One of the things I enjoy most about working at conventions is it gives me the opportunity to meet other tattooists. Good friendships are formed and that often leads to being invited to work guest spots at other tattoo studios. I recently returned to Bexhill-On-sea for my second guest spot there. Having worked there before not only meant that I felt instantly relaxed being back with my buddies Lee and Vic but it also meant I’ve been lucky enough to build a small client base there. Paul (who last time requested a Virgin Mary tattoo – see my post from October 2016) booked back in with me this time to start a traditional owl and rose chest piece. I knocked out a couple of other smaller tattoos on my two day guest spot at Lord’s Ink and had a good laugh tattooing Dennis The Menace in a skull go-kart on Lee’s Step Dad. The weekend was rounded off nicely with beer and a BBQ at a local roadside diner with Lee and Sophie. Already, Bexhill is beginning to feel like a home away from home and it’s a cool feeling knowing that going there is gonna be a regular thing.
A couple of weeks later I was off again. This time I was taking up the kind offer from Matt ‘Trud’ Trudgill to guest for two days at his shop, Skinned Alive Tattoo in Brighton. Brighton has long been one of my favourite places in the UK . Like London, it’s somewhat of a tourist trap but also like London, there’s so much to do there to make it worthwhile. Despite having played in many of the pubs and bars in Brighton with my band, there are many more I was looking forward to visiting. At this point, I should probably point out that the reason for a trip to Brighton WASN’T to embark on a quest to discover new pubs. Although I can’t argue that it wasn’t gonna be a bonus.
Skinned Alive has only been open just over a year and I was flattered to be asked to join them to do my thing. Other than Trud, I didn’t know the crew there very well so it was nice to meet shop manager Kiyarn and the other tattoo artists Dotwork Damian, Angie Gooderson and Mike Stout. All great people producing awesome art- check ’em out!
For the next couple of days I worked in the basement part of the studio alongside Trud. The Misfits and The Wildhearts became our working soundtrack and my time there flew by. On my first day I had so much fun tattooing a surfin’ burger monster on Siobhan. It really does mean a lot to me that people actually ask me ( and PAY me) to tattoo weird and crazy stuff on them. It takes a special and super cool person to have the guts to permanently wear some of my work and I do completely understand that my style isn’t for everyone. For this reason, I do feel I get to tattoo really fun and interesting people. And I’ve always got along with the weirdos better anyway. That night Trud and I drank in a few local pubs and also watched Pirato Ketchup, a surf punk pirate themed(?!) band from Belgium play a killer show.
On Day 2 I got to tattoo a Dracman ( that’s Dracula meets Batman,duh!) on Alex. I’ve been tattooing Alex for years and every time he suggests something cool that he knows I can sink my teeth into ( no Dracula joke intended). Being that Alex lives in Brighton it was nice for him not to have to travel up to London to get tattooed by me like usual. I followed that by tattooing Dan one of my bottlejob designs he’d chosen from my hand painted flash. Finally, that left me with a little time to tattoo a trademark slice of pizza on Skinned Alive’s own Angie.
Thanks again to all the crew at Skinned Alive and the clients/friends I tattooed there. I look forward to my inevitable return!