Dário Santos, originally from Portugal, has aimed to bring vibrant street art to brighten up Swindon, since moving to the town over four years ago.
“Murals bring color and art into public spaces, which otherwise can be quite monotoned and unloved,” he said.
“It helps create a new experience for the Swindon community, and positively transform areas that we all benefit from, interact with, and live in.
“It turns something otherwise unimpressive into something that brings joy and pride, so street art is uplifting as it brings us all together and engages people of all ages and backgrounds without limitations.”
The 32-year-old then undertook a degree in Illustration at Southampton Solent University in 2018 but had done other art before working full-time as an artist from 2021 onwards.
“The journey to becoming a full-time independent artist has not always been smooth and straightforward,” he said.
“For me, it involved entering other artistic fields such as tattooing, which I did for four years, as well as animation and concept art.”
He admits to being open to many different styles in his art but that it is always an ongoing learning process.
“I explore the surrealistic and psychedelic movements, combining them with odd ideas and building new worlds and here I mix illustration with these classic artistic influences,” he said.
“Also, I create cartoon illustrations, where I develop new characters that are meant to bring a smile or a laugh to everyone that sees them and the color is a big element for me and is a key aspect in my art.”
“Being an artist is very much a constant process of improving, learning, and testing out new ideas and even artistic styles, which helps with keeping the creative juices running.”
Dário took part in last year’s Swindon Paint Fest and made a mural of a Giraffe in a tub of flowers.
“Murals are a good platform for my art style, and also, it’s a great opportunity to push myself out of my comfort zone and do something more special,” he said.
“I usually work on paper, wood, or digitally so the difference is enormous as the impact a piece has in a larger size like a mural and the capacity it has to pack a vibrant is much greater.”
You can find Dário on Instagram and his website.
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