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Lloyd John

Lloyd John

Tattoo Artist: Lloyd John

Tattoo Shop: Mr Hats Tattoo

Give us some insight into how you became a full time tattoo artist?

I had admired the tattoo world and everything that went with it from when I started getting tattooed in 2007, and so I left a seven year career in advertising working as a graphic designer/ art director to scratch a persisting itch. I headed in person to my nearest and most preferred tattoo studio, Rising Dragon, where I met the owner and founder and sold him my story. He took me on, taught me, and the rest is history.

How do you like to make sure you keep progressing as an artist?

Adapt, try new styles, invent, re-invent, learn and take inspiration from the global scene, be patient and try not to follow trends.

What style of tattoo would you say you specialise in, and why?

I’ve found myself mostly enjoying blackwork, the use of only using black ink. Varied line weights, spit shading, strong contrast and dotwork. When used carefully you can imitate light tones, textures and make a tattoo that is bold and unique and will still look good in 20 years time.

Social Handles:

Tattoo Artist – @mrhats_tattoo

Tattoo Shop Facebook – Mr Hats Tattoo

Tattoo Shop Instagram – @mrhats_tattoo

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Megan Fourie

Megan Fourie

Tattoo Artist: Megan Fourie

Tattoo Shop: Ting’s Tattoo Studio

Give us some insight into how you became a full time tattoo artist?

I went to get a tattoo done by Ting, of something I had designed, and she asked me if I had ever thought about doing an apprenticeship. That thought stuck with me for a while so I decided to give it a shot. I wanted to apprentice at Ting’s but they already had an apprentice at the time, so I did my apprenticeship at a different studio. I always wanted to work at Ting’s, fortunately I got the opportunity to and I couldn’t be happier here.

How do you like to make sure you keep progressing as an artist?

I think a good way to stay fresh as an artist is to take criticism on the chin and use that to grow your style. It’s important to be willing to learn. There are so many amazing artists out there that it’s really tough not to find inspiration to grow.

What style of tattoo would you say you specialise in, and why?

I enjoy fine line and soft shaded tattoos. I enjoy many styles but flowers and foliage related tattoos are my favourite. I think they’re timeless and look beautiful.

Social Handles:

Tattoo Artist – @megan.magnolia

Ting’s Tattoo Studio Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/TingsTattoos

Ting’s Tattoo Studio Instagram – @tingstattoo_studio

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Sheldon Shaw

Sheldon Shaw

Tattoo Artist: Sheldon Shaw

Tattoo Shop: Fine Line Tattoo and Piercing Studio

Give us some insight into how you became a full time tattoo artist?

After school I would hang out at Little Shop of Horrors Tattoo and Piercing Studio, make coffee for the staff and clients, and slowly started learning the basics. I became an apprentice and the rest is history. I studied Fine Art at Wits while doing my apprenticeship, which was about four years before I picked up a tattoo machine.

What advice would you give someone wanting to get their first tattoo?

Take your time, really think about it. Do your research on the studio/s and the artist/s. Make sure you feel welcomed and comfortable with the artist and ask to see their portfolio, do not be shy about that. And, just have a blast, have a laugh, and have the best experience while getting a great tattoo.

What style of tattoo would you say you specialise in, and why?

I can’t choose one. I love so many different styles but my favourite styles are black and grey realism, trash polka, watercolour, and geometry/mandala.

Social Handles:

Tattoo Artist – @sheldonshaw14

Fine Line Tattoo and Piercing https://www.facebook.com/finelinetattooandpiercing

Tattoo Shop Instagram – @finelinetattooandpiercing

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Bryan Du Rand

Bryan Du Rand

Tattoo Artist: Bryan Du Rand

Tattoo Shop: Fallen Heroes

Give us some insight into how you became a full time tattoo artist?

I started it as a hobby teaching myself using the internet as my guide and then people just started paying me for it. I definitely don’t recommend this method if you’re considering tattooing as a career. Get an apprenticeship it’s much easier and faster.

How do you like to make sure you keep progressing as an artist?

You have to care. When you stop caring, that’s when you stop progressing. I also make sure to take regular breaks from tattooing.

What style of tattoo would you say you specialise in, and why?

I’m fascinated with Japanese culture and Japanese tattoos. I also enjoy realism. It keeps me balanced, well rounded and challenged.

Social Handles:

Tattoo Artist – @tattoosbybryan

Fallen Heroes  https://www.facebook.com/Fallenheroestattoo

Tattoo Shop Instagram – @fallenheros

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Roxy Rose

Tattoo Artist: Roxy Rose

Tattoo Shop: fallen Heroes

Give us some insight into how you became a full time tattoo artist?

I  was working as an illustrator at a Johannesburg agency, I decided the agency life wasn’t for me and I sought out an apprenticeship with Brent Goudie, who was tattooing me at the time. I apprenticed under Brent for about a year and then continued to work with him as a junior tattooer. He was an amazing mentor and definitely gave me a solid foundation to become the artist I am today.

What were some of the hardest things to learn when you first started out?

Patience was a big one. I had to really learn to take my time to learn another new skill. I was also very introverted at the time and had to learn to be more of a people person as having a good relationship with your clients is a very important part of being a good tattooer.

Which style of tattoo to you enjoy creating?

Anything illustrative or sketchy. I love drawing and tattooing subject matter involving flowers, girls and animals, cats especially. I prefer doing mostly black work but colour every now and then is also a fun time.

Social Handles:

Tattoo Artist – @_roxy_rose

Fallen Heroes  https://www.facebook.com/Fallenheroestattoo

Tattoo Shop Instagram – @fallenheros

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Ted Flintstxne

Ted Flintstxne

Tattoo Artist: Ted Flintstxne

Tattoo Shop: Descriptive Art Collective

Give us some insight into how you became a full time tattoo artist?

I started rather unconventionally for my time, but more commonly found in today, coming up as a self-taught artist. My first shop I worked at was Sleight of Hand with Leigh Soulink, later moving onto More Than Hype with Baked, and finally opening up shop with the best black and grey artist in Cape Town, Ricardo da Silva.

What are some of the pieces you are most proud of creating?

I’m so proud of so many of the tattoos I do so choosing one is a bit tough. There was one in particular that I couldn’t believe I managed to pull off. It was a double exposure portrait and it had some city lights in the background. I felt that to be a very technically good tattoo.

Which style of tattoo to you enjoy creating?

Lettering tattoos are by far my favourite. I simply love the art of calligraphy and penmanship, and tattooing allows me to borrow some of its techniques.

Social Handles:

Tattoo Artist – @tedflintstxne

Tattoo Shop Facebook – Descriptive Art Collective

Tattoo Shop Instagram – @descriptive_art_collective

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Ricardo Da Silva Cunha

Ricardo Da Silva Cunha

Tattoo Artist: Ricardo Da Silva Cunha 

Tattoo Shop: Descriptive Art Collective

Give us some insight into how you became a full time tattoo artist?

I decided to approach the tattoo industry the unconventional way of teaching myself, even though I was aware that this was not the right way of doing things. So, while completing my studies I tattooed part time from my own little studio at home. It was only in my seventh year that I joined Sleight Of Hand Tattoos and four months down the line decided to open up Descriptive Art Collective with Ted Flinstxne. It was quite the unconventional journey, but I’m happy to be where I am.

What drives you?
Always aiming to improve with each tattoo and to hopefully end up on an international platform.

Which style of tattoo to you enjoy creating?

Black and grey realism and portraiture. Reason being, I find it to be the hardest to execute and I get a feeling of satisfaction knowing that I can get close to duplicating the real deal.

Social Handles:

Tattoo Artist – @rick_ink.135

Tattoo Shop Facebook – Descriptive Art Collective

Tattoo Shop Instagram – @descriptive_art_collective

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Max Eru

Max Eru

Tattoo Artist: Max Eru

Tattoo Shop: Obsidian Black Tattoos

Give us some insight into how you became a full time tattoo artist?

I’ve always been drawing, studied Graphic Design at DUT, and when I was living in London I was given a tattoo “kit” by my good friend, Tom “T-dubs” Williams. I didn’t know how to use the machine at all so I started handpoking myself with the needles and a bit of ink to try it out. I moved back to Durban last year and now I’m working from Obsidian Black.

What first attracted you to the trade?
The art part of it. That I could put cool things into my skin. That an artist gets to express themselves and then permanently have walking, moving, developing canvases. I love art that evolves and changes over time.

Which style of tattoo to you enjoy creating?

At the moment I’m really into tattoos that use the shapes and form of the skin/ body as a guide, or at least consider the body as a 3-dimensional canvas. Otherwise I’m into characters, landscapes, comic panels, anything in the realm of manga and Japanese illustration.

Social Handles:

Tattoo Artist – @max_eru_tattoo

Tattoo Shop Facebook – Obsidian Black Tattoos

Tattoo Shop Instagram – @obsidianblack_tattoos

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Kat Richter

Kat Richter

Tattoo Artist: Kat Richter

Tattoo Shop: Obsidian Black Tattoos

Give us some insight into how you became a full time tattoo artist?

I started working in the industry back in 2013, when I was 16. I was still in school, so I dedicated every weekend to work – I’d go in, do designs, handle the clients, observe the other artists working there, and basically just did a lot of admin. The first year out of school was an exciting one, as I could then finally work full time and eventually start tattooing. I ended up opening my own, private Studio, in December 2017. I slowly started establishing my client base, got to practice more and improve my skills and so my journey started.

What first attracted you to the trade?
I was a little rebel, in an incredibly conservative school, so anything that went against their system immediately attracted me towards it – including tattoos. In all honesty, it wasn’t even my idea to become a tattoo artist. I was just that kid in school who was constantly drawing – including drawing on myself, so it was actually my classmates who brought up the idea by asking “why don’t you become a tattoo artist?”, which lead me to thinking about the trade, doing some research on it and falling in love with it.

Which style of tattoo to you enjoy creating?

It’s always black work. I love to do esoteric inspired pieces, illustrative pieces, encyclopaedia textbook illustration inspired pieces. Anything with detail and/ or plants is just up my alley.

Social Handles:

Tattoo Artist – @kat_r_art

Tattoo Shop Facebook – Obsidian Black Tattoos

Tattoo Shop Instagram – @obsidianblack_tattoos 

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Nic Lewis

Nic Lewis

Tattoo Artist: Nick Lewis

Tattoo Shop: Trade Mark Tattoo

Give us some insight into how you became a full time tattoo artist?

As a teenager, I got into graffiti, and spent a lot of time drawing and painting. I tried getting a normal 9 – 5, I was completely over it by the time I turned 30. I was getting tattooed at the time, and having spent a fair amount of time in shop, and missing having a creative outlet, my incredibly perceptive wife suggested I look into tattooing as a career. After a lot of praying for direction, and many rejected requests at an apprenticeship, those prayers where answered and Mully from Electric Eye took me on as his apprentice.

What do you feel is one of the most important lessons you’ve learnt over the years tattooing?

To not underestimate the power or significance that a simple tattoo has for its wearer. We sometimes take for granted that we have one of the best ways to pass time and make money in this lifetime, that we don’t consider that even though we have tattooed a thousand *insert design here*, Kelsey has only ever wanted that *insert design here* because she has a connection to it.

Which style of tattoo to you enjoy creating?

It’s constantly changing. I like the challenges that come along with the different styles. I love the mixed line weights and colour blends of Neo Traditional. I enjoy soft black and grey as well, and the boldness and solid colour of traditional is what I’m trying to get more into now.

Social Handles:

Tattoo Artist – @nic.fury

Tattoo Shop Facebook – Trade Mark Tattoo 

Tattoo Shop Instagram – @trade_mark_tattoo 

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