009: Life As An Underground Street Artist (Featuring Whatisadam)


Listen to Episode 009 with Whatisadam here:

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Do you ever wonder who's behind the graffiti and street art that covers your city?

And I'm not talking about graffiti that's meant to vandalize. I'm talking about graffiti as art. Graffiti that has a purpose.

Thanks to Station16 Gallery, I had pleasure of interviewing Montreal street artist Whatisadam (WIA).

Although his identity is unknown to the general public, WIA is a big player in the Montreal street-art scene. His work is very unique and strongly inspired by vintage comic books and Canadian stereotypes. He's even traveled to major cities around the world (Paris, New York, Mexico City, etc) to produce pieces with the intention of displaying them publicly as street art.
 

"It adds art to something that would otherwise be uninteresting."
 

I think what WIA does takes tremendous courage. Think about it; if you had to create something that you know is controversial (let alone against the law), how would you feel publishing it in front of the entire city...not knowing what kind of a reaction it will draw? It's a scary thing. So, major props to WIA for staying true to himself and putting himself out there.
 

"Something I discovered through street art is that there's a huge interaction between the viewer and the artist."
 

I'm super excited to share this interview with you because I think we all struggle with the the idea of being judged on our work, and WIA is a perfect example of how to unleash yourself from those fears, keep working on your craft, and put yourself out there.

In this interview, WIA talks about how he got started in street art, where he draws his inspiration, and the exact process he follows to go out into the night and decorate the city with his art.

Oh, and I almost forgot: He also shares a story about running from the cops and having to hide under a car for 2-hours to avoid getting caught.

"It's hard to please everybody, so I don't try to defend the imagery and the art. You just need to let the art speak for itself." 
 

More specifically, in this episode of the Unleash Yourself podcast, you'll learn:

  • How WIA got started in the world of street art.
  • Where he draws his inspiration to create unique pieces that have meaning.
  • How to look at things differently and see opportunity rather than just seeing a brick wall.
  • How to overcome your fear of being judged and how to believe in the art you create.
  • The importance of having support from people who believe in you and how Station16 Gallery have been a big part of his success.
  • The exact process he follows to go out into the street and create art in public places without being noticed.
  • How he almost got caught, had to run from the cops, and even hid under a car for over 2 hours.
  • And much, much more!


Want more of Whatisadam? Here are some of his most famous peices:

Roxy - the prostituting deer that WIA talks about at 8:45.

Roxy - the prostituting deer that WIA talks about at 8:45.

The black garbage cans that WIA turned into "Maple Sizzurp" cans. Hear about how he did it at 14:30.

The black garbage cans that WIA turned into "Maple Sizzurp" cans. Hear about how he did it at 14:30.

Just in time for hockey season, WIA's "Hockey Hoodlum".

Just in time for hockey season, WIA's "Hockey Hoodlum".

Whatisadam in action.

Whatisadam in action.

 

Follow WhatIsAdam online:

- Check out WIA's official website: whatisadam.com

- Follow him on Instagram: @WhatIsAdam

- Want some of his artwork or stickers? Take a look some of WIA's art that hangs in Station 16 Gallery by clicking here
 

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