By Bob Done
Reblogged from: http://www.swallowsndaggers.net
At a time when new Tattoo Studios are popping up in towns faster and more frequently than ever, I thought it would be cool to have a chat with my mentor and 20 year veteran of the craft Phil Kyle about the situation we find ourselves collectively in, and what it was like for him “back in the day”.
This is the slightly edited version because I don’t think the internet was, nor will it ever be ready for the original.
BD – Ok, what’s your name and how long have you been tattooing for?
PK – Phil Kyle, been tattooing 21 years and been getting tattooed for almost 30 now.
Where did you start tattooing?
I served my apprenticeship at Main Street Tattoo just outside of Baltimore Maryland in Edgewood. I started actually tattooing when my mentor thought it was the right time.
How many shops were in town when you first started tattooing?
2 at most, unlike today’s carnival.
And what was the relationship like between those shops and yours?
People just did their work and got on with it.
And what would have happened if someone else moved into town and opened up a shop?
(Laughing) Well…….Back then they would’ve got a warning, and if they ignored the warning there would’ve been some action. They’d have their equipment taken maybe, or you know… But the fact was that people with no morals or ethics got served the fuck up. It’s not like today where assholes open up one street over. What’s the fucking point? And they don’t even have the nut sacks to come say, “Hey I’m opening up”, or whatever. Like we did. It’s like fast food chains popping up everywhere. Serving total shit! (laughing) People that should just be clients are opening up shops. If they really loved tattooing they should just stick to getting tattooed, and not try to be some hipster cool guy who couldn’t tattoo their way out of a paper bag. These are the people that talk way too much trash too, if they could run their tattoo machines the way they run their mouths maybe they could actually tattoo.
Tattoos By Ade Stacey
Nine Tattoo Studio
By Phil Kyle
I am going to touch base on the subject. All you folks out there allowing your “friends” to “tattoo” you with dodgy equipment and NO EXPERIENCE or PROPER TRAINING need to wake up… along with the folks that are scarring you up! You think they are doing you a favor because they are giving you a shitty tattoo or hepatitis? You think they have an autoclave? Or spray down the area and materials after tattoo with Trigene? Or pay (like I do) for biohazard pick-up every week? Fuck no… They probably have four needles that came with the kit they bought online… What a treat…
By Phil Kyle
It’s hard to know where to start here seeing the state of things… So just going to play it by ear and have a bit of a rant while stating proper facts on things happening to our craft… not industry. An “industry” is a factory in China making and selling shitty equipment to sell on eBay…
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