A little about me - I am a journeyman tattooer.
I have worked in many locations throughout the United States and Canada. Even if I am traveled, my opinions stem from my experiences and time spent in the industry, not scientific study.
I would like to add a preface about what is written on this website: These musings, my experiences weren’t relegated to a specific area, demographic or region of North America. Any observations stem from my experience. These thought are about me and come from me.
It's from seeing people just plain fuck up simple shit (which I will admit I was guilty of during the first few years of my tattoo career) and refuse to adapt and learn. Whether that was from a lack of credible educators or being plain stuck up, there was something missing in the industry.
Why am I doing this?
These articles are written to engage and educate those who are out in the wild world of tattooing, enjoying the culture, but feeling like there is something that is missing from their day-to-day.
I know the feeling of being alone and seeking something or someone to improve. To me, navigating this crazy industry was an obsession of sorts.
After my initial break into the tattooing industry, I actively sought out professionals to help me improve. I felt it was the key to learning and progression. At times I had to travel far from home. Others I had to straight up beg to be heard.
I was lucky enough to be able to land a steady spot occasionally and learn from someone willing to give me a modicum of their time. (Which I am eternally grateful for). Most other times were spent studying, which turned out to be a slow slog through theory that I came up with myself.
How I attempted to move forward.
To combat this and try to progress, I went to conventions and took classes. I sat and watched pros work and, for the most part, I gained little. It felt like I couldn't improve no matter what I tried.
Throughout this journey, I was guessing. Left to just practice and pray I didn't mess up. Above all, I felt pained me because I wanted to do good. I just didn’t know how to get there.
Looking back, I am truly thankful for all those people who had taken time to help me progress, even if it was a miserable experience at times or if I made mistakes. They haunt me.
My efforts as I worked were always focused on learning and improving myself, there was never a point in the early stages where I took time to learn about my clients.
There was little to no attachment to the stories or efforts of these people. Those who were paying me to mark their bodies permanently were treated as a means to an end.
In reality, I was a shithead.
That realization forced to come to terms with my place inside the industry. When I was able to see my shortcomings and attempt to move past my ego, I progressed.
What can I say about me?
I would like to claim I say I am a good tattooer with no ego. I believe I am a good tattooer because I make far less mistakes than I did a decade ago. This idea of myself has pitfalls and leaves me wondering where to go from here.
I know I am far from great and my philosophy of tattooing is extreme in some ways. Still, I wish to obtain a mastery of the technical aspects inside of tattooing and leave the art to the masters.
Because of this I want to apologize to any person in the industry who may take my musings the wrong way. It is not in my efforts to bash or critique any person who is trying to make a living or improve their skill.
My want is to see people at the head of the industry put more effort into those who work alongside them and focus on where we go from here.
Welcome to my website. I hope you enjoy it.