Tattoos by Driz
Instagram: @drizelinink, @true_tattoo_studio
True Tattoo, Gold Coast, Australia
Dawn Cooke: What was your first tattoo?
Debra Yarian: I wish I could remember the name. It was a name on an older Mexican man’s hands, at a flea market in Phoenix, Arizona. We were on our way back to California and he had a step van there that he had converted into a tattoo shop. At the time people would set up on the weekend and tattoo at this flea market. I mean, Peter’s Tattoos – who was Peter Poulos, a legitimate shop – would set up at the flea market too… (more…)
Chad Koeplinger: What about stylistically? The way that you tattoo is pretty fucking unique looking, I think. You can tell it’s one of your tattoos. You have a certain look to them. I know the magazine does like to talk a little bit about technique so we can get into that. But first things first, is there or was there someone’s tattooing that you saw that was maybe the light bulb that clicked for the way you’ve developed your style? Was there some influence with anyone, or was it just kind of something that happened and you went that way?
By Owen Williams
Anyone who has been to a tattoo convention of late, from Milan to Sydney may not have actually seen, but definitely would have heard the whirlwind that is Crystal Morey. Usually holding court at the Gomineko Books stall (an invaluable source of Japanese tattoo culture reference and hard-to-find, out-of-print rarities) while simultaneously translating and taking bookings for her Japanese tattoo cohorts. Aside from kicking butt, taking names and rolling dice at convention time, what is it that goes on in the life of the pint-sized Texas Tornado and number one Tiger Mama? (more…)
By Crystal Morey
I met Sandi Calistro in Montreal last year and was struck by how sweet she was and by how amazing her business cards were! I went back to my hotel and pulled up her website that night. For someone so young her portfolio is very strong and it looks like she has really redefined the way artwork is translated onto skin. It has been my experience that many tattooers can’t draw on paper, and many artists have a hard time satisfactorily tattooing their illustrations… Sandi not only works well in both mediums, but her work transcends and she brings her trademark ladies to a new level of distinction with each new piece. Suffice it to say, I am a big fan of both Sandi and her work… (more…)
By Crystal Morey
I’m gonna just start this whole interview with a disclaimer… I love Owen dearly and really want to do this interview, but he’s one of my best friends and partner in crime so this is bound to get real messy, real fast. That being said I do think, for the record, that he’s über talented. Each new piece he does leaves the last in the dust… Sucking its thumb and crying for its mother. While he is without a doubt one of the loudest people in the industry, he is also incredibly modest and hard-working. His artwork is insane, be it portrait work, Japanese inspired pieces or pin-ups – the end result is always jaw-dropping. I think he’s a bit of an idiot savant… (more…)
Things out here in the land down under are hustling. I have covered a lot of ground in Australia, but pretty much seen only the inside of tattoo shops, and bars… what?
All of the traveling over the past 80 weeks took a toll on me and for a while I thought it was gonna take me out. I was living such a solitary existence. When I got to Melbourne, I hadn’t tattooed in three months and I went to work for one of the best dudes in Australia, Trevor McStay…
I can’t think of one thing in the history of my career that has changed me as a person or a craftsman more than traveling and meeting new people. I just got here to Five Star in Fremantle, Australia. Man, I was in South East Asia, surrounded by all of this beautiful shit but losing my fucking mind because I wasn’t tattooing, but now after two months of work, I’m feeling fine… (more…)
You arrive to Melbourne 16 hours after flying leaving Saigon, four and a half hours of which were spent in a Chinese airport where you ate beef-noodle soup that would soon destroy your stomach and have you gassing people out on the plane. The fat pimply, greasy Chinese 20-something sitting next to you keeps drinking milk, after milk, after milk, chugging them down as you fart into the cushion trying to drive the smell deep into foam oblivion… Before landing the flight attendants walk by and hand out napkins to cover your faces while they spray down the cabin in some disinfectant to rid the plane of dangers to Australia’s agriculture. You watch the stewardess walk by spraying the overhead bins and the bathrooms with what looked like air freshener. You fart some more beef noodle gas into the cushion, and the fat kid next to you is sitting there with his mouth open, burps up his milk. Welcome to Melbourne… (more…)
You’re in Hue –this is the center of Vietnam, the halfway point, this is the place where the North and South were separated during the war. The North was Charlie, the Vietcong. The South was with the U.S. and the puppet governments the U.S. were funding. You’re here and it’s kind of cool, but not too cool, grey but not too grey and it’s a bit quieter than Hanoi, which screamed out with energy, horns, touts and chaos. (more…)