club tattoo at the linq and the long road home.

Club tattoo, Linq, Las Vegas:

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On the long road:

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laughlin tattoo convention!

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Fair warning: this is a very image-heavy post and may take a moment to load. Click through for all the pictures~!

Laughlin convention:

(more…)

this past week’s painting, process shots, and sadness

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I’ve been painting every day since I last posted. Here is my current favorite brush and some rags, in front of the cloud section of a painting I’m working on. No matter where you are, there’s always a storm on the way.

The day after xmas my elderly lady dog died. She had been sick, off and on, with laryngeal paralysis all year. She was 16. She died in her sleep after a long day of rough times breathing- We’d had the vet coming in the morning, but she was gone when we woke up. She was one of the best, sweetest dogs I’ve ever known, and I miss her. I’ve gotten a lot of condolences, so thank you guys, it did really help.

I went back to painting the day after that. These are the things I’ve been working on all week. (For solstice, I got an espresso maker, stretcher bars, and some brushes…it was a lovely holiday despite the sad time right after.) I also got a popcorn maker. I have been living on lattes and popcorn now for a week, by the way. It’s just fine.

 

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Here are the initial stage of the piece I’m currently working on. I’ll probably finish this one today. It’s an area near Ona Beach in Oregon, where a creek washes out to the surf, causing a little rift and depression in the sand. I made sketches of this just after sundown. The sky was far too crazy red for my taste in the beginning, but I think it’s better now. I kept messing with the clouds, scraping them off and trying again. I think  that it’s all right now.

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The next thing I want to show you is a painting that was really hard for me to finish. I liked the rocks, the low point of view, with the ocean at my back. Just damp puddles in the sand that had been churned up by people walking around. This was near Heceta Head. There were SO many people there that day, all my sketches say “too many people” in the margins. I also took a photo that day, for reference, because there were birds. Flocks of odd birds and the way they were flying around the people was what I really wanted to paint.  So here you see the beginning sketch in paint, then the landscape alone. Then…
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Then I used my reference to scrape out areas for the birds. As soon as I started painting them I was unhappy. They were difficult. I didn’t like birds any more. But I’d already committed, mentally, to having them there. I cursed the birds, I fought the birds, I finished the birds and they look all right, for little salty bastards that just happened to fly into the painting. You can see the finished image here, or buy prints. The original for this is spoken for.

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When the birds were done I did this small, quick study of a logging road on Rte 34 near Alsea. I had sketched this site from every angle many times, and it’s one of my favorite subjects. Always finding new little things to emphasize or change about it. The mood there was always damp, diffuse, misty. I started then finished this one in a great mood.

The original is for sale, as well as prints which you can find at this link.
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Then, going through my sketch pad, I realized that on my last visit to Phoenix I had done some sketching at roadside. I love roads, highways or side roads, I really enjoy drawing them and painting them. This was in Northern AZ. I stopped to mess with my GPS, pulled off onto a frontage road, and realized that the sky ahead was very ominous. VERY ominous. If you have seen this blog entry you know what happened about an hour after I made the sketches for this painting. I think I decided to stay a bit and draw just to avoid driving into this maelstrom.

I did still of course have to drive through it. I liked the way the road ended in a little hummock though, in this sketch- the road of course continued over that hill on along the way but it looked like the end of the road, like that would just be the end of the trip. I did another recent painting from another sketch I made that day, facing south. That one is here. This one was drawn facing north along the frontage, away from the storm. The light was very weird. It was near sundown but not quite.
On the left you can see it’s mostly turpentine and a little scrubbing with an old brush to start with. Then I went at it with very thick paint to finish. This one has been scanned now, and the varnish is drying. The original is for sale and prints are at this link.
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RIP Hildie, you were a good girl.

some works from the archives.

These are the more popular things I’ve made available as prints over the last few years. They’re not all my own personal favorite pieces, but they’ve gotten the most attention and love from you guys. I think collecting them together here might give me some clues about what you all like so much, maybe.

Also I won’t be posting for a few days as we’ll be celebrating solstice here, but I’ll be back right after, on the 23rd. xox

“Down with the Ship”
This was a piece of tattoo flash I did as part of a series, and people really seem to like the sideways lighthouse in it. I did it at 11×14″ in watercolor, and did the linework with a nib pen and ink. The original sold and the prints have sold a lot too, I don’t often draw ships but I think I did a decent job on this one. You can still get some sizes of prints of this, here.

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“Einstein”

I did a little contest on my facebook asking people to tell me the funniest story about someone falling down. My friend Tiny told a great story, and was the winner. The prize was a portrait of anyone famous they liked, they’d get to keep the original art. He chose Einstein, and man was he fun to draw. Lots of people seem to like this one. I tried to give him nice gentle eyes. Yes, there are still prints of him. I did this one at 8×12″ in colored pencil.

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“Red Highway”

The original of this, I gave to a collector of my work. It was a 10×13″ watercolor. Of all the landscapes I’ve done, people seem to be most interested in this one. Maybe it’s all that hot dawn cloud color. I’m not sure.

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“Dahlia with Dice”

Of all my still life work, this one gets the most attention. Maybe it’s the format, that high vertical? It was originally a 12×16″ watercolor painting. The prints of this one are popular and I’ve made a few handmade runs of it, as well as the open edition prints.

EPSON MFP image

 

“River Otter”

A lot of you guys love the animal totem series, and this guy is the crowd favorite. He’s a little more simple than some of the others, so I think a lot of people just really, really like otters. Colored pencil on handmade tinted paper, 8×12″.

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“Weeping Doll”

I’ve done handpainted prints of her. The original sold as soon as it was finished. I’ve redone the entire image twice and both reproductions by hand sold immediately. And the open edition prints…people really like this beat-up old doll. She’s pretty melacholy. It’s originally a 10×13″ watercolor on hotpress.

EPSON MFP image

 

Then, there’s “Shy Owl”. The most popular of them all. Due to the buyer of the original schmoozing me out of open edition printing, (I was an idiot and won’t be doing that so cheaply ever, EVER again) there are only cards available of this guy. Every print I did make of it, that limited amount, sold instantly. People email me asking for a print all the time. I’d be at least a few hundred dollars richer if I’d never said I’d only make a few prints of him.
An expensive lesson.

I'll never give up my reproduction rights so cheaply ever ever again.

I’ll never give up my reproduction rights so cheaply ever ever again.

 

The Horrors, two pages!

The new coloring book, The Horrors, is out!  The book is an adult coloring book containing ghosts, cryptids, mlnsters and urban legends from around the world, complete with stories and descriptions. You can find it here (it’s the scary werewolf!) click the images for a size you can print out and color.

 

 

 

 

 

EPSON MFP image

 

 

 

Jackalope
The jackalope is an antlered, sometimes winged, jackrabbit. It’s found in the southwestern United States.
They’re as fast as an antelope, and as camouflaged as a jackrabbit. You can get hunting tags for them in Wyoming, every year. When hunting a jackalope, wearing good, high leather boots is a must, as they can be dangerous and may try to gore your legs or savage you with their horns.
The jackalope can imitate human voices and may lure hunters away from their fires at night by calling for help. They also find the scent of whiskey irresistible, so traps baited with glasses of whiskey are a good way to capture the elusive beasts.

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Jersey Devil
I personally encountered the Jersey Devil. I was taking a long solo hike and was passing through the Pine Barrens in NJ- a grey, odd landscape, at dusk. I was coming around the bend of a trail when a…a thing ran past me, across the trail. It was the size of a small horse, on its hind legs, with antlers. It had a horse’s head, emaciated, and a deer’s body- but behind it flapped immense leathery wings.
I turned and ran about a mile back on the trail, at full speed. I didn’t try to hike past that point until full daylight, with others, the following day. There were clear deer tracks in the dirt, only two feet…

The Jersey Devil is said to be: a cryptid, some kind of giant bat-deer, and alternately, the evil deformed child of a satanic witch. Nobody knows its actual origins, but stories in the area are common. It’s one of the few creatures in this book I have seen with my own eyes.

 

I’m going to include the sheilanagig as well, without story. enjoy coloring these, and grab a copy of the book!!! xoxEPSON MFP image

 

 

 

all-saints’

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I’m not religious by any stetch and no amount of ceramic dominicans can change that.

all-saints’ day. i’m not religious but i was mainly raised catholic, my middle name is a saint’s name. patron saint of migraine sufferers and writers. she liked to read. she was a rebel at home so they sent her to the convent, which was a lot less strict than her family had been.

she of course was religious but not nearly enough. she had malaria and seizures and visions, and decided to promote reform in the church. “The only right prayers are those that create actíon. Prayer without action does go unheard.”

this was a bit of a mistake. the catholic church persecuted her and disliked that a woman was ‘teaching’. she lived a good long time though.

http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=208

I’m pretty sure that my middle name was intended to be the name of the “little flower”, st. therese. however it’s spelled as the english version of st. teresa of avila, which means they done screwed up and gave me a hotshooter as a namesaint rather than a quiet little girl, and I’m ok with that.

tomorrow is all-souls’, or dios de los muertos if you’re latinx/excatholic. a much more meaningful day for me. but I figured I’d share this tidbit about saints and middle names. what’s your middle name? who’s watching out for you?

geometric tattooing, discussion question and thoughts.

let’s discuss.

Geometric tattoos and “mandalas”, while they’re in resurgence in every part of the globe right now among modern tattooers, are a very old way of marking the body.
Given new technologies, they’re different than traditional geometric work, but do they follow that same tradition? Is this really a trend within tattooing, or has it been there since the beginning? Do you think we will see more of this in the years to come, or will it peter out (like westernized tribal work has petered out a bit)?

These geometric designs aren’t limited to one region, race, or culture- from the far north of europe and the arctic circle all the way around the globe, equatorial and islands, jungles and deserts- straight down to the southern tips of Africa and the Americas, these sort of designs are found everywhere. Most modern interpretations draw on multiple sources, new and old, and don’t snag directly from any one tradition, don’t appropriate meaning the way some westernized tribal art did. (Although there are exceptions as always). Almost every person can look back to their own heritage and find base images to begin working from- or they can use modern maths to create something entirely new, that fits within this style.

I’ve been planning a few art brut tattoos lately, using this sort of layout for the body forms, and have done my share of geometry and radial symmetry tattoos as well. I’m wondering what everyone thinks of this little surge in demand for these.

Also here are some amazing images culled from various sources, of tattooing in this style. Feel free to add your own images or thoughts in the comments.

 

 

Miahwaska Tattoo Artist - Oakland, CA

Miahwaska Tattoo Artist – Oakland, CA

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Mianmar woman

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ancient Pict

 

Traditional Croatian Catholic Tattoo

Traditional Croatian Catholic Tattoo

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Roxx at 2Spirit Tattoo in San Francisco

Roxx at 2Spirit Tattoo in San Francisco

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Kalinga tribal tattoo artist Whang-Od. Photo via Lars Krutak.

Kalinga tribal tattoo artist Whang-Od. Photo via Lars Krutak.

 

by Nate Euvrard @ Secret Society

by Nate Euvrard @ Secret Society

meeting niharika and luisa

On this visit I got to meet two incredible, creative women. One was Niharika, who does costume/dress for movies in India. She is so sweet, funny, and stylish. And she made me feel stylish too.

I worked overtime one night and stayed late, and when I came home she gave me the most perfect soft sweater ever…
Also she took some pictures of me which are kind of funny. We had cactus tacos together, and she got a really fun floral tattoo (with wasps in it! I’ve been dying to do some wasps.)

Here are picture she took and pictures I took.

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Then I also got to meet Luisa, a glass worker from Mexico City. She’s Colombian, beautiful, and hilarious. We watched some episodes of the Strain together and talked about art, and she shared her coffee with me.
Here we are looking fantastic.
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And here she is with some of her work, which was marvelous. I got a pair of green glass ear weights from her.
In this picture is her work in mirrored glass.
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While all this was happening, the shop here got a new owner. She’s a really wonderful woman and incredible tattooer that I worked with ages ago- and I’m really glad to be working for her/with her again. Here’s a picture of all the women I work with right now, it’s so great to have a good mix of man and woman at work. I love working with other women.
There are men at the shop as well and they’re awesome too, but I had this photo of all of us ladies together so I figured I would post it.
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Last but not least, I got my hair trimmed and fixed by Jordie, my favorite hair worker, I think she did an amazing job. I feel stylish. Between her, Jason, and Niharika I was a fashion queen this week.
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I say Jason as well, because I got the most amazing glass ring that matches my eyes. He made it from matte glass and layers. You can see it in the photos up top that Niharika took of me, it looks like sunny side up eggs (just like my eyes)

tattoos from seattle in september! (and other things)

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seriously I take a lot of notes. there's also reference images you brought me, loose doodles that get abandoned because they won't fit right, and all the other people's packets of this stuff piled nearby so I can do each drawing in order.

art opening at True Love Gallery, Seattle in september!

Art opening images: what a great show! My friend Aaron and I had work hanging, there was a great DJ, and snacks. Thanks to George Long for putting on the show and being such a great organizer. True Love has a great space for art, too.

The work will be hanging until October 4th, so stop by there and take a look if you missed the opening. Some things have sold but some are still up and waiting for you… xox

 

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