People will stare, make it worth their while.

Shoreditch: The Street Art Capital

June 4, 2018

The streets of Shoreditch are far different these days to how they were when I lived in London fifteen years ago.  In fact, I’m not even sure Shoreditch was on the map back then, it was just another East End non-place that people avoided.  Now though, it’s a whole different story, Shoreditch is literally THE place to be.  If you’re one of those people who stalks the ‘Gram looking for insane backgrounds to shoot against, then you’re guaranteed to have seen at least one small square frame of Shoreditch somewhere on your timeline.  It’s bright, it’s busy and it’s an absolute mecca for street art.

Armed with the Huawei P20 Pro, I took a day out of my Graduate Fashion Week Schedule to get to grips with this awesome part of London.  Shoreditch feels completely different to the rest of London from the minute you jump ff the tube, it’s extra-urban and super cool, people here walk slower than literally everywhere else in London and there are actual smiles on peoples faces.  The change of pace is welcome after a crazy week and the weather is amazing so I got off to a great start.

Pixie Tenenbaum standing in front of some street art angel wings in Shoreditch with a smaller street art caption in thre foreground which reads "Daddy I want a Fucking pony"

Wandering the streets of Shoreditch is easy, it’s a place where yes, it’s easy to get lost, but people are willing to help and there’s always something interesting around the corner which will make you want to eep walking despite having no idea where you are.  I’m getting better at finding my way around this urban district, so with that in mind, I set off on a meandering tour of Shoreditch with no particular goal destination in mind, just an aim to find some really awesome street art and locations to photograph.  The insane thing about the street art here, is that is changes and evolves constantly, just like the staircases in Hogwarts, it’s never just the same.

I took the tube to Old Street for this particular task and took the long route into Shoreditch, you find a different type of artist skirting around the edges of Shoreditch, there’s a definite point where this street gallery changes and becomes bigger and more vibrant.  On the outer edges the spaces are smaller and more challenging and require a different kind of artist.

As you get closer to the epicentre of Shoreditch and it’s epic BoxPark, the art gets bigger and more elaborate, this is where you can see change day upon day.  I was back in the area just a week later and a lot of this street art had been painted over with bigger and better designs.  That’s the thing about this area, the pedestrians, the shoppers, the real people, they’re fans.  They gather here and line up waiting to post with pieces created by their favourite artists.  Remember iconic 80’s movie Mannequin with Kim Cattrall and those amazing store windows?  This is the 2018 version and it’s most definitely worth the visit if you’re in London with a few hours to kill.

From really grand and awesome art pieces that have to be viewed from afar to be appreciated, to tiny, almost hidden art pieces, Shoreditch is undoubtedly the home of the street artist.  It’s a borough where street art is appreciated rather than covered up and hidden, it’s imposing 80’s style buildings provide a canvas freely available to daub, and it’s top of the agenda for every blogger visiting the Capital, looking for an awesome background to give them that unique shot.  If ever there was a match made in heaven, it’s Shoreditch and a camera device.

As a tourist it’s pretty easy to feel intimidated by what you might have heard about Shoreditch.  Is it full of hipsters?  Yes, but hispters are way nicer than city folk, they sit and drink coffee with their pets watching the world go by, you don’t see so much of that in the West End.  The fashion is cooler, the sidewalks are bigger and the pace is slower, you can’t ask for more than that in a city that moves at a million miles an hour.  There are less chains, more independents and never ending pop ups supporting and championing new and established businesses.  Shoreditch is a pretty cool place to be, and I’ve got the pictures to prove it.

P x


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