Posted on October 01 2019
I'm a self-taught hand poke Tattoo artist from Bern. I started tattooing 2 years ago, before that I organised concerts with 3 other friends for a venue in Lucerne. For a long time music was more present and more important than my writing and drawing was. However I always drew and it wasn't long till I released that I loved graphic and abstract small drawings the most.
When I moved to Bern, I quit the booking job and had much more time to draw, paint, build... I was 19 at this point and started to redefine my artistic work.
In Bern I met good people and one of them showed me how to do stick'n'pokes with needle and threat. It was then that I found my favorite medium.
Was Hand Poke tattooing something you went to after machine tattooing, or has the hand poke style always been your preferred method?
I got some machine made tattoos in my late teenage years and very recently I got a new one. I love machine-made tattoos, I just don't want to do it. So, yes, hand poking was my favorite method since I started. I do really love the way hand poked tattoos are slower, the process of getting the ink really sets in. It doesn't matter whether it's a one hour or five hour session. I can make more decisions when hand poking, and I can see that within the tattoo.
What was it like the first time you put needle and ink to skin?
I felt excited. I liked the feeling of doing something that will immediately create something permanent. It really didn't matter what it shows. a line a dot or a motive. I didn't care about this at all, rather what is felt was important. This thought still remains- no story is needed upfront for me, the meaning of a picture or the motive is secondary or not important at all. Which doesn't mean tattooing has no meaning!
Have you always been a tattoo artist?
No! It still feels weird to say that about myself. I just like drawing and tattooing very much. It's a ritual. It's deep, and it hurts a bit. But before I started tattooing I did different things, but I always sketched, wrote and drew.
I'm studying for a Bachelors in primary school teaching. Mainly to make my parents happy. I could never stop doing my work as an artist and tattooist.
Do you have any memorable/ funny stories you can tell?
When my atelier opened, I went to a squat next door because they had a small tattoo-convention there. I did a huge bird on a foot of a guy. on the balcony outside and it took me like 3 hours because the position was really weird. There were so many people walking around us talking and smoking. It turned out good, luckily, but it was then that I decided to only work in clean and nice environments.
Whats your take on stick & poke safety?
Over the time and still I am professionalizing my equipment and techniques. I always use sterile needles, one-way-razors, gloves, disinfectant.. I work in a nice and clean room and recommend to everyone to take some effort to keep it clean and safe.
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