By Laura Roeper (Original Story Appears courtesy of Chicago Now’s: Permanent Canvas)
Chicago Tattoo Arts convention was held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Rosemont on March 22 to March 24, 2013…
The convention was hosted by http://www.villainarts.com/ who are old pros at this and it showed. The facility was easy to park at, not too pricey compared to downtown garages and was right off major expressways. The actual conference rooms at the hotel used were adequate but really crowded. That is great news, but it was a bit hard to navigate, stop and really view portfolios. What this does show is success. They had a varied representation of artists, including a few of the “celeb” sprinkled through out. This included our own lovely Hannah Aitchison appearing with her Best Ink co-star Sabina Kelly. Amy Nicoletti and Megan Massacre were also there.
Like or dislike the tattoo shows on TV, the one positive is these artists may attract a more casual fan, who then can go on to support their local favs and conventions like this one. Special mention of Amy, she was tattooing when I was there so I did not get a chance to speak to her, but I saw repeated social network postings on how gracious she was. The old school was represented too. My personal thrill was meeting Crazy Philadelphia Eddie and chatting a bit with him.
It was great to see Chicago shops and artists there, along with shops from many states and the UK. The clothing and supply vendors such as 187, InkAddict were there in full force. Chicago needs more of this and I was glad to see the organizers plan on coming back next year. The only thing I would love to see is the convention being held in the actual city area. It may be too costly, which is easily understood. Rosemont is a suburb of our Windy City and about 30 minutes away. For all the artists and vendors not from Chicago, I hope they had time to explore the city and it sights. The video is a small sample of the convention… next year, I will try to set up more one on one interviews but hope this glimpse is fun viewing for all!