Results tagged “Cool Hunting”

08:42 AM

David Sena fire art.jpg The exceptional tattooing of David Sena of SenaSpace in NYC has appeared on this blog before, most recently, with the photos below of his clients at the NYC Tattoo Convention. David's fine art work, however, demands more attention.

This Cool Hunting video does just that. In the footage, David demonstrates his work with fire, as he employs firecrackers and smoke bombs to burn paper, making art that is as powerful as the methods he uses to create it.  David discusses how experimentation in unique ways of mark making led this body of fine art work. I particularly enjoyed how he explained his love for the uncertainty and randomness of the process and making an uncontrollable substance like fire do what he wants to do.   

Tattooing since 1994, David has drawn parallels between his tattoo and fire art, stating that the two forms of creative expression have coexisted well because they both entail physical and ritualistic processes while transforming matter and people.

Check more of David's tattoos and artwork on his site as well as on Facebook and Instagram.

Cool Hunting Video: David Sena from Cool Hunting on Vimeo.

 David Sena tattoo clients.jpg
David Sena chest tattoo.jpg
David Sena's tattoo clients, above, including close-up.
02:47 PM
diesel only the brave tattoo.jpgTattoos are sexy. Tattooed people are sexy. Sexy sells.

And so, naturally, many brands jump onto tattoo cool to market their products with an edge -- a little bit crazy, a little bit bad. But hey, don't us girls just love that?

Thankfully, some ad campaigns get it right by doing it in a way that involves the tattoo community and puts a spotlight on the artistry along with the branding. One such campaign is Diesel's Only The Brave Tattoo Gallery for their fragrance Only the Brave Tattoo. [And yup, I'm a part of it.]    

For this fragrance, Diesel founder Renzo Rosso -- whose hands are tattooed-- approached renowned black & gray artist Mister Cartoon to design a tattooed clenched fist bottle and packaging. Rosso discusses this collaboration with Cartoon in an interview with Cool Hunting. When asked about how he thought to translate a tattoo into a perfume he says:

I'm going to tell you the story. It all started with the bottle. It was my 55th birthday, which is a special anniversary for I was born in 1955. Fifty-five is my magic number. I wanted to give my friends a gift, so I had my hand sculpted into a bottle that was all black and customized with Only the Brave. It was such a success and everybody liked it so much that we decided this bottle should be distributed worldwide. I have these tattoos on my hand as well. So I thought I could do something out of this. Then I met Mr Cartoon who I found to be very much like me--he has a sense of honor and creativity, and he's crazy. He designed the bottle and the logotype. After that, I asked L'Oréal to make a new perfume and translate my new rock 'n' roll attitude, my mentality, my passion, my positive energy into a perfume.[...]
Beyond the bottle design and logo, Cartoon's work is also featured in promotions for Only the Brave Tattoo, like this video below, directed by Estevan Oriol. It follows the tattooist around LA, from the streets where he grew up to the studio where he tattoos celebrities today, and in the film, he talks about melding his street art aesthetic with a luxury product.

A host of other creatives, including NY tattooist Michelle Myles, form Diesel's tattoo gallery collage, highlighting the diversity among tattoo lovers and their stories. Even more tattoo stories can be found on an accompanying blog by Anna Mazas, who wrote and curated the awesome "Life Under My Skin."

Indeed, there are many layers to this campaign. It reflects, in some way, how tattooing and our community are being considered seriously by luxury brands -- artistically but also as a market for their goods. It wasn't that long ago when I was being followed around Fifth Avenue stores because I fit the shoplifter profile. Today, I'm one of the faces for a fancy fragrance. And that does feel pretty sexy.

diesel only the brave marisa.jpg
11:44 AM
danish tattoo.jpgThis post is a love letter to my Copenhagen homies, with links to videos, photos and books on Denmark's rich tattoo history and its most recent international convention, the Copenhagen Ink Festival.

First up is this wonderful Cool Hunting video (below) in which Jon Nordstron, photographer and author of Nordic Tattooing and Danish Tattooing, takes us back to a time when tattooists would ride their bikes to the Port of Copenhagen to drum up business among the sailors. In the video, you'll see the oldest tattoo shop in the city, which is still buzzing today. And he offers background on prominent artists who shaped tattooing in the country and beyond. Lots of goodness in 3 1/2 minutes.

Danish Tattooing from Cool Hunting on Vimeo.

In more recent history, photographer Hampus Samuelsson captured this video (below) and some gorgeous stills from the Copenhagen convention [April 1-3]. The video offers wide shots from the floor to give you a feel for the show but also intimate close-ups of tattoos, including traditional hand-tapped work. In addition to tattooists working and clients wincing, you'll see clips of the Lizardman's performance, Viking sword fighting, and at the very end, there's a bonus clip of California's Rory Keating and Borneo's Jeremy Lo doing a drinking dance, which I plan on reenacting myself at the next convention. Fun stuff.  [See more of Hampus's photos on his Facebook page.]  


Ink Fest, Copenhagen 2011 from Hampus Samuelsson on Vimeo.

Special thanks to Colin Dale of Skin & Bone Tattoo for the video link.

01:00 PM
Last month, Karen Day of Cool Hunting generously reviewed my Black Tattoo Art book and in doing so, also held a contest for US readers to win a free copy if they submit the name of their favorite tattoo artist and studio. Cool Hunting picked the winner at random, and that winner turned out to be someone who's adorning billboards, taxis and bus stop shelters around NYC.

Meet Ginger Sierra
: paralegal, long-time Red Cross volunteer and tattoo collector. This Sunday, you'll find Ginger at one of the Red Cross Stations in Central Park for the NYC Marathon.

Oh, and for the record, her fave tattooist pick is Craig Rodriguez of Hand of Glory Tattoo who is doing beautiful work on Ginger. She also credits Steve Boltz for restoring a lot of older work and bringing it back to life.

As Ginger is also a Brooklyn girl, I decided to meet her in person to deliver her book. She's not one to flaunt her tattoos in public easily despite the billboards, but when she does, it's a treat, with her array of butterflies and flora that adorn her back and upper arms (she's gotten more work since that Red Cross photo above was taken).

I'm writing this post for two reasons:

First, to encourage all to follow Ginger's volunteerism and donate your time to organizations like the Red Cross. A lot of us complain that tattoo stereotypes still exist. Just look at this article on whether "tattoos make you trashy," especially the comments, and see that they indeed do. But these attitudes are best fought with action, not whining. And that's exactly what people like Ginger do when they use their free time to help others.

Second, Ginger told me a cool story that showed these negative attitudes towards tattoos are changing in the workplace. When the Red Cross campaign first launched, she told her Human Resources Director at the Brooklyn District Attorney's office, noting the visible tattoos. And the response? The Chief of HR sent around a proud email to all employees of the DA's office to have them look out for the Ginger's ad. She says, "I'm a city employee. It is what it
is...truth, justice, and tattoos!"

Look out for Ginger at the marathon Sunday and look into volunteering yourself or supporting the Red Cross in many other ways. I'm considering buying their three-day emergency Go Bag, ya know, for the imminent zombie apocalypse.

The photos for the ad campaign were taken by the talented Jake Chessum.
10:27 AM
I'm sure you'll soon get queasy reading incessant posts on my  Black Tattoo Art so here's some virtual Pepto for ya ...

A FREE copy that you can win via the fab

That's $159 saved in your wallet. Buy something nice. A kicky hat perhaps.

To enter to win, go to the bottom of this page, click on Contact and select "Black Tattoo Art Book Giveaway" from the drop-down menu. Tell them your favorite tattoo artist and they'll pick at random from entries received before 11:59 pm EST on 11 September 2009.

I'm so happy to be doing this give-away with the Cool Hunting crew -- the very best curators of high design -- because it brings me back to the roots of my tattoo blogging. Our joint blog venture began in 2005. [About a year later, we sold it to Rivr Media. It ceased publication in February this year.]

My first, humbling moment clicking "post" for Needled was in their home, watching Josh hunched on his knees getting his back tattooed as he typed away on his Mac. It was a sight (and a great view!).

And so I always have felt part of the Cool Hunting family, at least their lowbrow little sister.


Also online today is a post on Black Tattoo Art featured in Piel Magazine, the virtual bod mod magazine published in Argentina by tattooed goddess La Negra. Le Negra has stunning tattoos by fellow Argentinian artist, Nazareno Tubaro, whose work is shown above and featured in the book. See more from his portfolio here.

Book, book, book, blah blah blah. Alright, let me get working on the tattoo news review to cleanse your palate from all my shameless book promo.
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