If you look back over past posts you will see that street graffiti (tagging) has been an interest focus of mine for a long time.
So how to solve it? Beside the obvious sociological approach of education etc, the deterrents I have looked at involves making it easier to remove the graffiti than to put it up in the first place.
Things I have tried:
- A Teflon coat applied after painting that allows a quick spray of detergent then a wash off of the offending spray can paint.
[FAILED] Spray can paints adhere to Teflon coating only marginally less than to any other surface which was really surprising.
- An online paint colour matching service which allows graffiti vigilantes an easy way of finding out what paint to buy to paint over graffiti. It involves putting white paper over the top of the base wall colour to get a colour corrected assessment of its pigments and then use a colour database to find the closest off the shelf canned or spray colour equivalent.
[FAILED] Sadly when talking to the police about the approach it was explained to me that painting over the graffiti could lead to prosecution even if you were a tenant! How ridiculous!
My last effort to address the problem was to explore the offerings of 3M to see if there was a covering that would be transparent to the graffiti tagger, but could be easily removed and replaced. The idea would be to do this first with high risk/ danger graffiti situations such as road signs and street signs and then expand out to protecting larger areas like whole walls.
The idea is that hopefully the tagger will not realize that a film is protecting the surface, they do their business then along comes a caring citizen or a local counsel worker or policeman and the film gets replaced.
The logic is that the tagger only gets off on seeing their handiwork irritate others… if its so easy to undo their work it may encourage them to move onto other mischief.
The 3M coating we looked at wont work since it is for glass, it’s expensive and they use a powerful glue, which they say deters taggers because it takes time to remove (time they cannot afford to take with the possibility of them getting caught) but the down side of this logic is that it takes a lot of labour time to remove and replace.
I am still on the look out for a simple to remove super transparent film that is cheap and easy to apply. And maybe the added twist of needing a chemical spray to release the glue or something like that… but it has to be cheap.
Maybe 3M might do a custom film project with me… maybe this angle is worth following.