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Tag Archives: tattooing

Nick Hooker’s Tattooed 1940s


By Anni Irish A recent animated film featured on Vanity Fair’s website in their “Through the Decades” series showcases artist Nick Hooker’s tattoo inspired interpretation of the 1940s. The short four minute film highlights several historical events from the 1940s and is done in an Americana tattoo style. The film opens with a shot of a vintage radio that is placed next to a bottle marked “xxx”. In the background there are various tattoo inspired images which are framed. The radio is on and we hear what seems to be a speech FDR being given in regards to World War II. Over the radio address the sound of a tattoo machine buzzes and the camera pans out to a reveal simple sign that says “tattoos”. The shot widens and various flash tattoo designs become visible and the room is transformed into a tattoo parlor. An Uncle Sam type tattoo artist is tattooing sparrows onto a patron who has a larger ship and American flag scene on their stomach and chest. The image quickly shifts again. Within this shot the framed flash tattoo designs become the object of focus. It is within the confines of the framed tattoo images where Hooker’s depiction of the 1940s comes to life. An important element to Hooker’s representation of the 1940s is his emphasis on the history of tattooing. Hooker showcases this by making the link between tattooing and sailors as well as their presence within freak show and circus culture. Tattoo artists such as Professor Charlie ... Read More »

I am… We are…

Melissa Fusco Lotus Flower painting oil on wood Medium Res

By Melissa Fusco   Men and Woman look at life through a different lens.  There are plenty of professions where women out number men, and each man in that field will approach their projects differently than a woman. On the flip side, there are many professions that men out number women.  It seems that most of my life I have found myself in a field that I enjoy where men greatly out numbered women.  I can honestly say that I have felt the stress of being a woman in a predominately  male dominated industry multiple times in my life. This has always pushed me to work harder to really become the best that I could be. I strived to keep up, and  always felt good when I gained the respect from those I looked up to.  I feel in the flash back I am reflecting on my years of competitive snowboarding. However, even in my years of college there were more men than women in my classes, and artistically I excepted the fact that I am a woman, I see things differently than a man. I approach projects differently, from my overall vision, application, execusion, and time frame  within each project. Within the art world I immersed  myself in, I never really felt the stresses of man vs. woman. Then in 2003 my life change with my newly found passion of tattooing. Read More »

Campfires & Carbon Episode 4: Jeff Wright

Campfires & Carbon’s mission is to have and promote real, unedited conversation with local tattooers.  Here’s their podcast of a conversation with Jeff Wright… Read More »

Bill Baker Interview: Part 1


By Andrew Goodfellow Reblogged by:  There are very few tattooers working today that can lay claim to over 30 years of experience. Fewer still are those who can truly be said to have changed the course of tattooing. Bill Baker – artist, icon, entrepreneur, and now part owner of Pearl Harbor Gift Shop – is among those storied few.  In all honesty, I had no idea what to expect of my meeting with Bill when he agreed to speak with me for Swallows & Daggers. Highly regarded yet notoriously reclusive, Bill casts something of a mythical shadow over the tattoo community in Toronto. Though Pearl Harbor is among the city’s premiere shops and receives constant acclaim, he is rarely glimpsed by the clientele and is extremely selective in taking on new work. Having been tattooed there on a number of occasions, I had yet to catch sight of him even once. Little wonder, then, that I hadn’t any notion of what my afternoon with Bill would entail. What followed was an incredibly candid and fascinating tour through Bill’s 32 year career. Part raconteur, part machine technology and tattoo history teacher, Bill has managed to remain humble and utterly genuine in his love for tattooing. I learned more from him in the course of two hours than I had in the last two years of my own pursuits in the tattoo world.  I only hope that I can convey our conversation in terms that do justice to the man himself, ... Read More »

An Interview with Gabe Ripley: Self-Taught Computer Programmer Business Guy


By Ben Shaw I finally climbed from my car in front of the Lodge section of Colorado’s Keystone Resort and Spa after trying unsuccessfully to check into the spa section of the massive resort. The sound of running water enters my awareness, teasing, because with little to no lighting outside the lodge, I can only hear it. The whole place is quiet and sleepy, with nowhere to eat at 11pm, so I chose from a vending machine buffet offered in the reception area and then crawled into a queen size mountain of pillows in my room. It was a long day on the road… Suddenly awakened by a beam of light burning through my eyelids, I stumbled to the window, drew back the blinds, and gasped, awestruck by the magnificent view. A vast mountain range saturated with lush, green trees and split with running streams. A pond sits center stage in front of me, between the well-constructed resort floor plan and the gorgeous landscape. I took an eight-hour pilgrimage to interview Gabe Ripley, and this looks like the Holy Land… Gabe Ripley has spent the last 13-14 yrs. immersed in the tattoo industry, developing websites, planning events, and building tattoo studios. His Off the Map corporation has three major divisions: TattooNOW, a company that powers a network of over 150 tattoo websites; Off the Map, a trio of custom tattoo studios, one in western Massachusetts, one in Grants Pass, OR, and a third opening soon in Italy!; and finally the Paradise ... Read More »

A Tribute to Henning and Royal Tattoo for 30 Years

Huge congratulations to Henning from your friends here at TAM!!! *Video by Lars Stig Moller Read More »

The Old School Code of Conduct

By Bob Done Reblogged from: 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 ... Read More »

The Worn Path: Pierre Botardo


By Danny Reis My name is Pierre Botardo I’m currently living in Brooklyn New York and I am age 34. I grew up in Virginia Beach, Virginia and I was interested in tattooing pretty early, I guess. When I was in junior high, I was already doing stick and pokes on myself with a sewing needle and some ink. I remember trying to convince my friends to do it. That didn’t really work out because they weren’t into the idea of a tattoos, but I was proud if it.  It was fun and painful; but that’s what drew me to tattooing because it was a kind of “club”. The pain is a part of the whole experience. Even to this day, I still see it that way. You have to “put up or shut up”. Also, around this time, tattoos weren’t very popular. It was still considered to be an “outsider” sort of thing; which I loved. I honestly didn’t think about tattooing as a career until maybe 2007 or 2008.  Around the first time I  moved to Brooklyn.  It was through a friend who suggested it. I was dead broke and I thought for some reason, it was something that would force me to focus on a path. I had a friend who was showing me a few things here and there out of the apartment. Good habits like setting up and breaking down the station and sanitation of equipment. After struggling with finding regular work, I thought it ... Read More »

Jeff Gogue: Tattoo As I See It Trailer

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How I Got Here


By James Connolly First off,  I am honored to have the opportunity to be given an outlet like this for the things that are constantly running around in my brain. Thank you TAM for giving me a place for my rants to be relevant. So here we go… I thought I’d spend this first blog attempting to tell the readers here with who I am, what I do, and where I came from. I’m not a household name in tattooing like some of the other greats that post here. I am a tattoo artist that is working hard to get better at tattooing and along the way if I can make the people I tattoo happy with a solid tattoo then I’ll be fine with that. If I gain some recognition along the way I’ll take it. I started as a dude in the right place at the right time. In early 2005, a good childhood friend of mine ended up getting an apprenticeship working in the studio where he started getting tattooed. I was along for the ride to give him my skin to practice on and get some cheap tattoos to help a friend. At the time, I thought it was awesome but it never crossed my mind that I too could get into tattooing. I didn’t feel I had any business learning. I quit drawing when I was younger for other “artistic” interest (mainly pottery and sculpting in high school), so I didn’t possess the drawing prowess ... Read More »

DOC INK Episode 1: Teté

Doc Ink is a brazilian  web series of short episodes featuring some of that country’s most respected tattooers. It was introduced to us by São Paulo-based tattooer Nico Acosta. Enjoy episode #1!   Read More »

The Right Reasons

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By John F. Garancheski Every endeavor in life usually begins with the idea that the end will bring a feeling of “completeness.” Visions of victory and triumph fill our heads as we imagine the praise and recognition that we will receive, or we imagine the blanket of comfort and security that will be delivered upon the acquisition of items that we covet. We think, “If I could only have…” It’s the new girlfriend who we know is “the one”, the new job that promises the challenges and advancements that we have always hoped for, the new apartment in the best neighborhood that we could find, the new car that gives us goosebumps when we slide into the driver seat, the newest tech gadget, the new diet, the get rich quick scheme, the list goes on. Each promises to be the one thing that we need to finally be fulfilled and content with life. Read More »

Melissa Fusco: Breaking The Artist Bubble


By Melissa Fusco Last month I had the pleasure of visiting  Off The Map Tattoo Studio in Grant’s Pass, Oregon. It was my first time ever visiting Oregon, and I must say it gave Colorado a little competition. I arrived with the all to familiar nervous, anxious, first time exploring butterflies that I feel in my stomach while starting a new journey.  Off The Map Tattoo Studio shares it’s name with Jeff Gogue’s Grant’s Pass location. I had a few days of tattooing lined up, and was very excited about that, however I was more focused on the plans I had made in advance. I coincided my guest artist spot around Jeff’s painting workshop. I had this trip planned out for about 10 months, and it seems the longer it takes for me to plan anything the more anxiety builds for the trip. Read More »

Lessons From Ink Smith & Rogers: Week 2

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By Deb Yarian In my last installment of Lessons from Inksmith and Roger’s week 1, I explain that I had the pleasure of sending my second son, Nick, having just finished up an apprenticeship at our family shop in Alaska, to the world famous Inksmith and Roger’s Tattoo in Jacksonville, Florida for what many would consider a chance of a lifetime and a great opportunity for a brand new tattooer. Read More »

Dave Waugh: Work in Progress Session VI (By Hunter Spanks)


By Hunter Spanks 1:41pm August 29, 2012 and Lizzy finds herself back in Georgetown at Jinx Proof Tattoo for the sixth session on her back piece by Dave Waugh. A mystical piece complete with unicorns, naked women, hidden cocks and butt plugs just to round things out. Dave prepares a message table as they harass each other in preparation for the session to start. I’m sure this is just to work out the nerves. At least on Lizzy’s part. Dave seems cool as a cucumber as always…  Read More »

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