Most graffiti writers, like us, moonlight in their spare time. They use their skills to paint public spaces, pimp someone’s car or spray-paint a wall in an office or someone’s room. Some do it on the side, mainly to get free paint, while others make a living out of it and therefore stand almost daily in the air of paint.
It does not have to be unpleasant to stand in the air of paint. Montana Colors adds fragrances to the MTN94 cans. Yellow smells like banana and red like strawberry. Very nice, but not less unhealthy. After a long day of painting you can get very dizzy. I myself once woke up with a nosebleed when I had painted a children’s room the day before.
It was my first real job and I had one of those white dust masks on. Afterwards, I learned that they only stop dust and no propellants. Nowadays, I only use a 3M half mask. Apart from dust, they also stop propellants, which makes a big difference. However, at night you can still scrape a layer of paint from your nose and throat. Which means that something does end up in your lungs…
A month ago, we had an assignment to paint an office. It was a large room and we had opened all the windows. So we thought that the gases should be OK and filled our roller case with MTN94 paint. It has low pressure (good for details), it is reliable paint, many colours and cheaper than Montana or Belton, hence our preference.
We started paying attention to how it was possible that paint was still in your nose and throat, despite the mask. As the day progressed, we began to sweat behind the mask and the strap around our heads became irritating. In addition, the customer often came by to have a look and a chat. All the more reason to take off the mask and sniff the paint.
Graffiti is normally made on a synthetic basis and therefore not very healthy. But it does work in all weathers and on any surface. Perfect for all your outdoor jobs, where the gases can spread well.
For indoor work, you are in a closed, concentrated space, which is why we looked for a different (less harmful) paint. We tried acrylic and water-based graffiti. At first we were sceptical, would it stick? Nothing could be further from the truth…
Our search began with Flame Blue. The paint is similar to MTN94 and Montana Gold (low pressure and matt finish) and is acrylic-based. We were under the impression that this would be less toxic. The smell was indeed less intense, but the paint is acrylic-based just like the synthetic variant is solvent-based. As a result, it is just as toxic as the synthetic variant.
So that was not a good experience with acrylic graffiti… So we decided to try MTN Waterbased. The quality of the paint is very good and it doesn’t smell at all. Besides, the paint is not solvent based, but 100% water based. The only disadvantage is that the paint is relatively more expensive than the 400ml synthetic versions.
MTN Waterbased is perfect for children, as it is a small aerosol for small hands, and it is not toxic at all. Another example of success we heard from Egbert. He had a client who wanted him to paint something live at a trade fair and really did not want it to smell. MTN Waterbased was then also the perfect solution for him!