For almost 15 years I have been a self-employed graffiti artist working under the name of Olas Art, which comes from my name Nick Halahan (Nicholas - I thought it was about time I used the Olas part!) I do commissioned artwork for people and businesses, while delivering graffiti art workshops for young people and community groups. I have painted murals all over the UK, from Fort William in Scotland, to Barcelona, to Mexico and I am now based in Bristol, UK.
Whether I am painting for myself, or for someone else, my artwork often includes bright colours and some kind of movement flowing through. This was something I picked up when painting a lot of graffiti letters, where my aim was to bring the lettters to life bending them into cool shapes and giving them a character of their own.
I started delivering graffiti workshops for young people when I was volunteering at a youth centre in Leeds, where I was the Regional winner for Yorkshire & Humber Vinspired National Awards 2009, and national nominee for Most Inspirational Volunteer. Since then I have taught in schools, children homes, HMP Eastwood Park in South Gloucestershire and secure units for youth offenders, including the Atkinson Unit and Adel Beck in Leeds.
I have delivered graffiti art workshops in NHS mental health institutions such as the Roycroft Forensic Unit in Newcastle and Fromeside adults ward in Bristol. A career highlight has been working with Leeds GATE (Gypsy And Traveller Exchange) on and off over the last 8 years, and delivering art workshops to Irish traveller sites across Leeds, Bradford and Wakefield.
Akumal Arts Festival 2018, Mexico
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