How to prep for your first tattoo… I just go pick one and get it right??. Nope. I mean you could, if you want some basic shit that a thousand other people have. Probably not a good idea. Even if you’re getting something simple, you should still do your homework. Check my previous post about finding the right tattoo artist! Once you’ve done that, be prepared to go meet with them, have a consultation, leave a deposit, and set up an appointment. Now you wait!
A good artist will most likely be booked out anywhere from a couple weeks to months or even years! Don’t bug them about seeing your drawing weeks ahead of time, because obviously, they are busy. Have any reference images you have collected with you to give to the artist, and make sure you tell the artist all of the things you want included BEFORE they draw your design. If you try to add stuff to the design the day of your appointment, you’ll most likely have to wait or even be rescheduled. I usually draw the tattoos I’m doing the same day as the appointment. Also don’t micro manage! You’ve decided to use this particular artist because you like their style and what they do. Let them have fun with it and have a vision!
Your appointment is tomorrow! Should you do anything to prepare? Hell yes! First things first, get a good night’s sleep, and don’t go out partying. Getting tattooed with a wicked hangover is awful, and significantly decreases your tolerance for pain.
Tattoo day! It’s time! Now you’re getting nervous because all of your friends have been telling you how much it’s going to hurt. They’re probably right, so it’s time to be a grown up and get your head in the game. Grab a good meal before you go in, because you may be sitting there for hours. Also bring some snacks to keep your sugar levels up. Trust me, it helps.
Think about the placement of your new tattoo. If it’s going to be on your back, you’ll have to take your shirt off. A lot of people aren’t comfortable with that, so if you’re one of those people, bring a zip-up hoodie, or button up shirt that you can put on backwards to hide your round bits! If you’ll be laying down, maybe bring a small pillow, & maybe even a beach towel or small blanket (or snuggie!) if you get cold easily.
One very important thing to remember is to shower before you come in! You’d be surprised how many people come in with stinky feet or pits! We don’t want to smell you. If you want to bring a friend, that’s usually fine, but don’t bring a bunch of people. Most shops don’t have room for a bunch of extra bodies hanging around looking bored!
Last but not least are my two rules; don’t move and don’t hold your breath!!! (don’t want you passing out!)
Have any questions or comments? Leave them in the comment section below!Details
Biomech tattoos – What are they?
I suppose it depends on who you ask, but most artists will agree Biomech started with the Swiss surrealist painter H.R. Giger. He’s most famous for designing the alien from the Ridley Scott movie “Alien“. Giger not only designed the alien, but some of the sets too. By mixing organic and industrial elements, he created a sort of organic/mechanical fusion which has been elaborated on through tattoos.Due to the free-form, flowing nature of the style, it’s perfectly suited for placement on the human body. It can very easily be drawn to compliment the contours of the muscles.
Some notable leaders in the biomech tattoo movement are Guy Aitchison, and Aaron Cain, who first made it popular. Cain, now a tattoo machine builder, infuses his biomech style into his machine frames by hand-carving the designs into metal. Others who have transitioned the style from tattooing to sculpture are Jerzy Konrad and more recently Shaine Smith. I’ll be trying my hand at some biomech sculpting this year too!
“Biomech” is short for “Biomechanical”
Mechanical organics is a good description, since biomech designs in tattooing usually consist of mechanical like components and repeating patterns flowing in an organic way, much like plants or bones. These designs can be more mechanical than biological, or the other way around. Here’s some examples of biomechanical tattoos I’ve done… Biomech Tattoo Gallery
These type of tattoos are generally considered to be sci-fi, but the style can also be worked into other styles, such as ornate framework, nature elements, etc…
Finding the right tattoo artist.
There’s something interesting about finding the right tattoo artist. Lots of people don’t know they should! I was working the South Florida Tattoo Expo a few years ago, and a guy came to my booth repeatedly, each time looking through my entire portfolio, & even brought a friend with him to check out my work. I was thinking “Cool, this guy is really doing his homework & likes what I do.” So after finishing up with my client, I start talking to him & he says “I love your work!”. I’m thinking great! this is going well, then he proceeds to tell me he’d like me to tattoo a grizzly bear on his forearm! “A grizzly bear ?!?!?!” I say to him! Wow, I wasn’t expecting that. I didn’t have any animals in my portfolio aside from a few koi fish. I don’t really enjoy doing animals. I’m all about biomech and dotwork, and my portfolio reflects that! So I told the guy I was happy that he liked my work, but I recommend he find someone who specializes in animal tattoos. There are plenty of people out there who would probably love to do a grizzly bear tattoo! Not all tattooers are good at everything, in fact most aren’t. Most prefer to do certain things and that’s it, and they’re very good at those things. I’ve found Instagram is a great place to find amazing tattoo artists. in fact my last tattoo was done by Jeff Croci at Seventh Son Tattoo in San Francisco. I was looking to get some unique biomech, and discovered him in Instagram. I was already planning a trip to Cali, so I called him up and booked an appointment. It was fun going to someone who I knew was on the same page as me. I showed him a couple parts of tattoos that he’d done that I liked, & he took it from there. Great experience! Long story short, do your homework, find someone who likes to do what you want to get done, & get a better tattoo!
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Vacations, we all love them, but usually for different reasons. For me, it’s always an opportunity to run around and take pictures, eat & drink, & generally do more in a day than I ever do at home! This trip was no exception. We started the trip in Boston for a couple days, with our primary objective being going to see the Boston Pops! It was supposed to be an evening with John Williams and the Boston Pops, but he was out due to a back injury, so Richard Kaufman stood in. The show was amazing, and gave me a new appreciation for symphonies, and just the orchestral setting in general. Hearing each instrument was awesome. I would definitely do it again!
We also did a brewery tour with City Brew Tours, where we got to go on a guided tour of four different brewery’s in the Boston area. Much fun was had! Our guide Liam was a blast. He knew his shit and was funny to boot! If you’re ever in the area & looking for something to do, I highly recommend it!
We also sat on a big green wall…
After our fun in Boston, we took the train to Manhattan, where we would be spending a week, and meeting up with some friends…
New York City… I love going to Manhattan! There’s just so much energy there, so much going on…
Every day I got some photo fun in, trying out some new equipment I got from B&H photo (one of my favorite stores), & getting some cool shots…
One day my lovely wife got photographed by the superstar-photographer, inspiration, & good friend Steve Prue, and I met them at Tattoo artist Megan Massacre’s shop Grit n’ Glory which was a cool combination of clothing type store in the front and tattoo shop in the back. Everyone was very friendly, & Megan’s an awesome tattoo artist (cute too!) .
Our buddy Matt from Airitech Creations and his wife met us up there and stayed the week also. Matt & I went to a 2-day conference/workshop for prop builders and sculptors called ConStruct. It was held at The Compleat Sculptor, which is a cool store with a super-knowledgable staff for all your sculpting needs. I met Bill Doran from Punished Props, and talked about geeky prop stuff, Took a weathering class from Will Morgan from WM Armory,
& also got to talk to some great people from Poly-tek, the company who makes all of the molding and plastic products I use when making props! I took some classes, learned some things, & had a great time.
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What is this blog? I’d say it’s an insight into the mind and personal thoughts of a tattoo maker. Maker? Yes, maker. I make things. tattoos, photos, props, you name it. I make tattoos and I love my job. Every day is a new challenge, a new conquest, and a new story. Enjoy the chaos!Details
The art show planning is going extremely well! My team is getting everything in line to make this an awesome event! We have a long list of sponsors, so there will be plenty of drinks and hors d’oeuvres!Details
I just got back from our Peru trip! With some friends in tow we went to Peru, stayed in a 17th century monastery, saw (& climbed) Machu Picchu, and went to the Amazon jungle. I’ll be post pics soon!Details
I’m getting the website populated with new galleries almost every day, and working out the kinks. Should be %100 in no time!Details