For example, I was finally able to watch Exit Through the Gift Shop, a documentary (or prankumentary?) about street art and Thierry Guetta, the man who would video tape the acts of vandalism. All in all, I was impressed at how deep the street art world goes only as in so far to say... there is a big difference between a kid who doesn't know what the hell he's doing with a Sharpee in his hand versus an actual artist who thinks about the consequence and reasons of his work. Granted, it may be a real severity on my part to want see a strong line between play and art, but still, the thought process is there.
I browsed Flickr to find pieces done by some of the artists in the film.
When I first moved to The City, I was on a bus from Chinatown to the shopping district and watched a kid, maybe 17 or 18, just pull a fat red marker out of his pocket and do some random scribbling on the ceiling of the bus. It was packed, the driver couldn't see, and he just went ahead and wrote his name. I remember Kyle turning to me and saying, "Just because he has a tagging name, he thinks he should write it wherever there's space." I think there's something to be said about that for multiple reasons, mainly in the dichotomy of... just because you exist doesn't mean you have to tell everyone about it... But at the same time, just because you exist, why not tell everyone about it? Its an opinion that drags me both ways.
What I can agree with, however, is that if you're going to write something in public, at least do it with some precision, thought, and use great execution or else what's the point? If your point is to write something nonsensical in an illegible hand, then just write it down in a sketchbook and leave wall space out there for the rest of them.