I have been away for a while and I apologize for my absence but summer is a crazy time for me between working two jobs, trying to make it down to the beach (only happened for a week), and going to as many concerts as I can on my budget and in my free time. However, during my busy schedule I rather impulsively got another tattoo, but I still only have two.
The guy that did my tattoo (and I say guy specifically rather than artist) was doing drugs when he did my tattoo and didn’t do a very good job. He created a green bandanna which people mistook for a flower, a tongue, or even a female private part. To make things worse, he put spots in the background that I had no idea he was going to do. I don’t regret getting the tattoo for my friend Vinny who passed away, I do regret going to that guy though. My advice to you: don’t ever go to someone’s house to get a tattoo. Not only will you most likely not get what you want, but it could lead to infection. I was very lucky not to get sick.
So I got something that I never thought I would have to do: a cover-up. I was merely looking for ideas when I recalled a shop that I had
blogged about last fall called Sinful Art Tattoo in Vineland, NJ. I stopped in to see what could be done to my horrible looking bandanna, maybe make it look more like what it was supposed to be. The artist I spoke with discussed really turning it into a flower (people thought that is what it was anyway) but adding two more flowers on the side of it to make it look balanced. He told me the price and showed me the picture of the flower and before I knew it I was sitting in the chair with a needle in my skin.
Dave “Azma” Knauer did a beautiful job on the back of my neck. He managed to turn the dimensionless green bandanna into a red and silver flower. I would definitely go back and see him again for my next tattoo, even if it is about a 45 minute drive from my house. The outline hurt like a mother, but once he started in on the shading I felt like I was sitting in a vibrating message chair. I do wish that he would have went over the name and dates, but tattoo artists don’t like touching other people’s work unless they are covering it up. Normally people don’t compare getting a tattoo to a comfortable experience, but maybe I was just meant to have tattoos and they weren’t.
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?
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.