find out a bit more about him and asked for his favourite flicks.
1. What got you into graffiti?
I saw Beat Street in the 80s as a real young kid. After the movie I started noticing graffiti in Canberra and in Sydney. I saw early Canberra writers painting in the early 90s and observed them using Touch-ups and Tuxans. Did my first piece in 1992 and painted walls during the early 90s in Canberra. I liked seeing Sydney panels in Hype magazine and was inspired to do my first Sydney train in 1996 then I moved to Sydney in 1997 to continue painting more trains and tracksides.
2. How would you describe your style and who were your influences?
My Canberra style got updated to a more New York/Sydney style when I met and started painting with Fear. Most people will agree Fear has the best tag and throw-up styles.
I had real good writers around me and think all of these guys influenced my style to some extent. These writers included: Banos, Kink, Hoot (RIP) and Clue. These guys were my main partners and shared my enthusiasm for getting over. I mostly learnt about racking and yards from Clue and Hoot. I liked TSC/TM styles too. I also respected writers with more original styles like Brisk, Roske, Perso, Amuze, Dikes and Sifen.
3. Could you tell us about a memorable mission good or bad while out painting?
I have lots of good memories being in the yards with the writers I mentioned above. Notable missions include: Painting Campbelltown one night with Hoot then doing two more panels with him in Lavender Bay in the rain the next day. One on the water side (Mesh’s spot) and then another on the cliff side. Hooter was a real cool and funny guy. He was a good friend to me. I kept in contact with him when I left Sydney until the early 2000s. I regret not seeing him more recently.
Painting North Sydney tunnels during the day on a weekend with Banos while the North Shore line was undergoing trackwork. TPC has already been in there and Perso/Jiesk went in after us. I recall there being around 8 cars of burners sitting in there that ran later. Spending hours in Woolooware during the day with Kink and Fear on a weekend Wholecars and mid sections in Redfern sheds with Hoot, Clue, Banos and Mudles. I used to enjoy doing top to bottom throw ups in there too. Lots of missions in Flemington including one night with almost 40 writers, I recall there being ML, PLS, OSF and SWB there. Unfortunately a lot of stuff never ran out of Flemo with it being a maintenance yard. One night me, Fear and Hoot painted a Tangara at Waverton while the Seca was asleep a few carriages away. I also enjoyed painting the main line as much as doing trains. The buff wasn’t that frequent during this time and at one point I recall almost having one piece between every station from Newtown to Strathfield.
4. Do you have any regrets from the time you were doing graffiti?
I would have liked my style to have been more developed when I was painting trains so I’d like looking at my panels more now. When I reflect back to that time I can see the guys I was painting with were way better than me but that’s ok because they were great writers.
I would have liked to have done more of those OSF production cars. They did these a few years after I’d left Sydney. I consider those two Dim solo wholecars the best trains I’ve seen.
I really respected and would have liked to have done more front runner bombing like Insert 32 and Manek from East Hills. I did a few front runners in the yards but never while the trains were moving given I’d thought I’d end myself falling of the train. These East Hills guys were real famous for their front runners during this time.
5. Do you have a good chase story?
We were always pretty thorough checking yards and never had any real issues aside from occasionally needing to leave the yard due to a Seca or worker seeing us. I had a bad chase racking Krylons at a store with Banos. I was dressed in a suit (I don’t know what I was thinking) and filled my back with Krylons then tried to buy a tin and the store owner asked to see my bag. I legged it and the owner chased me for a long time. I hid in someones back yard and was ok after some time. Not fun.
One time me, Fear and Hoot had done panels somewhere. On the way home I wanted to drop a tag on the side of this terrace house in Newtown that you can see from the train. They said not to do it and I didn’t listen. The house owner called the police and they picked us up as we were getting back to the car. We were taken to Newtown police station and questioned for hours. Off course, no one would talk and we were released.
6. What motivates you to keep painting?
I haven’t painted in years given I have other priorities and graffiti can be all consuming. I painted a few walls when I left Sydney but missed painting trains and tracksides. I felt like I achieved everything I wanted to do with graffiti and more. In the early days all I ever wanted was a photo of my panel running. Most of my painting partners had stopped too except for Banos who went on to paint hundreds of burners around the world. My good friend and early 80s Canberra writer, Perv MG, still paints in Canberra and New York with 1970’s Mission Graffiti (MG) NYC writers. I enjoy hearing his NYC stories and checking his great styles on instagram.
I check out, Ruben, another Canberra writer I grew up with from time to time. He’s always had good style and continues to do graffiti. I like KGB and KOS styles particularly Bones and Gooz panels and pieces.
7. Can you tell us a bit about your magazine? this was known as one the best Australian train mags of its time.
While I was in Sydney I was doing a design course with Fear at Tafe and learnt how to design magazines. I always liked graffiti magazines. When I left Sydney I had time to do other things including having a go at designing a graffiti magazine. I wanted to do a magazine to give credit to all the burners the people around me were doing on trains at that time. The first magazine contained all Sydney trains. I did a few more issues after the first but felt the magazine was getting further away from what I had initially set out to do. It was fun to produce and I think it influenced some good magazines after it stopped just like I was influenced by the magazines before All Stations. I enjoyed joining up those OSF production cars. I recall Kero saying the magazine had better photos of their cars than they did.