“People say graffiti is ugly, irresponsible and childish… but that’s only if it’s done properly.”

Banksy, Wall and Piece

I love taking photographs of street art and sharing them on Instagram (I’m over at embobs85 – come say hi!).

For me, its not just the walls which are  lovingly – and laboriously – created by ‘professional’ artists, or the meticulously thought-out murals, but the odd sticker, poster, tag, paving stone, street sign – anything that I consider to be interesting or beautiful. I’ve even been known to ask if its weird to photograph chewing-gum stuck on the street, or road markings, and stop my friends in their tracks when I spy an excellent painting on a shop shutter or road partition. Taking things too far? I dunno.

Now I am about as arty as a baked potato. I know next to nothing about the origins of street art or famous artists, but I have a firm appreciation of the stuff, and I think that’s what it’s all about, really. Appreciation. Art isn’t supposed to be elitist or snobbish, it’s supposed to be for everyone. Something we can enjoy and discuss together.

I’ve always been interested in street art, but the picture-taking started when I began travelling – and blogging, I suppose – way before the ‘big solo trip’ I took this year (although the various lanes and arcades of Melbourne and Sydney reinforced that love and are not to missed when planning a adventure there) but short trips to places like Cologne, Berlin, Brussels and, of course, the time I spent living in London – East London is a street art lovers haven!

With this is mind, I decided to spend an evening after work trawling the streets of my beloved Manchester, taking snaps of architecture, streets, alleys, monuments, graffiti, and unintentional street art that I think makes the city beautiful.

Of course, such hard-work must be rewarded by snaffling £1 soft tacos because it would be rude not to on Taco Tuesdays, especially when its my favourite Mexican eatery, El Capo, on Tarrif Street. Yum.

Take a look below and see if you agree. Art is everywhere you look in this amazing city.

It’s certainly #notgrimupnorth

Do you live in a city where art is everywhere? How do you feel about street art and graffiti? Do you think it adds to a places sense of self? Where is your favourite piece of street art? Let me know below. Or come find me over @EmmaYatesBadley or give me a like on Facebook. 

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3 thoughts on “It’s Not Grim Up North: Street Life

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