Reason number five to get a Tattoo… Everybody’s doing it!

bob Ross I hope that nobody really gets a tattoo just because they believe that everybody’s getting one, but some of the choices I have seen lead me to believe some people are.  I have said it before in this blog if you want to avoid having a tattoo that you regret then you need to do a few things before you actually get the tattoo.  First know what you want to get or at least have an idea of what you want and or who you want to give you a piece of lifetime art.  Which is the second thing you should do… RESEARCH!  Ask people who have tattoos that you like, where they got the tattoo, Most of us want to tell about our tattoos, some people don’t but their not the norm.  If you find a great tattoo artist and give him an idea of what you, most will draw something up for you, if you love it ink it.  Chances are if you go to a reputable shop and you see an artists work that you love you will love what you get for a long time.  Third thing to remember is… Don’t be cheap! Great Tattoo’s cost money if you find a shop who will give  you a tattoo for $50 bucks… you will probably get a tattoo that will need to be covered up.  “Hey I have a friend who is a great artist I bet they could do a tattoo”… Nope they can’t they may be able to draw the flash for a tattoo artist though.  Tattooing is an Art form unto itself and the people who have been doing it the longest are Usually the best, not always but usually.  I listened to the Howard Stern show one day and Steve “O” from Jackass gave him self a Tattoo on the show with a Butcher Knife and some ink… So I am of the belief that just because somebody can give a tattoo doesn’t mean they should.

This is just my opinion…

Rob Hostetter at Lifetime Tattoo in San Diego is one of the Best Old School Tattoo artists I have ever seen.

Now you have a place to start looking!


Wow that is a nasty Scar!

I met a gentleman this weekend while having a cup of coffee, he is an artist and a pretty successful one.  As usual as the subject of Tattoo’s eventually came up and he had his opinion of the art form.  As most of his generation seem to be, he was a shocked that tattooing is so mainstream but also was impressed by the quality of Tattoo Art he sees everyday.  He joked about a friends military tattoo’s looking like some awful blue melanoma.  And then he admitted that as a young man he had given himself a cross on his forearm.  It was not his best work as an artist and he said it was something he was embarrassed about for years.  While in the Navy working in the dispensary he always wore a large bandage to hide it, finally a superior officer suggest they just Cut the tattoo off  😮 ouch!  Now he sports a Scar and he can tell the ladies it’s a war wound.   Remember this when you decide to get a tattoo, Know what you want, Research your Artist, and don’t hang out with people who have access to Drugs and scalpels. 

They always hurt more and cost more to remove so make sure! If you don't really like it now, you'll really hate it later!

Will the Nerds line up for Apple tattoo’s to memorialize the father of iPod?

I think they will.  Multiple generations know the name Steve Jobs, whether you had the original Macintosh or the latest iphone you know the name.  Your kids know the name too, he was an innovator, creator & really cool guy, he will be missed.   Here are a few pictures lest you think I joke about the tats.

“Be a yardstick of quality.  Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.” – Steve Jobs

mac back

Big fan

Flash Art as Fine Art

This week the Oceanside Art Museum in Oceanside California is having a show called Masterworkds of Body Art volume 3 Traditional Tattooing in America.  The show will end on sunday and will include a live runwway show, tattoo demonstration by Sam Phillips of American Tattoo and a gallery exibition.  The Exibition titled “Inspired by Ink” is split in two rooms; one room has art based on tattoo designs done in oils, acrylics, & watercolors.  The other side of the room is entirely Flash Art and stencils right off the wall of your local tattoo shop.  I have always thought of tattoos as art that you carry with you, and this exhibition while unfortunately very small is quite well done and while I enjoyed this exhibition as well as the others in the museum I wish there was more of the Tattoo Art hanging on the walls. 

Ink to paper is thoughtful, ink to flesh is hard-core” – Art Valenzuela

Oceanside Museum of art

Flash art becomes Fine art


You pick it they Stick it - Prices from 1963 Flash

I get my church on T.V. and my tattoos in a chair


I’m not trying to be sacrilegious with the title of this post, but I was just thinking about all of the Reality Tattoo shows on TV and wondered if there are as many religious shows on now.  It use to be you couldn’t change a channel without coming across Jimmy Swagart, PTL or the 700 club.  I guess those shows serve a purpose, you can always watch them and get your gospel if you missed church on sunday.  But if you want a tattoo, you probably will need to leave your house… Advantage 700 club.  I’m not surprised by the Surge of tattoo reality shows, Tattooing has become so common place and accepted in society, and television always takes what is popular squeezes every bit of interest out of until it becomes mundane.  If you think I am exaggerating here are a few of the Tattoo shows past present and near future.   Miami Ink, L.A. Ink, London Ink, Inked, Tattoo Highway, New York Ink, Tattoo School, Tattoo Anthropologist with Lars Krutak and Tattoo Age.  It’s fine that television is capitalizing on this latest interest in tattooing after people get bored with the TV shows I’m sure they will still get tattooed; after all Jim and Tammy Faye Baker are long gone and People still pray.  Enjoy some pictures 🙂

Miami Ink with Ami James


LA Ink with Kat Von D.


Inked with Carey Hart

Facial tattoos spiritual adornment spontaneous regret

A tattoo is a very personal thing, I have talked to people who get them as a memorial for a loved one, or to document an occasion in their life, because it makes them feel beautiful or tough or just because they like the buzz.  But when you put it out their for the world to see, we all kind of own it for a moment.  I love to see a great tattoo, the art of it, something new and original that makes me wonder what the story is behind it. 

When I see a Facial tattoo I have to admit that my initial reaction is different.  My first thought is usually what the hell were you thinking?!  I haven’t interviewed anyone with a facial tattoo yet but I hope to so that I can understand a little more about our obsession.  It’s not a new thing of course people have been getting tattooed on the face as long as tattooing has been around.  For religious reasons, or as passage into manhood but I have to believe that is not as common today.  There was a story about a year ago about a girl who got 56 stars tattooed on her face, then regretted it and blamed the Artist for mistakenly tattooing her with 53 more stars than she asked for while she slept.  The article didn’t say why she wanted stars on her face, but she was barely 18.   

The face has been generally thought of as Taboo to tattoo but in recent years we have seen celebrities and musicians like Mike Tyson and Lil Wayne adorn their faces with ink.  In the movie “The Hangover 2”  Ed Helms gets a facial tattoo ala-Mike Tyson with clear regret.  I am sure most people are not going to run out and get a facial tattoo after seeing a movie or listening to rap and I won’t drone on about positive role models.

As usual I just want to hear the story.  If anyone reads this and has a Facial Tattoo please post a comment and tell me your story.

Mike Tyson and Ed Helms


If your going to do it...


Oh the Horror!

How many people have had the awful experience of waking up to a Bad tattoo, maybe the idea seemed good at the time maybe it even looked pretty good in the dim flourescent lights of the tattoo shop.  But in the light of day, with a clear head you might realize a Hello Kitty Skull on your forearm was not the wisest move.  Plan a tattoo, becuase they last a little while.  Get a recomendation from somebody who has a tattoo you like, make sure you take the time to look at the artists book.  If you find yourself with a bad tattoo (ugly, misspelled words, tasteless etc…) you can have it removed, it will cost more than the tattoo did, and probably hurt worse than getting it.  You can also get a cover up which happens all the time, there are artists who specialize in doing cover ups.   The best advice regarding choosing a tattoo is still “Think before you ink”. 

Bat Tat and Girl




If Bill Clinton had a tattoo what would it be?


When Captain James Cook returned from his Expedition in the South Pacific He brought back a Tahitian word Tatau which is the only Tahitian word to become part of the English language. Its not a stretch of the imagination to realize why both Tattoo and Taboo are derived from Tatau. Captain Cook also returned with possibly the first Sailors to begin a now popular tradition.

I previously sarcastically stated that “Only Sailors, Bikers and Tommy Lee get tattoos”. Maybe it will not surprise you as much as it did me to find that in addition to the brave men who have served their Country many of the men who have led their country have also been tattooed.

King George V received a tattoo of a Jerusalem Cross, and while in the royal navy on a trip to Japan a local Japanese tattooist gave him a red dragon on his left arm. King Fredrick IX of Denmark acquired several tattoos during his naval service and Winston Churchill sported an Anchor on his right arm. Rumors abound of US Presidents having tattoos… including Franklin Pierce with two full sleeves of terrible workmanship, Dwight Eisenhower with an ace of spades on a butt cheek and FDR with his family crest on his chest. There are very few pictures in evidence of these rumors but I post one of King Fredrick IX to show some merit to the possibility. If Bill Clinton has one I wonder what it would be? Feel free to comment on what you think.

King Fredrick IX of Denmark

For the Boys

Memorial Tattoo’s are a big part of the culture of tattooing.  I am sure that this is nothing new, People like Kat Von D among others make a good living immortalizing loved ones with ink to skin.  I have seen hundreds of arms tattooed with Mom on a banner wrapped around a heart, I have a rat on my arm and that rat has “Dad” tattooed on his arm.  But the latest trend I have seen unfortunately is mothers, fathers and even grandmothers with memorial tattoo’s for their fallen Hero’s/Children.  It is sad that they have a tattoo for the reason they do, but I respect them and the loved ones they are honoring on their flesh.  Thank a Soldier when you see them for their service, pray for their safe return and buy them a beer when they come home, and lets all hope to see less Memorial Tattoos for soldiers.

In Loving Memory

Yes it hurts!

I have heard people say of getting a Tattoo that it feels like someone is pinching you in the same spot for a while and it is really more annoying than it is painful, the people who say this do so so that they can watch you freak out when you realize how much it hurts!  They are your friends just Masochistic.  The truth is getting a tattoo hurts, in fact it feels like somebody has taken sharp needles installed them in a machine originally designed to Etch METAL and now they are dragging those oscillating Needles at High RPM across your skin.  Hooray Tattoos!  Check this out from another blogger.

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