Interview: JEL DGS IHS

What up man, thanks for the love, lets start off by letting the people know who you are and what crews you rep?

I’m Jel from the Ink Heads Crew.

I remember seeing your stuff up since like 96, when did you start writing and how did you get you name?

I got my tag when I was in elementary school in 5th grade thats around 1989. So since I love the letter (J), I picked the tag: JEED. I didn’t know Deed at that time. I wrote it in pencil all over the school, Deed wasn’t too happy. So I come to school the next day and see my tag crossed out by Deed. I had a fear that this guy Deed was a big strong dude and I was gonna get beat up. Well it turns out that a friend of mine named Lenin lived close to Deed. Lenin also had a tag, he wrote LEED (and we had another friend who wrote Seed). So Deed had a talk with him and told him “Yo, you and your boys can’t write jeed or leed or seed.” So Lenin asked him “What should I write then?” So Deed gave him the tag: Del. So Lenin comes to me and tells me “Yo, Deed told me that we can’t write JEED or LEED or SEED. He told me to write DEL.” So I tell my boy Lenin. I’m going to write JEL”. So then we all had names to write so we went writing all over, it was Jel, Del, and Sel. 

 

How about your crews, how did you get in those?

Deed is the founder of DGS Da Graf Staff and NCT None Can Test. In 1993 Edec put me down with the Ink Heads.

Who were some of the writers and crews that influenced you when you were coming up?

AIM Crew was a big influence growing up in westchester, Meer, Dekay, Quatro. 

What part of Miami do you rep? Also, what are some of your favorite parts or spots of Dade to paint?

I represent Miami and love to paint all over. No favorite spots. 

Would you Rather piece or bomb?

I enjoy both a lot 

Ive seen your stuff on trains to canvases whats your favorite thing to paint?

I just like painting. I enjoy it, It takes me into another world. 

What’s your favorite paint to use? back in the days and now?

Krylon was my favorite back in the days, but now days with all the variates it can be hard to choose but I mostly use 94. 

What music do you jam to while painting?

I rock old DJ Craze mix tape from the 90’s, O’l Dirty Bastard, and some times I bring back the old Cuban roots.

What’s the best spot you’ve hit?

One of the spots I can say give me the most feedback was on the 836 towards the beach.

Do you prefer the traditional NY shit or the wild-style Cali shit?

I personally like  people to be able to read it. I like to reach the people out of our culture and they too get to know who you are.

Have you been roped? if so, how?

Thank god I’ve never had that problem.

Any good chase stories you’d like to share?

My craziest story is when I had to swim in the Okeechobee  Canal after getting chased for bombing some trains. 

What do you think of the gaff scene on the internet?

I guess now and days its all about technology so it’s a good thing I guess more people get to see your work out there.

Thought’s on Art Basel?

I think it is a cool event you get to enjoy different artist from around the world. And it’s also a good time to get your work out there so others can see it as well.

I saw that you just had a show over in Wynwood and that your work actually includes “The Buff”, how did all that come about?

To me I feel that one of the reasons why I stopped graff in the late 90’s was due to the  buff itself but in 2003 I came back and did the I95 wall and I guess the itch was back, I then did a couple of walls here and there but wasn’t really able to paint how I wanted. I always  acknowledged  the buffs in my community and realized  how the city created an art form by trying to destroy another and that really made me intrigued!! So I was able to do both the graffiti I love and a style     that catches my eye. 

Any words of wisdom for the noobs/toys?

Not much just do your own thing and don’t hate.

How did you get you fix back in the day?

12oz prophet, Can Control, Video Graff

Where can people check out more of your work?

jelmartinez.com

Shout outs?

To You, Deed, Edec, Shie 

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