Graffiti Introduction Essay Example

Graffiti Boards are a shared writing space (e.g., a large sheet of paper or whiteboard) where students record their comments and questions about a topic. The purpose of this strategy is to help students “hear” each other’s ideas. Some benefits of this strategy include that it can be implemented in five to ten minutes, it provides a way for shy students to engage in the conversation, it creates a record of students’ ideas and questions that can be referred to at a later point, and it gives students space and time to process emotional material. You can use the Graffiti Boards strategy as a preview activity by introducing a new topic and helping students to organize any existing knowledge about that topic. You can also use this strategy to prepare for a class discussion or writing assignment about a text by asking students to share their reactions to the text on the Graffiti Board.


  1. Prepare the Space
    You will need a large space in your room where several students (the more the better) can write at the same time. Some teachers cover a section of the wall with butcher or chart paper, while others use a whiteboard or chalkboard. You will also need plenty of pens and markers. For this activity, markers work better than pens or pencils because they allow students’ comments to be read from a distance. It is best if you supply one for each student.
  2. Contract with Students
    Before the activity begins, contract with the students in terms of what an appropriate response is and how to express one's discomfort with something in an appropriate way. Students should be told that they are to remain silent during this activity. Make sure students know that several of them can write at once. Students can write their own response to the prompt as well as respond to the questions and ideas that other students have written. They should draw lines connecting their comments to those of other students. Some teachers require all students to post at least one question or comment to the Graffiti Board.
  3. Students Comment on Graffiti Board
    Students are invited to write comments and questions on the Graffiti Board. It is typical for most students to be standing near the Graffiti Board during this activity so that they can more easily read and comment on what has been written. Writing on the board often starts out slow and then increases as the board comes to contain more comments that elicit student response. Typically, teachers give students five to ten minutes for silent writing on the Graffiti Board, but the activity can go longer if students are still writing.
  4. Hold a Group Discussion
    The ideas on the Graffiti Board make an effective springboard for a discussion. You could begin a conversation by asking students to summarize what they see on the board or what they notice about areas of agreement and disagreement.


  • Processing Powerful Content: Like the Big Paper strategy, the Graffiti Board strategy can be effective after a powerful, emotional conversation, video, guest speaker, or reading. While the Big Paper strategy is good for emotional and intellectual processing, Graffiti Boards are better for debriefing something that has really shaken up the students. It can be a helpful technique when you want to avoid analytical or intellectual discussions and allow students to process emotion. This strategy might be useful in situations such as these:
    • After watching a politician give a speech
    • After seeing graphic footage
    • After hearing from a witness to violence or a survivor
    • After hearing hate speech After having someone share a powerful personal story


In a Graffiti Board activity, several students write their questions and comments about a topic on a shared space.

Los Angeles is the most densely inhabited city in the state of California, and stands in second place after New York City, as the most populous in America. Most people in the city socialize mostly through cultural traditions and arts that are mainly practiced in the area. These arts form the basis of communication and expressions whether political or social. That being a few of the forms of expression graffiti is being widely used in the city. This form of art is employed as a means of social and political expression. The reason as to why young people use this form of avenue is that it is quite public and will relay the message. The fact that they are not provided with platforms to express themselves is another key issue to be addressed. In this paper, discussion on ways through which this work of art expresses the social and political issues in relation to Los Angeles will follow suit.

The city holds a history rich of arts and culture that has attracted millions of tourists from all over the world many years ago. In fact, the city’s greater area represents the most important site for television and movie production in the whole of the U.S. Other works of art related to Los Angeles include literature, music, museums, architecture, paintings, and street art, just to mention a few. Wordings; Graffiti artists use certain terms like crews, bombing, taggers these form a characteristic of graffiti traditions, although significantly, this type of dialect is to the idea that the whole culture is associated to the wider American customs that we are a components. Culture and language cannot be separated; culture creates language and the language creates culture. This distinct language is a preserve for graffiti tradition members and can be learnt through participation or continuous exposure to tag culture. This tag language is one form that graffiti is used to express social issues. The present graffiti words are obtained from the daily social life, the comments, phallic symbols, the jokes. Such graffiti is written in a common language so that individuals can comprehend, in addition to, partake in its humor or react in kind (Phillips, 47). The second category is images; in the context of community-based graffiti; these graffiti look like vivacious characters and vibrant texts. They have an origin in hip-hop culture and were selected because of its ability to both isolate, and form an interconnected faction that replicate current social issues in Los Angeles. It reflects a culture that is emerging in the society; it is ingrained in clothes, music, and dialect. The style was a preferred method, and individuals who create these images were part of the society that is influenced by the occurrence of these descriptions. Graffiti carried out by Gang is the type that is emphasizes a lot of the communal identification that this expressive means may value. However, the power that this illustrations yield, is usually disregarded. Graffiti expressing political notions is founded in interior representation by which negative political thoughts are channeled. These types of graffiti are mostly employed through activism movements in times of political protests; they have the ability to induce an emotional response, whether good or bad from their targeted audience. Objects, images and social conducts that contain a common implication among communities stand to unite the people. Under graffiti, the art has stood as a representation of opposition and a common dissatisfaction with current social certainty.

Ancient graffiti expressed love affirmations, social opinions and simple terminology of the notion in comparison to current popular information of societal and political standards as seen in the streets of Los Angeles (Phillips, 46). This is the same as in today’s world. Graffiti has been commercialized and is gaining popularity while others are seeking its legitimization. In 2001, IBM a large computer firm instigated a movement in Chicago, and San Francisco, which was advertising peace the campaign primarily, involved the community spray work of art on pavements the given symbols to illustrate “Peace, Love, and Linux.” However, because of the law which states that graffiti art is illegal the act saw the artists detained and prosecuted with damage charges, in addition to the repair costs, and penalty measures, IBM Company was fined more than US$120,000. In Los Angeles, Sony instigated same advertising campaign in 2005 and other cities, but this time taking into consideration the legal challenges of the IBM campaign. Sony compensated proprietors for the privileges to paint on their properties; portraits of dizzy-eyed city kids gathering, who were imitating a skateboard, a paddle or a rocking horse using PSP gadget. The two campaigns are an expression of an application of graffiti as a means in passing information, which the society does not approve to some extent. The war is clearly illustrated in Los Angeles, where two people were shot dead by the graffiti artist when they tried to stop them from doing what they love best. . Another social aspect is the growth of computer gaming depicting the art largely. These is to the positive aspect of the art, for example, the jet set radio program (2000–2003) shows the story of an assembly of youths fighting the subjugation of an authoritarian police that seeks to hinder the graffiti artists’ liberty of expression. Frequently, graffiti is reputed as an element of a culture that seeks to rebel against authority and laws in general as seen in the state where a certain group brands themselves and seek to warn visitors of their presence. What in my perspective makes the art wrong is the fact that most vandals are young people, ranging from young school going to youths, who vandalize public spaces for invalid reasons such as boredom, anger or revenge. For successful artists, ideas that perform this art often diverge and can illustrate a wide array of approaches and perceptions.

Most artist use materials such as paints and sprays, these sprays have a negative effect on the surroundings because of the fact that it contains. Harmful chemical elements like chlorofluorocarbons or volatile hydrocarbon gases are contained in the paints used for graffiti in painting a surface. These are harmful to the environment, and will continue to worsen the global warming situation in the world. Alternatively, moss graffiti can be adopted which will use moss, which is more environmental friendly to create the images or the wordings. The mixture is prepared through gluing moss unto a plane by mixing beer milk or yoghurt to serve as an adhesive for the art. These efforts of making the situation more environment friendly does not justify the fact that each year, in the clean up exercise of graffiti, large amounts are accounted for.

The society can approve a policy less lenient for destruction and instead provide an avenue or a place designed specifically for these artists to express themselves. Arresting them will only make the condition worse and they will continue to spend cleaning up the streets. On the other hand, with the already tarnished streets, what the locals need to do is first; to identify objects and locations prone to graffiti, and educate property owners effective and efficient of cleaning the places. Participants in these forums will mostly include property owners affected by graffiti, recreational facilities public works, shopping malls, schools, government, businesses, and other institutions. This will resolve the crisis in the short period; in the end, they can construct their buildings with hard to write on bricks or plant shrubs and hedges. Improved lighting and cooperation of the community and the authority will solve their so-called problem.

Looking at an artist’s perspective bring us to understand why they are so passionate about the art. Certain anthropologists explain that the art is an expression of one’s ideas and ideals. It goes beyond just the images and is mostly a representation of political ideas, race and art. This passion goes beyond fear of being caught, which has made a blog that highlights these paintings as being top five most viewed sights. I must say that these pieces of art is quite eye-catching and has its own beauty. The artists also are said to have a distinction between street art and graffiti basing the difference in that the artist signs graffiti while the street art is simply a form of expression, which is often done randomly. These facts also lead us to asking the question is the form of art an unnecessary struggle. I believe when one wants to pursue something he should go for it. Being a true believer means one is not swayed by the changing world, but one should also consider doing it peacefully. Overall, the art can signify liberation, love or territory. What the artist need is to make the community understand from their point of view. Successful artists in this field have received awards to prove that the entire art is not a negative vice and can be displayed in museums. In other words, it can be a visual method of communication with these it would play as both an art and a mode of communication to the users. Being an old form of art goes to show it has its form of justification and is not all negative (Ganz, and Tristan, 98).

A closer insight to the teenagers responsible for this form of art these explain that graffiti delineates the effect neighborhood, politics, and culture that is the society in general have on the day today activities of these teenagers. Most outstanding thing of this insight being the spirit, pride and allegiance that are expressed through in the voices of the said teenagers. This is not a glorification or the justification of gang behavior, but we rather perceive it as an objective that focuses on a specific social group that is not readily featured in the mainstream media and is trying to reach out. Gangs are not prevalent in many communities; my hope is that concerned parties would be enlightened, through various channels to be able to communicate with this group of a generation that is in need of help.

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Feb 8, 2013

Filed under: Example Papers — Tags: art essay, essay on graffiti, essay on Los Angeles, research paper on graffiti — Joan Young @ 10:33 am

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