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Loui

Posted on January 23 2019

I'm a self taught hand poke artist from the north of U.K. I've only been doing this a short time, around 2 months, and I don't tattoo for profit. I also don't do flash, I just talk about an idea and draw it up for them.

At university I studied Fine art and Animation and have always been a fan of drawing/making things. 

Currently tattooing is just a hobby for me. My main employment is in landscaping & renovating whilst running a coffee shop with my partner. 

Was Hand Poke tattooing something you went to after machine tattooing, or has the hand poke style always been your preferred method? 

From an early age i've been interested in stick and poke. My grandad was the first person who I knew to be covered in traditional method tattoos (bamboo, handpushed). He got his whilst serving in the Malaysia War. 

I tried to get on an apprenticeship when I was younger but never got anywhere with it. Most would say no I was too young or that I need to have most of my body covered before they would even thinking about it. As this didn't suit me I decided I'd give that route a miss. 

So instead I went to university as decided to do Fine art and animation. 

I decided to give stick and poke after realising a lot of people around me liked this style. I noticed people using drawing pin and Indian ink. Which I know wasn't a very safe or effective method to do permanent tattoos. So i decided to get myself some sterilised needles and tattoo ink. 

What was it like the first time you put needle and ink to skin? 

The first time I gave hand poke style tattooing a bash was about 6 months ago I did a Grave stone which read (rip love) It felt natural for me whilst I was doing it, it gave me a bit of a buzz. After that I didn't touch it for a while as it was a one off. 

Until about 2 months ago I decided to buy some needles and some ink. As I'd been asked to do another on said friend. 

Have you always been a tattoo artist? 

I've only been doing them for about 2 months now. By trade I do landscaping, renovations and freelance design work. Also my partner and I run a coffee shop.

Do you have any memorable/ funny stories you can tell?

Apart from half the time people cuddling my dogs I'm down and concentrating on the task In front of me. 

So Single Needle Tattoo Kits, I believe that home tattooing is inherently risky, but people have, and will continue to tattoo themselves, therefore making a safe and affordable kit is the way forward... What's your take on this? 

People will always tattoo themselves. And tattooist will always frown upon it. I'm a real big fan of a safe home tattoo kit. Wish I'd of known about this when I was ordering my first bits and bobs. At least people are being safe. 

I'd just say make sure you're clean and confident in what your doing and don't take risks because end of the day it's someone's body.

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