I'm walking alongside Waterloo station. I don't think I've ever taken this route before, certainly not on foot, maybe by cab. As I cross over this small bridge I can smell strong fumes and hear a weird noise. A metallic rattle and then a shhhhh. I peer through the diamond trellis fencing and see a graffiti artist carefully sculpting the arms of a figure with spray paint. Ah mystery solved, the now recognisable smell is the paint and the noise is the constant shaking of the can. But there seems to be a lot of noise from one artist. I peer through the gloom and see more bodies. Might be worth a further investigation.
I climb down the steps and as my eyes adjust I can see the Old Vic tunnels are packed with people furiously shaking and spraying. The aroma of the spray paint is now mingling with a distinctive whiff of weed. The walls and ceiling are adorned with images and more are being applied on top. There's music playing and a cacophony of sprayers are doing their stuff. Several of us are watching a tiny Japanese girl who’s recreating several drawings from her sketchbook. She asks for some pallets to stand on so she can outline her latest creation. I'm not sure if this is a random graffiti collective, a competition, a very lucky coincidence but it definitely creates a photographic opportunity.