Showing posts from September, 2013

Jessica aspiring to be a tattooist

Jessica Kaia is twenty two years of age and lives in Easton, in Bristol.  We met in the cafe next door to Ben Boston's Tattoo Studio.  I had just finished a two hour session with Ben. Jessica had been out and about in Bristol on Gloucester Road chugging for Greenpeace and was taking a lunch break  Among her talents she is also a fire eater/performer, but I won't explore that story here. Most of all she says she wants to be a professional tattooist.  She had an apprenticeship in Cornwall but that came to an abrupt end when the partners running the shop rather spectacularly fell out with each other. Ben has often talked about his worries over the number of "scratchers", people who buy tattoo equipment and clumsily use them at home.  They may do this with friends.  The problem is they have little or no skill and fail to observe basic hygiene. Jessica introduced herself to me as a scratcher but it quickly became apparent that she has one big aspiratio

A tattoo tail of two cats

I met Katie in the Stokes Croft area of Bristol.  Actually I had crossed the road in search of a friend in the café that Katie was standing by with a few friends.  Spotting her two sleeves and bright blue hair, not hard to do, I asked permission to interview her about her ink.  (Can you identify the huge mural in the background?) Katie lives on a boat on the Avon and Kennet Canal that runs 87 miles from Bristol to the Thames.  I asked her how she would describe herself, not wanting to put her in a box.  Her answer was "don't put me in a box".  Oops. She got her first tattoo five years ago  and that was a whole sleeve.  Her work was all done by Tiny Miss Becca at Jayne Doe Tattoos in Hornchurch .    Both her sleeves feature cats.  On her right arm is a cat called Varla.  When she and her partner split she also lost Varla, so in order to remember her she had her tattooed on her arm. O

Leah Moule at Cheltenham

When I met her I asked her for her name.  She said "I'm Leah from Birmingham" and that is what I dutifully noted.  It was only when I got home I realised my mistake.  Leah is not just a punter like me, but a nationally known tattooist.  This is Leah Moule. At Big Tattoo Planet she describes herself as "Leah Moule, the main artist at Spear Studio, we are a custom design studio based in Kings Heath, Birmingham. Leah specialises in Custom only pieces in NewSkool/Traditional or Oriental style work." I love the rose on her neck.

BBC Radio 4 - a Mortal Work of Art

Not much to say here than may sure you listen to this programme broadcast earlier this week and BBC Radio 4's programme "A Mortal Work of Art".  It's an intelligent and original listen. Radio 4 describes it: As tattoos become ever more visible on the bodies of the British public, Mary Anne Hobbs explores the meeting point between the world of fine art and the world of tattoos. She talks to Spider Webb, the tattoo artist credited with creating the first conceptual art tattoo and the artist Sandra Ann Vita Minchin who is in the process of getting a 17th century Dutch masterpiece tattooed on her back. She visits art historian Dr Matt Lodder who is writing what will be the first art history text on tattooing. She meets Alex Binnie, proprietor of Into You Tattoo - one of the first tattoo parlours in the UK to openly fuse fine art and tattooing. The writer Shelley Jackson caught public attention worldwide when she launched her Skin project in 2003. Skin was t

Cheltenham tattooed models

  Phoebe Black is from Swindon.  She started modelling just 8 months ago but poses like a more experienced professional.  She is soon to be seen in some of the well known Tattoo magazines.  It's not hard to understand why.  Even Phoebe realises that the choice of the Hannibal Lecter image on her left arm is surprising. See more of Phoebe at Emy Claire is Miss Tattoo UK 2013.  Her work was done by Brim at Nu Rose Tattoos in Caerphilly in South Wales.   Her ink reflects her love of gardening.  Some people say when you are older you will regret having so many tattoo but Emy Claire is confident that when she's 70 she will love them just as much as she does now. When not modelling she works at Sainsburys. Emma Wallis is from Southampton and is a tattooist at The Gun Show.  She has been exceptionally bold with her tattoos with work on b