PACT is a graffiti writer from Sydney. He started painting in 99 and writes PLS crew, During the 2000's he got seriously busy painting some of the freshest panels Sydney has seen while also rocking tracksides and bombing with a fat throwup style, a real all rounder. We caught up with him for a quick chat and asked for his favourite five flicks.
1. What got you into graffiti?
Like every other young wannabe writer, finding Subway Art and Spraycan Art in the school library was a game changer. By highschool the highlight of each day was riding the train down the Bankstown, Blue and East Hills lines and trying to read tags and pieces, seeing who was up and who was doing what. It was usually trying to catch a glimpse of a piece before the buff caught it. I spent all my time studying the art, scribbling, keeping note of who was up on trains and finally getting out there and having a crack. I did my very first wack piece at Dulwich Hill skate bowl on the concrete and eventually graduated to piecing on the lines and getting off on the adrenalin rush that came with it. I found out about Hype magazine, Style Wars and by that point I was obsessed. Eventually I met other writers riding trains and at the usual spots like Newtown PCYC and Summer Hill drains which led to many fun and crazy late night missions.
2. How would you describe your style and who were your influences?
Starting out I was influenced by writers I liked in Hype magazine, the classics from Subway Art and particular writers I noticed up and about in Sydney. As a young writer I was fortunate enough to be schooled by Roms in the early 2000s and inherit (imitate) his style which had flavours ranging from Dems to Rkoe to Scram to Zombe. You could call it “Sydney Style” with strong New York foundations.
In a style sense I looked up to the Sydney style masters that came before me, crews like TM, OSF and PLS. Influences also came from writers in other cities like Melbourne and seeing the rawness of the styles and the scene there.
3. Could you tell us about a memorable mission good or bad while out painting?
The most memorable missions were the trips to Melbourne that always involved good gatherings of people, large nights, yard parties and end to ends… and usually a parched quest for Gatorade at 5:30am. Those weekend missions “on tour” were always a highlight. Melbourne was always a good city to visit for many reasons not least of all the very strong graffiti culture and dedicated writers who had it all locked down (big shoutout to Break!).
4. Do you have a good chase story?
One afternoon probably age 16-17 my mate took me to Artarmon station on the North Shore line for some casual daytime runups. It was late afternoon on a school day and as the trains started to fill up with school kids and people finishing work, it was hitting rush hour with trains rocking in thick and fast every few minutes and we were ducking in and out from behind billboards and starting to catch a few looks and fingers pointed at us.
It was fun and addictive but we sensed it was getting hot and agreed one more would do it for the day. As the final train pulled in to a halt we leapt out, tins raised, but before the train even stopped there was a commotion to my right and I looked to see a swarm of blue units jumping down from the platform behind the back car screaming at us to stay there and get down. We pegged the cans and hit the legs in the other direction running parallel with the train as it rolled out. My mate went left down the hill towards the street and I charged on ahead following the rail line hoping to make it into the bushes.
Just off the end of the platform with a bit of distance in between I launched myself into a b-boy freeze face down in head high bush. Half a minute later I could hear the footsteps, voices and radios and waited, knowing any minute they’d see me and I’d be done. I couldn’t believe my luck that somehow they didn’t spot me, despite standing metres away and hearing every word and radio call until they finally went back towards the station. Not knowing the area I didn’t move an inch for about 45 minutes then began to commando down the lines and into the bush, noticing the next train that passed by the boys in blue were riding it, faces pressed up to the window looking out. I knew the search must have been on and I moved down behind some bushes near the rail fence where I thought was safer thinking I’d wait it out to nightfall (there were no ubers in those days).
Before long I heard crunching boots coming down the tracks elevated above me and suddenly “THERE HE IS –-GET HIM!”. I jumped up but they were on me in a second and tackled me to the ground. After a nice bumpy ride in handcuffs back to the station I ended up escaping very lightly but let’s say Mum was pretty unimpressed having to pick me up from North Shore police station. Did I learn my lesson? Yes, that was the last time I ever did daytime runups.
5. What motivates you to keep painting?
I had a long hiatus from painting and thought it was something to leave buried in the past with my younger years but came to realise it’s the kind of thing that stays in the blood and they are experiences you don’t have living an ordinary life. Nowadays it’s fun to get out there every once in a while with good people.
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