Greg Mike is one of the most popular artist in Atlanta. You can simply drive down any road around Atlanta and see some of his iconic Larry Loudmouf murals.
This painter/skater has been in the art industry for 20 plus years and has a very colorful mind with designs that will pop out and provide some of the same vibes you felt from looking at 90’s imagery.
Luckily we had the opportunity to connect with him an overcast day while he was painting his newest installment, “Phoenix II: Courtside Collection” with Mountain Dew’s Green Label. When we arrived he was directing his teammates to finish covering the asphalt to this unique basketball court. RoNNdell Smith talked to him for a minute, here’s what he had to say….
Do you have a name for this project?
Greg Mike: Not yet, names usually come after the pieces are done, after I have a chance to kind of decompress.
How long did it take for you to actually paint this certain piece?
Greg Mike: This one was two days, it was pretty quick, we had the squad out.
How long have you been painting? You’re a legend here in Atlanta.
Greg Mike: Probably….20 years. I started doing graffiti when I was 14, so I’m getting up there now.
What was the first painting that propelled you to stardom?
Greg Mike: I think it was when I started doing more murals, a lot of the stuff in town. Even things like the Living Walls project, things like that. That helped me reach a larger level or national level, also mural conferences, they’re happening all over the world now so fortunately we’re traveling and painting at different festivals even starting our own Outer Space project here in Atlanta. Things like that, allowing locals artist to be seen globally, we also try to give back as much as we can. That’s why it’s cool doing projects like this, where we’re doing something for the hometown and people get inspired by it and it inspires the kids.
What is the Atlanta Outer Space Project?
Greg Mike: So, it’s a mural conference that we started surrounding music, arts and design all centered around a few murals that we do. We started last year and did 16 murals all over the city..bringing 8 out of state artist and 8 local guys. We’ll doing it again June 18th – 25th, this time we partnered with Terminal West for all the music programming, we usually create a big stage out there, with a bunch of action sports like skateboarding, a lot of live art, art battles and music.
I want to congratulate you on getting married man! Does your wife paint as well?
Greg Mike: Thank you! She helps now, I’m always trying to spend more time with her and I’m always trying to paint. So it’s one of those things I have to balance out, if she has a weekend free I’m like hey, “I can use you’re help with some fill in’s, come through”. She gets a kick out of it now, she has some can-control now, she realizes anything she messes up, I can fix it. Once she figured that out with spray painting, I think that reduced the stress level a little bit. She likes hanging out on the lift and catching a sun tan while I’m sweating my ass off haha.
What does art mean to you?
Greg Mike: I mean art for me is just an expression, I paint a lot of bright stuff. I try to channel the positivity in my life through art, it’s easy to be negative, there are so many people that walk around with negative attitudes so if anyone interacts with my art I want them to feel positive. A lot of my work is really youthful, I used to watch Ren & Stimpy and I look at skateboard graphics and everything from the crazy 90’s. I try to channel a little bit of that, that fun child-like emotions that I use to have and keep that in the adult lifestyle. Figure out how to mold that into something that’s inspiring and also keep it young and keep it fun..just not too serious.
You can check out Greg Mike’s work on his website.
Follow him on Instagram as well: @GregMike