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Friends don’t let friends get bad tattoos!

bad tattoos what can you do?

What can any of us DO about the number of people out there getting BAD TATTOOS? Why do people get bad tattoos? Why do neighbors, coworkers, and even our family members come up and show us their new tattoos [which are obviously sub-par] and say, “I just got a new tattoo! It looks good, right?!” How can otherwise intelligent people, people whom we know have relatively good tastes in music, movies, comedy, theater, ballet, (SH#T– nearly ANYthing else creative in the world), but be utterly and completely blind to the truth about how bad their own tattoos are? As hard as it is to say- it may not really be their fault; even tattooers need up to TEN YEARS to learn how to recognize good work! That’s how hard it is to learn. But, for some reason, every-body thinks they know what’s good and what’s not, when it comes to tattoo work. Speaking AS a tattooer of 25 years, I’m going to go out on a limb and say it’s mostly OUR OWN fault, the pros who’ve been doing it for 10-20 years or more; we LET television and the internet flood the hearts & minds of genuinely interested tattoo fans, and did little to make a stand TOGETHER when we had the chance, by creating and offering quality, entertaining AND educational media resources for the masses. Most tattooer’s have selective memories, so it’s been really really difficult for many them to remember that there was once a time that they didn’t know shit about tattoos either. ... Read More »

The Justin Harris Interview

Justin-Harris-tam-blog

By Kevin Miller http://www.tattoosnob.com I’ve wanted to interview Justin Harris for a while now. Justin was always down, but we could never work out the details. Well it’s finally happened, and I’m stoked. Justin recently moved to Philadelphia, and has been pumping out new work. Keep reading to hear how Philly is treating Justin, his advice for new tattoo artist, who you’re sleeping on, and why he changed his iconic Instagram name. Tattoo Snob: Let’s get the basic information out of the way. Who are you, where do you tattoo, and what other information do people need to know? Justin Harris:My name is Justin Harris, I currently am tattooing out of Deep Six in Philadelphia, PA. TS: You have an interesting story about your Instagram username, and why you eventually changing it. Can you tell us that story? JH: A lot of people have asked why the change in the name. People commonly referred to me as one of the “Bullies”, specifically @greenbaybully. I still and always will be a bully for life. My counter part Bobby Johnson (@glendalebully) started it and it stuck. As for the change in the name, it was mainly do to with separating from the IG persona and real life. Using the bully name was a good way for people to remember who you are. As any business traveler knows, names are hard to keep track of. We’ve all been there, and with that being said – it also can be a down fall having an alternate name. People would often ... Read More »

World’s top Japanese tattoo artists pt3: Mick Tattoo

Screen shot 2014-12-11 at 4.44.32 PM

10 of the world’s best Japanese tattoo artists pt3: Mick Tattoo I spent a few days looking through my travel archives while preparing for this Artist Profile on Mick Tattoo, aka Mick from Zurich, (or, for you Game of Thrones fans)- aka Mick: the King of Dragons! When looking back on the history of this little adventure called Tattoo Artist magazine, I still don’t know how the whole thing came together. I’m no famous tattooer, just an average one with a side project  of documenting tattoo artists of the modern era, who suddenly found himself traveling the world and meeting the heroes of my craft. Back in late 2004/early 2005, TAM was still brand spanking new, understaffed, and much more complex (and expensive) than I ever imagined. I can’t tell you how many rides I bummed or couches I’ve slept on in the last twelve years since TAM’s inception, but I was receiving a lot of help from tattooers around the world, and each was encouraging me to push the boundaries of what our community could intentionally create, simply by working together. This was long before the social media explosion and the onslaught of TattooTV-type shows. Sadly, it was a much more unified time for our community; it’s a different world now, and I bear no ill will; things change. However, TAM’s objectives have not; it was (and still is) to conscientiously document tattooing’s most interesting, influential and talented artists of the time, plus collect stories of our shared past and then share all ... Read More »

First tattoo? Choosing a good studio

Cody Eich tattoo artist

Choosing the right tattoo parlor is just as important as the design you pick. When deciding to get a tattoo for the first time, it’s very important to get the very best advice you can (from the most experienced guide you can find). Once you find a person you can connect with, it’s time to begin the serious step of planning that tattoo. (BTW- that’s the REAL key, finding someone qualified that you can trust. Don’t be taken in by those who prey on customer ignorance, either on the street OR at a shop! Get informed. Be patient. And BE DISCERNING!) When someone actually makes the decision to get a tattoo for the first time, the next logical step is finding the right tattooist to do the work. BUT WAIT- how do you do that?! Tattooers are a dime a  dozen, these days! Well, for the majority of new tattoo collectors, it often and inevitably begins with finding the right tattoo parlor. This is a great place to start. Realistically, if you go to a less than ideal tattoo parlor, you’ll more than likely end up with less than the ideal artist and, hence, a less than ideal tattoo. No problem. It’s easy TO AVOID the most common mistakes made by the majority of people just getting into tattoos; the answer: simply be more informed than the majority! Before you decide on a tattoo parlor to do your tattoo, you need to compare what’s available to you and weigh out your options. The higher quality tattoo parlors certainly ... Read More »

Tattoo Removal: HELP! I got a bad SCRATCHER TATTOO!

Worst tattoos

Tattoo Removal Tips From The Pros A tattoo is something meant to last a lifetime. Regrettably, what an individual wants on their body today may not be what he or she wants 2 or twenty years from now. Regardless of that fact, it assumes the tattoo we’ve chosen is actually what we want…and it also assumes the person doing the tattoo does satisfactory job on applying the tattoo. If the job is bad, even though the idea is right, regret occurs almost immediately. When you take into consideration the chances of getting a “good” tattoo from an improperly trained, unethical & unlicensed “SCRATCHER” tattooist being, honestly, about nil to none; (for reasons too numerous to mention. Start HERE for more info.) We (TAM) are here to HELP PEOPLE, (help YOU), learn about good tattoos and good tattooers, because we want you to KNOW what’s really at stake BEFORE you go ahead and get that little tat from “neighbor/uncle/cousin Steve” or that guy up the road. Please take this article into consideration before settling for a ‘cheap tattoo’ because both the procedure and the expense of acquiring GOOD TATTOOS are fairly minor in comparison to having them covered up or removed at a later date. Well, here’s some helpful advice if you find yourself regretting the decision and looking for solutions. One of the most commonly used methods for eliminating an unwanted tattoo is also one of the least attractive. The skin-graft technique involves taking out an area of skin from a less-noticeable part ... Read More »

Inksmith & Rogers 30th Anniversary

Eric Inksmith and Rogers 30th yeah anniversary

By Deb Yarian Early in my tattoo career, I was blessed by the friendship and mentorship of Eric Inksmith and the late legendary Paul Rogers. At a time when secrets of the trade were highly guarded, their willingness to share their knowledge with others was a rare commodity. It was that, their shared love of tattooing, and their hospitable natures that drew travelers from all over the globe to the first Inksmith and Rogers shop that Eric and Paul opened in Jacksonville, Florida, in 1984. Three decades later, those same qualities are what drew me and hundreds of fellow tattooers, friends and their families back to Jacksonville for a two day celebration of their 30th anniversary. Paul passed away in 1990 but hosts, Eric Inksmith, Mike Wilson, and Angelo Miller succeeded in carrying on in that same spirit of generosity during the two day event. Inksmith and Rogers consists of five shops now, spread across the city, home to more than 25 devoted tattooers known throughout the tattoo world for their bold, colorful, beautifully executed tattoos. Throughout both days of the celebration resident and guest artists tattooed at all of the I & R locations. People lined up for hours waiting to get tattooed by Eric, many hoping to get The signature Inksmith and Roger’s smile and a “30″ year mark. Their flagship shop’s large outdoor area resembled a carnival midway festooned with tents and flower covered tables. Guests, Philadelphia Eddie and Bowery Stan Moskowitz manned a table, selling their ... Read More »

10 of the world’s best Japanese tattoo artists: pt2- Horiyoshi III

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This is Part 2: Horiyoshi III – 10 of the world’s best Japanese style tattoo artists. -Horiyoshi III (no connection to Horiyoshi II, from the last post), is Yoshihito Nakano of Yokohama, Japan, and is our featured artist today. Horiyoshi the 3rd is perhaps THE most respected and celebrated tattoo artist in Japan’s history. His work is admired and studied by experts, artists and collectors worldwide, and with more than a dozen books available on Horiyoshi’s life and work, it’s easy to understand why he is unarguably considered the preeminent Japanese tattoo master of this or any era. His work is EPIC! Beautiful! And Groundbreaking! While still remaining rooted in centuries of tradition.                   It was during the first year of Tattoo Artists Magazine’s existence that I found myself given the sudden chance to travel to Japan and meet this legendary tattooer, Horiyoshi III. TAM was still brand new at the time, so having a friend send along my request to Horiyoshi, asking to feature him and his work in the new magazine project opened up the chance of a lifetime- an invitation to come visit Horiyoshi’s studio and museum. It would be the realization of a lifelong dream to see Japan, (having become obsessed with Japanese art, history and lore as a young child after watching the mini-series “SHOGUN” on television, and then discovering the amazing filmography of Akira Kurosawa and books of translated Japanese legends by Lufcadio Hearn in my teen years!) Hell yeah! I could NOT ... Read More »

10 of the World’s BEST Japanese style TATTOO ARTISTS: pt1

Best Japanese Tattoo Artist

Over the next few weeks we’re going to pay tribute to Japanese-themed tattoos and the contributions of 10 Tattoo Artists widely considered to be some of the BEST IN THE WORLD. For an ever-increasing  number of tattoo collectors (and artists alike), Japanese-styled tattoos are appreciated as the most sophisticated and visually pleasing style of tattooing, today. Though known about since the late 1800s, the popularity of Japanese tattoos in the United States, Europe and around the globe has really only expanded exponentially since the 1960s, prior to this time very few people could understand the depth to these expressions of ink in skin- historically or mythologically. Tattooing is a visual art form, however, and Japanese tattoo work has always had an incomparable effect on even untrained eyes. Just imagine early westerners traveling to a strange land, months at sea, stepping off and seeing such decorated warriors! The history of Japanese tattooing and the mythological roots of its powerful yet elegant imagery are deep topics of study and the daunting pursuit of many modern professional artists and scholars, alike. The myths represented in these tattoos and Japan’s rich history of tattooing are subjects for future blog posts, but for our purposes, now, let us trace the various Japanese styles of tattooing, today, back to but a few primary influences- starting with (perhaps, surprisingly to some) the pioneering work of American master, Sailor Jerry Collins and his correspondence with Tattooers around the globe. There are reasons Norman Collins (aka Sailor Jerry) is so respected by the tattoo community, not the ... Read More »

Italian Adventures and Lessons Learned

Nicki-TAM-feature-image-blog-italy

By Nicki Kasper I’ve met a lot of people over the last five years in this industry… I’ve made a lot of surface level friends and I’ve been blessed with quite a few real genuine friendships with people who truly care for me, and want to know who I am and what I’m about. I’m always humbled by this, and it means a lot to me when it’s clear that I’m not being used for what I might be able to do for someone. I always notice. I was personally invited to attend the World Wide Tattoo Conference by my friend, Alex de Pase last week in Venice, and it was great. It’s two and a half days of seminars, speeches, and discussion panels in front of a room full of people eager to learn and be inspired. I’m not a tattooer, I’m a business owner, but even I can stand to learn something from artists who are teaching and talking about what inspires them, what they have trouble with, and how they get through it. It’s all relative. There are many different styles when it comes to tattooing, as well as different schools of thought in this small industry, but… I do believe that we all stand to learn something from all of them. I think having an open mind and a willingness to shut the fuck up, realize that you might not know everything, and listen to someone teach or speak about what it is that helps them ... Read More »

Tattoo Artist Profile: “Texas Tony Hundahl”

Featured tattoo artist Tony Hundahl

I met Tony Hundahl in January, 2007, (I think), at the famed Austin Tattoo convention. It was my first trip to Austin so, as was my custom, I spent the week before the convention traveling the city, meeting artists, visiting tattoo shops, (searching for the good food:) and booking interviews for the convention. The Austin Convention was (and still is) a great show! My team and I had a blast; we met a ton of new people and managed to get about 8 interviews completed in only two days, with just as many tattoos filmed. There wasn’t a whole lot of time for chit-chat during convention hours so I distinctly remember being stunned silent in the middle of an interview set-up by this GIANT full-torso WOLF-HEAD tattoo (and the shirtless Texan it adorned) marching abruptly past me and out the front doors for a smoke. “He must be on a break,” I figured, since he was still oozing. “I NEED to get a better look at that tattoo!” No joke, it was the most impressive tattoo I’d seen all weekend…(perhaps all year!) It displayed an intensity and boldness I’d only really seen Ed Hardy pull off so successfully! I dropped whatever it was I was doing and swiftly headed outside to see this tattoo and find out WHO was working on it!  GET the FULL 20 min video interview HERE for only $.99 I went hunting for the guy outside and quickly found him, the tattoo screaming at me from across the street, (as a good tattoo should). I briskly strolled up and ... Read More »

Gideon’s Army: Tattoos In Law

Gideon's Army tattoos

By Marisa Kakoulas When my tattoo world and legal world collide, in some very powerful ways, I want to share it with you. I attended NYU Law School’s screening of Gideon’s Army, a film that takes a tough look at the American criminal justice system through the lives of three young public defenders in the the South who struggle with an overwhelming case load, long hours, and very low pay in order to ensure that those who are poor and cannot afford a lawyer in a criminal trial have the right to representation — a right guaranteed by the 6th Amendment of the US Constitution and the 1963 case of Gideon v. Wainwright, in which the Supreme Court ruled that defendants in criminal cases have the right to legal representation in state courts, and if they cannot afford a lawyer, the state would have provide one. Public defenders are such lawyers.Gideon’s Army, brilliantly directed by Dawn Porter, is not a documentary where tattoos play heavily. This film, at its core, is about how some of the greatest civil rights abuses lie in a broken criminal justice system, as noted by Jonathan Rapping, who heads the Southern Public Defender Training Center, now known as Gideon’s Promise.However, one of the most powerful moments in the film comes in the form of tattoos. As seen in the short clip below (which is not all entirely in the film), Travis Williams, a public defender in Hall County, Georgia, calls himself and other public defenders who fight for the constitution ... Read More »

Forrest Cavacco Video Interview

Forrest Cavaco Video interview

By Luke Holley Read More »

Bay Area Tattoo Convention 2014

Bay area tattoo convention 2014

Video by Luke Holley Read More »

Painted ladies: why women get tattoos

Elise Harrison: 'My dad is old-fashioned: he thinks all tattooed people are prostitutes or criminals.' Photograph: Christina Theisen and Eleni Stefanou Christina Theisen and Eleni Stefanou/Christina Theisen and Eleni Stefanou

Introduction by Jenn Ashworth Why are so many women getting tattoos?  Eight women reveal the appeal of permanent markings.  Photographs by Christina Theisen and Eleni Stefanou. The first tattoo I ever saw belonged to my grandad. He had it done in Scotland during his national service in the 50s, so the tattoo must have been more than 30 years old when I became fascinated by it. I used to ask him to roll up his shirtsleeve and I would use my finger to follow the outline of a woman cheekily reclining in a margarita glass. The shading that was supposed to indicate the flirty curl of the woman’s toes had become a faded, bluish blur. Now and again, he’d wink and say it was a picture of my granny. She would purse her lips in pretend disapproval. My grandad died over 15 years ago and I’d have to look at a photograph to remember the details of his face, but I can always remember that tattoo. I was raised in a religious household where tattoos were verboten; the body was a temple and women even hesitated over piercing their ears. Modesty in all things was required, especially for girls, and a flash of colour on the skin was a desecration of a holy vessel made in God’s image. So I went and had my first tattoo done when I was 16. I was out on my own for the first time, throwing myself headlong into making my mark, and letting the world mark ... Read More »

Dennis Pase Interview by Pooch

Dennis Pase Tattoo Artist Interview

Pooch: I’m sitting here with my buddy Dennis Pase at his home in Louisville, Kentucky, going to do a little interview here, alright let’s start from the beginning, tell me a little about your history and where did you grow up? Dennis Pase: I grew up in Lake Worth and Boynton Beach, Florida, but I was born in Delaware in a doublewide…pretty cool haha! Delaware in a doublewide…cool, so when did you move to Florida? When I was 5, in 1981, we moved in with my Grandma at her house in Boca Raton. So, what got you into tattoos? Y’know it’s funny, the only thing I can think of was there was this real crazy white trash dude named John Hubbard that lived across the street from us and he had an old panther on his arm and it just looked like shit haha. but it was kinda cool, it was like he was a rebel…and then I guess when I got into hardcore and was into the straightedge thing and started seeing more people with them. Yeah I was going to ask you next if music had something to do with it…same thing for me…playing in bands. I was straightedge when I was 18, that’s when I got tattooed by Kevin Buckstrup at Louie Lombi’s Tatttoo Paradise, it still looks crisp as hell, he put “One Life Drug Free” on my lower back, it hurt so bad I don’t know why I got any more after that haha! My friend Nancy had a bunch of work from him, all old ... Read More »

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