A MURAL of ‘punk rock’ Alfred Hitchcock has been created in homage to the so-called master of suspense.

Passer-bys may be forgiven for thinking street artist Banksy had visited Grove Green Road after an eight-foot high image of the Leytonstone-born legendary director appeared on an exterior wall of the 491 gallery.

But it was one of the resident artists who created the striking image on the section of the building known as Vertigo, named after one of the auteur’s most famous films.

Pablo Outón, 31, from Galicia in Spain, said: “I am a big fan and love his movies. I wanted it to be a homage to him. I think it is important for people to know about about his connection to the area.

“The murals at the station are okay but I was surprised when I came here that there was no gallery or museum dedicated to him.”

The portrait is copied from the Hollywood legend's trademark black and white profile photograph, but with one striking difference.

The director is wearing a distinctive leather jacket adourned with silver spiked studs - and Mr Outon plans to go even further.

He plans to add piercings to the film-directors face, to help him 'fit in' with the style of the artists living at the 491.

The fine art graduate has already he has recieved a positive response from those living nearby.

He said: “Not all graffiti is good, but if you create a good piece of work and spend time on it then I think it can be good. It makes the street more interesting and helps develop the character of the area.”

Many passer-bys have been stopping to admire the work which they say brightens up the street.

Helen Shipley, retired, from Leytonstone, said: “I think it is good because it adds interest to the road. I don't think of it as being graffiti.”

Michele Sweetman, 56, an interior designer, of Norlington Road, Leytonstone, said: “I think it is brilliant and I wish they would do more. This road is long and boring and has become scruffy, but this kind of thing adds to the area.”

Ms Sweetman said she has written to the council calling for a community project to paint a mural on the railway bridge going over Grove Green Road in an attempt to help brighten up the area and reduce vandalism.

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