Tattoo and Fine Artist
I’ve been drawing since I was a little kid. Early on, I became obsessed with heroes and monsters, immersing myself in fantasy worlds of magic and lore. Batman, Lord of the Rings and Beast Wars were some of my favourites. As the domestic instability of my formative years became more real to me, my artistic passions and musical interests became increasingly macabre and throughout I never lost that sense of epic adventure. In retrospect, I think I was finding outlets for emotional and mental pain that I couldn’t seem to articulate, as well as some sense of passion and accomplishment in what was accessible to me at the time. For me, art has always been an outlet for expression through a different, perhaps more universal, language of images when writing and speaking often failed me. Only later would I devote study and practice to writing, poetry and public speaking in an attempt to rectify what I perceived as an inability to communicate effectively.
I worked in a graphic design/signage shop in the small town I grew up in but had bigger dreams of escaping my limitied world and seeing what the wider world had to offer. I attended Sheridan College for Art Fundamentals and subsequently completed my Bachelors Degree in Animation and Design. Disillusioned by the lack of satisfaction in my career prospects, I continued the search for an environment that felt right for me in illustration and teaching art. I reconnected with an old friend who had had a passing fling with a career in tattooing who urged me to pursue the craft for his sake and opened me up to a whole new world of art based tattooing. I went from having a small town understanding of the tattoo industry as selling “tough boy stickers” and a place to sell dope and associate with unscrupulous characters (for which I don’t judge, just for the record) to a deep appreciation for an art form that is challenging and demanding in every way if the practitioner is dedicated to improvement. I quickly became obsessed with tattoo as an outlet for multi-disciplinary pursuits involving the intersection between the self-expressive quality of art, the skilled trade of applying the mechanics and biology of ink in skin and balancing the social dimensions of client relations. Without such a comprehensive pastime where I could pursue mastery and self expression in my own way, I likely would have lost my mind a long time ago.
Now, I live a more sophisticated version of my teenage dream where I get to make a living drawing grotesque imaginings for interesting people in a challenging and one-of-a-kind medium while musing about the philosophy of art. I hope to contribute something unique to the art and craft of tattoo that shows my deep love and appreciation with the mastery of art as a philosophical and spiritual pursuit. In this way, I see my ‘style’ as a kind of dark Renaissance —a reenvisioning or revivification of enlightenment traditions with a modern sensibility, epic in scope. In my spare time, you can find me ruthlessly critiquing movies and t.v. shows, spending time in nature where I enjoy hiking, camping, diving and snowboarding, searching for each city’s best sushi and pancakes, respectively, trying to stay fit and anti-fragile and blissing out to the tingles of A.S.M.R. As of the time of writing this, I am most interested in large scale fully illustrated work involving organic horror and grotesque subject matter. The best tips I’ve received include sugar-free treats, books, and the mighty Bitcoin.
If you’ve made it this far, thank you for coming to my Ted Talk.
See you around,