Kopeye x Artist Interview
PUREGRAFFITI. What do you write and why do you write that name? Do you write any other names?
KOPEYE. I’ve been writing copy since Jr. High. Instead of paying attention to class, I would always be drawing. There was this one girl who’d let me copy her homework every single day and thus eventually she called me Kopy with a K. Since them I’ve been writing Kopy, Kopye, Kopyeon, Kopyeson and Fukusya. Fukusya is Japanese translation for “to copy,” given to me by my Japanese girlfriend at the time when I was traveling to and eventually living in Japan to tag in order to introduce myself to the Japanese graffiti scene.
KOPEYE. I’m originally from Los Angeles in the Valley. As you know LA is infamous for their graffiti all over the freeways, buildings, and etc. My early influence is from seeing tags from guys like Tolse STP, Oiler IFK, Norse TSL, Punsher DFC, Snap UTI, Vesp RK and etc. At the time these were just individuals’ work I’ve seen. I didn’t know about crews then. I remember walking home one day and coming across some yard and seeing everyone’s work and I knew I wanted this to be part of my world. It was hard not to gravitate towards it. I’d hit up these strangers in random yards who eventually became my friends and the rest is history.
PUREGRAFFITI. Are you into tagging, bombing, sticker slapping or mostly doing pieces, characters ?
KOPEYE. I mostly do characters. I used to tag a lot when I was younger but nowadays it’s mostly when I’m drunk. A lot of people now say all I do is legal work and some yards but I used to do a lot of illegal work for fun and for adrenaline trying not to get caught. That’s what fun was. I don’t give a shit what people say now. That any legal work that I do or even the ones other countries doesn’t mean its not “graffiti” and what I mean by that is vandalizing on public property or hard to reach places such as rooftops and freeway signs to gain recognition all in the while getting caught by the cops at the same time is not the only way to prove yourself as a real graffiti artist. Trust me, I’ve paid my dues numerous times in the past and I don’t have to prove anything to anybody no more. I’m not asking for fame as there are enough self opinionated ugly doucebags doing that as is.
PUREGRAFFITI. When you are painting, what’s going through your mind?
KOPEYE. A lot of my characters are often correlated to my emotions. Some days I make them silly or devilish. Other days they can be sad. And there are days where I have this intense creative drive where I am just spitting out crazy ass wild characters after another.As for my girls, I love making my women fucking strong and sexy. They can be my interpretation of my past lovers, schoolgirls, or sexed crazed pornographic risqué girls.
PUREGRAFFITI. How many hours a week do you think you spent on aerosol spray painting? Do you do this for a living or is it just a hobbie or both?
KOPEYE. At this moment I try to paint at least a day’s worth a week and I’m pursuing this as career the past couple of years. Definitely more trials than tribulations and like they say an artist’s life is either feast or famine but this is already a part of me.
PUREGRAFFITI. Have you painted in other country’s or cities, if so which ones? Are there any county’s or citie’s you would like to paint at in the future?
KOPEYE. Besides up and down all over California, you’ll see my work in Arizona, Colorado, Las Vegas, Mexico, Japan and Australia. I would love to go to Europe and that’s currently in the works so I’m crossing my fingers.
PUREGRAFFITI. Whats your favorite spray paint brand? color?
KOPEYE. I’ve used many new brands thank’s to 33third ,that are out in the market such as 94, but my first love like most oldschoolers is Kry-lon. That was when I developed my technique and style. My favorite colors from Kry-lon would be Glossy Black, Plum Purple, and Fresh Salmon. I always had those three colors in my bag.
PUREGRAFFITI. How long did it take you to get so good at painting characters with aerosol can? Any tips you can give beginners that are just starting?
KOPEYE. Damn, I don’t know how to explain it but it was for a LONG time. You have to just keep painting and feel it in your hands to create the style you want.
Short URL: http://puregraffiti.com/art/?p=1846