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Bluebell Park SEN School, Knowsley March 2014
A graffiti project with the Post 16 students resulted in some excellent work, an exploration of graffiti typography and art. The project took place over two days when the whole Post 16 school, approximately 50 students and 20 staff, worked together in collaboration with art4design. This was a great project which we truly enjoyed and thank the staff and students for being very committed and enthusiastic about every aspect of the workshops. They are all fantastic!

Our graffiti workshops explore the use of typography, colour, tone, texture, pattern and graphics. We provide clear instructions on what the students need to achieve and give demonstrations and guidance throughout the whole exercise so that every student has an opportunity to contribute to the larger artworks.

painted canvas

Ultimately at Bluebell Park School our aim was to complete two or more large pieces of work which were made up of various components from all student contributions. There were some basic tasks and skills used and some higher level tasks, thus ensuring students are all able to contribute something! These 'artworks' are then collated by the artists.

grafitti words

The graffiti workshops involved three stages, consisting of an initial briefing to class and staff, leading to research and ideas to develop a number of “inspirational” and “aspirational” keywords. These words were printed out using computers with graffiti fonts and graffiti generation websites by the students.

using stencils

The second stage allows students to draw out ideas and experiment further with colour marker pens, colour pencils, or paint on paper. We also focused on how group images and text will be composed together onto their larger paper banners. We demonstrated how to further explore paint and stencil techniques, pattern, creating tone, and filling negative space with designs.

The third stage reflects on the graffiti work achieved previously and students begin to collaboratively work on a large canvas, developing line, bold outlines, and blends to finalise each canvas.
When dry, these works are hung as a collective or individually inside the building.

The previous results of day one of the graffiti workshop led to a more coherent group banner painted onto canvas.

Detail below shows the use of colour gradients, texture, pattern and the mixing of bold colour to achieve strong graffiti typography.

Additionally, all students individual artwork, paper and canvas banners where scanned or photographed for use in the digital creation of large artworks produced by the artists.

The final large format vinyl banners were printed for installation around the play area outside the school building and near the main school gates.