Carving his name in graffiti art

Artist at work: Muhamad Fakhrul putting his creative skills to good use at Precinct 8 in Putrajaya.

PUTRAJAYA: After more than a decade in the world of creative art, local talent Mile09 can be proud of having carved a name as a graffiti artist who is not only known locally but also internationally.

Mile09, whose real name is Muhamad Fakhrul Akmal Shamsurrijal, 37, has done graffiti work in the country and abroad.

A product of Institut Kemahiran Mara Sungai Petani, the Kedah graphic advertising graduate has been entrusted with various graffiti projects with giant entities such as PETRONAS and Perbadanan Putrajaya (PPj) as well as overseas projects in Jakarta, Bangkok and Dubai.

“Graffiti art is now seen as a new platform among young people who want to generate income and have fun working without being tied to office hours or employers because it can be done at any time,’’ he said when met by Bernama.

Sharing the beginning of his career as a graffiti artist, Muhamad Fakhrul, who has expertise in semi-wildstyle lettering graffiti with pop colours and semi-architectural structure patterns, said the graffiti he produced were his own ideas which emerged through sharing ideas with fellow artists and also from watching YouTube videos.

Muhamad Fakhrul, who hails from Putrajaya, said to familiarise himself with the spray paint and colour selection, he made zinc wall at construction sites around Putrajaya as his canvas in the early stages of venturing into the field.

“Zinc wall at the construction area would usually be thrown away. It is from there I learned the art of producing graffiti to get to the level I am now.

“The name ‘Mile09’ is a combination of my name and the area of Precinct 9 where I studied and grew up in,” he said.

The father of three said the basic material for doing graffiti art is a special spray paint that is imported at a price of around RM25 to RM35 a can.

“The process of completing a graffiti art depends on the width of the wall. If the wall is small it wouldn’t take very long to complete.

“It can be done any time except when it rains,” he said, adding that he would spend nearly 12 hours a day to complete a project.

He said graffiti art has been accepted by the public and recognised by government departments such as PPj, Johor Baru City Council, Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) and Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF).

His works include the 300m-long RMAF assets at the RMAF Air Base in Subang in 2010 and a nine-storey building in Jalan Sultan Ibrahim, Johor Baru, last year.

“At the start of this year’s Ramadan, the PDRM also used my art pieces at the Dang Wangi district police headquarters in Kuala Lumpur.

“I also did a graffiti drawing for PPj in the pedestrian area in Precinct 8,” said Muhamad Fakhrul, who also believes graffiti art in Malaysia is more restrained compared to those produced in other countries where they are more aggressive.

Those who pursue a career as a graffiti artist should be able to have a starting income of about RM5,000, depending on the graffiti project.

“Income in this field is uncertain, depending on the project, but graffiti art provides a different type of satisfaction, especially when the work produced is appreciated,” Muhamad Fakhrul said.

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