Archive for the ‘alleys’ Category

graffiti words on a wall, black sharpie, Save us

It’s early April and we’re all tired of winter but it lingers on.   How are you coping?  Yes, you!

Cameron House mural on Queen Street West, woman in pink blouse is looking beyond the window to a man walking past.

below: Is this wishful thinking?  or maybe just a little too optimistic?

chalkboard sign on the sidewalk outside of a store on Queen Street West, sign says Spring is here

below: Spring is in the air?  They forgot the question mark.   Is the cat reacting to the disconnect between the sign and the reality? … or maybe  its expression is because it’s just realized that it’s sitting beside a book about Justin Trudeau?

sign in a store window that says spring is in the air. also some stuffed animals

These were the only signs of spring that I saw yesterday as I walked although I noticed that someone was trying to cheer things up.  Not sure how long these have been sitting outside.  They’re looking a little weather worn and grubby.  Hope may be wearing a bit thin?

small leafless shrub in the front yard of a house, small yellow fake flowers strung through the branches, the flowers are old and dirty.

below: Elsewhere yellow birdies were playing hockey.

two women are having their picture taken in front of Uber5000's mural about Toronto in the winter, little yellow birdies playing hockey.

Spring was elusive but what I did spot were a couple of stikmen that I don’t remember seeing before.   I also noticed more smiley hearts popping up in unexpected places again. First, some of the hearts…

smiley heart on pink wall with red spray paint lines around

pink smiley heart on a wall with lots of other colours, street art

small black line drawing of a heart on a metal pipe on a wall, pipe has been painted orange and red to blend in with a street art piece

below: Cool Woodstock makes an appearance too (a yellow birdie of a different kind).  I don’t think she’s too happy to have a bird sitting on her head.

street art on garages, a small yellow Woodstock cartoon character with black sunglasses, on top of a black drawing on white of a girl screaming, a little smiley heart and the word love is beside her ear.

below: The guitar player is now playing with heart.

part of mural of a guitar playing in shades of orange and red. A white piece of paper has been stuck on his chest, with a black smiley heart on it.

And the stikmen….

a broken stikman painted greyish blue on a greyish blue door where the paint is peeling and the wood is fraying

stikman on a white and blue wall

below: Instead of wooden, this stikman is a drawing in a frame.

picture of a green stikman in a little frame, on a wood gate, by a black and white stencil of a man's head

below: Is that a little orange head of a stikman in the bent frame?

….. and then back inside for some warmth!

interior of a coffee shop, people sitting at tables, people sitting on the bar by the window, a TTC streetcar is outside, passing by

I  will leave you with one last look at a window full of yellow chicks and Easter bunnies, hope for spring (Hope springs eternal? Hopes of spring are eternal?).

looking into a store window, that is decorated with little bunnies in Easter clothing, with little yellow chicks and paper flowers

I know, I know, Valentines day has come and gone.
But this week I kept seeing hearts and other signs of love in many of its forms.
There’s nothing wrong with sharing a little love, right?

Especially the love where the heart is full and ready to explode in colour.

the front of a garage is covered with street art. A bright red heart is in the middle from which coloured geometric shapes eminate outwards and cover the entire front of the building.

Love is witty… or it just can’t spell because love fogs the brain.  Love is blind after all.

dark brown garage door,metal, with white spray paint words that say love @ first site

Love is solid and strong

a small concrete love bot stands on the grass beside the garden in front of St. Patricks church, winter, no leaves on the small tree, stone church

Love is weak and hides in a corner.

metal staircase, outside, running diagonally across the back of a building, a shopping cart under the stairs with a box in in, a door in the wall under the stairs, both door and wall are cover in graffiti including a large orange swath and a bright red heart

Some hearts are jaded.

on a utility pole in Graffiti alley, there are 4 paper hearts in pink and purple, with words written on them - I love me, no luv,

Sing a song of romance
A pocket full of lies
Four and twenty belittlements
Baked in a pie
When the pie was opened
All hell broke lose
When ranting, and tears, and screaming, and all sorts of incriminations….
You know the story.

“All bad poetry springs from genuine feeling.” Oscar Wilde

beside a street art painting of the pink panther, standing with arms crossed (but head missing in the photo) is a utility pole with three paper hearts attached to it, two are light blue and 1 is orange. The hearts have writing on them, bye bye, friendzone, kill me

“If love is the answer, could you please rephrase the question?” Lily Tomlin

on a utility pole in Graffiti alley, there are 4 paper hearts in pink and purple, with words written on them - bed bugs, sk8 me, its you not me,

“Go forth.
the tellers of tales
and seize whatever
the heart longs for.
Have no fear.
Everything exists.
And everything is true.
And the earth is only
a little dust under our feet.”
W.B. Yeats, “The Celtic Twilight”

small black and white stencil on a concrete block wall. An adult penguin is standing with its head bent over looking at a small black and white cat that is looking up at the penguin

Tdot, an affectionate nickname for Toronto.

graffiti words, large, on a garage door in an alley, tdot,white on red background.

A lovely walk on a lovely afternoon discovering lovely things about love and affection.

below: Love but Think.

graffiti words on a garage door, love but think

stone statue of a girl seated, in front of a house that has a statue of Jesus in a niche in the outside wall as well as a ceramic religious scene

below: Mother and child.

under two hinges, on a post, in front yard of a house, a faded framed print of a mother and her baby

below: Batman and Robin, oh dear.

orange stencil, batman kissing robin the boy wonder

mural of a woman with very long wavy hair, side profile of her head and face, blue lips, blue eyelashes

below:  Some love is fleeting and some may be eternal but his love for Leila was never meant to last.

words on a garage door that say I love Leila. A big X is drawn through those words and beside it is written Honestly it wasn't meant to last

below: Even the insults sounded nice.  Except of course if the pizza had pineapple on it.

words scrawled on a wall in an alley that say Trump is a facist piece of pizza

below: And then there was this….  As it turns out these words are a line in the lyrics of a song but I’m still not sure why would write them on a door.

white words graffiti on a grey metal door that say When I do wrong I am with God

street art painting of a dragon, or monster, head with purple horns, green eye, and lots of teeth, seen from the side,

May all your walks be lovely!

It’s taken a few days, but here is the last (of three) of the blog posts featuring photos that I took this past weekend when I walked Graffiti Alley.

below: Levar Burton is my father, or at least that’s what’s written on the wrist.

mural in Graffiti Alley - a large blue hand the size of a door, with watch on wrist and words Levar Burton

below: Swimming with the octopi?  Or else she’s landed in hot water?  An other worldly mural by Planette.

mural in Graffiti Alley - by planette, a womanwearing face mask and helmet and in water up to arm pits, tentacles coming out of the water in front of her.

below: Mural by earth crusher,

mural in Graffiti Alley by earth crusher - man in black suit, white shirt and black tie, small rectangle machine head and a smart phone in each hand

below: How can it be evil if there is a cupcake and an ice cream cone? I think that Choo Choo the cat from Hanna Barbera’s Top Cat.

mural in Graffiti Alley - Choo Choo the cartoon pink cat from Hanna Barbera Top Cats,with white t-shirt on, Mike Myers evil character from movie, a cupcake and an ice cream cone

below: Huckleberry Hound seems to have reason to fear the cops.

mural in Graffiti Alley - cartoon dog in blue on door, with words run cops!

below: But everything is A OK with this guy!

cartoon character with pyramid shaped body, small black arms and large white hands, open mouth with red tongue = mural in Graffiti Alley

below: The hamburger probably isn’t coming out of the garbage bin! It doesn’t look like she’s too impressed with it though,.

below: @kyleghostkeeper, another tattoo artist. Red eyes, eyebrows, and lips but turquoise hair.

large woman's face, blue hair, re lips, over done make up

below: A stencil and a sticker.  Another @stick_tags  “Are you living your dream?” sticker.

stencil graffiti of a person in white coat

below: There’s a lot going on here – all small and not all noticed the first time in part because of the mess.  The cat, a small man screaming, and the words “just a pawn” written a few times.

graffiti in a doorway. stencil cat, words that say  just a pawn, stencil small man screaming

graffiti words on a wall in Graffiti Alley, bad man no take no selfie

There are always words written on walls.  Sometimes funny, sometimes profane, and sometimes just weird.  Today, we have comments about selfies and queer witches.   Both made me smile.

graffiti words stencilled on a wall that say Queer witches for a better tomorrow

mural in Graffiti Alley - person wearing gas mask and holding a spray paint can in outreached hand

The next two blog posts are also from Graffiti Alley.

In a little lane that runs south of Graffiti Alley towards Richmond Street, I found four paintings that I don’t think that I have seen before.  The first one is this very realistic eye that looks like it’s keeping close watch on the rat with the red heart.  It was painted by @soortattoo aka Suren Davtyon, a Russian tattoo artist from Moscow.  That is the ‘one’ in the blog title.

street art painting by soortattoo aka Suren Davtyon, a realistic eye looking to the side, to see a rat holding a red heart

The ‘three’ refers to the fact that the next three that were on the same wall are by the same person, @inkcanon, who is also a tattoo artist.  Portraits of three women.   The first one is blowing bubbles, very big bubbles.

street art painting by inkcanon of a woman blowing a large bubble with bubble gum, in shades of pink and blue

street art painting by inkcanon, a k a Nico, of a woman's portrait in profile, blond hair, grey tones in face, blue and pink background

street art painting by inkcanon of a woman with long hair, vines growing up on either side of her.

I wouldn’t have a staring contest with this guy if I were you.

When I walked down Graffiti Alley yesterday, I discovered quite a few new things that I hadn’t seen before.  There were too many for one blog post so I decided to concentrate on the little things this morning.

below: Little stickers stuck all over a piece of metal.  My favorite is the “All my friends are awesome” sticker.

stickers graffiti in an alley

below: The window on this wonderful orange door was covered with stickers and spray paint.  These three stickers were in the bottom corner.

stickers graffiti in an alley, on orange door

below: Pasteup collages with pictures of Campbells soup labels, and old camera, and a coca cola bottle.  A woman is yelling something in Russian while Lenin peaks out from behind her.  Meaning?  Maybe only Merz knows?

stickers graffiti in an alley

below: Soada.

stickers graffiti in an alley

below: “Do not attempt to think, or depression may occur.” Sticker by @stick_tags.

stickers graffiti in an alley

below: An octopus by Georgia and a @slole_slaps “It’s All Over” because they really are all over.

stickers graffiti in an alley

below: J isn’t here but another stick_tags wants to know if you’re living your dream.  Are you?  Maybe J is elsewhere, busy living their dream.

stickers graffiti in an alley

below: I told you that they were all over.

stickers graffiti in an alley

And now this blog post is all over too.

big bright pink flowers, mural on a garage door by Blazeworks
above: Bright pink flowers by Blazeworks

I shared David French Lane with some garbage men, a bright green truck, and a lot of smelly garbage the other day. Luckily there were lots of murals to distract me from the smell!

a green GFL garbage truck in a lane as men pick up garbage on garbage day

below: The north end of David French Lane is at Barbara Barrett Lane, immediately south of Bloor.  Here, elicser painted a mural in his characteristic style that I have already blogged about.   It is also where there is a mural of a blue and white train.  I didn’t take any photos of it this time because it isn’t new and it wasn’t part of the Wall Expressions project.

corner where two alleys meet, a green P parking lot and a building with murals on two sides.

Quite a few of the garages in David French Lane had been painted sometime in the past.  Many had been tagged over or were in need of updating.  The ‘Wall Expressions – You are Here’ project provided the lane with a fresh coat of paint back in mid-September.

below: A large TTC bus drives into the alley by dudeman, surrounded by skulls of many colours.

a mural by dudeman, TTX bus, spadina sign, and lots of different coloured skulls

‘You are Here’ was the result of a collaboration between StreetARToronto, the Tranzac Club, the local community, and last but not least Team Spudbomb who organized the artists who participated.

below: More colours here too – lots of movement and energy too.   Mural painted by Chris Perez.

a garage covered with colour splotches

below: Almost didn’t get this shot – the garage door started opening as I stood there.  A geometric abstract mural by Andre Kan.   It reminds me of the chaos of roads in the city

geometric abstract mural in browns and red and blues, by andre

below: Another geometric design – this time by mediah.

geometric abstract mural in browns and greys, by mediah,

below: whales by wales, swimming in the lane

large mural with marine life theme, whale, blue background for water,

a row of garages with the doors painted with murals, garbage ready for pick up in front of them, in a lane, large tree too

below: Midtown cinema by ACK

mural on a garage, red and light brown text on the botto, grey tones picture of midtown cinema on the top part

below: A portrait of Ed Mirvish holding an iconic Honest Eds sign, painted by spud.

street art portrait of David Mirvish holding iconic Honest Eds signs

garage with two sides painted in street art, lane, backs of houses, no leaves on tree,

sides and front of garage with street art on them

below: Mural by fly vandals

mural on side of building, purple,

mural on garage

below: An apt phrase – ‘Be Here Now’ beside a fence of spudbombs.

a garage door with the words Be Here Now beside a fence painted with spud bombs, hand grenade shaped characters with eyes and smiling mouths