Artist Profile: Phew

phew stickerName:
Eugene, Oregon
How long have you been making stickers?
Five going onto six years now.
What inspired you to first start producing stickers?
Damers & I started with stencils on slaps & I was looking for a way to spread my ideas or creativity in a different way. When I started seeing my stuff up & the responses that it would have, whether negative or positive I wanted to keep rocking it.
What role would you say stickers play within the greater scope of art?
That’s kind of a tough question. For me it’s about expressing yourself just like any art, but obviously it’s different for each person. I know some people who dig it because they want to be known or heard but others use it as a building block for other arts they do.
phew stickerWhat role would you say stickers play within the greater scope of graffiti?
I think it plays a dope role as far as it being another form of street art. Each person uses it differently like I said before, some people might tag slaps to get up quicker or easier where as others use it to express their opinions or views. Then there are always the people who just get a buzz off of getting likes/views or whatever & they don’t actually get up at all or try to make bank off a growing trend.
I try to use whatever is at my disposal, I like trying new things or rocking with something a bit different. For the most part though I use 228’s for my labels & Prismacolor for markers. Vinyl slaps for screen printing with a good, high grade ink.
What are some of your favorite places to put up slaps?
I love doing reverse slaps, marking on the sticky side & finding cool places to throw them up at. Usually newspaper boxes or windows, phone booths etc.
What is the longest one of your slaps has survived in the wild?
I somehow still have a couple slaps riding from my first runs so that’d be about five years now.
phew stickerHave you ever had any run-ins with the law due to your stickering?
Not for stickers.
What artists inspire you?
I get the most inspiration from my crew 2MA (Make More Art) the name says it all & I’m mad lucky to have such great people surrounding me. Other than that I take a lot of inspiration from old school writers as well as the people who took what they were doing & flipped it to make what we now have today.
Have you ever had a funny/unusual experience related to stickering that you would like to share?
I’m not sure how funny it’ll be, it’s certainly a bit unusual. There was one night I was walking home on the phone with my girl Mewdoo throwing up slaps of hers & telling her about it the whole time. I’d come up on something I had to climb & would have to put the phone in my backpack so I could get her up wherever it was I was trying to slap. Got some good ups that night, Mewdoo is a cupcake.
If you had to guess, how many stickers have you produced to date?
Between screen printing, block prints, tagging & doing hand-drawn slaps. It’s got to be up in the thousands.
Some artists try to get as many ups as possible. Is stickering about quantity or quality for you?
When I first started doing stickers it was just about busting them out & getting them up but through the years I’ve realized you can really do both. With materials like screen printing or block printing it’s easier to get out quality slaps at a higher rate (if you know what you’re doing) but I also love to sit down & take some time on some hand-drawns.
phew stickerDo you collect and/or trade slaps with other artists?
I do trades but try not to just sit on anything I receive, I always get everyone up, but as you get more & more trades it gets harder to. Crew, friends & locals always go up first for me.
Do you have a message that you are trying to convey with your slaps? What do you want people to take away from seeing one of your designs in the wild?
My main message would be just make more art, I want to see everyone express themselves in a creative & thoughtful way. As for what I’d like people to take away from my stickers personally… I just hope someone out there digs it & gets inspired.
Final thoughts:
Focus on doing you & your art. Keep making, refining & enjoying what you do. Don’t do it for the likes or the followers, to hate or gain attention through negativity. Just do you & don’t focus on what anyone else is doing unless it involves you. Stay motivated, stay positive & always make more art.
phew 2ma stickerWhat is the best way for people to follow your work?
You can follow my personal page on Instagram @Phew2ma but more importantly check out our amazing crew @mostmotivatedartists an I’ll see y’all in the streets.
Everyone in 2MA, we’re not just a crew we’re a family. Mewdoo, Damers, Ethos & Rocky. You all inspire me & keep me moving everyday. Nothing but love for each one of you. I’d like to give love to everyone who’s out there doing the exact same thing, keep rocking it out & makin’ more! To anyone who’s ever wanted to be a part of this, get out there & express yourself. And of course a huge shoutout to y’all, for doing this & letting everyone be heard. Much love.