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tattoo artists

Who was C.H. Fellowes? An amateur sleuth finds the man behind the designs.

Fellowes tattoo sketchbookWITH A QUARTER of Americans sporting at least one tattoo, it’s become impossible to walk down the street in summertime without navigating a virtual museum of color on skin. But who are the artists? Unlike a painting or a piece of music, which are closely identified with their creators, tattoos are less likely to come with an authorial pedigree. Never mind being able to identify someone else’s piece—many people (including me) don’t know the names of all the artists who produced their own.

The obscurity of tattoo artists has been a theme for as long as tattoos have existed. For every well-known tattoo artist, such as the recently fashionable Ed Hardy, the 20th-century icon Sailor Jerry, or Samuel O’Reilly, the 19th-century inventor of the rotary tattoo machine, there are thousands of others whose stories have been lost to time.

For decades, one of the most intriguing of these unknowns has been a mysterious 19th-century tattoo artist by the name of C.H. Fellowes. This March, some dogged sleuthing by an amateur genealogist helped bring Fellowes’s full identity to light, opening a window into a rarely seen part of the culture, and giving Boston a new claim on American tattoo history.

Read the rest of this article here

Tattoo artist Dongkyu Lee created the most amazing portrait tattoo we’ve ever seen, replicating a photo of Kobe Bryant on someone’s leg. The finished tattoo might even look better than reality.

Kobe Bryant tattoo done by artist Dongkyu Lee

Amazing Kobe Bryant tattoo done by artist Dongkyu Lee

He’s also done stunning portraits of fighters Floyd Mayweather, Mike Tyson and Jon Jones. See more examples of Lee’s work here.

We hope you enjoy this “day in the life” video of Sky Chris, in his Broken Heart Tattoo shop in San Diego, California. How can you not appreciate Chris’ shop mantra of mending ‘broken hearts’ one tattoo at a time? That and his advice that if you want to be successful at anything in life, showing up is the first step. Amen, Brother Sky! Amen!

Broken Heart Tattoo from The Circus Cartel on Vimeo.

A great round up of the best tattoo artists from around the globe who are still finding new and interesting things to do with ink was  posted on Buzzfeed. Exciting to see that graphic mash ups, watercolor effects and geometric designs are all still on the rise. Read the full article

Here’s a direct look at the artists leading the new wave.

Chaim Machlev

Chaim Machlev

Ondrash tattoo


Xoil tattoo

Peter Aurisch aka Xoil


Peter Aurisch tattoo

Peter Aurisch

Amanda Wachob

Amanda Wachob

Nigel Palmer has been identified as the unwitting inspiration behind the futuristic tattoos in the new movie ‘Divergent‘. Apparently Nigel didn’t know that his distinctive, geometric black and grey portfolio had caught the eye of Divergent production designer, Andy Nicholson until the press came calling.

With tattoos now an important part of the costume design for many TV series and films the question is – why are the true and talented artists like Nigel Palmer just “inspiring” them? Should the film studios be hiring top tattoo artists to create custom designs? And would the artists actually want to?

As Nigel himself explains on his website he “doesn’t design tattoos” but something tells us that if Summit Entertainment came calling before they start shooting ‘Divergent II, III etc that might all change.

“No. I don’t design tattoos. The details and overall look of the work is a result of the tattooing process, with much of the ‘design’ work being done as the tattooing proceeds.”

If you’ve got time on your hands, here’s a long painful scene where the stars’ tattoo gets revealed. Although in our opinion, you’d be far better off checking out more of Nigel Palmers’ much more detailed and intricate work like the head piece below, over on his site at http://nigelpalmer.com

Nigel Palmer Futuristic Tattoo