Your work is very classic and traditional. Have you gone through a classic tattoo apprenticeship?
Unfortunately not. I would have loved to have a classic apprenticeship, but sadly there was no one who accepted me. There weren’t that many studios in our area back then and the ones I asked couldn’t be bothered having an apprentice, hence I started completely autodidactic.
How that work and what did induce you to open your own shop?
I started tattooing in January 2011. Back then I used to tattoo in a separate room at my place. Initially friends and acquaintances and then more and more people that I hardly or didn’t know at all. At some point, I had to get out of our house anyway. When my son was born in 2013, I took some time off my previous profession as a technical draftsman. During this time the idea to try and have my own shop kept popping into my head. So I opened a private shop in May 2014, which had to give way for a street shop in Dinklange in April last year.
When are the moments where you are drawing for yourself and not for the next day’s client? Do you even have the muse to draw when having three kids, a dog and your own shop?
I do take my moments and usually, I am always down for drawing or painting. But it’s obvious that I have less time for it than someone who doesn’t have kids, a dog or his own shop. Nevertheless, I keep trying to bring in some output and I hope that I will have more time to paint in the future again.
What are you paying special attention to when drawing, what is important to you?
While designing a tattoo it’s certainly important to know the placement, the size and whether it is in black or in colour etc. It’s important to me that the tattoo motif or design works well, whether it’s on the skin or in aquarelle.
How do you structure a back piece? (, like the one you did currently?/ such as the one you did previously?)
There is no masterplan, at least not for me. This design was created in my free time, I just started drawing. With commissioned work, there are often certain requirements which should be stuck by, but in this case, you are able to do whatever you want to.
In the traditional realm many designs are repeated frequently, does this make you feel limited sometimes?
Definitely not, there are so many wonderful designs from the past that I gladly use over and over again; either as a reference or just as classic redraws. For example, I often use these for my Wanna-dos. Simply “Keep it traditional”. After all, you also create your own designs and motifs, so I don’t feel limited in that sense.