Miguel Montgomery: On a little bit of a different note about your tattooing, I’ve seen some Japanese tattoos with American roses in the background. I haven’t seen too much of that. Did something spark that made you want to do that? Or did you just take it upon yourself, like ‘this snake needs a rose next to it’?
Bryan Burk: There were a few conversations I had when I was working with Bob about how we should try doing that stuff. And there were some kids that I had tattooed on, one was my friend Jeff, who’d gotten a bunch of tattoos and wanted to fill in all the space around them. So he was one of the first people that I filled in with roses and water around everything because it kind of fit in all these little spaces he had. On his it worked, and I think if you’re gonna do blue water with roses and some American stuff, it works. As long as you kinda keep it pumped up on the American side of town; color clouds and blue water with black behind all of that, like Eddy Deutsche, like Eddy meets late Sailor Jerry-type Japanese compositions, it’ll work. But I think if you’re doing black Japanese background with grey water, for whatever reason, roses look weird… (more…)
Crash: Okay, let’s start with a basic history of yourself and then I want you to talk about the shop and it’s crew.
Horitaka Kitamura: Sure man, basic story… Well I was born in Japan and my parents moved to America when I was a few years old. My parents were bilingual so they taught me Japanese as well, which opened a lot of doors for me later on… So I grew up here and probably had a very similar interest in tattooing like many of my generation, I was a skater, turned punk rocker and liked tattoos from my junior high school days. I do recall liking the tattoos in an old Japanese TV show, “the tattooed magistrate” where the hero shows his cherry blossom tattoos before he kicks ass at the end of every episode. So I guess I’ve long had an affinity for tattoos. I know in high school I had already decided I wanted a body suit, didn’t know what the hell that meant or what was good but I just knew that I wanted tons of tattoos! (more…)
By Takahiro “Horitaka” Kitamura
It’s no secret that I love books. I collect them, I write them, I publish them… and it’s nice to see that amidst the flurry of Google image searches and technological advances, books are still in use in the tattoo community. I haven’t been tattooing that long, but book collecting was, and is, something all my mentors and role models encouraged. It was about study and reference, doing your homework to make the best tattoo drawing you could!
As many people in the tattoo world are aware, Horitomo has been busy working on his first book and seminar. I was just telling my girlfriend Molly that I was going to blog about this and she beat me to the punch. She even snapped some photos at Horitomo’s house when he was showing us his drawings. Here is a sneak-peak at what I think will be one of the most important books in tattooing. Introducing guest blogger Molly Skobba… Enjoy!