Artist interview features

  • A while back I started to receive some photos of tattoos from a chap I’d not heard of before. The tattoos were; how can I put it? Eye wateringly beautiful with a softness that I hadn’t seen in a tattoo in a long time. The talented chap behind these incredible images is a guy who is extremely passionate about his art...
  • A drive up the A1 finds me in Whickham, looking for Martin Couley’s Tattoo Studio. Feeling a bit lost I make a quick phone call and realise I am parked outside it. The studio is quiet, unassuming and private. It doesn’t stand out with big flashing lights announcing it’s presence, it sits quietly waiting to be found -...
  • Their name has been on the hitlist for months now and after a successful run at Tattoo Freeze, we swept the decks and made the time to give this thoroughly deserving studio their afternoon in the sun… Sass – who exactly are you and what’s your background? "My real name is Aleksandr but my friends have called me Sass...
  • Mat Lapping has his hands full – least of all with the numerous awards he’s won over the last 12 months. With one thing and another, it’s taken us quite some time to put our heads together and find the time to align ourselves - as fate would have it, the Gods threw another spanner in the works on the very day we...
  • Trying to concisely summarize the world travels of Dan Smith is a dizzying task. Really, he’s like a modern day Gulliver. Born in England, he grew up in New Zealand, spending most of his time hanging out at a tattoo shop, then moved to Australia for music, traveled the world with a band, ended up homeless in...
  • During the Amsterdam and Brussels conventions, the Thai artist Noi Siamese strikes the tattoo fans with tattoos which lie somewhere between old Japanese and new Oriental. Noi runs his studio 1969 Tattoo not in Bangkok but in Oslo where his unique oriental tattoos are characterized by clear and sharp colours and have...
  • As with any serious career path, Philip Holt’s path began with hurdles. Some of those hurdles were major and some of those hurdles were minor. Some obstacles might have been big enough that they would knock you off track for a few years, maybe even set you on another road but that wasn’t the case with Philip Holt. If...
  • The artist Gerald Brom – or simply Brom as he is better known the whole world over – is one the worlds best kept secrets, but it’s a secret that’s surely to be blown wide open with the release of his latest book The Child Thief. What’s he doing in Skin Deep? Well, a chance conversation led him to a big cupboard where...
  • Last issue we hooked up with Mike DeVries to talk about his studio and well, whatever else happened to come along. This issue, we wrap it all up as we get a further view on the world through the eyes of The Master of Reality. Sometimes it’s not easy to get everything you need to talk about into a handy single issue...
  • He was born in New Zealand, raised in Tonga, went to high school in Fiji and college in Malaysia. He started tattooing to survive, overstayed his welcome in the States and was forced back to New Zealand. From these inauspicious beginnings, Carl Cocker at Kalia Tattoo in Auckland is one of the few Tonga artists to take...
  • Jonathan Shaw is a multi-faceted artist living the proverbial gypsy life, based in Brazil, but seemingly on a perpetual adventure. The son of Artie Shaw and Doris Dowling, his life was never to be one of mediocrity, and associating with the likes of Frank Zappa, Jim Morrison, the Manson family and Bukowski, the...
  • One quiet Sunday afternoon, (an occurrence that doesn’t happen too often in our house), I was lurking around Facebook when I saw an old school tattoo of an owl. It was one of the best tattoos I had ever seen. The colours were bright and distinctive, the lines straight and bold - the tattoo literally jumped right out...
  • Renowned for his stunning realism work and putting ink into the skin of Sylvester Stallone and Chris Daughtry, Mike DeVries is rightly ranked among the world’s best. With MD Tattoo Studio going from strength to strength in just a few short years, we thought it was high time we checked in to survey out the lay of the...
  • John Anderton is a man well beyond his 26 years in terms of being a great artist – and he’s making some waves within the community that we couldn’t ignore…Starting from the very beginning, what drew you to tattoos? What was it about them that you liked? What is your earliest tattoo memory? "What I like about tattoos...
  • The world of tattoo artist Electric Pick is vast, matchless and colourful. The restless globetrotter is at home anywhere he lays his head and it is hard to say where his homeport really is, but it is certain that he is a creative genius full of unusual ideas, concepts and designs.The fact that Pick would be an artist...
  • The American/Mexican tattoo artist José Lopez developed his black & grey style from tattoos made in the prisons of California and amongst gang members in the streets of the big cities in the ‘sunny state’. Fine lines, soft shadows, realism with a magical Mexican touch! During the Dutch conventions of Breda and...
  • Southampton is shrouded in thick, dark clouds. Their ominous presence poses the constant threat of a downpour, creating a thick atmosphere and a foreboding backdrop for my visit to the little studio, Tattooz by Design. Entering the studio I am encapsulated by a small room with walls emblazoned with bold, bright and...
  • Many have watched her television show, browsed through her books, read about her in the tabloids and created a persona of Kat Von D in their minds, but few know the real Katherine von Drachenberg. Who could take on such a big task? Barbara Pavone has a damn good crack at it.A passionate, at times self-...
  • Jason Doll has to be the easiest man in the world to talk to. For his part, his fantastic American drawl is immediately appealing and there’s simply something about the man that draws you in but to be honest, his art does more talking for him than he ever could. “To be honest I was very intimidated by the thought of...
  • He took art in school and then went to college, studied art and took it from there. Demon started getting tattooed when he was eighteen, and after getting his first tattoo, fell in love with it. It started when a friend of his suggested it as a career when he was around twenty years old, saying “what you gonna do for...
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