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Tag Archives: state of grace tattoo

Japan’s Complex Relationship with Tattoo


Japan’s Complex Relationship with Tattoo When visiting Japanese Tattoo: Perseverance, Art, and Tradition, on view at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) in Richmond, Virginia until September 27, you’re struck by the pure artistry. Photo after photo of intricate, mesmerizing designs, breathtaking colors, and symbolic imagery, one interwoven into the other, which would be difficult to render on canvas, much less flesh. There’s a passion and a reverence in these galleries that is almost palpable.  That’s why it’s almost inconceivable that Japan, which has been so instrumental in elevating tattooing to an art form, has also pushed this art form into the shadows, even condemned it for centuries. To understand the seemingly conflicted relationship that Japan has with tattooing, you must carefully unearth the deep roots of Japan’s tattoo culture, which date back to the Jomon Period (roughly 10,500 to 300 BC). That’s when the first evidence of tattooing in Japan was recovered from tombs, in the form of clay figurines with faces painted or engraved to represent tattoos. Fast forward many years later to the Edo Period (1615-1868) and Japanese authorities began using tattoos to mark criminals. According to “Japanese Tattoos: From Yakuza to Artisans, Aesthetes” in the Wall Street Journal, “…convicts were branded with penal markings such as bands on the arms, or the kanji character for ‘dog’ on the forehead.” While this criminal stigma would prove difficult to shake for many centuries, tattooing enjoyed a significant reprieve from the negative connotation at the end of the ... Read More »

Bay Area Tattoo Convention 2014

Bay area tattoo convention 2014

Video by Luke Holley Read More »

Knives & Needles: Beau Brady


By Molly Kitamura Reblogged from: Beau Brady. What can I say about one of the most charming tattooers out there? Beau is one of the latest additions to State of Grace, he is super talented, and at one point in time there was no shortage of home made baked goods from the many googly-eyed female clients that seem to follow his every move around the globe. But I digress! I sat down with beau for a second and grilled him on his eating habits, what he likes to eat and most importantly what he cooks. Read on! Beau’s Background Before tattooing I worked in restaurants from the time I was 15. From French to Italian. From pizza shop to Delis I either was a busser or working in the back dish washing and prepping food. that being said I can cook like 6 things haha. What he does now I am a tattooer working at State of Grace Tattoo in San Jose California. I travel frequently and try to enjoy life! Last meal he cooked As I said earlier, I can cook like 6 things, so the last meal I physically cooked was Mac and cheese. Yup, Kraft, blue box Mac and cheese. Kept in the pot I cooked it in, add ketchup. Big bottle of water. Bing bang boom. Dinner, snack. Last meal My last meal on earth is simple. Steak. Ribeye, medium rare, a little more rare. Mashed potatoes, with tons of butter. Steamed broccoli, a big salad ... Read More »

*New* Photos Added To The Gallery

clipper ship

Tattoos by Joshua David Obie San Jose, CA Read More »

Molly Skobba: Beau Brady Visits State of Grace Tattoo


By Molly Skobba  Beau Brady is rad. He is known not only for his killer tattoos, but also for his warm and open personality. Taki and I had the opportunity to hang out with Beau for a week. Beau is originally from Arizona but works at Fun City Tattoo in Manhattan and Da Vinci Tattoo in Long Island, New York. He likes long walks on the beach and thinks sun-dried tomato aioli is a revelation… Read More »

Molly Skobba: In Yokohama, Japan With Shige and His Family (Part II)


By Molly Skobba  Shigenori Iwasaki is a remarkable being. Sorry, just had to get that out there. Taki and I spent two-and-a-half  days with Shige, his adorable family (beautiful Chisato, plus cute-as-a-button Ayaka) and a family friend nicknamed ‘Mister’. We started out the mini but extremely action-packed adventure at the famed Yellow Blaze Studio… Read More »

Molly Skobba: In Japan With Horikiku (Part I)


By Molly Skobba  I briefly met Horikiku at the Bay Area Convention of the Tattoo Arts last October, and first got to witness him in action. I didn’t get to see a finished piece in person at the convention, the weekend was just too crazy, and so I was super stoked to get a chance to photograph some of his current clients in Japan. Read More »

Horitaka: Getting Tattooed by Horitomo by Molly Skobba


By Molly Skobba and Takahiro “Horitaka” Kitamura First off, I want to express how absolutely honored I am to have been tattooed by the renowned Horitomo. Not only did he take the time out of his incredibly busy schedule, but also he tattooed a one-point tattoo on my hand -something he does not do often. It was incredibly kind and generous of him and I am so very grateful. Read More »

Horiken Tattoo Artist Magazine Article Preview for Issue #27


            Interview by Nicki Kasper Nicki Kasper: Do you explore other mediums, like paint? If so, how do you approach that? Do you market and sell them? Horiken: Yes, I like to paint very much. I usually paint with acrylics on paper. I like wooden panels as well. I do try to do different things from my tattooing, I may use the same motifs, but I lay paintings out differently. And, I guess I use different shading and coloring techniques; some that may not work in a tattoo. And… yeah, I do sell paintings, I don’t really make a huge effort to sell them, but if someone wants one, I do sell them. When I was in art school, I studied art history. I am trying to study this more and I have the thought that maybe I can paint and draw, a bit separate from tattooing and make something new… Read More »

Tattoo Artist Magazine California Road Trip

By Crash

By Crash I’m too old for this shit, but damn, what an adventure! I thought I could write something short to share the TAM Road Trip journey and give TAM Blog a little more content. I believe the potentials we have with the TAM Blog are pretty evident, and given enough time, can be fashioned into something powerful, entertaining and educational… Read More »

Horitaka from State of Grace Talks About Ink ‘N Iron


By Takahiro “Horitaka” Kitamura My first blog… I’ve never blogged before but I’ve been a contributor/reader/supporter of Tattoo Artist Magazine since its inception, and so when Crash asked me to join the new blogging crew, I readily agreed. I figure it’ll be a mix of tattoo news, upcoming projects, food posts and photos of my dog… Very similar to my Facebook probably. Hope ya”ll like it… Read More »

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