King Spiff, Spiff Ellis, OG Spiff are all monikers of the vibrant and jovial artist from New York. When discussing an artist that truly reflects current hip hop culture, Spiff is an essential selection. His versatility is evident from his captivating variety of artwork completed in differing media. It seems he is boundless as he continues to venture into other forms of expression where he will certainly produce work worthy of further consideration.
His talent has been flourishing over the years while fully capturing the essence of the millennial culture he is a part of. He connects with the high school “nerds” being bullied but also with the woes found in the young adulthood social life. He illustrates this dynamic with his colorful portraits depicting “I fight myself daily.” or “I don’t want attention.” written within the piece making him highly relatable among his fans revealing pieces of his psyche while remaining largely incognito. This mystery sometimes transcends into his work, with unique creatures he creates or seemingly random inclusions into his drawings. Although the level of mystery can sometimes confuse—or rather intrigue—it is all perfectly cohesive in its presentation and harmoniously creates an enigmatic feel. First impression of Spiff on social media definitely is met with that mysterious feel but its complimented well with his captivating style. The use of colors and shapes to accent his already eye pleasing work makes it all the more attractive. His work is aesthetically pleasing especially if you enjoy a flood expression, but to a satisfying extent. He has a certain pull to his work where you cannot simply look at one without searching for more to sate your creativity needs. And his expression manifests itself in variable states.
He has clear ties with hip hop culture which extends past his art and into his sense of style. Reminiscent of Yeezy or ASAP Nast, he does not abide by the apparently conventional fashion sense. From distressed to baggy to designer to vintage, his grasp of what it means to be stylish furthermore engages the people and provides another endearing aspect to his persona. Clearly his creativity proves itself to be meddling in many facets of his life and it also takes on many different media ranging from copic marker drawings, pencil and pen sketches, digital art, paintings, audio engineering and now to contemplating clothing and accessory designs. Each product of the differing media is distinct yet it is clear Spiff made it. That being said, it’s difficult to compare him to any artist, he has an entirely unique approach to each piece. If a comparison must be made the only artist that comes to mind would be McFlyy with the exception that Spiff uses real people or creates his own characters to augment or present in a new and interesting way.
He seems to draw inspiration from the very thing that he resembles—the culture itself. Traces of Kid Cudi, Chris Brown and Kanye; not necessarily as visual artists but artists in general appear to have influenced Spiff and his thinking towards his projects. With that understanding, its obvious that Spiff doesn’t mooch off of them but simply piggy-backs and even so he can effortlessly procure pieces that align with his very own special style. His style is birthed from his high school years when he began drawing proceeding to drawing on his phone on a drawing app.
His evolution clearly did not come by chance, even as he coins “ Art Daily” as his motto, his work ethic is notable. Constantly completing commissions and asking for more, he is someone who believes in himself and it shows in his diligence. You can always rely on his efforts being posted on social media, which makes it easy to follow him along his journey. It takes quite some effort to aim your sites at the artists representing hip hop culture and to miss Spiff, he is a first- class pioneer who goes hard all the time, no reservations. I am eager to see how he progresses into paintings and through his own personal endeavors he surely is an exceptional artist that is searching for his limits; whether he will find them in this life, we all await to see.