While in Melbourne, we spotted Golden Graves’ impressive art on a canvas in a cafe in Fitzroy and subsequently stalked the artist’s name until we found his instagram. There we found a treasure trove of his distinct portraiture style drawings and had to find out more about his enigmatic self…
Hey Golden Graves! Tell us a little bit about your background
Hey Bawdy, so my name is Dan, I’m 35. I was born in Echuca, a rural town in Victoria, Australia. I’m half Aussie half Scottish & I like to draw! I started drawing from an early age and for most birthdays & Christmases I would get trays of derwent pencils. By age 12 I’d have a shoebox full! Drawing for me is like an old friend, a bond that has always been with me. It’s a time where I can let my imagination run free, everyday life can get so repetitive, drawing gives me the freedom to break this cycle, if only for a little while.
You have a very distinct portraiture style, what inspires your drawings?
I went on an excursion to MONA in Hobart, Tasmania. Not only is it a stunning space but has so many different forms of art… mind blown, highly recommend checking it out. Also Instagram has also helped me out, it’s a great way to get exposure & follow other artists, it’s also good to find faces to draw!
Do you have any favourite artists or creatives, in music art or otherwise?
I’m heavily influenced by a lot of the people around me. Some of my friends are incredibly creative and doing really great in the film, tattoo and photography field. I find what they’re doing is incredibly motivating it pushes me to want to do more and more with my art.
What is your favourite piece you have drawn to date?
Probably my works on pine, I wanted to produce something on a different medium to push myself a bit more so I found a place in the industrial area that worked with wooden doors. Asking for some wood for this purpose was a first for them but it paid off in the end!
You have some of your own pieces tattooed on yourself, is tattooing something you would also like to pursue?
A lot of people have asked me that question, but I just don’t see myself doing it. A pencil on paper is completely different to a tattoo gun on skin dude, once you fuck that up you can’t rub it out!
We first spotted your awesome work on a canvas in a coffee shop in Melbourne, do you have any further plans to sell your pieces online?
I’m really not that tech savvy, like I mean I only just got an iPhone last year and I don’t even have a laptop! But it’s definitely something that has crossed my mind numerous times, especially when all I have in my room is my own art that should be on someone else’s wall. But really I think next year will be the year!
Finally, tell us something not a lot of people know about you?
When I was 19 I had the opportunity to draw for Hallmark cards but I was dumb, naive and inherited quite a bit of money from my Grandparents (R.I.P) and basically wasted a decade drinking lots of wine and regretting everything. Every experience has taught me so much and I wouldn’t be who I am today if it wasn’t for all that Craziness!
…Oh, I also got a magpie stuck in my bike helmet when I was 12!
Thanks for your time Golden Graves! We hope to see your work spreading to Europe soon.
– Aisling Abbey
You can find more of Dan’s amazing illustrations on his instagram @goldengraves