"Go big or go home ese." Sand One on corn, trucks, and the hustle. Interview inside.
It's difficult to pass over the larger than life females Sand One draws without taking a pause to check them out. They're vibrant, playful, sexy and energizing. And they're coming from a pint sized Los Angeles artist with a big appetite for life.
On Graffiti and Painting
What is the meaning of your name?
I saw a man Sand Blasting a wall it looked pretty fun! The name Sand was born, now every time I paint i think .."i'm sand blasting your wall"!
How do you organize your paintings? Do you sketch before?
I do street art every week during the day, and at night i paint canvases and sketch. I sketch before I paint a canvas but on walls, I sketch directly, freestyle homie!
You do a lot of female characters. How do you maintain variety?
I always change my characters depending on the environment and location they are placed in, hair color, skin tone, eye color, and clothing change in all my cartoons, my girls are always hugemongous, its empowering to me, being able to do 10 times larger than me cartoons, at times when i have a small spaces to paint I have to force myself to paint small, i'm very short so I have this short man complex, I have to paint huge, "Go big or go home ese!"
Do you need something particular to be creative?
I need nutella chocolate spread, gummi bears, Thai Food, Tea, Corn on the cob, an extensive pallate of spraycans and acrylics and some too short, snoop dogg, and old spanish love jams..all these elements fuel my creativity.
Whats your perfect spot for the perfect graffiti?
Trucks! They are smooth and travel around, mobile walls! Also corn carts.
You do a lot of legal work so how does this affect your opinion on the ephemeral nature of graffiti on the streets (up one day, down the next)?
I try to approach areas where I feel that my art will remain permanent,i hate to see it leave and disappear behind white buff, I paint for my self pleasure, and for the pleasure of the viewer. I feel overwhelmed when I see a freeway spot one day and then its gone..it took guts, drive, and fearlessness for that person to run through the freeway exposing themselves to being arrested. Mad props to al the hardcore illegal heads!
Do you feel the work you are doing is something that should be preserved or just stay ephemeral?
Preserved! I want my girls to be valued in all neighborhoods they are in. Keeping in mind that I paint my characters based on the surroundings i would like for them to not be erased!
What advice would you give to up and coming graffiti writers and artists out there?
paint, dont listen to negative critics, seek mentors that are worth looking up to, never doubt or undermind your self. Never give too much compliments to artist above you, they will intake all the props and leave you with nothing but a side ways look, sketch draw paint every day, whatever you do seek to be the best, not just another from the bunch..i'm still seeking.
Can you name a few artists you would really like to collaborate with in the future?
You worked with Atomik on your Art of Basketball billboard, can you talk about that collaboration and the process you two used to produce that?
Me and Atomik (buk 50,tsc 28) are from two completely different cities, he is from Miami and I am from L.A., so the mixture of colors and painting techniques are completely different. His colors and letter structure compliment my cartoons. We work with numerous colors, which go great with my girls,a nd my girls give his letters a touch of grace! The Art of Basketball project is a true example of our collaborations, he painted the background letters,and the green tentacles around my girl, with out his touch my girl would be a sad loner.
Your age definitely has not stopped you from finding work and collaborating with other artists. You seem fearless. Are there any stories that have contributed to that fearlessness?
I come from the streets of East Los Angeles California, typical stereotypical city, join a gang, get pregnant and smoke some narcotics. I feel the need represent all the females that, like me, don't have access to economic stability, to all the females that their dreams were put on hold due to life struggles. I want to dream and chase after an unknown future. I dont want my mother to grow old working on a daily low income check and never travel outside of Los Angeles. I want to see more to life that what I have now. My hard working mother and my living conditions are what pushes me to have no fear as I stand alone in my 5 inch body. Next to someone that can open doors for me. I got no shame, I am hungry,I want more !
What attracts you to Miami as a destination to paint, and what differences do you find between painting in Los Angeles and painting in Miami?
Miami is a great playground to paint in. The possibilities are endless, abandoned buildings, houses, walls waiting to be graffitizised. There's not much heavy competition, everybody is more welcoming and acception, in L.A we bite each others heads! aarrghh!!
We've heard some other stories from artists about Miami's Art Basel, any story you can share with the FatCap readers?
Art Basel is the shit! Its a writers reunion. Every writer from all over the world comes to Miami to play! The vives are so positive, everyone wants to show their skills, I want to show mines too! I want to stomp on all the girls that are being weak painting wack stuff. I hate walking around Basel, so i hitchhike from one corner to another :). Sometimes Im too into the wall i dont even eat! During Basel I sleep only fir 4 hours,Im a crazy painter.
You're highly influenced by your culture and your Latina roots. If you could direct a video for one artist, dead or alive, who would it be?
Selena, Nicky Minaj, Gwen Stefani, Lil Kim and, Jenni Rivera, I can see them all being turned into "Sand Chicks"
What would you pitch them conceptually?
They will all be turned into my characters but with their signature styles.
What is your favorite tv show, movie, musician and/or book?
No tv! too short hustling music! and Anne Rice Vampire Chronicles
Where are your favorite travel destinations, and why?
Haven't travel much..but i am looking for good food, paint and surfaces.
Do you have a favorite quote?
"Go Big or Go Home"
If you could bring to life any fictional character from a book or movie, whom would you choose?
Jessica Rabbit, shes hot.
Suppose for a moment that you are truly colorblind: all you can see is black and white. Then one day you wake up to find you can now see one color. Which color would you want it to be? And why?
green,because the world is green, green is peace, its relaxing.
If you could create a memorial to your city or country in a city park, what would the memorial be? Where would it be?
The East L.A city hall, I would paint the whole building all around with my pretty cartoons in memorial to all the fallen souls that have been killed by the hands of drugs, gangs, graffiti and violence.
There's so much life has in store ahead of you, where do you see yourself in 10 years? 20 years?
I want to be well traveled, I wish for recognition as a prolific street artist, I wish to have painted with each great artist of my time, I want to be at a higher and better place than where I find myself at the moment.