BTS have always inspired artistic interpretations of their music, their lives and even their physical features. Artists have recreated moments, have recreated and interpreted the beauty that is BTS, as a group or individuals. They are all muses for different artists, from painting, drawings, carvings, pottery to graffiti. Today we feature Jongbae-Lee, artistic name Staz, a street Graffiti artist from Gunsan, Korea, who has captured the full essence of BTS in his wall art that depicts the members realistically with a touch of flair.
As a lover of art, I love to see the intricate details in the pieces, the use of colors to draw the eye to said details and brighten the canvas. I also love the different strokes that artists incorporate into the pieces, but Graffiti, graffiti has a soft spot in my soul! And that is why Graffiti artist Jongbae-Lee (Staz’)s art drew me in. I love how seamless he has brought life into the portraits of BTS’ j-hope, V and Jung Kook. The art is truly inspirational, Jongbae-Lee uses both color and black and white to bring life into the BTS members and you can see how attention to detail his work is and never missing a single expression on the faces.
The art is moving as looking at for instance the portrait of j-hope, the smile is literally a complete replica of j-hope’s perfect and bright smile, you do feel like he really is smiling at you, and that is what separates a true artist from one who is not, the power to capture the real emotions in the art. Art, specifically Graffiti art should speak, tell a story, make you feel something, give you shivers and goosebumps, make you think and figure things out, Jongbae-Lee’s art brings all that into the portraits.
So what is Graffiti? Graffiti is a form of expression that has existed for a very long time. Graffiti ranges from simple written words to elaborate wall paintings, and has existed since ancient times, with examples dating back to ancient Egypt, ancient Greece, and the Roman Empire.
Contemporary graffiti style has been heavily influenced by hip hop culture and the myriad international styles derived from Philadelphia and New York City Subway graffiti, however, there are many other traditions of notable graffiti in the twentieth century. Graffiti have long appeared on building walls, in latrines, railroad boxcars, subways, and bridges.
I got the chance to ask Graffiti artist Jongbae-Lee a few questions about his art and what inspires him…
Question: How would you describe your art?
Jongbae-Lee: “This art work in an art area called graffiti or street art is drawn by using some spray paint.“
Question: Describe your creative process?
Jongbae-Lee: “First of all, sketch with a spray of dark lines and form three-dimensional effects with more brighter color and then finish for a highlight color. I try to get creative inspiration from circumstances around me but sometimes have improvisation for my work activity.“
Question: What is your main inspiration?
Jongbae-Lee: “BTS’s all music!“
Question: Do you create for yourself or others?
Jongbae-Lee: “Just do it for myself without any help but I really enjoy this work.”
Question: What do you enjoy most about being an artist?
Jongbae-Lee: “Not only I love the process of drawing but also it is my pleasure that people feel happy with my drawing. The best time would be when the art work is finally completed but the process also makes me happy.“
Question: What is your favorite art work?
Jongbae-Lee: “My latest work ongoing now.”
Question: What memorable response have you had to your art work?
Jongbae-Lee: “I have been so impressed since the state of Georgia in the U.S. released the news introducing my drawing.”
Question: What is your dream project?
Jongbae-Lee: “My dream project is to draw all members of BTS in lots of cities. I am doing it for many fans including ARMY at private expense in this city.”
Question: Why did you choose BTS art?
Jongbae-Lee: “In my opinion, BTS is the treasure of Korea. I give them cheer all the time and also hope they are growing much better than now.”
Question: What wouldn’t you do without?
Jongbae-Lee: “Music is needed for me as I draw with my phone:) especially i-phone and Airpods are never missing.”
Question: Tell us about yourself in one sentence
Jongbae-Lee: “The street artist of Korea, Staz!”
Find him on Instagram and check our more of his amazing art work
Instagram ID, @stazgraffiti
Jongbae-Lee (Staz) also does Graffiti of other artists like this incredible depiction of the late hip hop artists Tupac Shakur and The Notorious BIG and the now ‘retired’ 50 cent
The oldest known example of modern graffiti are the “monikers” found on traincars created by hobos and rail workers since the late 1800s. With the popularity and legitimization of graffiti has come a level of commercialization. Graffiti is here to stay and its is beautiful watching all its different forms of expressions.