I’ve loved scooters for four decades now, but street art is a new obsession of mine, having captured my imagination in the last couple of years or so. Both scenes provide an outlet for creative folk to produce unique, incredible pieces of art and I’ve been wanting to bring these two worlds together for a while, for a special photo shoot.
I’m a regular visitor to Brighton, which is one of my favourite places having lived and worked there for many years. These are some photos of my Vespa GTS which I took last year, one at Black Rock which is at the end of Madeira Parade and the other in Hove next to the peace statue.
If you’re interested in Brighton street art then you can find out about the best locations here, and see some incredible murals here including work by top international artists. I’ve also written about paste-up street art here which is another passion of mine.
However, much as I love my own scooter I wanted to get some more exciting machines to photograph with the murals so I managed to persuade some of my Midhurst Detours clubmates that a rideout to Brighton would be a great idea.
We managed to pick a glorious summer’s day which was perfect for scooter riding but unfortunately not so great for photos as the sun was actually too bright! Beggers can’t be choosers though, and although we lost a couple of people early on, one to a toothache and one to a dodgy clutch, there were six of us who completed the hour’s ride to Brighton.
Volk’s Bar Meeting Point
We parked at Volk’s bar which is the traditional meeting point for anything scooter-related in Brighton as far as I can tell. There are some handy cones outside which stop cars and other vehicles from parking there, leaving a nice space for a dozen or so scooters. Some others arrived soon after us, and Snowy was drawn to this Lambretta’s leopardskin seat which matched his new jacket perfectly!
It was really scorching so we had a nice cool drink before heading up to Black Rock for the first shoot.
Black Rock street art
I was really excited to see some artists in action when we arrived. Snub 23 and Sprite were collaborating on a large mural which was well underway. They stopped for a chat and I thought Mark’s street-style Lambretta suited it perfectly.
We sadly didn’t get to see the finished article, but Sprite kindly sent me this photo. It’s absolutely stunning!
Snub 23 and Sprite
You can see more of Snub’s work below, and his artwork is available to buy via his website here. Sprite also has a website which you can visit using this link. To see their latest work on Instagram check out @Snub_23 and @I.Am.Sprite.
Harpo Art and Ed 209
Just a few yards away we found Harpo Art and Ed 209, both of whom I’ve met previously on other Brighton street art visits. It was Ed who painted over my Brighton angel wings (for which I bear no grudges!) and they were in full flow in the Brighton sun.
Harpo is better known for stained-glass style designs, including many owls which are dotted around the city. He loved their symmetry, and become known as the ‘owl guy’. Now he’s learning how to create real stained glass, and loves to play with the combination of both media, whether it’s transforming an art piece to glass, or studying how glass reflects its features and sets a striking background.
These are examples of the iconic stained glass style that Harpo is best known for.
He’s always liked painting birds too, as they have so many directional features to play with, and the photo below shows him working on a yellow hawk. Further down in this post is another piece by Harpo from Trafalgar Lane, a blue hawk.
Mark was in Stig mode for this shot which worked really well with the urban art and his Lambretta, Street Freak.
Ed 209 is into sci-fi and robots, which inspired this piece below. He later told me “this was about me trying out the gold areas, and visually I just wanted to have something with an ambiguous, perhaps mildly disturbing face, and a sports car aesthetic. Repulsive and alluring. I’m influenced by lots of varieties of science fiction, comics, films and computer games”.
Vespa P Range with Street Art
Next up was Snowy, who is the street artist of the scootering world, building, painting and repainting his Vespa on a seemingly weekly basis. Surprisingly it hasn’t changed since Hayling which was a whole three weeks ago, but I’m sure it’ll be different by the next time I see it.
Dennis The Menace
The street art was a great backdrop for Putt’s Lambretta. He was down to his last few drops of petrol and wasn’t to know that he’d break down on the way home, when his stator plate failed him. The joys of scootering! It didn’t dampen his enjoyment of the day though…
Cobra Street Style Lambretta
Elliot Ede’s scooter is a lovely street-style Lambretta, which he is running in still so couldn’t race with the others when they shot away on the ride over. I liked the contrast of his smart paintjob with the Black Rock murals in the background.
Vespa GTS 300
And then we have my boring black GTS. I do love it, although I know that autos divide opinion in the scene. I enjoy riding both my scooters, they are so completely different, and separated by around 40 years of age! The Lambretta is from the early 1960s and the Vespa is just ten years old.
This stunning mural by Mick Mowgli really caught our eye. Originally from London, he’s been in Brighton for three years now and started painting a year ago after a 15 year break, inspired by all the local street art. Favela helped out with the background while Mick focused on the character’s face. You can check out his Instagram feed here to see his other amazing work.
Mark went into Stig mode again, for one of my favourite photos of the day.
Here you can see the Favela work better, particularly the parrot and graffiti lettering. He was from Birmingham originally but has been in Brighton for 20 years. He started doing graffiti in the late 1980s but stopped for 15 years, and then restarted a couple of years ago. Amongst others, his main influences include lettering, leaves and mandalas. Check out his Instagram feed here.
Before we headed back Putt stopped to pose in front of this eyecatching mural!
Trafalgar Lane Street Art
After another quick refreshment break at Volk’s bar we rode home via Trafalgar Lane, another of Brighton’s best street art locations.
I think Mark’s scooter looked stunning against this graffiti.
The Travis Perkins building is covered in artwork including this bright street art which I think looked great behind my Vespa.
My husband Lee had ridden my Lambretta over which meant I could take photos of both my scooters. Here is the Series 2 in front of a couple of murals, the one on the right by Snub 23 and on the left by Stevie Unknown (his Insta is here).
Here is a better photo of the Snub mural. I love the intensity of the glowing eyes!
Another shot of Snowy’s P Range Vespa!
And here’s another by Harpo Art, a stunning blue hawk with a stained glass background.
By now everyone was ready to ride home, so I jumped on the Lambretta to lead the way back to Bognor and beyond. I was surprised how much the boys embraced my ‘scooters and street art’ project and can’t wait to do it again with them!
My Street Art Scooter
Since writing this article I’ve now got my own street art scooter! It was painted by Snub23 and you can read about the project here. This photo was taken in front of a large Snub mural next to Trafalgar Street car park in Brighton.
More Scooters And Street Art
Since writing this post I’ve been sent examples of scooter street art, and found some myself. I will add them here as I collect them so do check back to see what’s new!
Southsea artist Fark
Fark is a Southsea artist who typically paints brightly coloured birds all over the city of Portsmouth. His latest piece at the end of Tonbridge Street is his take on a scooter, albeit with a bird on the seat!
Cartagna Street Art
A scooter friend, Shady, spotted this whilst on a cruise stopoff in Cartagna, Spain.
Serbian Street Art
Sticky saw this street art on one of his European adventures, it’s a barber shop in Serbia and was first featured in the story of his first rally which you can read here.
More Brighton Street Art
I hope you enjoyed reading about my scooters and street art project. Here are my other Brighton street art posts :
– Brighton Street Art
– Brighton Graffiti Tour
– Brighton and Shoreditch Paste Up Street Art
You may also be interested to learn about the Secrets Of Brighton’s West Pier which I was lucky to explore in the early 2000s on a guided tour before it tragically burned down.
If you fancy seeing some of the fabulous street art in Brighton then check out the latest deals on Booking.com below!