Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Tattoos, like painting, but without the wuss.

Posted by: Dave

Remember all those tattoo references we had a while back on our blog.  Well, I thought it might be a good idea to follow up on that.  Kate and I are now tattooing part time here on Vancouver Island, just two days a week.  It was our way of doing something artistic for additional income when we decided to that teaching art didn't pay very well.  Now I know what a lot of you are thinking out there, "but Dave, are you tough enough to be a tattoo artist?"  Damn right I am, I kicked some kid's ass in 7th grade, and have had a perfect fight record ever since... of 1:0.  The tattoo world is a lot of fun, but a bit different than the fine art world (which I am far more integrated into.)  It's the kind of place where if there is a work dispute, you have to go outside and duke it out in the parking lot like a real man as opposed to whine and cry about it.  I work at a biker shop right now, so pretty much by this logic I tend not to argue with people.  Ironically, I will say that this has been my first really enjoyable work environment.  We have a great team of artists where I work, and if a customer is annoying, I can always look forward to the fact that I can poke about 100,000 holes in them before they leave and they have to pay me 140 bucks an hour for the pleasure.  In addition, heavy metal is played all day and someone is likely to be headbutted if they try to slip some classical music in the cd player.

I will say that whenever I tell someone I am just meeting that I am a classical realist artist, they think of this.

But now when I tell someone I am a tattoo artist, they think of this.  The latter is way better.

Now, for the record, this in no way is going to become a tattoo oriented blog.  We still consider ourselves full time painters, but I wanted to show how having fundamental realist skills can transfer over into new mediums.  Good reference, composition, shapes, forms, edges, single light source, balls, etc are integral to both.  Below are a couple tattoos we have done and a couple pieces of tattoo flash we designed.  Enjoy.

NOTE:  The answer is no to all the guys who are going to leave comments asking for me to do their tramp stamp (looking at you Jason De Graaf).

 Hawk by Kate

Crow Skull by David

Flash by David 

Flash by Kate


  1. Not even a skully phoenix rising from the

  2. Dang! You guys kick ass in the tatt world too! Beautiful work as always. May I throw out a little observation here? Consider the fine art your "career" and the tattooing a "vocation". And it is good to have both! My family comes from the banana republic of Cuba and because the political situation there was so tumultuous my grandfather who was a bonafide cancer surgeon & ENT specialist, also trained as a tailor for his "vocation". As something to fall back on in case he could not practice medicine. The key here being that surgery & tailoring obviously share similar skill sets as does fine art & tattooing. Pretty cool, huh?

  3. I am still chuckling over your humor in this post...I read it last night. Hope you both continue to enjoy your new art adventure!