Hello My Name Is: Druid 81


Name: Druid81/Erik
City/Country: Oss, the Netherlands
When did you start writing? I did my first legit piece in 1997.

What’s graffiti for you? Relaxation and meditation.

Influences? Folklore and fairytales, illustration, 80’s movie posters, American comics and Japanese manga, nature.

Tell us about your city, how is life and graffiti there? Oss is small town in the middle of the Netherlands. I think for a town it’s size the crime rate is quite disproportionate. Or maybe that’s just the joke I like to make with my friends. Historically we’ve had a lot taggers come up. Nowadays there’s still a core of good writers getting busy regulary.

What keeps you still writing? The exploration of letter styles. I like that feeling of “discovery” when you suddenly put a different twist on a letter you’ve been doing the same way for years.

What first made you interested in graffiti and how did you end up on that track? My earliest memories of graffiti is checking out all the tags on my school door, I was about 6 at the time. By the time I was 11 I had filled up all the free space in my school books with shitty tags.

What trends are you seeing now in the graffiti world that you don’t like? I do see trends pop up from time to time but like most things it comes in cycles. I approach trends as something you can try to improve upon or make a 180 spin against. So in that regard I like seeing them.

What do you do when you’re not painting? I like to work out, read, drink tea and listen to podcasts.

How would you describe your style? Familiar feeling but with a twist.

Can you remember the first piece you did? I did my first real piece after a night of going out with my friends. We were all around 16 years old at the time and I asked if they could be on the lookout for me. I painted the local Basketball court wall. The wall was some raw concrete that sucked up all the paint. At that point I didn’t know to properly paint a piece so I did my outlines first and then my fill in. Also I just used the original cap because I didn’t know about all the different caps. By the time I was finished the sun was coming up again.

Future plans? I’d really to visit the UK, eat some fish and chips and paint some pieces.

Do you adapt your pieces and tags to the spot/surface? I always try to keep the spot in mind when painting. When the spot is dope, you only need just the right amount of funk to let it shine.

What do you think about the new generation of writers in your city? I think there are some that have a lot of talent. I can see they’re developing a personal style and I hope they will mature over time. I do realise that finding a personal style for them is harder nowadays with the constant bombardment of social media. We all get influenced some way or form without noticing it.

What are the best and worst aspects of graffiti? The worst part is probably the health aspect, i’ve probably sniffed way too many fumes all these years. The best part is meeting cool people.

Who do you paint for? I believe in karma. I’m always eager to check out new pieces that others have made but to me that feels kinda selfish, the act of just consuming. It’s because of this I try to be thoughtful about the stuff I paint. I figure aslong as I do my best and and try to send something cool out into the world for others to enjoy, something cool will come my way back again. I feel this is a more healthy balance.

What writers have inspired you? SerchBatesCan2 just to name a few when I was younger. Nowadays the writers in my crews always keep me sharp and I appreciate their insights.

Can you ever feel tired of graffiti? I only get tired of seeing my own graffiti.

What do you hope people will think and feel when they see your stuff? I hope my pieces have a nice story to tell.

Instagram: @Druid81
Tumblr: Druid81.tumblr.com

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