Night Etchings

Conscious dreaming
-Exerts from a notepad beside my bed filled with bent words that were etched in darkness
Myself and a close friend were walking along a path that wound in and out of a densely forested area, there was a feeling like we had just been up to no good or were somewhere where we didn’t belong. This friend of mine is another graffiti artist so this feeling was no stranger to us yet when a third person entered the scene, a man who rode past us on a nearby road on his bicycle, my friend and I stiffened up. We walked on trying to keep casual as we went, trying not to alert the seemingly suspicious man whose eyes were fixed on us as he passed.
                Our path lead us back into the forest and trees began to block our vision of the man on the bicycle. I turn to Cece and state that we should run for it, his expression mirrors my words and I briefly turn behind us to look for any paths in the thick forest. When I turn back to Cece he is gone.
                I panic a little, eyes and head darting around, searching the area he used to be, did he run already? Had he been taken, if so by who!?
“Cece!” I call out in as loud and quiet as I could muster “Where are you?!”
I spin on my heal and am startled by four floating mouths all facing each other, I ask again “Cece, where are you?” my eyes latched to the mouths in front of me. They speak.
“I hear this question in my mind every day, is life just series of repetitions? Am I just hearing this same question over and over from different mouths?”
—————
With this question and an answer in my mind I wake up and reach for my pad and pen, what follows is what was released onto paper at around 2am 10.22.14

————–

If our lives were just a repetition then that’s all we would know, we wouldn’t differ from plant or the likes of things that are unknowingly content on their cycle of growth and death. The fact that we already have, and do soak up information about our universe is enough of an argument to say that we are not a stagnant being, but an ever evolving systematic organism.
                We are not stuck in a cycle we are on an outward spiral and as an evolving being we are never content, we are always looking to progress ourselves. Being stuck in a cycle is an absolute nightmare for us and our mental states, our minds are constantly expanding  and as we learn more of our universe and knowledge of self our conscious and reality expands with it.
————–
Some people are held back because they think that thinking differently could be ridiculed and shunned by others, that they would be thought of as ‘crazy’… these thought patterns are bullshit.
Everyone having their ‘own’ personality and thought process is what’s crazy, we are all made of the same genetic makeup, us as humans and us as a entity in this universe.  The fact that we all think we are individuals and actually act so to such an extent of creating wars to kill each other is one of the craziest things one could ever dream of.  Yet we do it anyway, maybe we know we would do it , or know we are doing it.
                Hypothetically if we were a whole we may have decided that separating into different organisms with ‘individual’ thought processes would be the fastest track to learning. Us wanting to kill each other because of this self imagined separation is just an unfortunate side effect of our division, one which in the grand scheme of living, discovery and learning doesn’t really matter.
                 If you live to the age of 10 or 100 you still play a part of being , but if a child (or anyone for that matter) is to die we all feel hurt, hearing of a death especially a young one seems like such a waste, it’s as if we loose a branch from a tree that could have gathered light, experience and photosynthesize information for the collective.
                We also think it’s a waste when we see people spending their lives in ways we don’t agree with, it could be somebody sitting in front of a play station smoking pot all day or a suit in an office counting earned money, both are wasting their lives if they are not conscious. If not conscious both will feel the underlying depression of an unfulfilled soul.

Time for more sleep.

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Near Death in Laos, Fumes and Flights

I leant over the bed to unplug my phone from its overnight charge, grabbing the cord attached to the phone, I start to spasm as heat pulses through me, wave after wave of electric  through me. My body feels like it wants to pop, my hand was now glued to the phone and cable as more current flowed through me, I start to let out a scream as the tension rises in my body causing my  back to arch and feet lift off the ground, my quivering contorted body was now balancing on the bed by my stomach. As my skin stretches over my cramping muscles I start to topple to the left, as I do so the cord tightens and pulls from the wall…. my body relaxes in an instant and I take a breath. A backpacker in the room jumps out of bed
‘WHAT THE FUCK JUST HAPPENED’
I was in Laos, a friend had paid for my flight here for a long weekend so that I could paint some walls at his hostel apart from the unexpected electrocution it was a dope weekend and being that the electrocution didn’t snuff me from existence it has to be forgotten and the culprit charger thrown into a deep trash sack.
The weekend went down like this, flights from BKK with Nok Air apparently involve two buses transfers making an hour flight a 4-5 hour journey, still better than a 10 hour bus. I arrived in Vientiane Laos where I last got arrested for painting and held in a cop shop for two days to, ironically, paint again.
My German friend Steve flew Tom (MateTwo) and myself to him in Laos and gave us 100 cans of quality paint then said…
“Go”
We had 3 days to paint and we smashed it, it was really fun having all the paint we needed and blank walls for days. Here are some pics.

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On the day of leaving I read some times wrong and missed my plane, classic, so had to catch the 10 hour bus I despise arriving at 7am then go to work at 9:30
———-
Bring on Christmas and New Year in Thailand, I had checked flights earlier in the year and was going to go back to New Zealand for Chrimbo and NY, then in December flight prices doubled, so I decided to go back in February when the flights were cheap.
In steps Mum and Dad. I’m not shy to say I love and miss my Mum and Dad to bits and them being in New Zealand will always draw me back t visit. The majority of my mates are spread around the world and usually come back to see their parents for Christmas also. My old man being the smart ass/Wise man that he is said this to me on Christmas eve.
“It’s better to come home for a short time over Christmas and be with your mates than for a longer time in February and hang out with yourself”
Well…
I was on a plane within 12 hours getting upgraded to business class and spent the next 7 days in New Zealand.
A few pics
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I got given two cameras while I was there by some close friends. One 35mm Fujica and one Canon 1000D DLSR.
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I don’t have the charger or battery for the Canon but here is the best pics from my first roll of film in the 35mm
The two sunrise pictures are the first sunrise of 2014
 35mm film cow mountain 2014 first light sunrise new zealand 2014 first light sunrise new zealand new zealand beach sun fishing new zealand beach sun
————-
I only spent a small amount of time in New Zealand because I wanted to get back to Thailand for a work meeting… yeah some might be thinking ‘work meeting! that’s hardly anti conformist’… well “HA” :D my jobs great at the moment so I didn’t want to miss it.. Lucky too because my work laid it out for us.
They flew all the big names in our company to Thailand and gathered a select few from the studio here in Bangkok and put us up in a 5 star hotel for the weekend, dat shit was plush! When I first went into the room I thought I had it wrong, there was no bed ! It took me a while to find that there was actually a bedroom attached to my private lounge and study.
Vie Hotel v hotel bangkok Vie Hotel v hotel
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Writing, Photography and Riots

Alright here we go, another blog entry even though I said I was going to leave it for a while.
 I have taken up writing again, so after slowing down for a few months expect some colorful stories of the exploits and shenanigans here from me in the land of smiles.
I’ve actually been writing a lot, I now write monthly for a Nightlife magazine called ‘NINE’ it is about Street Art, Graffiti and anything street. I have had an article out in the local rag as well as one coming out in Invasion, Asia’s graffiti Magazine, so I figure, why leave my blog to rot.
Some major changes have been happening for me over here, I mentioned one in the last blog, I now have a job, it’s a job. I had forgotten what one was.
I am art director for a studio of 170 Animators and Illustrators, I’ve been hired to raise the quality of athletics and movements in the advertisements we make for Coca-Cola, Lays, Corona and such.  Anyway, if you read my last blog you know about this new job already.
What was I getting at?.. ah yes… life with a job.. The first thing I noticed is that I had no time to notice that I had no time!  When I was freelance things were more difficult, I couldn’t spend money and was working 7 days… but 5 days a week working for someone else, well… if the job wasn’t fun, I don’t think I would invest so much time into it. It sounds selfish maybe, but hey, life’s what you choose.
Anyway, Lucky for me.. the job’s sweet.
So what have I been doing with all this new money from a steady job?……….. eating mostly, but I have started Thai language lessons and I can afford a few beers here and there. I don’t need to sacrifice eating to buy paint anymore so that’s great,  I have got a fixed gear bicycle so I can burn around parks with my goon bag.
Also photography. I have always been into photography;  if you were reading some of my older blogs from the time I was in central America I’m sure you were in absolute awe of my amazing photography skills … most probably you weren’t, HA! :D  but that’s fine, I like to take photos so with my new pay check I started searching for a new picture maker. Cameras these days are dope! The photos look so good, my Buddha they are crispy.
I checked some price tags, threw up on my chest a little and realised that that this dream is snuffed out before it began. I close that door and look for others; I asked myself “what do I want from photography?”
What do I want from my images?  I want something different, I want images that I can make into paintings to put on walls. I find looking for images to paint on Google horrible, I just know I’m entering the same key words as the next guy and unless I doctor the photo I feel I am only doing half the art work by painting it.. the other half is in the hands of the photographer.
Reality check though, I can’t afford a fancy pancy camera, so I had to look at other ways to get some images.
While researching I read about ‘film soup’. A cowboy way of creating effects on analog film. In a nutshell it’s getting 35mm film and throwing it in boiling water, dish washing liquid, vinegar and anything that you have in your kitchen, let simmer for a day or so, dry it out and shoot…
This sounds so sick… I’m keen.
I went out and brought myself a shitty plastic camera. This camera is beyond shitty, it’s from 1960-70 period and was hardly even sold, they given out as gifts and prizes at fairs and such.  But being so shitty and analog there is some cool stuff possible
Here are a few photos from the first film (note I haven’t tried film soup yet)

1467334_564583540291604_1228788960_n 1456088_562276790522279_676727610_n 1390472_562276743855617_951406216_n 603885_564583530291605_1328323569_n 1483149_564583533624938_1881507995_n 1479468_562276753855616_1762827848_n 1467404_562276750522283_654602330_n Matt Diamond photography lomo policeMatt Diamond photography  lomography Matt Diamond photography thailand bangkok lomo lomography 35mm

———————
Meanwhile in Bangkok, there are armies of civilians being rallied in an effort to drive the prime minister out of government. Dude, they all camp on the motorways I use to get home. Bastards, ha, as if traffic wasn’t bad enough here in Bkk.
10,000,00 people ended up being rallied and it was like a big antigovernment street party. We got involved with some graffiti……as we would.

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———————
But other than that inconvenience and the few days when it started to get violent and I had to ride my way through tear gas, police and mobs it didn’t really affect me.
Unfortunately it did affect the four who lost their lives and the 80 people who were injured. RIP

 

 I also got a mention in New Zealand Artist Mag:

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Samui, lao, BKK , Paint, Bodies, Jobs.. and stuff

I ask myself, has it been to long, or not long enough between blogs?
I haven’t felt the urge to write a new blog for months honestly I feel it’s because my progression in the direction of a life of art seems like less action to write about than the action of a traveller in central America of in the Indian ocean. Although to me, its still just as exciting as getting robbed at gun point or smashed into the reef in Indonesia.
Still I feel like I should update you on whats going on, the blogs won’t be coming week by week anymore, but they will keep coming.
Where to start? The last blog was in April and was comprised of a few months also, I had just come back from Samui when I wrote it and funnily enough I’m in the same situation now.
‘Nikki Beach’ on Koh Samui island invited me down to paint at their Arts and Fashion weekend, if you were following this blog when I first came to Thailand, this event was one of my first as a traveling artist.
The weekend was great, the hosts down there are amazing, they put me back in the cliff top Villa overlooking a private beach. From the cliffs I could lounge in the infinity pool, bask in the heat of the jacuzzi or just enjoy the huge premise made of granite, wood and rock.
All sounds ideal but when I got there I collapsed into my bed, I had been up most of the night prior packing my things and body painting three models at Bash [Bangkok’s upscale nightclub]… the last few weeks have been absolutely flat out for me, in good ways of course.
I’ve been doing a few canvas’s and working on realism with spray cans, while doing so I’ve discovered the control, colour range and superiority of Montana colours. Unfortunately with quality comes a price tag, the one shop that sells them in Bangkok has a monopoly and cans are nearly 4 times more expensive than the cheap stuff.

So… I have really put my self in a strange position here. For the last year and a half I have been surviving … just .. on selling canvas’s and doing commissions. I have had no problem with that, merely surviving is ok with me as long as I’m able to do what I really want to do.

But now… I can’t afford to do what I want to do ..

Time for change
I decided to get a  job and the first thing I stumbled into was a job Teaching English. Teaching isn’t so bad, I worked only a few hours a week so I still had time to paint and kids (some of them) are hilarious, but after settling into it, for me it really felt like work, I was something I HAD to do and I didn’t really enjoy it..
I gathered a few pay packets, quit then started looking elsewhere. At first I thought maybe I could just work harder at the commission stuff. I teamed up with a fellow painter and friend I live with and started putting together a portfolio. I had done it all before so knew how much work would be involved but unfortunately my partner in crime didn’t. Things just weren’t going to work. I started going through the catalogue of jobs and trades I’ve dabbled in over my life and decided to try for an Animation job [I used to be an Animator in NZ making kids cartoons]
A friend of mine, lucky for me, worked at a big studio in town and arranged for an interview. One thing led to another, me and the boss  hit it off and I became the Art Director for a studio of 170 people.
So far so good here, the job is enjoyable, the people nice and the Animation level is high. My job is to critique every scene that goes through the studio on selected movies. Our goal is to raise the quality of film and advertisements that the studio puts.
I’m working 9:30-6:30 now so with that comes a full months pay, so no more stress about money for a while and I can afford to by the paint I want. Downside, of course is lack of time to produce the amount of work I was before. I will try though.
A brighter note though is that I can even afford to go have drinks with mates these days ;) Amazing

 

Social Media … My facebook ( Matt Diamond Expressive ) reached over 1000 people liking and following my art this month so I decided to clean out the closet and put on a sale of my canvasses around my studio to say thank you.
The sale ran for 48 hours and 6 canvasses sold. Thanks everyone I hope you enjoy the canvas’s

 

To be honest lots of other things have happened but better than chatting about them I’ll show them in photo’s and everybody likes photos and vids ;)

A fire extinguisher I modified to shoot paint

MDE and MATETWO

MDE X PROSE X MATETWO

Oil painting

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4gti-qBRJN4
Enjoy
Cheers all
MDE
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Breaking chains – China-Cambodia-Koh Samui-Khao Yai-Bangkok

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I’ve started writing this post three times now and as I look through what I’ve written I know its not post worthy. The last two months have been up and down like I would have never imagined, I have had the least money I’ve had since traveling, my bank has hit me up about my overdraft, I have traveled around 3 countries for work eating from 7/11 one week then eating Waguu burgers the next. A month of contrasts. 
 Sideshow kuts (SSK) has been good to me these last few months, we traveled to Cambodia and Macau (China), they did their DJ thing and I did some exhibition painting on stage for punters entertainment. 

Cambodia was a trip, our event was in Phnom Phen, the capital whose history is as dark as coal. For those who don’t know, 1975 Pol Pot lead the Khmer Rouge Communist forces began a vicious four year regime resulting in the heinous genocide of Cambodian people. 21% of the Cambodian population were killed (aprox 1.7 million) as Pol Pot tried to start life again at ‘year zero’. All this was hidden from the world as the Pol Pot and his regime had closed the boarders.  

People who were to be ‘cleaned’ (killed) were all people who were not farmers or did not work on the land, people were tortured and killed for such things as having hands that were to soft from not using manual tools.  
As you can imagine most of the city folk were lost.  
While we were in Cambodia we visited the ‘Killing fields’ where most of the city was killed. Mounds of earth surrounded pits where bodies were thrown and between our feet in the hard earth shards of bone and teeth could be seen. Every few months grounds keepers collect all the remains that have made their way up through the earth.
It was a heavy place to be in, a weight pressed on my chest through out the day as I tried to come to grips with what humans are capable of.
While in Cambodia i linked up with a charity that teaches underprivileged kids confidence through skating . I painted this mural at their skatepark

China… well… not so much China but an island off in called Macau, this island has its own currency and is rammed with casinos. People call Macau ‘Vegas of the east’. As an old Portuguese colony Macau has an interesting architecture and feeling in the old town, new town however is Casino, Casino, Casino. Glitz, Glamour and broken dreams.
 
This is the side we were working on.

The Hotel we were working at .. 38th floor lounge

 Our venue was the Altira, a 38 floor 6 star hotel/casino. The Altira lounge on the 38th floor was were I would paint and where the boys would DJ, they put on a good night… the place was so ritz, lucky for me I get to wear shitty paint covered clothes under the cliché  that ‘he’s an artist’ its aloud because honestly I don’t have any shoes with out paint on the currently, this isn’t a place I would normally go but was nice none the less. Everyone enjoyed watching me paint and the finished product, so that was cool also. 

Back to Thailand for only a few days and then I jumped on a plane to see my friends at Nikki Beach Koh Samui, I worked for these guys last year at their ‘Art and Fashion’ weekend. Then I did a graffiti mural, this time I would body paint models that would float around Nikki Beach’s anniversary white party.

Apon arrival I was met by the manager his girl friend and Brian Peeler, we chatted for a while then Eddy (the manager) said ‘C’mon then, lets go’.
Last time I worked for these guys I said 50m down the road at another hotel, this time I wasn’t really expecting anything, if I was lucky I guess I would have got to say at Nikki Beach.  
‘Where are we going?’ I ask. Brian perked up at this ‘DUDE, we are staying at their Villa…. its ridiculous’
 And so the 5 star living continued, here are some pictures 

My job was to body paint 3 models

Thanks for the hospitality guys, it was amazing  
—-

Back from the island and off into the jungle, I head out with my mate Ned paint a climbing wall in Khao Yai

 Back in Bangkok and after a few months of having no money at all I have a little to play with.. I buy paint, I buy a motorbike, I pay off my overdue rent, I thank god I live where the best food is cheap and start looking for some work again 
 — 
From the guy I brought the motorbike off I scored some work building and flooring, stuff I have done in a previous life (scotland an england), we also lined up some jobs re-coning chairs for bars and putting up shelves in condos.. not to bad. Lucky I have the bike at this stage because I have been having to ride to the other side of the city and back everyday .
 Here is some more art and jobs I’ve been up to also



available for purchase

commissioned tattoo.. ‘i want the grateful dead skeleton uncle sam uppercuting a space monkey’

 

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Adventure tourism me – and more MDE Street art

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When I landed back in Thailand work has come my way via my friend Ned. The work is for an adventure group called ‘Wild Planet’, the same group I worked with a little last year.
This time we were to head west to Kaeng Krachan, Thailands biggest national park. Kaeng Krachans 3000 square kilometers of lakes and jungle is home to reptiles, elephants an tigers but because of the rich schools we were working with we stayed  staying at a huge resort far away from tigers and elephants. The resort was on the edge of the national park and with 3 baseball diamonds, a 15km long golf course and about 200 bungalows was quite an epic place.

Over the next four days I ran 200 kids through low rope courses that we set up between trees, it was basically an confidence builder for the kids. The Wild Planet crew were awesome and the kids were a laugh too. One kid cracked me up in particular, being rich city kids they don’t grow up with much nature that was stiflingly clear when one girl had to use a tree to help balance herself at the start of a tight rope suspended between two trees. She put her hand on the tree to balance, her gaze snapped to her hand on the tree pulling it away in the same instant ‘ewwww’ she said, ‘i’m not touching that tree’, is it possible to be allergic to nature.  
Back to Bangkok for a day and then off on another job with Wild Planet. This time we went down to their lodge on the edge of Khao Yai national park, another lush scenic mountainous jungle area in thailand.
My job this time was … mountain bike instructor.

 

For three days we worked our way through 120 kids by having a different group everyday and cycled 20km a day. The course we had mapped out wasn’t to hard but resulted in every kid getting wet and muddy. Super fun. 

Back to Bangkok only one day again and then I get the 12 hour bus down to Phuket to see my brother. Down here I was to touch up the paint on his boat, I only needed to paint 1/3 of it so it was done in a day.

We partied with some friends for a night there in Patong then I’m back on the bus to Bangkok… at this stage I’m pretty exhausted.
At home in Bangkok, I get back to work painting… below there are some pictures and a video of me painting the sky rise late last year, I would like to thank all the people involved with the filming and rigging, John lee for not dropping me and knowing how to tie knots. Sasha for editing and filming to such a high standard. Meow, Mike and Jimbo for filming and passing me paint, with out everyone there on the day this couldn’t have happend .

Thanks

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DmKVmE8Wiqk&feature=youtu.be
Also here are some of my latest paintings, you can get live updates of my work on my facebook Matt Diamond Expressive

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New Years in the Islands then three weeks in NZ

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I swung around the back of the truck running as fast as I could, the dog had already caught up and pushed into my inside leg as it came down to make contact with the ground, my foot rolled uncomfortably and my next step on it, shot a warm flush of pain up my leg.

I had only been back in New Zealand 5 minutes, not even long enough to put my bags in the house,  and I had injured myself. The dog, a slender Doberman had his extra long tongue drooping out the left side of his mouth and what seemed like a big dumb smile smeared across its face, its stump of a tail wagged furiously wondering why I had stopped playing. This was the beginning of my three weeks back in New Zealand.

I was aiming to get back to New Zealand for christmas and New Year but work called, lately in Thailand I have been getting more and more work painting murals for people. Over New Years I headed south to Koh Panang, Thailands notorious Full Moon Party island. On Koh Panang there was is a resort called the ‘Beach Village’ and its there that they hold ‘Rhythm and Sands’ a monthly party on their private beach.

The location was epic, and the party the same. I didn’t end up painting live at their event but hope to be going down in a month or so to give them a show. What I did manage to do was put some life into their blank white walls around the resort. Here are a few pictures of the work
 
Some street art I also did in december – Bangkok:

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Landing in New Zealand after a 18 hour flight I dragged myself into the domestic terminal to catch my smaller plane north, to Whangarei. Fighting to keep my eyes open due to a Valume I had taken on the previous flight I took comfort in the fact that when got on this next flight I had 40 minutes to sleep. That was the plan until the plane took off, being such a small plane we flew low and I could see my home country from coast to coast, it had been away two years and I was lapping up the familiar mountain ranges and coasts.. I wasn’t able to sleep due to the fact that my face was glued to the window from take off to landing.
While in New Zealand I still wanted to continue painting, but spray paint in New Zealand is 8 times the price of what it is in Thailand and unfortunately just to expensive for me to paint as big as I like. I put a message out of Facebook asking if anyone wanted things painted for them while was back. My inbox flooded with proposals, two vans, a music studio, games room, table, a soon to be born babies room and more. Basically I wanted to do them all but because I was only there for 3 weeks only a few would be possible.
I painted a friends table and another friends soon to be born child, the children’s room was one I really wanted to do because as a young child my room was also painted with bright cartoons, I loved it.
Here are the finished products.

Also while home I painted with a close friend Josh Motera at a festival called ‘Chronophonium’. The festival was deep in the Tangihua forest, a totally isolated spot in a mountain range. Upon arrival we were hot from the drive and decided we would try find a river to swim in, a short walk through the bush led us to a small rocky waterfall where a few people from the festival were already bathing. One of them was my old flatmate Eli. We jumped in the fresh water, bathed and caught up for a while then headed to the festival.
Here is some pictures
The festival was really good, anyone in New Zealand in January next year I would recommend going to this, it was sold out because the clearing in the forest is only so big but with the 300 people there and over 20 bands, it was a really good party.
Three weeks went to fast in New Zealand, I stayed out at the beach most of the time, hanging out around my parents as much as I could, I have always missed immensely while traveling.
 Over all the trip was filled with delicious foods, catch ups with friends I hadn’t seen in years and the stunning beauty of New Zealand. Great trip.
Apologies to people I didn’t get to see, there will be a next time :)

Extra Note:
I managed to do some street art while there, here are the pictures and some videos :) enjoy


Back to Thailand..

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Sailing, broken bones and hanging of buildings to paint

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Where to start…

 

Briefly, I flew down to the south of Thailand to see my brother on his boat (since money is still an issue for me these flights were a very kind, early christmas presents from my Mum and Dad xoxo )
Krabi was our destination and what a destination it was! The islands in Thailand always surprise me in their beauty. Krabi is know for its world class climbing, this is because huge limestone cliffs shoot straight up out of the earth and tower above white sanded beaches.

 Adam Baker, Lanz and I made our way to Krabi town then got a long tail boat out of the bay, 15 minutes later we saw Johns boat Rhombus nestled in a bay surrounded with cliffs. Jumping aboard we called John who said he was on shore. Eager to cool off from our journey we jumped into the water, then with surfboards we swum into shore.
Seeing my bro after long breaks is always a thrill, but this time had a little pain involved also. I saw my brother, we said our hellos then noticed everyone was walking a slack line (a tight rope made from a truck strap suspended between two trees). I jumped on with confidence having done it before but fell off after a few steps…luck wasn’t with me, the slack line flicked up taking one of my toes with it .
I now had a broken toe with-in the first 5 minutes of being there, ting tong (Thai for Stupid)
It was a good break though, it seemed to be in the middle of the toe so it didn’t hurt when I walked, it just went black and swelled up doing its thing with out being much of a worry to me. The only major down side was I couldn’t climb while I was there.. no biggie.
 After a few days exploring the island and enjoying being in the water again we set sail for Koh Phi Phi. For all of you who were following my blog when I first sailed to thailand, you will know that over the last Christmas and new year period the Rhombus and Canela yachts were moored at koh phi phi for almost a month. The place hadn’t changed much and was still a party every night.
This time how ever it had lost its luster because the four months prior we have all been around people unlike before when we were sailing up the coast of indonesia.

 Heading back to Phuket after this, we got the boat up on the hard where it will stay until april next year when John will continue sailing around the world. A few nights in Phuket and ‘wam bam’, we were all back in Bangkok.
John had brought his climbing gear with him and we conjured up an amazing plan.

We found an 18 story building and sized it up. It was big.. and its blank wall faced 8 lanes of motorway traffic.
I wanted to paint on it, so we went to check it out.
 
We rushed around town getting extra ropes, another harness and carabina’s for the next few days
It was now friday, John left for australia saturday night, so this was basically our only chance. Getting there at 10 in the morning we rigged everything and John started to hang out the 17th story window getting in position to Blay me from the top…
Security…

They came jogging up the stairs obviously out of breath but started yelling at us in Thai. Luckly my friend Cartoon was there to help translate. In thailand the King and Queen are very active, always going around town seeing people doing things. Out of respect for the king it is not aloud for people to be above him and/or be looking down on him when he visits a place. We of course were 18 stories up and the King was turning up very soon to the building next to us… Bad news.

We pulled John back into the building and cleared away our things, the security needed us to leave ASAP but in amazing thai style they said that at 6pm or tomorrow we can come back and continue to paint the building.
I love this place.
We left everything rigged up but took the expensive things with us then came back on sun set. Here is a few photos, the video will be up soon on Mattdiamondexpressive.com or facebook MattdiamondexpressiveFacebook

 

 
 Thailand had two big holidays lately also, one called Loy Krathong and the other was the Kings birthday (Fathers Day).
Loy Krathong is a holiday where people make a crown of banana leaf around a slice of banana tree trunk then float it out on the river and make a wish. It was quite a spectacle and the lanterns let into the sky also were amazing.

This is a Krathong, however these elaborate ones didn’t get put in the river

This Krathong is made from bread, candles and incense are lit on top of the krathong and the theory is that the longer your flame stays alight the more chance your dream has of coming true

The Kings birthday is a big holiday, thousands of people waited out side the grand palace to see the king and everyone in the city wore yellow, the kings colour.
 Thats all for now, here is some more art including a wall I painted at Bangkoks Music Festival ‘LUSH’

-Sold-

Lush Music Fesitval, the painting to the right is what i painted on the night

 

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Long awaited

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Last week I talked about the graffiti war that started and ended within a week. The thai boys have made up this video of the repaint, it turned out pretty cool

This last week my heads been in turmoil, I’m trying to figure out whats next for me. I have a need to survive, a need to create and ambitions to do it in my own way.  As weeks go by I am discovering in detail what I like and dislike, what works for me and what doesn’t, what is a waste of time and money and whats productive and positive to my growth. The problem being that I’m walking on such thin ice I feel that if I put a foot in the wrong direction it may mean failure. So every week or so I re-assess.
 This week I have pushed away a few projects that weren’t going to lead anywhere and started thinking of other ways to go about thing.

Tony Jaa and I from last weeks ‘Tony Jaa pride of thailand Exhibition’ .. This photo was taken after we did a live graffiti and Tony did a muay thai dance

I will be making limited prints available of my popular artworks in the coming weeks for those who couldn’t afford the original or missed out of the purchase of it. I will also be making prints of street art I have done and there will be special framed prints with the original sketches for sale also.
 I feel this is a move in the right direction because my goals for the coming months is to paint bigger and bigger on walls, making limited edition prints of such works means I can afford the cans to pull off such works.

This week I was lucky enough to be approached by a videographer called Sergio, currently he is compiling a documentary on street art in Thailand (Bangkok predominately).
We had met up previously and had a chat, he was as keen as I to get out, get painting, and film.
We met on a Thursday night and waking up at 5 the next day we shot for his film. He put together a small video as a preview to his documentary.

 

 —
 This week I met some interesting people including the importer of a asian spray can called Kolour, Mister Bows (a well respected Thai Graffiti writer) the Kolour rep and myself went for a paint in the blistering Bangkok heat.
 We painted by a BTS station (sky train) out west a little.
 Here are some pictures of our works

 ———–
The Thai Graffiti scene being so friendly has ample perks, my friend Mister Bows, was also going to be filmed for graffiti documentary mentioned earlier. He called me up and asked if i would like to paint with him when he gets filmed… of course i would :)
Here are some pictures

 And the video

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Graffiti War and Matt Diamond Expressive in 3D

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These two weeks have been eventful to say the least, I did a visa run to Lao and back so I can stay another month is Thailand. While there me and two friends got arrested for street art and held in the police station for over 30 hours. I don’t want to elaborate on this now as I managed to get some gorilla video footage of the event and we are currently in the process of making a short film about it.

Police Chief – Vientiane

Mean while in Bangkok, one of our house mates had been indulging on to many pharmaceuticals and recreational drugs and flipped out, he wasn’t coherent as he tried to throw his girl friend out off the fourth floor of our house and it took 4 men to take him down. It wasn’t pretty, the friend concerned ended up getting his face split open in three places and all the housemates present were mortified by the events. He is now down south and sounds like he is doing much better.
——–
 On the streets of Bangkok there has been a grievous hate crime and line crossed in the graffiti world. A known graffiti spot that gets freshened up ever year due to graffiti events there was attacked. The spot consists of a huge empty lot with a cinder block wall surrounding it, every year a local graffiti magazine/writers and artists get together and give the cinder block wall a fresh new coat of art.
The latest even had just happened a month ago so everything was looking prime.
‘Go Play’ magazine covered the event here
GoPlay African Graffiti Meet
You may remember Cece and my pieces from a previous blog post
 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DTjvztOnaSw

Photo by GoPlay

Last week a friend Toon and I were on our way to do some street painting and drove past the graffiti lot… some one has thrown up quick graffiti pieces on every wall.
 There are certain rules in the the some what lawless game of street art and graffiti and one main one is to never cover another persons work unless your work will be better.
 This guy putting 5 minute throw ups on works that took others hours is a huge insult and resulted in an uproar of angry Thai graffiti and street artists
This was the mess he made
Coad and Muders mess 
 Retaliation was hard and fast from the thai community, the two graffiti writers where cut off from buying any graffiti supplies from any of the local graffiti shops and everyone went back that week and painted over all his work
Everyone did new artwork and the places is looking like new again with one added wall just for Coad and Muder (the writers that committed the hate crime)

Photo by GoPlay

—————–
Last weekend I traveled down to Pattaya for some bodypainting work with my Crew Sideshow Kuts.
They are a group of Dj’s and prodcers who have a syndicate around the world, I’m on board as there street artist and body painter.
 The gig in Pattaya was at the Pullman Hotel, a very classy establishment that has a beach club. Sideshow kuts provided the music and I was to body paint.
During the week I was contacted by a guy named ‘Al – the 3d guy’  who makes the ‘Explore3D Travel TV’ Show. He was interested in what I’ve been doing and wanted to film me at the Pattaya gig, publicity works well for everyone, Sideshow kuts, The Pullman hotel and myself so I was happy to oblige.
He brought two models along with him and a crew for filming in 3D , over a few hours I painted the girls while he ducked and weaved around the club and my painting area filming all he could.
 Afterwards we got together for a short interview and that was that….
Soon we will all be seeing ‘Matt Diamond Expressive’ in 3D, I personally cant wait
His 3d Youtube channel is here.. but you need glasses to watch
When the Tv show is public I will post it on this blog
———
I have to cut this blog short because tonight is a big night for me, I have been lucky enough to be chosen to be in the ‘Pride of the Nation – Tony Jaa’ Exhibition. An exhibition in honor of Tony Jaa, Thailand’s Bruce Lee
 I will have two paintings shown tonight one large and one 30 x 20 cm

 Best of luck to you all … see you next week

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