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The Revolution is Digital!

EXCLUSIVE artist interviews Carlos Lopez


Secret Lake Tattoo, USA
ISSUE 25

Ezequiel Samuraii Mo Coppoletta

Arcangel Tattoo, Buenos Aires The Family Business, UK Illustration in Skin, Germany The World!

OUT & ABOUT The 2nd All Female Show East Coast Expo Features Lets Hear it for the Girls! Vive la Revolution!

Mario Hartmann Davee Blows

DEXTERITY Ink
Award Winning Tattoo Artist:

-Sue Cathy

2 Queens Street, Wrexham

www.facebook.com/cathysue1

07545915526

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As it was a success, Dave and the team decided that it would be good to run the event for a second year. I have to say, I really enjoyed the first year with the great line up of artists and the excellent entertainment, so I was looking forward the another episode of the All Female Show. As I walked into the venue, The Assembly in Leamington Spa, opulently designed inside by the flouncy Lawrence Llewellyn Bowen, I noticed that the layout had changed, all be it only slightly. The main stage was in the same place, as this is a big live music venue for the area, but the booths were a little more spread out, giving access to all the working

artists, making life easier to navigate the aisles. Speaking to Dave he did say that he had to reduce the numbers of booths slightly to accommodate this but that to me just proves that he is doing this show for the right reasons. So many show organisers just seem to ram artists into unworkable spaces just to fill their own bank accounts with the booth money rather than thinking of the comfort of those working and those attending.

With the booths all set out the public filtered into the rooms, the serious business of tattooing got underway. As I mentioned before we have such a strong talent of female artists in the UK and a good majority of these ladies were in attendance for this Sunday show. It does seem odd that we should think that the girls should be any different to the blokes when it comes to tattooing but for some reason in certain quarters it seems to, stereotyping at its best. Tattooing should hold no boundaries when it comes to good work and this show proved the case with all the artists producing some of the best tattoos Id seen in a while.

Attending were some of the big hitters with the XX Upstairs there were more artist chromosome including booths and the great display of Leah Moule, Sofie & Sarah (Spear Studio), Sam Ford tattoo memorabilia from the (Silver Needles), Rachel effervescent Willie Robinson, Baldwin (Modern Body Art) & from the British Tattoo others were there selling their Museum. Willie had brought wares, including Dawnii selling along a good selection of rare a vast array of her unique and unseen artefacts from paintings. The lovely Golidlox tattooings rich history. If you ever find yourself in Southport, was on hand to mete out her own hand-poked dot work pay his wondrous museum a designs also. visit, youll not regret it I can assure you. (www.tattoo-museum.org).

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The all Female

Tattoo Show

For me there were a few new faces to the convention scene including Hannah Calavera (Electric Lady Tattoo Studio), who was working on some very nice colour pieces with clean and crisp lines to boot, Id not come across her work before and she certainly is a lady to check out. Another up and coming name of Jane Mosley, of Golden Dragon in Chester. Janes tattoos have really hit home with the British tattooed public just recently and Jane took home a well-deserved trophy for her work. In one corner was another relative newcomer to the trade, Tanya Buxton, who was working her first convention on her lonesome; she seemed a little nervous but as soon as she got into the tattoo, Tanya forgot all about her first show nerves and produced some real nice tattoos. Last year the All Female Show put on some fine entertainment in the form of burlesque

dancers singers and acts, and this year was no different. Dave and the CBA team had varied the entertainment with few different acts. We still had some burlesque, we still had some wonderful fifties and sixties singers belting out classics with voices that would melt a statues heart; but we were also entertained by an interesting chap called Mister Joe Black (www.misterjoeblack.com). Joes form of stage show was like none other I have ever seen. Joes act aired on the side of black humour (hence the name methinks); he sang some amazing, and I think selfpenned tunes, with titles like: Sex, Drugs and Vaudeville, Vile Volumes for Villainous Children & Show tunes For The Recently Deceased on the accordion, ukelele and keyboard with superb dexterity with a large blood-splattered dollop of macabre musicality.

Joe Black is like the bastard offspring of Tom Lehrer & Jack the Ripper. His stage act really is a thing to experience; once seen, never forgotten! As the day wore on more and more fresh tattoos appeared form behind layers of cling film and soon the judging started. Loitering by the side of the stage, I got to see all the contestants and I have to say the standard of work coming past was amazing.

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The all Female

Tattoo Show

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All too soon the day drew to a close, machines were packed, goodbyes said and all the artists, traders and public wandered off home to reflect on what was yet again another great show. Next year Dave has told me that he intends on expanding on this winning formula and will be increasing the booths into another building next door to make the All Female Show even bigger and lets face it there is more than enough female tattooing talent to fill this venue three times over, at least. There will be some that still say that this theme should not be needed in our modern, free-thinking society, but surely at the end of the day its all about the tattoos; regardless if they were tattooed by big, hairy masculine digits or a delicate, nail-painted slender hand guiding the tattoo machine? I had a great time again and Im looking forward to see what 2013 has in store for the All Female Tattoo Show. Sunday 25th August 2013 at The Assembly, Leamington Spa.

COMPETITION WINNERS
Best Small Colour Donna Finney of Infinite Ink, Coventry Runner up Charlotte Eleanor Timmons of The Ink Shack Best Pattern Work Goldilox of Painted Lady, Birmingham Best Small Black & Grey Beki Sanderson of Inkognito, Ackrington Best Large Colour Leah Moule of Spear Studio, Birmingham Best of Show Leah Moule of Spear Studio, Birmingham Best of Show runner up Jane Mosley of Golden Dragon Tattoo Studio, Chester

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Carlos Lopez

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p Jessie and her sister

p Jessie checking the designs


Starting right now in the year 2012, with pop-star Lady GaGa, who is not only proud of being who she is - shes also wears her tattoos with pride. There was also but sadly no longer with us - the oh so talented and lovely blues singer Amy Winehouse who seemed to make the British tabloid newspapers daily with all the mishaps and misfortunes she seemed to get herself into; but it shouldnt disguise the fact that she was one of us, who wore quite a few very interesting looking tattoos on her body and was proud to show them off, God bless her. Then there are the others the women who have stood alongside the male, enduring the pain a whole lot better then the chaps ever could (women have a much higher pain threshold) and we only have to look at people like Winston Churchills mother; Jennie Jerome (Lady Randolph) who wore a snake tattoo coiling around her wrist to see that tattooing was and is for everyone. Lady Randolphs tattoo was put on by Londons Tom Riley. from where she worked with Joe and it must be said that he was quite upset by Jessie But we would need a book opening up so close to his to honour and record the But instead of learning the art significant sacrifices and from her father who was also a premises and her former work achievements that women tattooist, she went to work with place. (Its good to see this practice continuing - ahem! have always played in the art of Charlie Bell Snr, in Chatham, Neil) tattooing, and considering that Kent, before moving on and TRM is a UK-based publication, setting up her own tattoo But life moves on and it was its only right and fair that we studio in Aldershot in 1936, also around this time when have a look at just three of where she tattooed throughout Jessie received a letter from the first pioneers of female the Second World War. a Winnie Ayres of Scotland tattooing in British history. asking for a job. Jessie said Things went along smoothly Yes and Winnie travelled And what better place to and Jessie became one of down from her Edinburgh home, start then in 1930, which saw the great names in British Jessie Knight became Britains tattooing with people travelling on her motorcycle, and the pair tattooed together for a couple first professional female for miles to be tattooed by a of years, before they parted tattoo artist. But before taking true lady of the profession, company. Winnie then went and her place in tattooing history, and in 1955 Jessie took the opened a studio in the Army Jessie worked with her father, second place spot in the Garrison town of Aldershot at Leonard, in his sharp shooting Champion Tattoo Artist Of 117 the High Street. act, standing before him so that All England competition held he could hit a target that was in London, with a large back Winnie, who could hold her sometimes placed on Jessies piece design of a Scotsman in own in any drinking contest, head or hit the area around the Highland games tossing a could also knock many a man her body. Where one night it caber, complete with tents and out (and did) if they played her all went horribly wrong when spectators in the background up or tried anything on with he accidentally shot her in the of the tattoo. 1960 saw her her. She also travelled and shoulder. And it was this that move to the naval town of after returning from a trip to prompted Jessie, who was born Portsmouth, where she went India, where she did a bit of in Cardiff, Wales, to give up to work for Joe Cleverly before tattooing, she stayed and slept show business and leave her opening her own studio on the on the floor of Jack Zeeks fathers act to concentrate on corner of Charlotte Street West London tattooing studio becoming a tattoo artist. which was only along the road whilst working as a diesel
p Jessie Knight

p Jessie Knight in pa

per - Jennifer Bra

in

fitter on lorries, coaches and buses during the day. And when Winnie retired from tattooing she started working as a graphic artist painting murals and chalkboards in and around the Portsmouth area. Getting back to Jessie, she had a very successful tattooing career and she had a unique way of drawing on the skin with a matchstick to make a black outline before tattooing the design onto the body. But her private life was far from happy, and one night after an augment she shot and wounded her husband Bill, which resulted in some prison time. After which Jessie retired from tattooing in 1963 to go and help her brother, Lenny, who had just left service as a steward on the RMS Queen Mary to open a guest house in Wales, where Jessie spent a happy retirement. She was also gifted in model making and made large paper mache animals in her spare time, which she gave as gifts to her family and friends. Jessie who lead a very eventful life making many good friends along the way.

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p Rusty Skuse with her manikin at the Trocadero

She passed away in a nursing home in Barry, Wales in the early 1990s and was cremated. After which her ashes were spread in the garden of remembrance at the Coychurch Crematorium, Bridgend, South Wales. Which brings us to Janet Rusty Field who after marrying Billy Skuse on the 5th July 1976 became Rusty Skuse, and possibly the most famous of all, in terms of the British tattooed women. Who by the age of 20, in 1964, had 62 tattoos and was a driver in the Womens Royal Army Corps. Her first tattoo put on by Billy in 1961 - aged 17 was a small skull on her left forearm costing 6/- (30p). Rustys tattoos even got her noticed in the British tabloid Daily Mirror newspaper of the 14th March 1964. Under the headline Tattooed Army Girl Gets Show Offers telling of the 62 tattoos Rusty had tattooed all over her body.

There was also other reports in the papers with one giving its readers the groovy little title Tattoo Girl Covers Up Army warns its Miss Rainbow, stating the Army had warned Rusty that if any of her tattoos started to show from under her uniform she would be discharged from the service. This was of little consequence, as upon leaving the Army she joined the tattooed ranks and started working, cleaning the floors, and making coffee at Bills tattoo studio in Aldershot, before learning the ropes to become a tattoo artist herself. It must also be said that Rusty gained an incredible amount of publicity in not only the British but also overseas press - because she was one of only a handful of heavily tattooed women in the Western world during the 1960s and 70s. Rusty also featured in the Guinness Book of Records as the Britains most tattooed woman and was accepted into the book in 1970.

p Rusty and Les Skuse


She also had her own life sized manikin displayed outside the Guinness World of Records exhibition at the Trocadero in Piccadilly, London. With the little known fact that the staff at the Trocadero had a terrible job in dealing with the public, who would pull the bikini bottoms down all the time to see if there were any tattoos on the down under . Appearances on Japanese television, with other record holders, followed and on her first trip to Japan she appeared on the Whats My Line television show of November 1978. And on a second trip she was a guest on a second Japanese TV show,as a Guinness record holder. Rusty (Janet) Skuse who was born on December the 20th, 1943 was a former holder of the Miss Tattoo title (Awarded at the 1989 Dunstable Tattoo Expo) - passed away on December 7th 2007.

So, there you have it a few hundred words on three of Britains most famous tattooed women. Others we owe a great deal are Susan James, who also featured in the Guinness Book of Records in the late 70s, for the wonderful work she has on her body. The same being said of today for Isobel Varley who appears in the great book. Pam Nash, who won awards at the Bristol Tattoo Club, with Jennifer Brain doing likewise at the North Western Tattoo Club meetings in the 50s and 60s. To Edith Burchett, Lily Maddison, Jenny Titchener, Marion Hollier, Pat Bone, Pauline Clark, Fiona Long, Theres Gordon-Wade, Michelle Attard and Jo Harrison who have kept the flag flying by promoting, tattooing and leading the way, and to the many hundreds of

British tattooed females not mentioned here, we really couldnt have done it without you. Footnote... Jessies father called himself Charlie, but his real name Leonard Knight aka Professor C. Knight and he tattooed at (Bute Caf) 195 Bute Road, Cardiff. He also tattooed in St Mary Street, Cardiff under the waxwork museum, but that was closed at the start of the Second World War because of the greater fear of fire, all that wax making the building an even bigger tinder box if hit.

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Text: Kerry-Anne Richardson, Cock a Snook Tattoo, Newcastle

More tatties less titties.


Well, here we are again, another month another moan. Id prefer to be writing about happy things like kittens and rainbows or even kittens dancing on rainbows, but alas there seems to be a distinct lack of these things in tattooing at the moment. There is however a growing trend of tattooer models or even just tattooers taking an unholy amount of pictures of themselves for the Internet.
Its great to know what tattooers look like so we can recognise them at conventions, so we can have a natter with them or recognise them when we go to visit them for some work. But it seems very confusing to me that there are a growing number of tattooers who seem to put more pictures up of their faces than they do of their work. Is this vanity? Insecurity? Or good business sense? We are all more than aware that sex sells (in my case beards) but hand on heart I follow tattooers on Instagram and Facebook so I can look at the pieces they are making. I really dont want to trawl through photos of heavily made up wimmins, possibly with an accidental breasty shot thrown in for good measure. There are different sites for that. (I have to point out there seem to be male tattooers guilty of this too). I recently picked up a tattoo magazine for a bit of a nosey, to see what was going on. A little into the magazine and there was a three page spread of a female tattooer. I was really looking forward to having a look at her work; a delve into what made her tick, the direction she was taking her work, what she struggled with or loved and whatnot. To my dismay there was not one picture of a tattoo she had made. NOT ONE. I will tell you what there was a lot of. Half-naked pictures. Those of you, who know me, know that Im far from prudish. I love a good pair of knockers as much as the next person. However, what relevance does her scantily clad body bear on her work? I was furious and others I have talked to seemed to think it was absurd too. I have lots of friends who tattoo who are having a quiet spell of late. I see them consistently post up on the Internet that they have space. This is a crazy concept to me as they are producing topclass work on a regular basis. They arent too expensive either. I also see people who are producing sub-standard work who are incredibly busy. The common theme that is apparent is that these busy tattooers are attractive and they are the kind of people who take those kind of pictures. Lots of these tattooers have thousands more subscribers, friends and followers on the net than some of the best artists in the world? It makes me sad that the gudduns are overlooked because they take their work more seriously than they take themselves. I thought I would test the water a little. I posted two pictures up of my face just to see what would happen (I was going to only post face and boob shots for two weeks but I bottled out) I was really quite surprised at the response. I seemed to get more likes and comments and new followers than I would for a tattoo I had made that I was particularly proud of. I also received some comments along the lines of; I would love to get tattooed by you I would have found it a massive compliment if somebody had taken time to write something like that about a tattoo I had made but I found it quite grotesque that somebody could write that under a picture of my silly face. And unfortunately this seems to be a rather common thing from what Ive seen from other peoples profiles. Now, I know I bang on about this every month. But tattoos are on your body forever. Just because somebody has a zillion followers doesnt necessarily mean they make good tattoos, particularly with things like Instagram, as the pictures are so small its easy to bullshit quality. You dont have to jump on the bandwagon and chime in and agree with the masses just because the tattooer is attractive. Have a good look at what they are making, is it actually good enough? Two hours in the company of a slammin hottie is always fun but is it worth giving away skin for? I know Id rather get tattooed by Quasimodoas long as the outcome is a beautiful tattoo that Im proud of.

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Ezequiel Samuraii
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What is it that you get out of travelling?

I get to meet some amazing artists on the road, like Jason Butcher, I just did a guest spot with him and that was amazing. I have also met wonderful artists like; Victor Portugal, Iker Ruiz (Fucking Fat), Karl Lundquist from Sweden, They are all amazing guys but amazing artists as well. This for me makes every trip away worth while and I learn so much from these guys, its incredible! I noticed that spending time in Poland with Victor, when I came home my work had changed dramatically. For me personally, I love to do Black & Grey tattoos. I used to do colour work but I find my heart is more wired up for the B&G kind of work I do now. I dont know why but when I used to tattoo in colour, it seemed to take me ages to do so. I work fast and methodically, but colour takes me forever! I have pretty much been into Black & Grey work ever since I picked up a pencil. For me graphite, charcoal and black & white work is the way to go!

My favourite type of tattoos are the horror style of work. I love horror movies and that style just gets my blood pumping for some reason. Lately I have been really interested in the Victorian, Jack the Ripper, type of 1800s themes. They really are inspiring me to do more of this dark imagery. I love that time with the very ornate type of themes and the darkness just speaks to me all the time. I like to try and give that sort of sinister atmosphere to my tattoos also. This trip, I spent some time in the Eastend of London and Whitechapel, and did a few Jack the Ripper tours, that was kind of a dream come true! It was incredible just to immerse myself in the surroundings. I have so many influences at the moment and new artists just appear from nowhere, producing incredible work, that it is hard to keep up with them all. I would say Victor Portugal is probably my biggest influence. Then Robert Hernandez & Karl Lundquist in Sweden, Jamie Mcabe from Canada, Paul Booth, Bob Tyrrell, Jason Butcher; there are too many to count really.

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I have just recently finished a guest spot with Jason and plan to come back again next year as I really enjoyed my time there and learnt so much. The Immortal Ink crew are such lovely people and amazing artists. I have also spent some time in Wrexham with Steve Cutter and Cathy-Sue, they are wonderful people too.

On my list of artists to get work by, Im in the process of getting a half leg sleeve by Victor Portugal at the moment and I would like to collect work from Jason Butcher, Markus Lenhard & Robert Hernandez for certain and so many more...Id like to find a bigger body to hold them all, haha!

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Ezequiel Samuraii
Q
Has there recently been a single tattoo that has made you go Wow!

What about hobbies, pastimes?

Lately, it must be the full back/leg tattoo that Jason has done. The piece has a name but I cant remember what it is called at the moment. It is like an entire face that covers both the guys back and runs down the back of both legs and runs over both arms too. It truly is inspiring. Jason told me that during the tattoo process he had moments of doubt as to whether the tattoo would look good or not. I think we can say it worked! These guys are not only great tattooists but they want to raise the bar every day too. That attitude is one I try to adopt for myself, as well you know? Another amazing tattoo I remember is called The Wing by Markus Lenhard of Lux Altura, that also is outstanding.

Outside of tattooing I used to play guitar in an extreme metal band but again, tattooing just takes over your life, so I had to give the music up. To be honest, anything that takes me away from my tattooing and drawing feels like I am wasting my time. So if I have any free time, I like to sit and draw. I also catch up on my designs for my clients as Im travelling and this takes up time too. I am always playing catch up! What I am trying to do now is not work for two days in the shop and one of those days is purely spent drawing my designs. This is good as it makes me focus on my art.

I love to work in a Bio-mechanical style too but it is very difficult to get it right and very easy to get it wrong! It is a style that has evolved over the years to become a very complex art form of tattooing. Id really like thank Steve Cutter for all his help whilst I have been in the UK. Hes amazing and great fun! Jason Butcher, for allowing me to work alongside him. Chris Jones, of Physical Graffiti, Cardiff also for letting me guest with him. All the artists I admire for being there and giving me a horizon to aim for.

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When I head back to Argentina we have the tattoo convention in Montevideo in Uruguay, where I am working alongside Victor Portugal, Javier Obregon (Tatuador) and Henry Anglas (Tatuador). Whilst there we are tattooing two full back pieces over the weekend as an art fusion project. This will be the first sitting, then we will finish off the tattoos at another show in January. So in two sittings at two shows, we will have two full backs tattooed by the four of us with a common theme running through both tattoos. It should look and be amazing!

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EAST COAST EXPO

zStacy by Cathy-Sue

of Dexterity Ink, Wrexham

p Natalia by Alan Aldred

of Cosmic Tattoo, Colchester

zJohn by John Paul


of Jinked, Porthcawl

x Sarah by Pete Oz
of Seven Star

For some, the prospect of staying in a caravan in November is a bleak thought but for me, it adds a little extra element to the show. I have always been a big fan of conventions that have the facilities for those working the show to stay on site and having accommodation just a few steps away, and at the expo this is coupled with the bonus of being able to cook a meal for yourself if needs be. If you like cooking that is. If not, there were food facilities providing hot and affordable food all day long. So as Saturday began, the artists set up their machines and got ready for the day, as did the people on the other trade stands. The doors opened and the show got underway. There were two main rooms for the artists to work from; the biggest room housed the main stage, whilst the smaller one held the overflow of artists and another smaller anteroom housing ten or so tattooists.

This layout worked well, giving those attending the show the room to wander between all the rooms and booths, maybe grab a drink in either of the two bars, sit and watch the entertainment on stage, or browse the trade stalls.

of the artists working may not be regulars on the rest of the UK show scene and so it is nice and refreshing to look over the shoulders of these talented but rarely seen individuals and to keep up to date on their progress. As well as the tattooing stalwarts there were a few The East Coast has for new names, some attending the past few years had a a show for the first time. theme and this year it was I have been watching a Hollywood and the Oscars. young talent by the name This being the case, there were many cut-outs of movie of Ben Ormerod from North Wales, and he and Kev Heath stars and characters, with were there to showcase red carpets guiding the way their talents and promote for those attending and their new studio; The Rogues other movie paraphernalia Gallery in Bangor. Ben themed the venue. Another specialises in B&G portrait unique aspect to the East Coast Expo are the two huge work and Kev does more colour work. Both produced TV screens running classic some great work and Kev films all weekend. I loved sadly had a cancellation on this idea because if you are the Sunday but picked up not getting tattooed there a walk in tattoo, which he are only so many hours you executed perfectly even can shop for and a show can get a little dull. But those not though it was a black & grey portrait. lucky enough to be getting fresh ink could grab a chair, Another tattoo of note was relax and take in a movie. A done by Needle Runner nice touch that. inventor, Steve Cutter; he Talking of tattoos, and thats tattooed a stunning long eared owl on the Sunday. what we were there for, There were some really this years list of attending good but less well known artists was very healthy artists plying their wares, indeed. One of the things and that for me is one of I like about this particular the best things about this show is the fact that many

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p Keith by Julie Clarke

of Flaming Gun, Colchester

p Kev Heath of p Keith by Julie Clarke


of Flaming Gun, Colchester

The Rogues Gallery, Bangor

y Peter by Ray Hunt p Dan by Sara Pengelly


of Lady Luck, Portsmouth of Diablo Tattoos, Medway

convention. By November some of us might be a little Conventioned Out but in the weeks leading up to the expo, I get all excited at the prospect of seeing new talent. I was not disappointed and The Expo provided me with that little pick me up to see me through to the new year and the start of the show scene again in 2013.

As I wandered the show, my eyes kept picking up new tattoos that needed the attention of my camera lens, and as I mentioned earlier, the quality of the work being produced and on display was incredible. As the Saturday wore on, the main act of the weekend took to the stage. The Committed are a Commitments tribute style

band but they didnt just stick to the band they were emulatings back catalogue and belted out some great R&B numbers that got lots of the crowd up and throwing some shapes. They were really rather good and finished off what was for me, a wonderful day. So happy with what Id seen and photographed, it was time for me to hit the hay.

t Dan by Steve Needle Runner

Cutter of Dexterity ink, Wrexham

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EAST COAST EXPO

t By Ray Hunt of

Diablo Tattoos, Medway

The following morning I noticed that not all had taken the same actions as me and some of the booths were a little... erm late setting up and many of the public looked a little bleary after partying until the wee hours. Still, with the doors open and the hangovers dissipating, the tattoo machines fired up and the serious business of tattooing got underway for the second day. Sunday was busier in terms of public attendance but not so crowed that it was uncomfortable to move around and it wasnt too long before fresh tattoos appeared from the booths. Again, I was encouraged at the quality of work being done and I do feel that this year the tattoos that I saw were better than previous years. I do think this is very encouraging for the craft as a whole, as I feel that the more of these independent shows can host good artists and promote tattooing in a good and positive light, the better.

q Paige by Kev of

p Adam by Evo of y By Ronnie Goddard

The Rogues Gallery, Bangor of Blood, Sweat and Pain, Boston

Wicked Needles, Southampton

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Victors & Victresses


Best in Show 1 Jed by Ronnie Goddard Blood, Sweat & Pain 2 Glyn by Samantha Ford Silver Needles 2 3 Adam by Evo Wicked Needles Large Black & Grey 1 Rebecca By Samantha Ford Silver Needles 2 2 Andy by Mark Frost Blood, Sweat & Pain 3 Danny by Mark Frost Blood, Sweat & Pain Small Black & Grey 1 Will by Ben The Rogues Gallery 2 Page by Kev Heath The Rogues Gallery 3 Bryan by Ronnie Goddard Blood Sweat & Pain Large Colour 1 Rachel by Dan Banas Bananas Tattoo 2 Chris by Jim Allen Straight 2 The Point 3 Joanna by Mark Frost Blood, Sweat & Pain Small Colour 1 Dan by Steve Cutter Dexterity Ink 2 Dickie by Sim Abbott Cosmic Tattoo 3 Alex by Evo Wicked Needles Traditional 1 Joe by Joe Farrell Accomplice Tattoo 2 Andy by Kate J Black Cat Tattoo 3 Sam by Ali Jekyll & Hyde Tattoo New School 1 Dickie by Sim Abott Cosmic Tattoo 2 Paul by Alan Aldred Cosmic Tattoo 3 Gemma by Chloe 7 Star Tattooo Portrait 1 Danny by Sonny Mitchell Black Lotus Tattoo 2 Rachel by Dan Banas Bananas Tattoo 3 Stephen by Evo Wicked Needles Oriental 1 Fergus by Evo, Wicked Needles 2 Gary by Pete Oz, 7 Star Tattoo 3 James by Sim Abbott Cosmic Tattoo

zJames by Ben Ormerod

p James by Sim Abbott of


Cosmic Tattoos, Colchester

of The Rogues Gallery, Bangor

x Sarah by Pete Oz
of Seven Star

This year a new style of judging was tried and I have to say had varying degrees of success. The judging was done all on the Sunday and rather than the entrants having to register, they all queued up and were seen in any fashion and just telling the judges what category they were entering their work in to. This created rather a long queue but most folk seemed to be patient and they got judged in a reasonable amount of time. Also only tattoos done by those working the show were allowed. I liked this idea as it gave those who had made the effort to work the chance of taking home a trophy. Also the artist and wearer had to be present at the awards ceremony to accept the award thus reducing the mass exodus and keeping folk in the venue until the end of the show. Yet another innovative idea from the organisers. Looking back, I can see that Glyn, Sonya and all the guys that helped them put on the ninth East Coast Expo worked tirelessly and achieved the best show so far. Long may it continue as this truly is a small but perfectly formed and independent tattoo convention. Thank you all for your hospitality and see you next year for the tenth anniversary!

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Mo Coppoletta

Of course tattooing is a commodity, it is not primary spending. But for some reason people feel the need to find that little personal space, they are maybe willing to make the sacrifice. In the tough times, it is likely that people might choose you over another establishment. I have got a team of heavyweights that goes a long way, so we attract a good number of people to keep the shop steady. Mo says the support of his team has been key to the success of the studio this far, and it is what allows him to juggle all his different projects and still maintain a strong presence at the helm of the business. You need to be good at organising and delegating. Luckily I have a great team. Trust is not something that goes a long way in the tattoo world but it is important.

If you are a business owner, your presence and your influence cannot disappear for long periods of time. You need to find pockets of time to do creative stuff and business stuff. You can do your own exhibition, or a project with a major brand, tattooing. It is beautiful. Recent projects have included creating a watch for luxury watch maker Romain Jerome, and Mo is currently working on designing a textile line for high end department store Liberty, which will feature in its autumn and winter collection next year. Mo also worked with Liberty in 2011 to create a drinks label for a Ralph Lauren launch party. Mo had a solo exhibition of his artwork, Hora Incerta, shown at Londons Heartbreak Gallery last year. He also has a book published, Tattooed by the

Family Business, which takes the reader through the tattoo process from beginning to end, and offers an insight into the behind the scenes workings of a tattoo parlour. Mo says he has been offered the chance to put together another book, if he can find time to do it, considering at least a year and a lot of work went into the last one. A major fault with tattoo books is that they are aimed at the tattoo industry some are self celebratory, but they are always aimed at a public who has a general knowledge of tattooing. I wanted to aim wider, create a book that anyone could pick up without knowing who (Louis) Molloy is or who Alex Binnie is. To take everyone from an old granny to a young student through the tattoo process.

Although he has a lot of irons wake up, its the adrenaline. in the fire, it is of course the I dont want to sleep. I am tattoo studio itself which is shattered but Im happy. Mos main focus. This is my baby, its my thing I probably sleep three and everything is going well hours a night because I so I shouldnt complain.

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Credit: Danielle

Mo says he has a few surprises planned throughout next year to celebrate the studios tenth birthday. He will be launching some new products, displaying some new artwork and gathering together the biggest guest artists the shop has ever hosted to create a mini tattoo convention. Although the line-up is still a secret, the event is pretty exciting considering the calibre of artist the shop has welcomed in the past. I ask Mo if it is tough to manage the permanent artists, considering there are so many of them, but he says they rarely clash because he tries to foster a harmonious environment in which everyone can express themselves. He is pleased turnover is relatively low and many tattooists who were originally just passing through have stayed for several years. The tattooists life is always on the move, Mo says, but

having a shop with the right atmosphere encourages the resident artists to stay put for longer. It comes from the top. I wanted to create a shop with a strong identity that would afford not have to look at another shop for reference. I put a lot of effort into making the Family Business a business. If artists have freedom of expression, there is no clashing of egos. You keep everybody busy and you have a recipe for success. What else has he learnt in the process of singlehandedly building up The Family Business? Never dismiss anyone or anything. Never jump on a high horse. Keep your eyes and ears open for everything.

Credit: Dom

Among the people Mo refuses to dismiss are the young guys who come through the door of The Family Business with their portfolios in their hands. In fact, Mo believes anyone Always have five minutes with a passion for tattooing to listen to what someone is can become a tattooist. proposing, because someone It is much easier to get else might listen to him and some money from tattooing then you might say oh, I tomorrow than going on remember than guy came the X Factor. Tattooing to me once. It doesnt cost is much more profitable much to be nice. straightaway.

Credit: Andrea Giulimondi

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Mo Coppoletta
You cant work more than eight hours a day so you cant produce more than that amount of tattooing. If we were a reproducible kind of product, corporates would have come in and made it even bigger than it already is. We have reached levels of notoriety and widespread acknowledgement. And it is a big industry - look at the convention deals, the suppliers, the social networks dedicated to it but you still have to put the hours in, it is not like you can capitalise on it in any other way. What this means it that there is no scope to produce one piece of art which makes you a millionaire and turns you into the next Damien Hirst. Tattooists dont come into the tattoo world for the money, and those that are successful are the ones who arent afraid of hard work. But Mo says the fact tattooing is a peculiar industry in the sense that it isnt repeatable is a good thing. Its a no bullshit art form because you cant cheat your way out of it if you do a bad tattoo, you do a bad tattoo, thats it. Tattooing is still more a craft than an art in that respect. How does he feel about the way tattooing has opened up to the point where anybody can set themselves up as an artist with a tattoo machine from eBay and no training? What is interesting about tattooing is that although it has pervaded nearly every aspect of popular culture since it began gaining popularity in the 90s, it has not been exploited as an industry the way the music industry has, for example. This is because tattooing is, by its nature, not reproducible, he says. If you decide you want to tattoo, you have three friends, you start tomorrow, tomorrow night you put 100 in your pocket. If you can do a couple of lines and a bit of shading, next week you advertise on Facebook or whatever and you will get people coming. But despite the widespread hatred of scratchers among professional artists, Mo says they are not all bad the chances of contracting an infection from being tattooed by an amateur is not a lot higher than if you went to a reputable shop but then didnt look after the fresh tattoo afterwards. At least with amateurs trying to break into tattooing every day, a few will eventually become the industrys future stars. These days it is safer - at least you dont have to solder your needle now, you can get it in a pack presterilised. Infection can also occur from very renowned shops, because what happens to a fresh tattoo when the customer leaves the shop, we have no control over. So it is good and bad, because of the 100 guys who start tattooing tomorrow, maybe ten will succeed, and five will become incredible artists. Another common gripe among tattoo artists is people stealing others work and passing it off as their own, or using a drawing for reference and then turning into an inferior carbon copy tattoo. But Mo is pretty sanguine about this too, arguing there is no point trying to fight progress. The main thing that bothers Mo about tattooing today is the saturation of the market, although he is keen to stress he doesnt want to sound like a moaning old timer when he talks about this. I am always sick of listening to old men complaining about how it used to be in the old days, but there was a time a while ago when the whole thing was a bit more romantic. You could recognise styles, you could recognise a sleeve from Scott Sylvia or Alex Binnie. These days it is so watered down. Although he says there are still artists that stand out, they all broadly follow the same trends in terms of tattooing style, and there are few visionaries around these days. Some artists excel more than others, but they all follow trends which are strong. You have this homogenous, amazing work which takes a lot of charm away, it is all very sterile and clean. There are no visionaries anymore. Maybe there are some, but there are trendsetters and 300 followers, and the followers are better tattooists than the trendsetters.

Credit: Inma

If you really want it, you will get it, if you have the passion for it. Just make it your own way. Were not bankers, were not lawyers, we dont have proper schools. If you dont have passion, its like turning up to a guitar shop saying you want to play guitar but then they ask you what records you like and you say I dont listen to music.

The other issue he mentions is with the advance of social networking and sites like Instagram, artists put their work out there immediately for public consumption. This Sailor Jerry said you always takes away some of the fun have to run faster than the of uncovering work by new others. They copy you, get artists, or visiting a studio on the next thing. You put and flicking through physical it out there, and if people portfolios. are following that, youll be Back then there was still the reference, theyll know the discovery, going to the you are the first. Theres shop, finding the artists no point worrying about work. Now you see it on that, it is better to channel Instagram straight away. that energy into creating That way gives a lot but also something amazing. Trust takes a lot of romanticism me, that hard work always away, Mo says. pays off. [Stealing work] has always happened, in every industry, in every artistic field. It doesnt matter. Im not really afraid of that.

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Credit: Stuart
Credit: Xam

Credit: Andrea

Of course, the popularity of blogs and image sharing sites has contributed to the huge explosion in the tattoo scene over the last few years which has catapulted it into the mainstream. The downside of this is perhaps that tattoos have become as much a commodity as an art form. Mo says tattoos have been a booming business since the 1990s, and he agrees it has become commoditised. But conscientious artists and business owners can make it something more than this. Tattooing is a very peculiar business. But if your integrity is very strong and your professionalism

goes a long way, you have got a blank canvas, he says. You could have a shitload of customers and be an incredible artist, but it is up to you how you want to treat them. Anyone can be a tattoo artist now, it is up to you what you want to do with it. As for where tattooing goes from here, Mo says he cant imagine how the industry can grow much further, since it has permeated almost every aspect of popular culture. Mo is especially qualified to talk about how tattoo art has crossed over these boundaries into other mediums because of his work designing for big brands.

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Mo Coppoletta

We always said it couldnt get any bigger but it has grown bigger than ever. Now the industry has been transported to many other fields - babys bibs, perfume brands, he says. I think room for improvement in terms of general acknowledgement and widespread popularity is probably not that much. Having said that, each individual can take his skills, artwork and vision to other fields and see what happens. Im not saying weve touched the top, but were pretty damn close to the top. Maybe well stay there. But I cant imagine many more applications - it has affected every area - movies, rock stars, TV, products, fashion, design. How much further can it go? I suggest the way tattooing will evolve further from here is not through different applications within popular culture, but through the artists who are pushing new styles and techniques. As tattooing has grown, there are artists pushing the boundaries to produce some very complex work as styles like photo realism become more popular. There has been criticism from old school tattooists that these designs wont have longevity because they are not tried and tested. I ask Mo how plausible is it that there will be a lot of people walking around with blurry portraits on their skin in 20 years time. He concedes there are definitely people wearing colour work from the new school which hasnt aged as well as it could. I think there is room for refinement in tattooing - finer details and

Credit: Joao

more elaborate graphics. I am not a big fan of no outline, full colour realism. I dont like it on a poster but especially on skin. But of course, the main thing is whether the wearer is happy with their tattoo, he adds. The Family Business consistently produces gorgeous, clean work and, combined with Mos ambitious expansion plans and focus on taking care of customers, it looks set for another decade as one of the leading studios in London.

Resident artists at the Family Business

Credit: Steve

MO COPPOLETTA ANDREA GIULIMONDI INMA STUART ARCHIBALD STEVE VINALL JOAO BOSCO DOM HOLMES ANDREA FURCI XAM DANIELE TONELLI NOON

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Credit: Noon

ARTISTS ROY PRIESTLEY & PAUL PRIESTLEY

SKINSHOKZ
11 TOWNGATE, WYKE, BRADFORD TEL: 01274 676914

WWW.SKINSHOKZ.CO.UK

Rich

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Image: Ashley www.savageskin.co.uk

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Your style leans toward mainly colour portraits and realistic designs. Do you

remember where and when your love and fascination with that style first began?

A To be honest, it fascinated

me from the very beginning, so much so that my 8th tattoo was a portrait. I love being

able to bring faces to life. The colours come from my graffiti and I love experimenting with these different colours.

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Mario Hartmann

You create custom works. Do you have full creative freedom from your clients/ customers?

Are there any famous artists that have influenced you down the path of your career?

It really depends on the customer; however, I find it best when they have a basic concept in mind and then lets me creatively interpret this idea. Occasionally compromises have to be made for the good of the tattoo, but in general, my customers are very uncomplicated and give me mostly free reign, which is great!

A Theres loads! Boris from

Can you tell us about a memorable moment you had while doing someones tattoo?

Hungary. When he did two stints as a guest artist in our Illustration In Skin Studio. We worked together for one week, and I learned a lot just from looking over his shoulder. He has been a big role model for me, so this was a big honour. Hes a really nice, crazy guy too. Dmitriy Samohin was recently a guest at our studio too. He gave me a tattoo, that was a portrait of Albert Einstein breathtakingly perfect! The guy is hopelessly talented.

Occasionally customers will ask me to give them a tattoo depicting someone they loved or cared about who has recently passed away. On the one hand, its a little sad, but I am glad that I am able to provide their loved ones a lasting memory. That for me, is a great part of my job.

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Mario Hartmann

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Q Q
What is your favourite or most exciting aspect about your job?

A To try something new every A


day. I find it really exciting that every day is different. To achieve my full potential.

Nowadays the tattoo industry is booming with more new products (inks, machinesetc) Do you think that is a good progress? Every boom is good for the industry and every tattoo artist profits from good ink and good people and machines. I am glad that I belong to the generation that has access to good materials to work with as this will ultimately improve my tattoo work.

Q Tattoos have been treated


as a deviation etc. Do you think it will ever become fully accepted as an art?

A There will always be

animosity towards tattoos and tattooed people, because a lot of tattoos arent particularly ambitious on an artistic level. There are just too many bad tattoo artists, although that is beginning to change. A lot of good artists are starting to

make a name for themselves. Who knows what will happen over the next 20 years? Maybe this boom will end and only the good artists will be left standing.

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Mario Hartmann

Which tattoo style is the most popular in Germany right now?

I cant really say we usually do very realistic stuff. What is striking is that we do a lot of really big pieces these days. That is very refreshing allowing us to promote good tattoos effectively.

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A Gypsy Tattooer

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Though a helping hand goes a long way, its Davees unique style that sets him apart, a style that was formed by his love for another art form during his formative years as an artist. I grew up, and my background was graffiti. I started to paint when I was about 12 and I was really still very much into it when I was 19 and I started tattooing, but then I moved away from it, but recently Ive really started coming back to it, trying to paint one or two times every week. Everywhere I go I like to leave a mark on a wall, this is the medium which Im feeling the most comfortable with, other than tattoo machines. Even with this huge stylistic influence, tattooing has its own challenges to overcome, just like any other medium it has its own idiosyncrasies, largely due to its nature as a transient form on a less than reliable canvas, something that artists learn quickly if they want their work to stand the test of time.

me, different approaches, it has to be more simple, more stable. In graffiti there are no rules, you can really go wherever you feel like going, with tattooing you have to respect and follow so many rules, which is what Ive realised in the last few years. When it comes to his signature style Davee takes a refreshing approach to the up and coming artists who gravitate towards his work, far from the closed off attitudes that were so prevalent in the arts past, he seems to appreciate any contribution to the industry. When I started, in my country, there was like two or three tattooists which were doing the colourful tattoos, now its like hundreds of kids doing them. Every week youre hearing a new name and being super impressed. Its not just in my country though, its worldwide.

tattooists thats like these are my secrets, nobodys going to find them out and nobody can have machines Im like, what the fuck? Let the kids start to tattoo, maybe theyll be good one day, everybody should have the same opportunities. Perhaps due to his tentative first steps in to the industry, learning as he went along, Davee continues to expand his horizons through travel and guest spots. A self confessed Gypsy Tattooer he finds clients, and fellow artists, the world over. You can grow both ways, as a tattooist and as a person. While youre hanging out with more people your horizons are getting wider, including that tattoo aspect, youre always gaining more knowledge. It seems a contrast then that despite his frequent exposure to other artists in the flesh, he tries not to look at too much in the way of other tattoos, but its really a matter of drawing that line between subconsciously taking in influences and actively seeking them out, something that Davee has avoided, with his style changing organically as a result.

I think that tattooings getting more widely accepted, and you can see I used to be more influenced it everywhere, its getting by graffiti back in the day, commercialised but I think when I started. Im trying to its a good thing. Even stupid separate this though, I can TV shows, they really help see that tattooing expects with peoples approach to different techniques from tattoos. Im not one of these

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What Im always saying to my customers is like, Id rather do something like what Im doing, totally from my heart and my head, and give you this, instead of following something that someone did before. If people complain and say, okay, the stuff you did before was better, if they

like it more, then I respect that but Im not going to go back to it, because I think you always have to move forward. What you did before is only a collection of your own experiences, and you can progress from that. People are starting to complain

that Im simplifying the stuff and that it used to be more detailed or whatever, but I think it works better as a tattoo now. Youve got to realise that styles like old school or Japanese, they really work because theyre simple, theyre bold and theyre very powerful.

Travelling is undoubtedly one of the best ways that an artist can expand their horizons, whether its by taking in influences from other mediums or more directly by working alongside other artists. While conventions are constantly on the increase,

with more and more venues becoming open to the idea of hosting them and a growing number of artists and vendors willing to occupy the space provided, they can also have the downside of creating a somewhat impersonal atmosphere, as Davee has found.

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Ive really moved away from the conventions. The last couple of years Ive done 10, 12 shows a year, thats a lot. In a way it felt like you were going somewhere, but you never got to see the place, you were just working at the show and going back home, its not the way I want to do it. After doing that I realised that doing guest spots is way more fun because you can learn and hang out with people, you can get to know them. At a convention you might shake their hand and say See you next year but thats all. Fortunately there are plenty of studios and artists happy to work alongside him, giving him a unique opportunity to see much of what the world has to offer, with one location in particular providing Davee with his home away from home, and an interesting chance to be involved in a resurgence of tattooing. My favourite destination ever is Hong Kong. Its definitely the most inspiring place and in a way it feels different for a tattooer because theres no such thing as a tattoo scene there are a few people who are trying to realise what tattooing is about but there arent really many of them, the whole tattoo thing is very fresh. Hong Kong has its story in the 50s and 60s, there used to be great tattoo shops because there used to be sailors coming in, but not anymore. Nowadays its turning back, I think itll be big in the next few years and everyone will be looking at Hong Kong.

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You cant really see tattoos on the street, except the tourists. The locals dont really have them, or they have the old ex gangster backpieces, the single needle black and grey stuff. People dont normally have any, theyll come to the shop and ask for a small star. Since I started to go there people have started to realise what tattooing is about, and they get to know me. Ive got this base of my own customers there who are just amazing people, they let me do what I want and theyre very open.

Thanks to his nomadic existence and love for travel, Davee has had a number of clients travel internationally for his work, with customers coming from as far afield as Australia, the U.S. and even Singapore to capture some of his unique artwork. Luckily, thanks to the magic that is the internet, its far easier to track Davee down than you might think, due in part to his frequent posting on the likes of Facebook and Instagram. So keep your eyes peeled, because with his hectic travel schedule he could well be on his way to a studio near you in the future. If you have any enquiries Davee can be contacted at: daveeelovesyou@gmail.com

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Tattoo Revolution

Tattoo Theatre
Drink it in folks, for this is where we shall display a dazzling array of tattoos from artists all over the world for your consumption and enjoyment.
q Teresa Sharpe of
Studios 13, USA

presents

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u Jeremy Miller
of Pigment Dermagraphics, USA

z Travis Broyles, USA y Travis Broyles, USA x Teresa Sharpe of


Studios 13, USA

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z Kelly Doty of

Ink &Dagger Tattoo Parlour, USA

q Gray Silva of

Rampant Ink, Nottingham

p Kelly Doty of Ink &Dagger


Tattoo Parlour, USA

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z Lewis Mckechnie,
Rock N Roll Tattoo Edinburgh, Scotland

p Lewis Mckechnie,
Rock N Roll Tattoo Edinburgh, Scotland

q Gray Silva of

Rampant Ink, Nottingham

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z Stu Pagdin,
On the road, Australia

y Megan Jean Forest


of Painted Soul Tattoos, USA

z Stu Pagdin,
On the road, Australia

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p Ed Perdomo, Sweden

z Martin Silva, USA

u Ed Perdomo,
Sweden

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p Benjamin Fluxx, Octopus Tattoo y Paul Ahern, Dublin

z Chris Allen, USA

x Paul Ahern, Dublin

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z Fadi Michael of

Triptyc Tattoo, Geneva

q Max of Southmead
Tattoos, Bristol

p Fadi Michael of Triptyc


Tattoo, Geneva

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