One of the questions I am most frequently asked is “When did you start drawing?” I have been drawing since I was old enough to hold a pencil. I was fascinated as a child by blueprints and technical drawings and I always loved drawing very detailed technical things; buildings, cars, helicopters, etc. That coupled with an interested in science and the natural world made me want to draw every animal I could, trying to replicate their environments and bring them to life. The challenge of getting each drawing as “real” as I could make it was much more interesting to me then the abstract, impressionistic or surrealistic paintings that I saw in museums.
I was fortunate enough to grow up in a nice town with a good school system that offered varied art classes. I was exposed from everything from painting to photography and sculpture, but always kept coming back to pencil and ink. I fortunately have had artistic encouragement from my family and friends for my whole life. I discovered tattoos in middle school through magazines and was immediately intrigued. I quickly saw how tattooing is a very delicate balance between the artistic/creative side and the technical precise application of each piece. I also loved how every tattoo looked different on each person and how each one often means something very different to both the wearer and the people looking at it. I started buying tattoo magazines and copied every page over and over again becoming more enthralled with each page I turned. I moved to Vacaville, California when I was sixteen and started hanging around the tattoo shop in town. I attended a few art classes and I started my tattoo apprenticeship in the spring of 1996 when I was twenty one. The training and education in tattooing continues every day of my life. Each tattoo offers new challenges and you I learn something from each and every one that I do. I do not believe that anyone can ever truly perfect any medium or can “know it all”. I am fortunate enough to work with some extremely talented professionals and continually learn new practices, methods and procedures from my colleagues.
The history behind tattooing is just as interesting to me as the actual artwork. Human beings have been marking their bodies since we stood up and the fur came off. I think that each style offers another level of tradition and creativity to the art. For as much as I try not to limit myself, I prefer black and gray and photo-realistic tattooing and I enjoy doing custom work the best. What this means that I prefer to create custom tattoo designs, through client consultation, to create a tattoo that is one of a kind.
Some of my favorite times in the studio are the hours spent with clients where I can customize their tattoo as well as their overall tattoo experience. I believe that each tattoo should demand equal attention, planning and care from both the artist and the client.
I am always working to improve and learn new techniques; fortunately this is a career where you can learn and have a great time in the process. I’d like to say what the future will bring but we all know how that works. For now, thank you in advance, for checking out my work.