SPECIAL THANKS TO:
TERROR OF PLANET X
BULLSHIT HARDWARE CO
CUTTING EDGE CT
AND ALL OF OUR FRIENDS
COVER: ALEX NIVISON FS NOSE WALLIE
P: ZACK BRESCIA 1/125TH F.6.4 ISO3200
10. RYAN KELLY
What is there to say about Ryan Kelley that he hasn’t already said about himself? Kidding - and if you know Ryan,
you know that the truth is in fact, the opposite.
There’s something to be said for those who are unassuming. The ones who go undetected, who aren’t looking for the
glory, but would prefer to remain behind the curtain - leaving an air of mystery. The type whose name is revered in their
craft, but would only be recognized by the ones he’s chosen to associate with. Ryan is the epitome of this character.
Honestly I knew him for years before I found out (through somebody else) how prolific of a graffiti writer he was.
The best thing about Ryan is that he’s just a genuinely good dude. Father, husband, master of puns, drinker of beers,
teller of jokes - all traits that he’d probably list off far before mentioning skateboarding or graffiti. He’s the type of guy
who is naturally talented, but goes the next step to understand / appreciate the history and culture behind anything
he’s devoted himself to.
I can say personally that he’s been a great friend and an inspiration to me, and I’m certain I’m not the only one.
Where did you grow up?
I was born and raised in New Britain CT. I like to think I’m still growing up
What came first, skating or painting? Can we credit that to
growing up in new Britain?
Drawing came first before almost everything though. I have been drawing since
I was very young I’m told. And yeah, I mean if you’re talking about someone
wanting to do graffiti then yeah, I have a pretty boring origin story. I was kind of
a product of my environment
Makes sense, what little kids don’t draw?
I don’t know man, it’s not for everyone. I always drew and stuff but in school
art class when they wanted me to be “creative” and make sculptures with
toothpicks, cotton balls, and macaroni they kinda lost me. I was a less creative
artist I guess. If they ever asked me to draw a sweet 18-wheeler I would have
had one on tap though. That like all I drew when I was little.
One kid’s art class is another kid’s math class, everyone has their strengths and
I realized early that I sucked at drawing, but I think I’ve made
some mean macaroni art in my day.
If you ever get bored and just want to PASTA time you could always KRAFT a
macaroni camera. You know, just shoot tiny still lifes around corners using a
What’s more likely to get you laid, skating or writing graff?
Spray painting someone’s name for everyone to see out there in the world is
more likely to impress and lead to conquest than hopping on a plank of wood
and doing some cryptic dance moves they won’t understand. Its relative though,
and age is a factor. It depends but I’d say graffiti.
Now that I think about it, my front smiths don’t really get the
I think I should start painting.
That’s a shame dude, your front smiths are quality, have you tried to go back-
side? Some girls are into that.
Remind me to ask Dave Lewis the secret to proper back smiths.
12. I have a feeling you weren’t painting to get laid though,
what’s the motivation.
My motivation initially was to peel back the layer of secrecy to it. Like
how were people doing it? How did they get spray paint cans to make
clean lines, and blend colors and flare when doing tags. I didn’t know
anyone who was into it so it was all a huge mystery with no way to know
other than figuring it out. I liked the learning and discovery process of it.
When all the politics and consequences hadn’t come into play yet.
I always just liked the act of painting and everything involved with it.
That was my motivation. Walking train tracks trying to find a spot I
hadn’t been before, the schemes to get cans, the thrill of painting active
highways, meeting like-minded people and planning missions, travelling.
There’s a lot of unexpected life lessons to be learned through graffiti
Classic question, do you think the internet/Instagram is
changing graff and skating for the worse or for the better?
The internet changed everything. Like everything in the world, not just
graffiti and skateboarding. It made the world smaller. Kids are progress-
ing so much faster in recent years because they’re exposed to so many
different styles and tricks from all over the world. In graffiti specifically
it seems to have kinda sped up the erosion of regionally diverse styles.
Philadelphia stands out as an exception, they still have their own distinct
style of writing.
Have you been keeping up with the skate world lately?
I have a hard time keeping up with the real world let alone the skate
world! I dated a check 2013 last week! Ill check out clips off Instagram
or fb sometimes but I don’t really keep up with current skateboarding.
Do you think writers and skaters deserve a certain amount
of respect for battling winters? Or does it just not matter
if you’re that deep enough in the scene?
Keep in mind there’s always somewhere that’s colder and you can rest
assured guys and girls are out there getting after it, whether were talking
spray painting or skateboarding, does it automatically merit respect for
doing so? Not really. They’re basically just cheap thrills and minor crimes.
Satisfying a compulsion in and of itself isn’t respect worthy in my opinion.
Being dedicated to something is, but there’s always someone braving
harsher elements. If you’re painting or skating to get respect from people,
you’re drinking water with a fork.
In your opinion, what’s wack about the graff scene?
What’s amazing about it?
Ok here comes the old man… YOU KNOW WHAT REALLY GRINDS
MY GEARS. Haha I would say the amount of information available
on the topic access today is pretty wack. Kids can google how to
make a mop, then just head over to amazon and buy some krink.
There’s fancy paints on shelves everywhere. Graffiti from every
corner of the world is literally at our fingertips
Have you been painting lately or have you changed
your focus to other things/ different art forms?
I paint maybe a piece a year. I haven’t really been active for about 5
years. I was Definitely
focusing more on other artistic pursuits for a couple years. Mainly
honing my drawing skills and working on I guess you could say “fine
art” paintings? Lately I just doodle with my son’s crayons while we
eat dinner and stuff. Been drawing a lot of silly stuff to make him
Here’s an exclusive, this was the last time I tried to draw an outline.
It’s funny, concept to completion was less than an hour. It was one
of those times when I could see it in my head first and just put it
on paper first try. Then I tried to draw an alternative version and
changed some things and spent way longer than that, plus I couldn’t
get the scale right so all the letters/characters would fit on the page.
Classic case of overthinking.
Are you open to commissions? Or selling any of your
work? How can people get a hold of you and see your
Of course! I don’t do a lot of commission work but I’m always open
to it. It’s always a good feeling when someone taps me to draw
something for them, it gets me motivated and sometimes headed
in a new direction visually. I used to be way more on top of posting
drawings and paintings id done on Instagram but I’ve fallen off as of
late. My flickr account has a pretty eclectic mix of my art stuff from
like 2006-2013 too. Anyone can feel free to hit me up via DM on
IG(@thisisasandwich), that’s probably the easiest way. I have a
bigcartel store that I haven’t updated since 2014. I do have some
zines left haha.
“If you’re painting or skating to
get respect from people, you’re
drinking water with a fork.”
16. Wanna give any shout outs?
S/O to my lady who juggles a lot and looks good doin it!
Thank you to everyone that I’ve learned from through painting or skateboarding
along the way especially everyone from the Yacht Life Social Club, and the 09
bad boys. Theres lots of people that have been way more productive through
the years and still today and have a more interesting or informed take on
graffiti, yet here I am. So I’d also like to thank to the ECOD staff for shining
a light on me. I’m the low hanging fruit rotting on a tree that fell in a forest a
long time ago that nobody heard until now.
28. So you’re living in NYC now?
Ya, long story short I was looking at spots in philly. These kids I knew
from vt were looking at places here and they hit me up because they
needed another roommate. Stopped in the city on my way back to ct
and ended up signing a lease.
Where are you from originally?
West Hartford, Connecticut.
How Yung are you and are you currently a bachelor?
Im 25 and as of revently, yes. Not too young, but ive been rocking with
the handle since I made Instagram.
What do you think is more likely to help you pull a girl,
skating or painting?
Ahh def depends on the girl! Id say painting, but im also not the best
I’ve seen you skate the white ledges, we all know that’s
Ahh thanks man! Skating is also cool now, to the point where certain
girls fetishize it. When I was growing up I wasn’t doing any favors to
myself with the ladies by skating.
So what came first for you, painting or skating?
Oh, skating. I started painting when I was 21, and ive been skating
since I was 11.
Late bloomer, what sparked the interest of painting?
Honestly boredom, then I made a trade with a friend one day. Her mom
was an art professor, so she had mad acrylics/brushes laying around.
I came up on a ton of paint and brushes that day. That was during the
summer of 2013, I experimented and painted a lot that summer.
I instantly fell inlove.
Crazy to just fall into it randomly like that, so at this
point whats your favorite medium to use when youre
Well, I had always been interested in art. Throughout the years, ive gone
through phases with drawing, but it never really resonated with me. I
always loved fucking around with paint pens, but they felt limiting…
Something with the brush strokes consistency of the paint, mixing
colors… I became obsessed.
I prefer fucking with acrylics and I use them most for sure, like I always
wanted to make art, I just didn’t know how to do it. Something with
painting clicked if. If that makes any sense.
Makes sense forsure, I wish I could paint decently, tried
my had at graff for acouple years but high risk low
reward, ill stick to taking photos.
Ya dude, graffiti is the gnarliest! I love hitting chill day spots with my
friends who actually get up, but it’s a lifestyle and a criminal life-
style at that. I don’t concider myself a writer though. I don’t think
you can call yourself a writer unless you’ve put in the work…
not a term you can just throw around.
You draw some funky characters, where do they
come from? Whats up with the snakes and skulls?
Always been interested in characters. I remember in elementary
school really studying all the pokemon and dragonball z charac-
ters, to a point of obsession. A lot came from trial by error, just
sketching. My nickname is snakes, so that’s one thing, but the
snakes and skulls are a direct influence from traditional tattoo
flash. Plus I mean the skull is such a strong symbol. It represents
both life and death. Plus I really enjoy painting them.
Been seeing your work on clothes, is this a direction
you’re hoping to stay on?
Ya forsure, its been a really cool development. People express
themselves through clothing, so its been flattering to have a lot
of positive feedback from the clothing. Theres so many directions
you can go with clothing too, I have so many ideas in mind. I
think making/painting clothing was reactionary with moving
to the city. People take clothing/fashion super serious here.
Everyones trying to stay fresh in their own way. However ive def
cranked out a lot of clothing commissions recently… I literally
just finished one befor you hit me up. So, im about to take a
week or two break, just so I don’t get burnt.
How can people get in touch with you for
commission work? Where can people see your stuff?
Through DM or email (in Instagram bio) I always respond to any
email or message, no matter how big or small! Ill be launching a
website in the future aswell.
Ill also be showing art/ throwing/curating a group show at super
chief gallery NY on February 18th. Before then, we’ll see… i’ve
been in a few sporadic pop ups/ shows here. So only time will
tell I guess.
Rip sticks or scooters?
Rip sticks are way sicker than scooters
Four loko or 40oz steele reserve?
Steel reserve over 4loko. Ive had many good nights drinking 40’s but I don’t think I ever drank a 4loko without blacking out, and blacking out
Any shout outs?
Shout outs to all the homies! There’s way too many to list, I have amazing friends.
Oh, and shouts to ECOD.
Don’t compare yourself to others. Step out of your comfort zone. Don’t be mad when you fuck up, learn from your mistakes and use them as
stepping stones. Travel whenever possible. Be nice to people, but don’t let them take advantage of your kindness. If you’re struggling with anxi-
ety, depression, or other mental issues talk to someone who you trust and tell them what you’re going through..... it will get better and help is out
there! Practice humility, don’t let skateboarding dictate your ego.
P: Mostafa Douban