“Reverse graffiti” Pressure Cleaning

reverse graffiti
“Reverse Graffiti ~ Moose” by mrsmullerauh is licensed under CC BY 2.0

What is Reverse Graffiti?

Reverse Graffiti is an artistic practice where an image is created not by adding color to a surface, but by subtracting color. It’s also known as “dust tagging”, “clean tagging” or “green graffiti” because it’s usually performed by removing dirt from a surface, and not using any chemical product (such as spray bottles, which are used for regular graffiti).

That’s right – you basically need dirt. That’s the main tool needed in order to create Reverse Graffiti. You may also perform this procedure on a surface that has been previously painted or sprayed but in that case, you will need chemical substances such as paint solvent in order to successfully remove the color – yet the result will not be as good as with simple “dirt”. Pressure Cleaning will not be enough to remove paint or spray.

The procedure to create Reverse Graffiti with pressure cleaning:

Once you have identified your dirty surface (it could be a wall, your driveway, a sidewalk), you need to create a Stencil. Unless you have great artistic skills and you are able to create a great image without one, of course. There are some companies that sell stencils, however, you will mostly find artistic stencils, which aren’t good enough for the water pressure you’re going to apply. Artistic stencils are too thin to withstand a 1,300 to 2,400 psi pressure range, and they will be either damaged in the process, or misplaced.

The type of stencils you are going to need is a heavy, steady stencil. They can be made of heavy plastic or wood. You may purchase specific pressure cleaning stencils or cut your own using professional tools. If you’re trying to Reverse Graffiti a written message, remember that you don’t need to mirror the letters. They will appear exactly as they are on the stenncil.

Place your stencil on your surface. Make sure it’s secured by weights if you lay it horizontally, you may even stand on the stencil with your feet. Have someone holding it in place for you if it’s placed vertically.

At this point, just run your pressure washer over the stencil and make sure that all of the cutoff areas are washed. Lift the stencil, and your Reverse Graffiti is ready!

Your result will look like this:

pressure washing in port orange
Cobble Stone simulating Pressure Washing Art

For this service, we used a cobble-stone simulating stencil, on a dirty sidewalk. The result was really satisfying! And it will give a unique feel to your property without expensive work. If you’re interested in our Reverse Graffiti Pressure Cleaning, contact us: we offer different patterns and even event-related applications (birthdays, parties, Christmas, Halloween, etc.) which can be subsequently removed via regular pressure cleaning (we do that too, of course).

Following, some videos that show the process of “Reverse Graffiti” pressure cleaning applications.

This is done without the help of stencils:

This applicator is using a stencil, to create a logo on the sidewalk in front of a prestigious hotel:

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