Thanks for taking the time out of your busy schedule to do this interview! First off can give us a brief introduction of your career? how long have you been doing graffiti and how did you come up the name 0dhes?
My name, odhes, emerged without any meaning it was only a name that I chose to paint. All my friends began painting back in school in 2004, one of them introduced me to markers and graffiti, and once I learned about graffiti my whole world changed and I changed as a person. In those years where he lived, we were known as doing graffiti seriously, I joined up with a neighbor who was also painting graffiti. We would go find abandoned places to spray, I only had signatures, but my friend made pumps and wild styles, that gave me the urge to evolve my graffiti. We were going out at night painting illegally on fences, and commercial buildings, this was well until 2006 when I found a friend at school who also painted illegally, he invited me to paint with another person but this time it was a legal gig, everything was with permission.
Then I started to make a name for myself. Now I could do more elaborate pieces, and this was very different then what I did before, I liked it and I took this as my new way to paint. Although it was more expensive at the time I only used 3 aerosols, but when doing commissions, I had to buy more aerosols and not only that but also acrylic paint to put underneath the piece. This turned out to be something that they only had very little, I started doing commissions for several years on the weekends, and this taught me to improve my letters and the technique with spray this was until 2009, when I went to study at the University and that consumed all of my time. From then on I painted very little, until in early 2014 I got contacted from a friend who invited me to paint again, we were going to many places for gigs but we no longer made letters instead we mostly did characters and my graphics changed a lot and from that time I’ve been doing graffiti consistently up to this year and its something that has become my lifestyle, as it is not only about painting but the experiences that comes with this i’m enjoying with friends who make every wall exciting.
Your wall murals are beautifully cartoonish, its something that you see often in grafitti but your level of execution on your scenes is really really good. What were you doing before graffiti? Cause I would imagine you were a animator or cartoonist or was that always just a part of the graffiti culture for you?
People always ask me if I studied graphic Arts but actually no, I’m an architect. In architecture we’re always watching the points of design you know harmony, symmetry, spaces and other points in architecture and that influenced a little of my letters and forms that I do, for example they have a lot of volume.
I see on your youtube channel that you have a regular crew with you, what is the name of your crew and how long have ya’ll been together? I liked seeing the hanging out you guys did outside of painting it makes it seem like just something you guys do for the hell of it. how did ya’ll meet and do you guys do jobs together or do you go out and paint strictly for the fun of it?
The team i’m with now is the level 9 team and we only started painting together a year ago, its not a long time but we have done a lot in addition to graffiti we’ve also done a lot of promotional murals. I do a lot of my graffiti time with yosh, we met through common friends and we found out that we work really well together. Its a lot of fun to make graffiti with your friends.
What are some good beginner supplies for a graffiti artist who is just trying to learn the ropes? Is it best just to pick up some cans from walmart and go for it? What kind of brand do you like?
I live in Mexico city, the material here is good, most people use the 4 or 5 brands that do aerosols specialized in graffiti, that’s very good when starting in this world and makes it easy to make graffiti. It usually costs around $ 2 for a local brands and foreign brands such as Montana are close to the 5 dollars, is a better option. There are trademarks industrial selling at Wal Mart and specialty shops in painting that are close to the 3 to $ 4, but they are not good as its pigmentation is very bad.
Looking at your skill level I would assume that you are make a living at this, how long have you been doing this as a career? what did you do to support yourself as an artist in order to get to a point where you could sell your stuff?
I can’t say that this is the life for everyone, I know people living graffiti and if they don’t paint they cant eat, it is very difficult to stay of top of this. Here where I live in low people who appreciates your work and what one ago, there are few projects as it is worth living other where lose money rather than win it, I try to be in the middle and future be living this.
Who were your first clients and how did you go about getting work when you were starting out?
Here in Mexico one begins painting with tenants who have their own business and want one to decorate, these are the first customers one reaches out to and if you do good you get recommended for other jobs.
Any crazy travel stories you can share?
In Mexico there are many cities that make graffiti events to go to. We often rent buses to travel together for 4 to 8 hours to another city, on occasion police federal stopped the truck, the police began to search the bus and it looked like a party in the bus, there was alcohol, everyone smoking marijuana, all over the coach it was crazy. The police though just wanted some money from the driver and then he let us go.
What kind of movies or music are you into these days? Is there anything in particular you like to listen to when you paint?
I like a lot of science fiction movies one of my favorite are those of Back to the Future and Star Wars. As far as music goes I’m a big fan of Gorillaz , Daft Punk and Justice.
Was there anything that you know now that you wish you knew back before you started doing graffiti that would have made the whole thing easier?
I think something that you should keep in mind is that this is not easy, that this will cost you work and you will see many setbacks and disappointments, but always move forward and be patient.
Who are your favorite writers and artists today? Is there anything new you are trying to teach yourself these days?
There are so many artists that I admire as jueb35, yosh, motick, drain, Dear, Smith, cancer, among others, are some icons here in Mexico, they all work very hard at each wall. They are my inspiration and I am to be at their level one day.
Any shout outs? Where can people follow you and what can people expect from you next?
Interview by Wesley Edwards.