Old New Art…

I have been meaning to get this and a few other pieces up on this here blog for a lil while now, but, wouldn’t ya know it, I have been busy :)

This watercolor painting was inspired (yet again) by old time tattoo shop signage… this time, instead of fixing black eyes, the barber shop customer waiting was alerted to the fact that he could get tattooed while waiting for his turn to get a haircut.  I have never actually seen an original sign for this offer, but I am still searching diligently to find one.

I tried some new things on this painting and am pleased with the overall results.  This is going to be part of a mini flash set I intend to use for promotional materials.  Keep it locked here or my Facebook page for more info.

Thanks for stopping by!

Old School…

Here’s a painting I completed a little while back.  The inspiration came from watching Marcus Kuhn’s web series “Gypsy Gentleman”  If you have yet to check it out, do so, you won’t regret it.

Kuhn does a great job explaining a piece of old sailor tattooing that is seemingly going to be forgotten to the depths of history.  As I have said previously, I have a huge love and appreciation for history, especially when it comes to tattooing and punk rock.

What’s cool about this post (from my perspective) is that I have progress shots to show you how I work (minus all of the sloppy paint dripping and cursing)… It is rare that I have several shots of a painting or project to show you how it goes.

Enough jibber-jabber, check ’em out!


Thanks for stopping by!

From TAMblog: “JoJo Ackermann: That’s The Impression That I Get”

I just read this column, it struck a nerve and I just had to share it with you.  It is a concise and honest piece on respecting those who came before you and learning from what they have to say.

All too often, I feel like tattooing has gotten so big and filled with so many people rushing to cash in on its popularity, that the number of folks that care about the history and the struggles that our tattoo fore fathers/mothers endured to get tattooing to become accepted (dare I say respectable?) is at an all time minimum.  Its sad.  Dollar signs seem to have eclipsed the beauty of the art.  Scratchers and scab merchants plague the art with little care or regard for its sacredness and vibrant history, never mind their blatant disregard for learning properly, doing quality work and following ESSENTIAL safety practices (tattooer Isaac Aguila used to have a comprehensive collection of pictures documenting the horrors of home tattooing, before someone dimed him out to the facebook police)…  it’s all just cashing in.

(***UPDATE*** Isaac’s valiant and laudable efforts to dissuade homemade horrors has been revamped and gotten its own page on facebook!  Check it out!  Tattoo Artist United)

I, too, have met some great tattooing legends, like Jack Rudy and Lyle Tuttle (to name drop a few).  My favorite part about meeting them wasn’t asking them what kind of inks, needles and machines they liked… it was hearing their stories and absorbing their wisdom.  I think that is something that a lot of people in this “industry” ignore or discount as irrelevant.

Mr. Rudy at work in the wee early hours of the morning at the Motor City Convention, Detroit, 2007

Mr. Tuttle tattooing me at a convention in Dayton, OH, 2008

A lasting memory of talking to greatness

I feel incredibly lucky to be given a second chance at tattooing and to learn under a master (my life-long mentor Ron Antonick)  that is phenomenal in everything he touches; tattoo art or otherwise.  I never take for granted that there are/were pioneers and trailblazers that came before me to allow me this opportunity.  It’s a big part of the reason that I study so hard and do my best to learn from them.  I don’t want to sully the sacred waters of tattooing. I care about what I’m doing.

Anyways, enough rambling out of me… please go check out Jojo Ackermann’s thoughtful and well-penned piece at the link below:

JoJo Ackermann: That’s The Impression That I Get

Thanks for stopping by, and thanks to all of those who have come before me for paving the way… some of us still care.  Cheers.

From TAMblog: “For the Record: The Zeis Studio Flash”

Over the past 5 years or so, I have been doing my best to seek out information about historic tattooers and places of tattoo infamy… you gotta know where you came from to get where you’re going.  That said, I have always found Milton Zeis to be an interesting, albeit relatively unknown, figure in tattoo history (that is, unknown to folks outside of the craft of tattooing).  He pioneered a lot of the things we as tattooers take for granted today, such as ready-made colored flash sheets, mail-order supply shops, etc.

The link below comes to you courtesy of Tattoo Artist Magazine’s Blog–via Chuck Eldridge and the good folks at Tattoo Archive–and gives a bit of a crash course on Milton’s flash.  There is more information to be found about Mr. Zeis by checking out his page on tattoo archive >HERE<.  One thing that I found particularly interesting is the origin of the name “pork chop flash”… I had always thought that it was named as such because the images were often cut out from tan colored paper and posted on black, creating a likeness to the shape of a pork chop.  Read the link below to find out why!

For the Record: The Zeis Studio Flash

Also, if any of you are feeling generous, I would certainly accept a donation of the book on Mr. Zeis, “Milton H Zeis: Tattooing As You Like It” due out soon, from Yellow Beak Press ;)  Check out the promo video below!

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