Tattoo Blog

Art that adorns the flesh…

Grime Time

March 25th, 2013 by

Hello dear readers,

A good day to you all.  I’m going to continue with a short video documentary (once again from Vice – these guys certainly know what the hell they’re doing) on one my absolute favourite tattooists working today: Grime.  If you don’t know who Grime is, man-o-man is it ever time for you to find out.  Grime has that shit locked down – although judging from this video series, he’s his harshest critic.  That’s okay though, because his own harsh criticism has kept him safely at the top of his game.  He’s San Francisco based and well…why don’t I just shut up and let you check out everything about him for yourself?  Sound good?  Of course it does.  Enjoy…

Meet Grime!

April 6th, 2010 by

I don’t know…I search around, I look for tattoo artists that really impress me and then I find someone really cool and I always end up feeling dumb because the art of every tattoo artist that I really like always seems to come from a tattoo artist that is already legendary amongst tattoo artists.  I guess I can’t be blamed too much for this though, seeing as how I’m not a tattoo artist anyway.  So I feel sort of when I find these tattoo artists, that I want to profile them on the site.  Then I worry about “exposing” people to an artist that is already way too well known.

Well, I thought about this for quite some time and then I came across Grime and everything changed.  See, the thing with Grime is that yes, he is one of those tattoo artists that every good tattoo artist seems to know about.  His skills are widely spoken of in these circles.  But outside of these circles I realized that if even one new person were exposed to Grime, then it was a good day for that person.  Why?  Because Grime is plain and simply absolutely, insanely good at doing tattoos.  There’s just no other way of putting it.  If you don’t already know about Grime, then you really, really, really need to find out about him.  What can I say about this guy’s ability to tattoo?

Grime doesn’t seem to say much about himself or his art form – or maybe he does?  I guess that’s up to you to decide.  Check out this interview that he did with Prick Magazine If you’d rather just check out some of his work first hand, then you should follow this link.  I don’t really have much else to say about this guy.  Does it matter where’s he’s from or what his hobbies are?  The guy’s work is really all that matters and it is some of the finest work currently being done in the tattoo universe.  That’s my opinion anyway.

Meet Carlos Torres!

July 24th, 2011 by

There are not that many times that I can recall of when I’ve been looking for a tattooist to profile and stumbled across one that just blows my mind right from the first glimpse at their portfolio.  Guys like Grime and Nick Baxter are some of the artists who have done that to me, but between the artists who really stand out and the ones who just impress me, there is typically a long wait.  I know that it may be blasphemous to say it, but I’ve only just discovered Carlos Torres and holy smokes, dude is fucking killing it.

It’s not simply a matter of Torres working in black and grey, it’s a matter of Torres taking black and grey to another level – I’m not joking or exaggerating, either – Carlos Torres has taken black and grey to a level that is going to be insanely difficult for other artists to follow.  This is black and grey portrait and realistic work that is to be admired for its form and presentation and just plain KABOOM! factor.  This stuff leaps off the skin and is a genuine treat to look at.  I envy each and every person who has ever had the good fortune to be tattooed by this man.

Torres tattoos from Los Angeles, California.  Aside from his tattoo work, he also paints and believe me when I say that his paintings are impressive as well.  I love seeing good art and when I see a tattooist who can elevate his or her work to the level that Torres has, I have nothing but admiration for them.  This is a rare talent and I sincerely wish Carlos Torres all the best in his future.  Unbelievable stuff, man.  Thank you.

Oh yeah, one last thing: Torres probably has the best tattooist website that I’ve ever seen – and I’ve seen a lot.  Tattooists take note, Chris Torres can inspire on more levels than one.

Something New (No, Seriously)

July 4th, 2011 by

I don’t know about you, but I’ve pretty much had my fill of any TV series that makes tattoo its focus.  I’ve checked out the most recent addition to the tattoo TV “reality” programming family – NY Ink – and found that while at the moment it’s slightly less annoying than LA Ink, the fact of the matter is that it just doesn’t deliver where a good series on tattooing should.  If I watch a TV series about tattooing, I want to know about tattooing and not the fight that one tattooists is having with his girlfriend or another artist in the shop where he/she works.  I want to see a focus on tattooists who are damn near legendary amongst the tatoo scene, artists who are never in the spotlight because all they care about is tattooing.  I don’t care that some guy is getting a tattoo of a horse because him and his now deceased grandfather used to ride horses together.  I only care about the artist, how they do their work and their thoughts on tattoo.  No more, no less.  Shit, I don’t even like TV.

Fortunately, there’s something new on the horizon.  Over the years I’ve been an on again, off again reader of Vice Magazine.  It’s always made me laugh, even though it often has a penchant for simply being contrary just for the sake of being contrary.  In the last few years however, Vice has spread its wings and gone beyond the publishing world into the realm of web TV, creating VBS TV, which often has crazy good short documentaries and web series.  There’s genuinely unbiased reporting going on here and they’ve covered everything from Iraqi punk bands living in a war zone to freaked out sex hotels in Tokyo.  Now it seems that VBS has added a new series to its slate called Tattoo Age.

Tattoo Age follows some of the truly great tattooists in the game and talks to them about the craft that they’ve honed and continue to hone.  The first episode stars heavyweights like Mike Rubendall, Dan Santoro, Freddy Corbin and one of my personal favourites, Grime.

‘”Tattoo Age” follows the likes of Freddy Corbin, Troy Denning, Dan Santoro, and Grime, and accompanies them in their creative process as well as their family lives.

The trailer, which was released on YouTube, gives explanations as to why the featured artists became as iconic as they are today. Corbin, for instance, who has been tattooing for almost 30 years, says: “It’ll be five years until you’ll be doing even halfway-good tattoos.”‘

I’m pumped for this.  I believe that Vice will deliver the goods at a time when no one else seems to be able to do the tattoo industry justice in the video medium.  Hell, even if it sucks it can’t be any worse than any of the other tattoo reality shows clogging up the TV airwaves.

Take That, Mister Mayor!

June 3rd, 2010 by

Maybe it’s because I’ve been on the look out for it more often, but lately it sure seems like tattoo artists are really beginning to make a move to get tattooing and tattoos synonymous with art in general.  Call me crazy, but it seems like there were a few years there where tattoos really took off into the mainstream but never really were able to go the full distance in terms of respect for the art form.  If that really was the case, then it wasn’t a bad situation at all.  From what I can see, it’s a step by step process: tattooing hit the mainstream and has been around in the mainstream for long enough now to prove that it’s not just some gimmicky hobby.  All together now: this is art.

I don’t want to keep hitting people over the head with that concept because chances are that if you read this blog, then you’re already well aware of the fact there are far too many tattoo artists to name that have serious artistic skills.  But there are those out there who have no idea of such a thing and the sooner those people realize it, the sooner the outdated ideas about tattoo art are killed off for good.

So it’s really cool to see that tattooist Chris Earl and a group of other various tattoo artists have compiled a collage of their work in Augusta, Georgia to present to Augusta’s Mayor, Deke Copenhaver.  In addition to putting great art directly into the hands of Augusta’s “top-brass”, the gift helps to promote this weekend’s Tattoo Expo in Augusta.

The art below isn’t by one of the artists that contributed work to the Mayor’s collage, it’s just by a damn amazing artist, who also happens to be a favourite of mine.  I’ll spare you the gushing over the Grime Monster’s ability (go here for more gushing), but I just thought a post about talented artists needed a fine example.  Well, here you go. That’s art, folks.

Hanya Mask Tattoo Pictures

May 30th, 2009 by

We are starting a new Japanese Hanya Mask tattoo pictures section on the site feel free to link to your favorite tattoo pictures in the section this page is dedicated to Hanya Mask tattoos.

Filip Leu
The Leu Family’s Family Iron Street Shop
36, Avenue de France
1003 Lausanne
Phone/Fax: +41 21 624 87 08

Filip Leu
The Leu Family’s Family Iron Street Shop
36, Avenue de France
1003 Lausanne
Phone/Fax: +41 21 624 87 08

Skull & Sword
3415 Cesar Cavez
San Francisco, CA 94110

Jason Brooks
ROCK OF AGES TATTOO 2310 South Lamar
Austin, Tx

Tim Hendricks
Saltwater Tattoo inc.
Costa Mesa, CA US

Pet Tattoo Pictures

February 12th, 2009 by

We are starting a new pet tattoo pictures section on the site feel free to link to your favorite cats and dog tattoo pictures in the comment section this page is dedicated to cute pet tattoos.

Skull & Sword
3415 Cesar Cavez
San Francisco, CA 94110

Heather McLean

Jeff Gogue
Grants Pass, OR US

Bob Tyrell
Eastpointe, Michigan
Private Studio

Guy Aitchison

Heather McLean

Snake Tattoo Pictures

February 6th, 2009 by

We are starting a new snake tattoo pictures section on the site feel free to link to your favorite snake tattoo pictures in the comment section this page is dedicated to snake tattoos.

Skull & Sword
3415 Cesar Cavez
San Francisco, CA 94110

Petri Syrjälä

Good Tattooers

January 18th, 2009 by

Anyone who’s been paying attention for then last fifteen years or so knows who Paul Booth and Guy Aitchison are.  People who follow the industry at all should know names like Filip Leu, Tom Renshaw, and Deano Cook.  But there are a lot of names you might not be familiar with and if you’re a serious collector these are names you need to know.  Disclaimer:  This is by no means a complete list, but more of a study guide for anyone fascinated by this artform.

Bob Tyrrell has to be one of my all-time personal favorite black and gray realism guys.  He’s been on a number of television shows but when I talk to people about him they tend to not know the name, google him.

Shane O’Neill does amazing b&g as well as color realism, the guy’s all-around phenomenal.

Mike Demasi, Mike Devries, and Nikko do some of the best color portraits in the world.

Okay, so trying to describe everyone’s style is going to take years, I’m just going to list some tattooers I think you should take the time to get to know…

Phil Holt; Joshua Carlton; John Montgomery; Josh Wood(s?); Jay Chastain; Josh Ford; Sean Herman; Brandon Bond; Joe Capobianco; Jime Litwalk; Aaron Cain; Brian Brenner; St. Marq; Stefane Chaudisagues; Gunnar; Grime; Nate Banuelos; Liocifer; Craig Driscoll; Trevor Mcstay; Leo Zulueta; Sabado; Juan Puente.  That should be enough to keep you kids occupied for awhile.  I’ve tried to list every possible style specialist from traditional American and Japanese to biomech to realism.  When you silly kids get through checking these guys out let me know and I’ll continue to feed the beast.


Tattoo Magazine December 2008 Preview

October 27th, 2008 by


December 10th Anniversary Special

  • Aaron Cain
  • Guy Aitchison
  • Bugs
  • Stephane La Bete
  • Kari Barba
  • Grime
  • Corey Miller
  • The Dutchman
  • Sabado
  • Jack Rudy
  • Brian Everett
  • Read the rest of this entry »