“Reach new heights of artistic expression with Tyrone Drone,” says the hype. “Dare to tag wherever you couldn’t — or wouldn’t — before. You might not crash the White House, but Tyrone is armed with a couple cans of spray paint and no conscience. Paint your neighborhood. Or destroy it with graffiti.”
“What are you doing?” I asked the teenage boy who was gleefully tagging a repainted space at Santiago Park in Santa Ana. Alarmed, he jumped down the small ledge to look up at the bridge where I was standing.
Others emerged from beneath the bridge to see where the stranger’s voice was coming from. There were probably five or ten of them altogether.
They looked so fresh-faced, ranging in age from perhaps 15 to the early 20s. A young adult with shoulder-length crimped hair appeared to be a leader. He wore a wide grin on his face.
A wave of sadness and great disappointment washed over me. These kids belonged in a boy band, or on a soccer team, or part of a visionary group that would put a person on Mars. Instead they were misusing their talents and potential to deface public property.
Artist WIZARD demonstrates how to draw a cholo. We especially like the attention to detail shown in the facial tear-drop tattoo and the Nike “swoosh.”