Strolling Amok

Pops goes on tour.

Open For Business!

This started out as an empty cavern, and is now quite a step up from most tattoo shops.

This started out as an empty cavern a few weeks ago, and is now quite a step up from most tattoo shops.

Being a justifiably proud papa, I have to brag a bit. My son Tom is artistically gifted. Muchly so. After his long foray into construction, he listened to my lament that artistic skill is a very tough way to make a living, and that if he could wangle a way to leverage it, that would be 1] a miracle and 2] a great way to earn income doing something he likes. Once he discovered that there is decent money to be had in body art, he apprenticed at two shops while his lovely bride left her career at a cellular company to learn the business of piercing, and to keep the later shop’s books.  Thus armed, he mustered considerably more courage than I’ve got and just opened his own shop in cahoots with two experienced and extremely talented artists, Nate Bjork and Billy Raike. It’s called Electric Tattoo, and Tom, who humorously refers to himself as a “Epidermal Pigmentation Modification Specialist” built out the leased space himself, on a tight deadline. Nothing like a little pressure, but monthly rents on commercial spaces these days in his area are staggering. They have a Facebook page instead of a website. Now tattoos may not be your thing, and horror subjects seem to be all the rage these days, but you will still be impressed with how distant these guys are from little Navy anchors and hearts. Many examples are amazing. Caution: If you are already wearing at least one tattoo, you may not want to start clicking on links over on Facebook. You’ll start wishing your skin had been better utilized than it now is.

This is the master reference for customer approval, before it was executed on skin. Tom did this from a photograph. Think it must be easy to reinterpret on paper? Try it.

This is the master reference for customer approval, before it was executed on skin. Tom did this from a photograph. Think it must be easy to reinterpret on paper? Try it.

Well, I don't know about you, but I'm impressed! Nate Bjork did this one as the first tattoo in the newly-opened shop.

Well, I don’t know about you, but I’m impressed! Nate Bjork did this one as the first tattoo in the newly-opened shop.

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16 thoughts on “Open For Business!

  1. VERY impressive. I am not a tattoo fan, but yes, the artistry is immensely appealing and these guys are extremely talented. Your son’s shop should be a huge success!!!

  2. Beautiful shop! Good luck to your son and partners in the new venture.

  3. Proud papa for a reason! What a talented young man! 🙂

    • All the more, since what he has produced along the way has always been out of all proportion to his minimal art training. It’s always been a matter of learning the mechanics of the tools more than having any trouble envisioning an end result.

      • Truly talented. 🙂 You will have to post some more of his art after they get rolling. Starting any business is tough but I think they will do very well. I am so glad he is able to have his work be a joy in his life. 🙂

  4. Linda Sand on said:

    I’m not into tats on myself, either, but the skill required to do this type of artwork amazes me. I’m already convinced your son’s business will boom. Good for him and his wife and the rest of the crew!

    • Thanks, Linda. I think that between his various abilities, my daughter-in-law’s skills and work background, and the Tatmasters starting with them, it will be very surprising if the shop does not survive that precarious starvation/startup period. It is actually very difficult work when the talent level is high – you need to be able to cough up one original piece after another on very, very tight deadlines, and move on to the next! Spend too many hours on any one piece, and suddenly you’re working for minimum wage. A good, cohesive crew makes a difference when you’re outside the “pick one from this catalog” type shop.

  5. Wonderful! I have several tattoos and really appreciate great artists.

  6. Dennis on said:

    Nice shop…..he has a whole lot of talent like his dad! Good luck to him!

    • Well Dennis, his grandmother’s artistic genes sorta skipped lightly through me to land squarely on him, but thanks! Same story with his grandfather’s analytical business sense, but he did get my tenacious nature, courtesy of his grandmother again. Some call it “mule-headed” or “stubborn”, but I prefer “tenacious”. It may serve him well in this venture.

  7. I don’t have any tattoos, but have always thought it would be cool to have one somewhere that wouldn’t show when dressed. Who knows, maybe someday. Both of my kids have their own businesses and are doing really well and it makes me very proud of them. Lots of hard work and the willingness to take a risk. Your son’s artistic ability should put him over the wall into a really satisfying career. How I’d love to be artistic! Good luck to them!

    • Yep, BJ, the Secret Tat! Popular. It’s not unusual to be artistic in some way, but to make it pay more than chickenfeed is a rarity. Gotta have the business sense to accompany the skill, or you’re in the hole pretty quick. Thank you for the well wishes.

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