Love, art inspire stencils

This example of Jones´ work portrays how love can inspire his stencil work through his girlfriend.

This example of Jones´ work portrays how love can inspire his stencil work through his girlfriend.

Sometimes, cutting up stuff and spraying it with paint is considered wrong, but one Joplin resident wants to make that his living.

Christopher Jones, 21, makes and sprays stencils in his daily life.

“Some people call it graffiti,” Jones said. “I call it stenciling.”

Seven years ago, Jones found himself in need of a few graphics for a skateboard. He turned to something he had known in his daily life.

He had seen stenciling examples on other boards, on walls and even on T-shirts.

“I knew it then and I said, ‘I can do that,'” he said. “I knew spray paint, and I knew stencils.”

Jones said his first stencils were simple symbols, then he moved up to small graphics about two years ago.

“I did bats, zombies and monsters,” he said.

Jones’ roommate said he has seen a change in the craftsmanship of the stencils over the years.

“I’ve seen him get better,” said Robert Snodgrass, junior undecided major. “I’ve watched him progress. He’s just gotten better.”

The graphics of today are anything from signs to pictures of Jesus.

“The one that turned me around is one of Jesus,” Jones said.

He said his graphics were nothing special until he created the one of Jesus.

“When I made that, I thought, ‘I can do something with that,'” he said.

Snodgrass said he thinks Jones’ work would be hard another person.

“It’s hard to explain,” Snodgrass said. “I challenge you to try it once.”

Jones said he doesn’t consider what he does to be an art.

“I hate to call it art,” he said. “With every stencil I work on, I just try to put myself out there.”

Jones said he has no particular style, but said his technique is not liked among other stencilers.

“I talk to other stencilers,” he said. “They say I’m wrong.”

He uses a thicker razor than is normally used and uses cardboard instead of plastic to cut patterns for his paintings.

“I do all the wrong things and get the right results,” Jones said.

He said he never took a class in stenciling, but that his talent is simply in him. However, he said he attributes his natural talent to God.

“I’m just a man,” Jones said.

He said the things he cares about usually inspire him to create a stencil piece.

“Revenge, love and art inspire me,” Jones said. “If I see an image I like, I want to share it.”

He said so far he has not received much money for his work, but he would like to make it profitable in the future.

“I usually do it for trade labor,” he said. “If I could make any money off it, that’s all I would do.”

He said he has done some graffiti in the area, but he said he does it in a respectful manner. His graffiti is in places where people may view it, but not necessarily in illegal places.

“You don’t use the restroom in the same room you sleep in,” Jones said.

The works each have their own meaning to Jones, but he never tells his viewers what to think.

“I want it to be open to interpretation,” Jones said.

Snodgrass has another appreciation of the stenciling, which is created in the living room of his and Jones’ shared house.

“I don’t try to get into philosophy behind it,” he said. “I just sit back and admire it.”