Results tagged “Bob Tyrrell”

07:40 PM
Paul Booth Giger tattoo.jpgH.R. Giger inspired tattoo by Paul Booth.

The tattoo world has lost one of its greatest artistic influences: surrealist H.R. Giger. As Rolling Stone reported, the 74-year-old art icon died Monday, following hospitalization for falling down the stairs in his Zurich home.

Many news outlets discuss his legacy as the designer of the Alien creature; however, for the tattoo community, he is much more. He inspired a whole genre of tattoos: biomechanical art -- art that conveys man and machine fused in surrealist dreamscapes to stunning effect.

The world's most renowned tattooers, such as Guy Aitchison and Paul Booth (whose work is shown above), cite Giger as one of their greatest artistic influences. There are, indeed, countless Giger-inspired tattoos worldwide, including an entire bodysuit project

Giger's impact on tattooing has been so profound that a number of collectors have dedicated their skin to portraits of the artist, as show below.

H.R. Giger will be missed, but on the bodies of his fans, his legacy lives on. 

For more on the artist, visit HRGIGER.COM [currently unavailable] and HRGIGERMUSEUM.COM.

Benjamin Laukis Giger tattoo.jpgTattoo above by Benjamin Laukis.

Dmitriy Samohin giger tattoo.JPGTattoo above by Dmitriy Samohin.

Bob Tyrrell Giger Tattoo.jpgTattoo above by Bob Tyrrell.
12:02 PM
Last week, we posted another Sullen contest for y'all to win a special edition hoodie designed by by black & grey guru Bob Tyrrell. All you needed to do was either Tweet at us or post anything in our Needles & Sins Syndicate Group on Facebook. Really, these contests are getting too easy. 

I put all the names into & the internet gods picked ... Jesse Nelson. Congrats, Jesse!

You can still grab the hoodie yourself for $60 on the Sullen store, which is a sweet deal.

More contests to come!
08:09 AM
For those who spent too much money over the holidays, we have something you can score for free -- and it is gooood. Sullen Clothing is giving away an incredibly badass hoodie designed by black & grey guru Bob Tyrrell to a lucky Needles & Sins winner. The sweatshirt normally sells for $60 on the Sullen store, so this is a sweet deal.

As usual, here's how to play: One winner will be selected randomly from those who comment -- any love note will do -- on this post in our Needles & Sins Syndicate Group on Facebook or hitting up @NeedlesandSins on Twitter. On January 3, 2012, we'll put all the names of the commenters into to pick the winner.

Also, if you haven't entered to win a free tattoo from Bob Tyrrell (exclamation points), you still have until December 31st. More details on the Sullen Facebook page.

Good luck!

09:38 AM
BobTyrrellTattooGiveaway_Body.pngOur friends at Sullen Clothing have yet another tattoo giveaway, and this time you can enter to win a free tattoo from ... Bob Tyrrell [exclamation points].

The winner of the contest will be flown to Detroit Rock City to be tattooed by Bob at the Motor City Tattoo Convention. The Motor City show is one of the stops on the Inked Up World Tour, which is a kickass partnership between Sullen and Rockstar Energy Drink.  The tour kicks off early 2013 and will have 12 of some the best artists in the world -- no really, the best -- hit up 12 international tattoo conventions. 

Check the video below with a South Park-ized Bob throwing out the details -- the best part of the video is that Jack Rudy is doing the voice of Bob. Gotta see it.

Also check out the new Bob Tyrrell tee for Sullen.
04:19 PM
keystone lodge.jpgjohn 13 roses.jpgView from the Keystone Lodge, and Johnny of 13 Roses Tattoo, Atlanta.

My trip to the Paradise Tattoo Gathering began even before my bags were packed. The party kicked off in beautiful Keystone, Colorado last Thursday, and I followed along in real time on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Most posted their images with #paradisetattoogathering so it was easy to follow. Check them here.

The photos highlighted the tattoos being created on the convention floor but also what was going on behind the doors of the many seminars -- like 3D works from Chet Zar's sculpture workshop, and portraits in progress from those lucky enough to get into Shawn Barber's sold-out painting class. And naturally there were VIP party pix. Horns-high group photos in various Instagram filters.

I flew out of NYC Friday afternoon. With enough frequent flyer miles, I scored a roomy business class seat. Once settled in for the flight, the grey-haired grandfather sitting next to me smiled and said, "I love your sleeves." Turns out his kids have sleeves of their own. We spent a good portion of our flight making fun of the freaks:  the tattoo-free suits getting drunk off the free booze soon after take-off. But I guess I was the freak to some. Heavy tattoo work is not as common outside of coach, and I found myself having to answer (again) the question: What band are you in? Because, ya know, hot towelettes are only for tattooed hands with record deals.

But within hours, I was amongst our people at the Keystone Lodge, with tattoo's rock stars like Bob Tyrrell, Nick Baxter, Durb Morrison, Nikko, Noon, Jeff Gogue, Damon Conklin ... the list goes on. Check the full artist line-up.

Jeremiah Barba tattoo.jpg Jeremiah Barba tattoo on Mr. Scary.

nick pangburn.jpgThroat tattoo by Tim Pangburn on the wonderful tattoo journalist Mary D'Aloisio.

The big buzz Friday afternoon was Adrian Lee's "Bloodwork: Bodies" exhibit. It is a stunning collection of backpieces and bodysuits created by 53 tattooers around the world and documented in meticulous detail. Adrian gave a talk about the work with a slideshow presentation and also signed copies of his must-have book.

The evening closed with a Drink and Draw party, compliments of Graceland Tattoo. Considering how Keystone's high elevation [9,280 feet] was messing with us, I gave props to those who could manage more than a couple of drinks. Lack of oxygen makes for lower bar tabs. I did find myself surrounded by three tattooists taking full advantage of altitude inebriation, and they suckered me in to judging a napkin art contest. There were a lot of animated penis drawings -- all artfully done of course.

james kern tattoo2.jpg

james kern tattoo.jpgAshley's neck and backpiece by James Kern. Fantastic cover-up work.

Saturday was another full day of tattooing and seminars. One seminar that I found particularly interesting was "The not so secret secrets of the tattoo world" by Kris Richter of Beyond the Ink. The seminar (free to all with admission passes) focused on how to choose the right work and artist, and while beneficial to even long-time collectors, it was really a great primer for those new to the art and especially those trying to navigate the whole convention scene. One of the most popular seminars that day was James Kern's Advanced Cover-Ups For Tattooists. Artists completely packed the room to learn from and get critiqued by the cover-up guru himself. My Copyright, Trademark, and Licensing Seminar with John Kastelic followed James's class, and while far from packed, I had a blast talking tattoo law with a fabulous group of artists. [I was also honored to be included on the tattoo business panel Sunday night.]

Sunday rounded out with the completion of some large-scale tattoo works going on that weekend -- with so many fantastic artists from around the world, attendees took full advantage of the opportunity. But whether local or international, all tattoo artists working there had a reputation for excellence. This curating of tattoo talent is a key component of Gabe Ripley's events. You can't get a bad tattoo at Paradise.

Another component is community -- that friendly, laid-back vibe throughout the show where you feel you are a part of something, kinda like the Island of Misfit Toys except on a mountain and the dolls all look like Tim Burton creations.

We all closed down the lounge of the Keystone Lodge that Sunday night/Monday morning. It was filled with hugs and hook-ups, booming laughs (including my own notorious cackle), and wholehearted promises to connect before the next show. It was a tattoo Shangri-la. Paradise, even.      

Gabe's next event is the tattooer-only Paradise Artist Retreat in New Mexico, March 25-28.

vince villalvazo.jpgTara's sleeve by Vince Villalvazo.

thigh tattoo by gene coffey.jpg
Thigh tattoo by Gene Coffey.

gene coffey.jpgGene Coffey himself.
11:12 AM
bob tyrrell tattoo.jpg
UPDATE:  And the winner of Bob Tyrrell designed tee is ... Keith Smith of Ontario, Canada who came to the closest to the actual tattooing time of just over 9 hours. Congrats Keith!

Recently, black-and-gray rock star Bob Tyrrell was at Sullen Clothing's HQ designing artwork for a new tee, which will be out in the Fall. While he was there, he took a break to answer some quick & dirty questions I sent over to see what he's been up to:  

What have been your favorite tattoos you've worked on recently?

Been doing a lot of skulls lately! Just did one with tentacles -- I just watched the new "Thing" movie, so I did one with weird arms and tentacles growing off of it. I did a Slash portrait recently that was fun, and a Ted Nugent portrait! Two of my guitar heroes.

Outside of tattooing, what projects are you working on?

Not much lately. I've been super lazy. I'm trying to get some prints going, haven't done them in a few years. I've been trying to play more guitar lately. I wanna get a metal band back together. I'm playing in a covers band now for fun, doing stuff by Sabbath, Skynyrd, ZZ Top, Metallica, Alice In Chains, Thin Lizzy...

Where can clients find you in the next few months, and what's the best way to get in touch with you to make an appointment?

They can go on my website,, for convention listings. I do guest spots out there in the LA area every once in a while, don't really advertise though, and guest spots at friends' shops all over the place. People can e-mail me on the site -- there's a form you can fill out for appointment requests -- and I finally have a business cell phone: 586-219-8661. You can call but texting is probably better. If I don't reply, hit me back as much as you want! I need an assistant really bad. I get nothing done if it involves business!

Will we be seeing you on a reality TV show any time soon? If you could have your own show, what would it be about?

I did a guest spot on LA Ink in Season 2, and one on London Ink in Season 2 also. That was a few years ago. It was fun, I got to be myself and there was no drama. Haha! Those shows were pretty good back then, before the producers brought more drama into the mix. Such is scripted reality TV. There's too many tattoo shows on TV now, and they're just getting worse. I definitely don't want my own show! It's getting out of control. Not just tattoo TV, but reality shows in general. Tom Renshaw here in Detroit had a pilot on Animal Planet called Detroit Ink, it was better than the other shows out there. Hopefully it becomes a series.

What are some of the tracks on your favorite playlist these days?

I got the new Van Halen album yesterday, it's killer! Can't stop listening to it. Been listening to The Little Willies lately, awesome country covers band! I love Norah Jones's voice. I'm hoping to marry her someday. Been listening to Joe Bonamassa a lot, one of my favorite guitarists these days. His solo stuff, and a project called Black Country Communion, kind of a supergroup with Glenn Hughes, Jason Bohnam, and Derek Sherinian. Killer stuff! Joe did an album with Beth Hart last year too which if totally killer. He released four records in 2011! A total workaholic. Slash's new live album is killer too! New Lamb Of God is also buddy Rob Dukes, singer for Exodus, has a band called Generation Kill, good stuff! Latest Exodus is totally killer too. The latest Pink Floyd reissues have some amazing bonus stuff!

What are some of your upcoming projects in the 2012?

Just to get prints out, another Sullen shirt, form a metal band...that's about it! And try to tattoo a little more and travel a little less!

As we wait for that new shirt to drop, his existing tee called "Blood Lust" (shown above) is available at the Sullen store and we have one to give away.

Yeah, another giveaway!

Here's how we're going to play this one:  In the video below, you'll see Bob tattoo a portrait on Sullen co-owner Ryan Smith. Watch it and let us know how long it took to complete the tattoo. Post your answer in the comment section to this post in our Needles & Sins Syndicate Group on Facebook or Tweet at us with your answer. Also include your shirt size. As usual, we'll put all the names of the commenters into and the internet gods will offer up the chosen one on Thursday, February 23rd.

Good luck!

01:36 PM
David neck tattoo.jpg
David's neck tattoo by Bobby Serna of Inkslingers

Finally recovering from the four-day debauchery that was the Biggest Tattoo Show on Earth in Las Vegas, which began last Thursday night and ended sometime around Monday morning.  Like everything Vegas, it was glitzy, over the top, and a helluvalotta fun.

See my usual bad pics of the show here.

The minute I got to Vegas I saw an ad on top of a taxi cab for the convention. It was also heavily promoted in the media, with convention organizer (and tattoo mogul) Mario Barth hiring a PR firm to bring in a crowd. In the Mandalay Bay Hotel, which housed the show in one of its massive convention halls, there were people handing out wrist bands in the casino for reduced admission -- do well at roulette and treat yourself to a tattoo.

Despite the tireless promotion, however, a number of artists and vendors said that there were less people in attendance than last year. [This was my first time there.] But it all depended on who you asked. The experiences of those working the show widely varied. Some said they were completely booked. Others were trying to hustle for business. And then I spoke to a number of artists who were happy to do a few tattoos and mostly hang out and have fun, like a tattoo vacation with some extra dollars to pay for the trip.

knux by Mark Mahoney.jpgKnuckle tattoos by the legendary Mark Mahoney

Vegas has it's velvet ropes and A-listers and this convention was no exception. As I mentioned last week, I was super-stoked to see legendary artists like Horitoshi, the Sulu'ape family, and Americana's bad boys Stanley Moskowitz and Crazy Philadelphia Eddie. [I bought Eddie's new book "Tattooing: The Life and Times of Crazy Philadelphia Eddie, My Vida Loca, Vol 1" and will review it here soon.]  Portrait prodigies Mike De Masi, Mike Devries, Nikko Hurtado were in attendance, and I also got to meet some Greek homies doing a wild fusion of abstract art and realism from Sake Tattoo in Athens, Tattooligans in Thessaloniki, & Fabz Tattoo Gold Coast Tattooligans. Baba & BJ Betts schooled young artists on lettering while Jime Litwalk and Tony Ciavarro worked their New School. Black & Gray maestros Shamrock Social Club, Bob Tyrrell, Tony Olivas, Andy Engel, Robert Pho, (among many other greats) dominated the tattoo competitions.

horitoshi tattooing.jpgHoritoshi tattooing

The competitions were MC'd by the rock/TV/porn star Evan Seinfeld, who was his usual brand of delishiousness. I was also hoping to ogle the cast of Sons of Anarchy (the one reason I own a TV these days) but it seemed the only thing going on in their large booth was airbrushing the show's new logo onto tees and tank tops.

The only other "celebrity" I spotted was skater/Jackass Bam Margera at the after party, which took place Friday and Saturday at King Ink, Mario's tattoo studio-boutique-dance club complete with velvet rope and a line of tattooed Snookies waiting to get in. Oh, and there were TONS of cougars hitting on young punks with stretched earlobes and neck tattoos. I had one 50+ woman come up and ask me what was best way to take one of these guys home. [Answer: Jack Daniels. Lots of it.] As for me, I stayed sober just to take in the scene. It was surreal.

Overall, it was a convention for the masses. Serious collectors were there but it was far from an insider art snob show or hippie gathering. The airbrush artists, faux-tattoo sleeves vendor, and even the psychic readings kept spectators on a blackjack break busy. There was no mystique but it was accessible to all. It was Vegas.
02:55 PM
zombie tim kern.jpgIn working on my upcoming Black & Grey Tattoo book, I came across rockin realism in the form of tattoo artist portraits, including Paul Booth, Bob Tyrrell, Jack Rudy, Tim Kern (above), and other greats. And so I had to learn more about the man who pays tribute to these artists with his own skin. Here's the story of Broken from the UK:   

Please tell me about your tattoos and who did them.

I have some horror-inspired tattoos from different artists in the 80s/early 90s. But, about 10 years ago, thanks to the internet and increased number of tattoo magazines, my passion for tattoos was re-awakened. Paul Booth and Bob Tyrrell were top of the list, although I never thought for one moment I would ever be tattooed by them. Then in 2005, London started with a new tattoo convention and the following year, I decided to take a chance and email Bob Tyrrell. I knew I wanted a portrait tattoo and horror movie stars were the obvious choice for me, but having seen so many, I wanted something more unique. Then it hit me. Tattoo artists! These guys were creating masterpieces and yet tattooing was still seen as something only criminals, bikers and the lower end of society would get.

paul booth tattoo.jpgSo, as Paul Booth was top of my list, I asked Bob to do a portrait of him [shown right]. Ten minutes later, I got a reply and it was all set for the London Convention. It was also very important to me to have Bob tattoo the Paul Booth portrait because they are close friends. With all my portrait tattoos, I have the same philosophy. I think that a close bond with the subject they are tattooing makes for a more personal and unique tattoo. [Also at that convention I met Tim Kern and got a severed wrist tattoo.]

The following month I had decided on getting a tattoo sleeve of tattoo artist portraits. I met Bob in New York and he was more than happy with the artists I had in mind. So, over the next few years, I got portraits of Filip Leu, Jack Rudy and Robert Hernandez, from Bob. Before the Hernandez portrait, I needed to find a suitable artist to tattoo a portrait of Bob. The obvious choice was Robert Hernandez. He was very happy to do it and he ended up doing it at the London Convention 2008, with Bob watching.

Very interesting experience.
He told me he was honored to be part of my project. The following year at the convention, Bob tattooed the portrait of Robert on, with Robert watching. Again, it was a surreal experience, but that made it even more special.

[In between the portraits, another artist who I was desperate to get a tattoo from, was Milosch. His black and grey is amongst the best in the world. In 2008, I planned to set up an appointment with him in the Czech Republic. After emailing him, he told me was doing a convention in the UK and a guest spot at a studio beforehand. When I found out the studio was 20 minutes from my house, I knew it was fate. He created an amazing demon on my calf and we have become good friends.]

ben moss zombie.jpgTim Kern and Benjamin Moss [shown left] were next on my list, but I felt that these artists would be better suited to doing a self portrait. I had already met them both and they are extremely friendly and gracious people. When I asked them, they were more than happy to do it. I wanted them to do a more horror inspired portrait and they both came up with something amazing.

What has been the reaction by the tattooists to your requests?

When I asked Bob Tyrrell to do the Paul Booth portrait, he told me that he would get Paul to pose for the photo reference. I've met Paul a couple of times since and he is genuinely honored by it. In fact, all the portraits I've had done, have been specifically photographed for each one. I haven't met Jack Rudy yet, but Filip thought his was really cool when I showed him and all the others say it's an honor to be a part of it too.

Why tributes to tattooists?

I chose tattooists because, since getting back into tattoos about 10 years ago (after 10 years when I didn't get anything), I realized just how far tattooers had come as artists. Nowadays, so many tattooers also work in fine art. People like Paul Booth, Robert Hernandez, Jeff Gogue and Carlos Torres etc...could easily have a career as fine artists. Yet, many people still don't see tattooing as an art. So this is just my small way of showing my appreciation for such an under appreciated art form.

Your portraits are largely in black & grey--what do you love about this style?
Black and grey, to me, is a timeless medium. Just like b&g photographs, they have an aura about them that just says class. I also think there is more focus on the subject with b&g. With color, there is the option of moving with each color. Black and grey needs more self awareness.

See more of Broken's tattooist portraits here.
11:50 AM

Australia's took their cameras to the Singapore Tattoo Show and came back with footage of the scene (above) as well as interviews with artists  Bob Tyrrell and Kim Saigh.

DevilCityPress also has a short video of the convention's closing ceremony with a traditional dance performance.
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