Japanese Tiger & Cherry Blossom Tattoo
div class="listing_meta"> December 15, 2014 by Carl Hallowell in Irezumi

  Finished! Third photo in a series of three. Working that elbow, pounding in the color. Dipping and working, dipping and working. From one color to the next. Instead of swinging a pickaxe, guiding the machine, as it taps out design after design. Instead of shoveling snow at home, I’m shoveling in color inch by inch at my tattoo shop. There may be some conversation and a joke or two. But, there is always laughter around the elbow, because you have to laugh not to cry. Maintaining a relaxed visage, at all costs. Attempting to “stay in your body”, or to float away. Chewing the edges of your mustache while rounding the corner of a long line. The black lines that could wrap around the planet and cross every boundary into every corner of the earth. The black lines, connecting South Pacific tribesmen to a colony of artist types out in Liberal KS… The black lines  swirling into designs… 10 am, 6 pm, 3 in the morning… The designs stay the same…The pictures in your skin.

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Japanese Tiger
div class="listing_meta"> December 12, 2014 by Carl Hallowell in In-Progress

Background Complete At the inception of my website, I was excited to post in-progress tattoos. It really helps to illustrate the progress one must make towards attaining their goal. It also represents the amount of work a tattooer can get done in a session. It is also a badge of honor for those who sit long and hard hours to accomplish more tattooing. It looks so small in the photo, yet this is 7/10ths of a man’s inner arm, a large tattoo to see in person. Ed gets the work put on in a timely fashion. He sits and sits. Is it any wonder the Japanese tattoo is admired around the world? Like Daruma, the tattoo recipient also sits while contemplating. No one knows the thoughts of strength the warrior lets arise and pass through him, never stopping. In writing this, I did allow my mind to stop in one place, thus shutting down my stream of thought. Zen is the absence of judgment, the absence of a dwelling place. It is alive in the present and just waiting to be tapped into. Maybe it will allow us to paint a picture, or to sit for one more hour. Here […]

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Black and Gray Sleeve
div class="listing_meta"> December 5, 2014 by Carl Hallowell in In-Progress

  Detroit the Motor City Rob returns for his second black and gray tattoo sleeve from me, we talked last night about how it was funny that it all started off with one tattoo on the inside of his other forearm. That tattoo? A single needle “DETROIT” done in Old English that we did as a walk-in one night. This particular evening was Women’s Wednesday if memory serves me. I treated it like an Old English Tattoo, I gave it an authentic look; you can’t be walking around Detroit wearing some goofy looking bullshit. Plus, it was a phase I was going through, investigating the greatness of Barrio work and trying to imitate the feel, but not rip off the images. Anyway,  there is always the quest to study it all, and if motivation or inspiration fails you, there is always the customer there to push you to really expand upon your scope. Neither Rob or I knew at that time that we would soon be moving on from that one tattoo to a full sleeve. That just kinda says it all about tattooing. You may not have known you wanted it all that much until you got it. You […]

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