Permanent artwork and the motivations behind it

Archive for October, 2011

Band Ink: Band Members with Tattoos

Bands have been known to influence people to get permanent tattoos of them or symbolizing them  However, what about the tattoos that members in bands have?  These are a few photographs of some members in famous bands with permanent tattoos:

M. Shadows, lead singer of the band Avenged Sevenfold, sports a sleeveless black Motorhead shirt showing off is tattooed arms.  He is tattooed from his shoulders to his hands, and has many more tattoos covering his body that he is not showing the fans at the Rockstar Energy Drink Uproar Festival in 2011 at the Susquehanna Bank Center in Camden, NJ.

Lead singer Andy Sixx of the band Black Veil Brides wore a shredded black tank top and covered himself with flecks of black paint over his tattoos during their AP Tour 2011 performance at the Theater of Living Arts in Philadelphia, PA.

Seether’s bassist, backing vocals, and acoustic guitar player Dale Stewart shows off his right sleeve tattoo work during their performance at the MMR BQ 2011 at the Susquehanna Bank Center in Camden, NJ.

Two members of the band Asking Alexandria, lead singer Danny Worsnop and guitarist Ben Bruce, show off their tattoos at Vans Warped Tour ’11 at the Susquehanna Bank Center in Camden, NJ.  Worsnop shows off his lower arm tattoos whereas Bruce shows off his chest piece and his right sleeve.


Dedication: Band tattoos

Ronald Vincent Pables

Bands come and go, but band tattoos last forever (for the most part).  What makes a person love a band so much that they are willing to get a tattoo of a band name or a symbol of that band somewhere on his or her body? 

I caught up with 23-year old Rowan student Ronald Vincent Pables this week and discussed his band tattoo with him.  At 18 years old, Pables knew what he wanted his first tattoo to be that would stay in his skin for the rest of his life.  After five years living with his permanent artwork, he still loves his tattoo and does not regret getting it all.

“I got my tattoo because it is of my all time favorite band Mushroomhead,” said Pables.  “The symbol is called a Double X Face or an XX Face.  I got it on my leg to concel it from future employers, but I originally wanted it on my arm.  It is to symbolize my fanhood in a permanent fashion without it getting in the way of making a future for myself.”

Ronald Pable's Mushroomhead Tattoo

When I was growing up, I wanted a tattoo of “GC” in Old English letters for the band Good Charlotte.  That definately did not happen.

Usually taste in music changes, like mine did over time, but it seems that more often than not even though people are getting band tattoos at early ages, they know which band(s) they wanted tattooed into their bodies.

21-year old Steven Wallenburg knew what band tattoo he wanted done by Premiere Tattoo at an early age as well, and had a creative way of looking at it if he decided he was not a fan of the band anymore.

“On the inside of my arm is a tribal “S” that stands for Slipknot,” said Wallenburg.  “I had it done because I have been listening to Slipknot for 10 years since the band debuted.  And if I get older and I don’t like them anymore, then the “S” stands for Steven.  A two for one deal.”

Steven Wallenburg’s Slipknot tattoo

These band tattoos have two things in common: they can easily be hidden by clothing if needed or desired and they symbolize musical interests.  I would call that a two for one deal.

The picture of Pables was borrowed from his facebook page.

 The picture of Wallenburg’s arm was taken by tattoo artist Willam Trask.

Meaning in the artwork

Art is beautiful, but it is the meaning behind it that really makes it art.  This week, I wanted to delve into the meanings behind two young people’s tattoos: 21-year-old Jared Baker of Maple Shade, NJ and 21-year old Steven Wallenburg of Camden, NJ.  Here are their tattoo stories:

Jared Baker’s tattoo gives the illusion that a bald eagle with an American flag background is ripping through his right shoulder.  It is his only tattoo but craves for more.  “My dad has two tattoos and I have always wanted one ever since I was a little kid,” said Baker.  “My dad took me to get it for my 16th birthday at Jersey Devil Tattoo.  It’s supposed to symbolize that America is a part of me and I’m proud to be an American.  Like a patriot, I love my country.”

On his right forearm, Steven Wallenburg has a tattoo of an archangel ripping off a good angel’s wings (who has yet to be tattooed on Wallenburg’s left arm) from Premiere tattoo.  “It’s to resemble that even the rich and powerful, no matter how good you are, no matter how hard you work, eventually you are going to fall,” said Wallenburg. “It’s on you to pick yourself back up and dust yourself off and become that good angel again.  If you don’t have the strength, you’re just going to fall like everyone else does.”

On the inside of his lower right leg, Steven Wallenburg has a tattoo of a skull in the middle of two roses with dog tags coming out of his eyes from Premiere Tattoo.  “It is a memorial to my father who passed away when I was five,” said Wallenburg.  “It’s a classic tattoo that I changed up and drew up on my own and added dog tags to it to symbolize my father being in the navy.  That tattoo was very hard to trust a tattoo artist to do because of how much meaning it has to me.”

Art as a career: Interview with Tattoo Artist William Trask

Tattoo artist William Trask working on an arm piece

Tattoos would just be drawings on paper if it weren’t for the people who have the talent to put them on skin.  A descent amount of people think they can be tattoo artists just because they have the equipment or can draw on paper, but without the license and the experience to back it up, who are they trying to fool?

William Trask is a 37-year-old licensed and registered tattoo artist who is the owner of Premiere Tattoo.  He will be opening a new shop in the near future, but waiting for a tattoo done by him is worth the wait.  If someone had an interest in becoming a tattoo artist for a living, he or she would want to hear from an experienced artist like Trask.  With over ten years of experience creating tattoos on paper and on skin, people trust him to put their artwork onto their bodies.  I was fortunate enough to interview Mr. Trask last week about his career path and his work.

Q: Why did you decide to become a tattoo artist and how long have you been doing tattoos?

A: I have been doing tattoos for eleven years off and on.  I decided to become a tattoo artist just because I had a fond fascination for it from when I got my first one at thirteen.

Q: What is the age demographic of your clientele?

A: That all depends on the specific time of the year but really usually anywhere from 30-45.

Q: What kinds of tattoos do you like doing the most and which ones don’t you like doing as much?

A: I like doing all sorts of tattoos, it doesn’t really matter to me as long as I have somewhat of a challenge, big or small it doesn’t really matter.  If it goes into your skin I’m the one that wants to do it.  I enjoy every style of tattoo, I try to be well-rounded.

Q: Is it difficult getting all of the tattoo equipment and how would you go about getting the tattoo equipment?

A: It’s not difficult because I have plenty of different suppliers that supply with me because I have been a professional for so long.  With tattoo machines, I make my own so I don’t really have to worry about that but inks I have a couple of different suppliers, some are more prompt than others.

Q: How long does it take to get your license?

A: Going through an apprenticeship, it takes 2,000 hours within the state of New Jersey so you can be a licensed professional tattoo artist.  It’s very hard to find someone who will apprentice you and apprentice you correctly so you know exactly what you’re looking forward too.

Q: How many tattoos do you do on a daily basis?

A: On a daily basis, anywhere from two to four.  Some could take a half hour, some could take eight hours.  Details, size, custom designs where I draw directly onto the skin, that normally takes a lot longer.  The majority of the tattoos that I have been doing lately lasts anywhere from an hour to an hour and a half of pure pain.

The photo above was taken by Jennifer O’Neill Trask.