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“LGBT Support and the Tattoo Industry” by Nick Baxter

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by Nick Baxter: Everyone reading this is probably well aware of the mass shooting tragedy in Orlando, Florida a few days ago, targeted specifically at a popular gay nightclub. While headlines and attention tend to quickly move on to other current events, the trauma and aftermath is still being sorted out for all the victims, and many generous people and organizations have set up relief funds to help them. If you feel compelled to donate, here are two such efforts: https://www.crowdrise.com/we-stand-with-pulse-fund https://www.gofundme.com/29bubytqhttps://www.gofundme.com/29bubytq Thankfully, there has been a very supportive social media response to the Orlando shootings from tattoo artists and industry people. Yet, on a daily basis at tattoo related public events, LGBT issues seem to be rarely broached and are almost never amongst any of the tattoo artists I know or have been around. Although I don’t have close involvement with a vast majority of the tattoo world, especially as it grows exponentially bigger seemingly every year, I would love to see a more vocal and public consciousness around LGBT issues from tattooers and those involved in the industry. As it slowly evolves away from the secluded underground, and often quite intimidating “macho boys club” that it used to be, I’ve wondered to myself why there aren’t more proud and openly gay/trans tattoo artists making waves in the tattoo world (or if there are, why am I not hearing about them the same way I hear about all kinds of other industry happenings?). After all, it has historically been ... Read More »

Artist Spotlight – Timmy B

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Timmy B @timmy_b_413 Timmy B started tattooing in 2005, but not in the traditional sense some would assume. He didn’t undergo an apprenticeship. Instead, Timmy started his tattoo career by working out of other people’s kitchens and participating in tattoo parties every weekend he could. He used a toaster oven as an autoclave and scrubbed tubes bare-handed. He couldn’t find a shop that would take him under their wing so, determined to start learning how to tattoo, Timmy B bothered a kitchen magician tattoo artist for months until he finally agreed to hire Timmy for $100 a day, with parties often running up to 12 hours. Timmy specializes in a blend of realism and new school art styles, which you can see characterized in his work that’s featured throughout this gallery. He works out of Tattoo Afterlife, also known as NiteOwl Tattoo, in downtown Northampton, MA on the corner of Pleasant and Pearl St.  NiteOwl Tattoo http://www.niteowltattoo.com/ Northampton Massachusetts IG – https://www.instagram.com/timmy_b_413/?hl=en Read More »

Celebrating Transitions with Premium Tattoo Ideas

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A person’s tattoo is a representation of their personality, beliefs, and values. As people evolve and transition into a better version of their former selves, a suitable tattoo must be inked accordingly. In order to get a tattoo that is truly unique and states your individuality, let go of all the notions you’ve formed regarding body art. In order to get the right tattoo, lock into the inspiration that’s driving you through life. Whether you wish to mark an achievement, a major event in your life, or honor a close friend or family member, the sentimental value behind a tattoo is what makes it meaningful to you. There can be multiple things going on in your mind that may require careful consideration. Should you feel even the slightest hesitation in your decision, think again. Your commitment to this decision should come before everything else. While many things can be done if you aren’t as thrilled about a tattoo when you first get it, such as cover up tats or laser removal, one should never enter a studio with short-lived or questionable tattoo ideas. While some tattoos do represent current trends and fashion statements, from music to sports teams, you should think long and hard about what speaks and resonates with you because fashion and trends have a habit of dying out. Here are a few things you should take into consideration before locking in your decision to get a tattoo. Your Personality A lot of people often opt to get tattoos ... Read More »

Some of the OG’s of the Tattoo Industry and Artists Who Have Shaped the Industry

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Bob Tyrell is an American Tattoo Artist based in Warren, Michigan. He was born in Detroit and began tattooing in his early 30’s. He is most known for his black and grey work in hyperrealism and Rock and Roll subject matter. He tattooed Kid Rock’s back and boasts a 8 month long waiting list.. He has been featured in LA Ink and London Ink. Read More »

10 Mischievous Muerte Tattoos

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Death has been personified by people for millennia, from simple artistic depictions of life and death to underworld gods taking human form. There are few personifications of death more readily identifiable than Santa Muerte, the folk saint of death acknowledged throughout Mexico and the Southwestern region of the United States. Santa Muerte is said to reign over life and death, offering healing, protection and safe passage to the afterlife for those who follow and worship in her name. While you may not have heard of Santa Muerte before, you’ve likely seen various depictions of her without realizing who/what you were looking at. She often appears as a skeletal female figure wearing a long robe and holding either a scythe, globe or variety of objects. However, muerte tattoos have taken on a life of their own. They usually break the mold and show either a fully-fleshed out woman or zombie-esque rendition of Santa Muerte with bone-like tattoos and body paint mixed with a variety of religious symbols. Tattoo artists all over the world have enjoyed depicting Santa Muerte in new and unique ways, making her easy on the eyes and appealing to a wide audience. Santa Muerte and, by extension, muerte tattoos have gained widespread popularity over the past couple of decades largely due to the worldwide recognition of the Day of the Dead. Oddly enough, worship of Santa Muerte has been opposed by the Catholic Church for as long as her worshippers have been around. Until very recently, Santa Muerte ... Read More »

The Weird Beautiful World of Normal Carrey

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Kaiyu Huang a.k.a. Normal Carrey, who was born in Shanghai creates some pretty amazing esoteric artwork that are stunning tattoos.  He currently lives and works in New York City, and is a student at Parsons the New School.  Normal started tattooing in 2013 and oddly enough had no tattoos himself when he started.  His unique brand of asthetic tattoo art features statuesque portraits and is comprised of geometric elements.  Normal is slowly but surely creating a name for himself with his unique designs that truly are a departure from the tattoo norm. We think they are amazing and would love to hear your thoughts!   Read More »

Minimalist Tattoos: 10 Proven Cases Where Less Is More

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We here at Tattoo Artist Magazine see a lot of tattoos on a daily basis and cover a lot of the larger, incredibly detailed designs at length. But today we want to focus a bit more on smaller tattoos that have a big impact. As the age old adage goes, sometimes less is more. In the case of the tattoos in the gallery below, we couldn’t agree more. These tattoos are massive designs and many of them don’t include a ton of detail, but that doesn’t make them any less impactful or impressive. It’s easy to forget that tattoos aren’t about being big and boisterous. Tattoos are body art that you have to live with for the rest of your life. They’re meant to have a strong personal impact, giving you full control over your body image and the images you decide to display to the world. Sometimes less can be used creatively, like the lion puzzle that’s missing pieces or the snowy mountain range that uses the person’s skin color to full effect. The side abdominal flower design uses less ink to give it a softer look, strategically using shading instead of dark outlines to create the picture and really bring the flower to life. You’ll probably also notice many of the tattoos featured below don’t make use of color, and the one colorful design only makes use of one color too. A talented artist can do a lot with one color, utilizing shading techniques to give the design ... Read More »

Six Tattoo Artists That Will Blow You Away

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  Just like clothing and jewelry, tattoos are a collectible outlet for self expression that show off an individuals style. We love celebrating diversity and finding new artists that have that certain something that sets them apart. These artists have truly peaked our interest and we think they will peak yours as well. Sascha Unisex   Read More »

Interview with a Borneo Hand Tap Tattoo Master

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“Two sticks. That’s all the equipment you need to tattoo by hand.” – Jeremy Lo, hand tap tattoo master. Sitting on the terrace of a traditional long house overlooking the Borneo rain forest, Brighton based tattooist Fade FX is chatting with world renowned hand tap tattooist Jeremy Lo. Fade FX is the only UK tattooist trained in the ancient art of Borneo tribal hand tap tattooing. She revisited the Borneo jungle in 2015 with film maker Tom J. Kelly to document the last of the Iban Head Hunter tattooists, meeting with former teacher and tattoo master Jeremy Lo to document and discuss the intricate technicalities of hand tap tattooing. “You have two sticks. One has needles tied at the end, while the other works as a hammer. The size and length of the sticks depends on which part of the body you’re tattooing. It’s like using a machine with different needles, different tubes and different throw depending on what and where you’re tattooing.” Fade first went to Borneo in 2008 specifically to train under Jeremy, learning the techniques and procedures of hand tap tattooing and has since returned regularly, each time learning a bit more to perfect the technique while living in the rainforest with members of the Iban tribe and simultaneously learning about their culture and tattooing heritage. Jeremy paved the way for tattooists like Fade, encouraging the Iban tribal elders to open up to outsiders and share their secrets. The process of gaining their trust is described as ... Read More »

Spotlight on Nikko Hurtado

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For those of you living on Mars, Nikko Hurtado is an American tattoo artist who specializes in colored portraiture. Nikko was born in the San Fernando Valley of California in 1981 and began tattooing in 2002, eventually starting his own tattoo parlor, the Black Anchor Collective in Hesperia, California. He has been featured on LA Ink and Ink Master, and has also put out several instructional DVDs. In 2012 Hurtado participated as a jury member for the Chaudesaigues Award, an award that recognizes the career and the artistic choices of a tattoo artist. In 2013 Nikko hit an important milestone in his career with his first solo art show “Renati”. Working primarily in oils, Nikko debuted a series of paintings at the Corpro Gallery in Santa Monica, CA to acclaimed reviews. When he looks at everything it took to get to that point he realizes he wouldn’t be where he is now without the dedicated help of his wife Joanne, “Everything I have done was only possible because of her help.” Sadly, after a lustrous career with his tattoo machine, the wizard of realism announced in April 2015 that he is hanging up his tubes.  Hurtado says “I’m sick of seeing teenage girls getting infinity symbols tattooed on their wrists, I did all that I could with a needle and now I’m pursuing a life of wellness—both spiritually and physically.”  Hurtado suffers from debilitating back pain and has decided to pursue other ventures. Nikko is and will always remain an icon in the tattoo industry and ... Read More »

12 Couples Tattoos That Will Melt Your Heart

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Getting a matching/cooresponding tattoo with your significant other is ever the rage these days. They’re a few urban legends around that tell us this is taboo but, we think it’s pretty awesome. Whether you’re already wearing a token of your undying love in the form of ink for your sweetheart or thinking about partaking in this epic past time, we think you will get a kick out of these 12 awesome couples tattoos. 1. All Love is Equal 2. Soul Mates >> SEE MORE by clicking below: Read More »

Try Your Tattoo Before You Buy? Whaaaaat?

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There is a new product on the market that could transform how many people shop for tattoos and assist those who are reluctant make a decision about a tattoo while also helping artists increase deposits, reduce cancelled appointments, and drive even more business to tattoo studios around the world. Momentary Ink is the brain child of Jordan and Lindsay Denny that launched in October 2015 to a flurry of impressive media attention. Now, anyone can try-on any tattoo design, before they commit to permanent ink. How it Works? Upload an image of your tattoo design to Momentary Ink Momentary Ink creates a replica and ships it to your door You apply the tattoo with the Momentary Ink’s proprietary secret solution Enjoy your tattoo for the next several days “We find that many of our customers order 2-3 of the same tattoo at a time because they want to experiment with the placement more so than the design.” – Jordan, founder Momentary Ink. EVERY tattoo below is a custom, temporary tattoo from Momentary Ink! Studio Partnership First, let’s cover some facts. 79% of people surveyed, who were interested in getting a tattoo, said they would purchase Momentary Ink before getting the actual tattoo. 100% of Momentary Ink customers said they were MORE likely to get the actual tattoo after trying it on. 39% said they were willing to pay MORE for the actual tattoo after trying it on with Momentary Ink How it Works for Studios The artist creates a custom design for the ... Read More »

Making First Time Tattoos More Comfortable

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It doesn’t matter if you’re a teen or a senior, always and in every case the first tattoo is essentially a rite of passage. This bold step outside your comfort zone can be very intoxicating. And self expression is addictive. Today, tattoos aren’t just for sailors and bikers anymore; it’s now a way of self-actualization like never before. If you’re a tattoo artist dealing with a first time tattooee, their nervousness quickly becomes apparent. In order to make the newbie more comfortable, walk them through the process. Even if they’ve come prepared, they need to know that their artist understands what they’re going through. Cover the following aspects: Choose Body-Art carefully It’s just a statement of fact: many, many first timers make poor choices when it comes to their first tattoo, and nobody really knows it until years later, in hindsight. It’s important to make the effort implore those new to tattoo to carefully consider the body art they choose as it is going to be a part of them for many years to come, therefore QUALITY is their primary consideration. It doesn’t matter if it’s an epic tattoo or a piece of flash, quality of application is the key to happiness (when it comes to tattoo art;). In addition, a good starting point for the uninitiated is choosing a tattoo that represents something they value deeply, a statement to the world, or simply to show support for a cause. Proper Diet the Night Before When an appointment is set ... Read More »

Game-changer! Introducing the Helios Rotary Pen

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For the Professional Tattoo Artist!  The NEW Helios Rotary Pen is COMING SOON and this innovative tattoo machine is already taking the world of professional tattooing by storm. From its first mention on social media late last year, artists have been lining up to get a hold of this powerful new tool. The Helios Rotary Pen’s sleek form and interchangeable cartridge system is the first of its kind, portable, comfortable, and fully adjustable. Artists from around the world have been making a switch to the Helios Rotary Pen and giving sensational reviews about how it has been exceeding their expectations. The Helios Rotary Pen is the ideal tattoo machine for large & small black and grey work, soft shading, fine line/detail work, and soft color techniques.  – What makes the Helios Rotary Pen so different? The Helios rotary pen is CNC machined from premium aircraft-grade aluminum in Europe. With a weight of only 3.17oz., you will have an incredibly lightweight feel, with perfect balance. The fully adjustable needle stroke allows the machine to be used as a liner or a shader, giving complete control of needle depth from 0 – 2.5mm, making Helios the equivalent of a short-stroke machine. The quiet but powerful German-made motor runs at a speed of 8,000 – 13,000 RPM, and is compatible with most standard power supplies. The Helios Rotary Pen is designed for use with Helios Tattoo Needle Cartridges. Although several brands of cartridges have been tested with the pen, they do not guarantee optimal performance if ... Read More »

The Art of Watercolor Tattoos

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Have you ever seen a watercolor tattoo in person? You’d certainly known if you had. Watercolor tattoos stand apart from their traditional counterparts in a variety ways, from their vibrant color schemes to the special techniques artists employ to create them. While the term watercolors may cause you to think of the Crayola trays parents give children to paint with in an attempt to limit post painting destruction, they’ve actually been used for centuries to capture the colorful essence of nature. The art style was utilized during the Italian Renaissance by many famous painters and was often used to depict wildlife and landscapes. The art style uses paint in which pigments are suspended within a water-based solution, hence the name. While it can be supported on a wide variety of different materials, it’s most commonly applied to paper that’s either partially or entirely made of cotton in order to reduce the painting’s distortion when wet. Watercolor tattoo artists obtain the same sort of visual effect by lessening the overall ink saturation through subtle shading. They often achieve the brushstroke-esque design by forgoing the typical black outline seen in more traditional tattoos. If you do a bit of research into watercolor tattoos you’ll find a lot of people calling into question the art style’s longevity due to the lack of outline and lessened amounts of ink saturation. It’s true that watercolor tattoos don’t last quite as long as their traditional counterparts and tend to require more touch-ups to maintain, but the ... Read More »