Wednesday, January 06, 2010

On Traditional Tattooing.

"Traditional tattooing doesn't mean staying stuck in the past, it means nurturing something that came way before you because you deeply hope it will continue after you. It's about being in the middle, not being at the end."
D. Higgs

I've been noticing a trend in traditional american tattooing. Which is probably not really a trend at all but I've since developed a "tattooists eye" and understand things a bit better now. The trend I'm speaking of is trying to pass old tattoos off as brand new custom designs. It's one thing to reference an old tattoo or old flash but when someone asks for something custom and you just tattoo an old Jensen design on someone and try to pass it off as your own is when things get dicey for me.

Everybody should look at something when they're drawing a tattoo but if everyone keeps rehashing the same stuff over and over where's the growth going to come from for the art? Color portraits? I hope not.

That's not to say I don't love doing old designs or painting old flash designs. I've got a few Sailor Jerry designs on me, amongst a few others; and tattooing that stuff is some of the funnest stuff I've ever tattooed. My point is that all that old stuff is sort of a foundation to a house that everyone who's doing traditional style tattoing is building with their own individual style. We can't have the whole house looking like the basement does, can we?

Just some thoughts.

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