Results tagged “Joe Capobianco”
The times they are a'changin, my friends.
Over the past few years, when I'd interview tattooers, many--if not most--would decry "the scourge" of reality TV in the tattoo world. I've done it myself. But recently, the cries have become more muffled, even muted.
It could be a shoulder shrugging "if you can't beat them, join them" mentality. It could be that a lot of our friends are on the shows. It could even be that the shows have gotten a bit better. For me, it's all three.
The shows are here to stay. My non-tattooed neighbors watch them. My dentist watches them. My mother watches them. Polite dinner party conversation has moved from Nathan Lane on Broadway to Ami James on NY Ink.
And so, considering the vast audience these shows have, perhaps it's time to help shape them and offer a better representation of tattooing, through constructive critique and support of strong artists featured.
Which brings me to the second season of Best Ink, premiering tonight, April 3rd, at 10PM ET/PT on the Oxygen network.
For those who may have missed the first season, Best Ink is one of the tattoo competition shows in which twelve tattooers compete in different art and tattoo challenges to be the last one standing, winning $100K and a feature in Tattoo magazine.
I got a preview of the show and jotted down my Top 5 Pros and Cons based on the first episode. Here they are:
PRO: Renowned tattoo artist Hannah Aitchison joins the awesome Joe Capobianco and Sabina Kelly as a judge. When I talked to Joe about the show, he was particularly excited about this too, saying:
My personal favorite new addition to this season is judge Hannah Aitchison. I'm a huge fan of Hannah's work and was insanely jazzed that she agreed to take on the role of the third permanent judge this season. I think that she added an educated, almost 'teacher' approach to the judging that Sabina and I sometimes lacked in the past season.CON: Hannah's got a lot of teaching to do, as many of the tattooers are young, with only a few years in the industry under their spiked belts.
PRO: Pete Wentz replaced Kimberly Caldwell as the show's host. Pete actually has more than one tattoo! He appears cool and comfortable on the set, and more of an insider than an American Idol contestant hanging with the cool kids.
CON: I have no cons about Pete at this moment. He's just too cute.
PRO: There's a lot more discussion on the design process and what the judges are looking for to create a solid tattoo. It's more educative to the general public, and hopefully, will lead to more educated clients.
CON: There's a lot more discussion on the design process, and what the judges are looking for to create a solid tattoo. And this will likely lead to more people thinking they know how to tattoo by just watching a TV show.
PRO: Joe will make contestants cry.
CON: Contestants do stupid things that makes Joe make them cry.
PRO: The tattoo clients--or "Skins"--bring the drama. It's a "pro" if you like that kind of thing. Joe thinks it adds to this season, explaining:
There will be a bit more emphasis on the "Skins" (tattoo clients) story this season, which is really cool. Some of these folks have really heartfelt and interesting stories. The show also does quite a bit of background on the artists themselves. My hat goes off to these guys for stepping up to the challenge of the skins' sometimes crazy requests, as well as the Flash and Ink Challenges.CON: Not every tattoo has to have a story. The public should also be aware that many of us get tattooed simply because we just like the way it looks. Alas, that doesn't make for a compelling show for the masses.
So, how can we make it more compelling for us?
Best Ink Bingo [And/Or Drinking Game].
I made this simple, sample card below, which you can remix if playing against others. Every time the scene noted in the card plays out on the show, mark an X and take a drink. When you get five across, vertical, or diagonal, finish the bottle. Caveat: based on the choices, you'll be hurting in the morning. [For non-drinkers, take a sip from a frosty protein shake.] You can download a slightly bigger bingo card here on Flickr.
Photos above by Ben Cohen for Oxygen Media.
Hurricane Sandy made a mess of the transit system here in NYC and reports are informing me that New Jersey has actually cancelled Halloween (can they do that?!). Fortunately, Marisa and I already managed to get in our Hallows Eve festivities last weekend with a rousing evening of karaoke with tattooist Tim Kern (who was dressed as a very convincing Gene Simmons) and Friends. In honor of our "Tank Girl and Booga" couples-costume (and the fact that I'm a Hewlett & Martin junkie), I wanted to post these two great Tank Girl tattoos.
[Tank Girl tattoo by Bryan Hall of Cherry Hill Tattoo in Naples, FL]
[Tank Girl tattoo by Joe Capobianco of Hope Gallery in New Haven, CT]
Happy Halloween, everyone!
The winner of Joe Capobianco's "Blood Puddin" contest is ... Iowa's own Mark Eckman. Mark was chosen by Randomized.com out of all those who Tweeted at us and posted in our Facebook group page. Congrats!
Mark will be getting a signed copy of Joe's latest publication "Blood Puddin" as well as 3 mini prints, 5 full color stickers, 6 "Capo Gal" buttons, and a set of "Best Ink" temporary tattoos. You can find them all for sale at Joe's online store.
To check some of the artwork in person, this Saturday, May 12th, is the opening of "The Art of Blood Puddin" at Hope Gallery Tattoo in New Haven, CT. The exhibit will include new works by Joe as well as a host of other artists including Eric Merrill, Julio Rodriguez, Amber Carr, Carlos Rojas, Carlos Torres, Joe Linsner, David Nestler, Alisa Bruneli, Steve Prue and many more. More info on the show here.
Thanks to all who played along. Lots more contests to come!
Got another contest for ya, this time it's artful swag from one of our faves, Joe Capobianco of Hope Gallery in New Haven CT.
Joe is giving you a "Taste of Blood Puddin" with this special giveaway. This package contains a signed copy of Joe's latest publication "Blood Puddin" featuring all new paintings, sketches, and tattoos. You'll also get 3 mini prints, 5 full color stickers, 6 "Capo Gal" buttons, and a set of "Best Ink" temporary tattoos. It's our sexiest contest to date!
As usual, this is how to play: the winner will be selected randomly from those who comment (any sweet nothing will do) on this post in our Needles & Sins Syndicate Group on Facebook or Tweet at us. In one week, on May 8th at noon ET, we'll put all the names of the commenters into Randomized.com and the internet gods will chose.
To get an up close and personal taste of "Blood Puddin," join Joe, Eric Merrill, Julio Rodriguez, Amber Carr, Carlos Rojas, Carlos Torres, Joe Linsner, and many more for "The Art of Blood Puddin" opening reception Saturday, May 12th, at Hope Gallery.
Go to www.hopegallerytattoo.com for more info.
I'm going to go out on a limb and say this: TV is not killing tattooing. I know. Crazy talk, especially from a person who has been mocking reality tattoo shows from Miami Ink to NY Ink and all those shirtless promos of Ami James in between. [We even took time out of our lives to make a drinking game for the latest Ink show.] But the intense outcry today against these shows and the so-called "sell-outs" (I hate this term) who populate them has grown exponentially and really seems disproportionate to the actual harm.
The biggest issue of course is that there really isn't anything real about reality TV. Tattooing is not as dramatic and glamorous as seen on TV and many fear the shows attract people who just want to get into it for the fame and fortune. This is very true but then reality does set in for these types of "artists" to help weed many out.
And of course there's the bemoaning of the death of tattoo's magic, something I've done more times than I'd like to admit. But Kat Von D didn't put the final nail in the tattoo cool coffin. The art was securely woven into the fabric of pop culture long before the shows. Maybe I did it. Every time a lawyer gets tattooed, a biker dies. True fact.
All the foregoing blah blah does not mean I'm a fan of all the tattoo series, but I am keeping an open mind and looking at the good and bad of these programs. And that's what I did when I got an advance screener of Best Ink, a(nother) tattoo competition show.
Best Ink premiers tonight at 10/9c on the Oxygen network. You can catch video previews of the show here. I've only seen the first episode and promos, so my Pros and Cons list below reflects this and nothing more.
The judges Joe Capobianco and Sabina Kelly. Joe has been tattooing for nearly two decades and developed a tattoo style that is sought after worldwide. Joe has paid his dues. He's speaks his mind. And he has great hair. Perfect judgey material. You'll also be happy to know that he makes people cry on the show. People who you want to see cry. Bonus! Sabina was a "tattoo model" before the term was even used as a job description. [80% of tattooed women under 25 are tattoo models. True fact.] She's run a shop, she's judged and presented at international tattoo conventions, and she's beautiful. TV likes beautiful.
The host Kimberly Caldwell, seventh place finalist on the second season of American Idol. I don't get it. At least Dave Navarro on Ink Master had a lot of freakin tattoos to distract us from his overly groomed facial hair. In the first episode, Kimberly tries explaining why on earth she would be running this show by saying something to the effect that "she's all business in the front, and party in the back," turning around to reveal a lettering tattoo on her shoulder blade. I threw something at my computer screen. I think it was a Clay Aiken cd.
I would have loved to see a celebrity who has a passion for tattooing. I would have loved to see Margaret Cho, who is getting tattooed by some of the best in the business and sharing her experiences being a tattooed woman on her amazing blog. A pro here is that Margaret does make an appearance as a judge. The thing is that Margaret, with all her tattoos, biting wit and dirty mouth, is not safe for a mass audience. Kimberly is safe. My mom will like her.
There are some strong tattooists on the show like Roman Abrego and Jon Mesa. Viewers have an opportunity to see what a "good" tattoo can be by those who have experience and skill.
There are some inexperienced tattooers on the show who do damage to the sad people who agree to get tattooed under the ridiculous conditions of a competition show just to be on TV.
The biggest con: presenting all the contestants as the "top tattoo artists" in America.
The biggest pro: the actual judging of the tattoos -- the dissection of the elements of how a tattoo should be crafted, which could educate a mass audience on the possibilities of the art. The drama here is largely derived from achieving the best execution of the work, rather than, say, the backstory of a transsexual war veteran who lost her cat during a house fire and that's why she wants a tattoo of Garfield engulfed in flames holding an AK-47 with Old English script that says "RIP Odie" underneath. True story.
Bottom line: I'm going to watch it. There will be moments when it will make me mad. And there will be moments when Joe schools the kids on tattooing that will make me cheer. In any case, it's entertainment. Not reality. Perhaps it needs a drinking game.
I know. I know. You're upset.
The magic and mystery that tattooing once held has faded into the ether leaving us with, well, Dave Navarro. The heavily tattooed, perfectly manscaped rocker with the smokey eyeshadow is now the arbiter of body art, holding the fate of ten tattooists in his hand as he decides who will be ... "INK MASTER." [!!!]
If only someone who really feels the tattoo passion could command such fate, someone like Kimberly Caldwell ... wait who? Oh, she was the seventh place finalist on the second season of American Idol, who is hosting Oxygen's own tattoo competition, "Best Ink." But we'll get to that.
"Ink Master" is Spike TV's version of Project Runway produced by Original Media, the ones you have to thank for Miami, LA & NY Ink as well as The Rachel Zoe Project and BBQ Pitmasters. Like these shows, "tension and stakes are high" as tattooists battle it out for $100,000 and a feature in Inked Magazine. Here's more from their PR peeps:
"Ink Master" contestants will compete in various tattoo challenges that not only test the artists' technical skills, but also their on-the-spot creativity, where they must create and execute an original tattoo on command. Challenges focus on different tattooing techniques, such as shading, line and proportion, and styles including photorealism, Tribal, American traditional, and pin-up.Ok, that doesn't sound too bad. Essentially, it's a Hollywood version of the first and most wonderful tattoo competition series, "Tattoo Wars," which was never picked up because people with tattoos actually liked it.
In addition to Navarro, Chris Nunez ("Miami Ink") and Oliver Peck (Elm Street Tattoo) make up the show panel with guest judges, like tattooers Scott Campbell and Jack Rudy, weighing in on certain episodes. Other guest judges are Inked creative director Todd Weinberger, "Auction Hunters" Ton Jones and NBA player Chris Andersen [because reality stars and basketball players are the taste makers in fine art tattooing.]
Considering the roster of artists competing, which include many well respected tattooers -- some who are friends of ours -- we have hopes for Ink Master, or at least we don't think we'll be getting as drunk as we do with our NY Ink Drinking Game.
That said, we'll just pretend this show trailer ever happened. And let's forget the tag line "You don't get to be a master without drawing some blood." Instead, click the videos with our girl, Lea Vendetta and Brooklyn's own Al Fliction. Here's the full artist list:
Ink Master premiers January 17th. We'll make a drinking game for this one just in case.
Oh, and yeah, that competition show for the Oxygen network. Well, it's pretty much the exact same thing -- ten artists compete for $100,000 and a spread in a magazine, but in addition to the American Idol non-winner, the awesome Joe Capobianco and Sabina Kelly hold court. Oxygen's PR machine is a bit behind on Spike's, but when [more] photos and videos are out, we'll be posting them, especially if they come with kicky taglines. Best Ink premiers January 30th.
UPDATE: Tattoo magazine has a cover feature on Best Ink. For more, check the Hope Gallery Blog.
UPDATE 2: Best Ink site has a few pics on their site with more content to come.
Tattoo by Gunnar.
With the Thanksgiving upon us, I found it fitting to search for tattoos that mark the holiday's icon: the turkey. It wasn't easy picking images that would appeal to carnivores and vegetarians alike, but I think crazed butchers and vengeful vegan designs should do the trick.
While surrounded by controversy in the US, Thanksgiving to me is largely a reminder to indeed be thankful for all the good in my life. Anyway, according to the NY Times, gratitude will make us healthy. One thing I am truly grateful for is your support and general fabulousness. Thank you.
Tattoo by Jesse Smith.
Tattoo by Joe Capobianco.
All three artists are featured in my Color Tattoo Art book, still available for purchase at the reduced rate.
Dragons mutated and infused with psychedelic colors in trippy tableaus. Preening pin-ups with the luscious, highly exaggerated proportions of adolescent fantasy. Creepy cute children inhabiting dark freakscapes. Political satire played out in anthropomorphic caricature. Kittens and rainbows.Tattoo by Genko
They're all in Color Tattoo Art: Cartoon. Comics. Pin-Up. Manga. New School.
Yup, we've given birth to another monster in the series of large format, too-heavy-to-carry hardcovers for Edition Reuss Publishing. This time it's an ode to color bombs -- 496 pages filled with them. I'm honored to have worked with 42 exceptional artists from around the world (they are listed below), selecting 580 images of their stellar tattoo and fine art, as well as interviewing a number of them for thoughts on tattooing (and some personal gossip). It was a helluvalotta fun.
For a sneak peak into the book, check out the Color Tattoo Art Flickr set.
Color Tattoo Art: Cartoon. Comics. Pin-Up. Manga. New School. It's a highly literal title to describe a book dedicated to graphic, animated tattoos as well as the paintings and drawings of tattooists. Were this book to be published in the 80s and early 90s, it may have simply been called New School -- a label often used to describe art that didn't fit into traditional tattoo categories like Americana, Tribal, & Japanese. But today, with styles blurring and evolving at a great pace, these highly saturated works are moving in different directions, defying easy classification with a catchy title. I briefly discuss this movement in my introduction and in the artist interviews, but we've largely let the work speak for itself on these full-color pages.
Tattoo by Joe Capobianco
In the book, you'll find the awesomeness of these international artists featured:
Joe Capobianco, Tony Ciavarro, Genko, Gunnar, Kristel Oreto, Jime Litwalk, Kowhey, Fred Laverne, Ed Perdomo, Jee, Joako, Eva Schatz, Ulrich Krammer, King Rat, Leo, Sean Herman, Bammer, Daveee, Woodpecker, Josh Woods, Steph D., Jason Stephan, Dimitri, Broda, Slawek, May, Tiraf, Holly Azzara, Naoki, Fide, Electric Pick, Leah Moule, Jesse Smith, Morof, Kozuru, Ivana, Dave Fox, Gerrit Termaat, Peter Bobek, Scott Olive, Kosei, Olivier. [Olivier's work is featured on the cover.]
BOOK RELEASE PARTY: I hope you'll join us Saturday, June 25th, from 8-10PM at Sacred Gallery NYC in SoHo to celebrate the release of Color Tattoo Art. Copies of the book will be on sale for the discounted rate. [As well as discounted copies of Black & Grey Tattoo.] More info on the party to come.
Fine art by Gunnar
big ass book
Color Tattoo Art
The October issue of Inked, which just dropped, has my interview with Joe Capobianco, the Prince of Pin-Up tattoos. In it, Joe talks about his signature style, quitting the convention circuit, hair pomade, and what makes a woman sexy. Here's a taste:
You have such a signature style that one can look at a pin-up tattoo and know that it's a "Capo Girl." What are the elements you put into your work that make it your own?
"There are certain ideas that go into my work: the shape of the figure, the attitude of the figure--in pinups it's important that the girl has the right attitude. I usually start with the face. In my opinion, if you blow the face on the pinup, it doesn't matter if she's naked with big boobs. If the face is shot, the pinup is shot. In everything I've done, I've looked to great artists like Gil Elvgren, Earl Moran, Alberto Vargas, Hajime Sorayama, and Olivia. Their work is in the back of my mind--it's subconscious--but I don't try to copy them. I think that's something some people lack: they try to make their work look like someone else's, but for me, it's more about letting things happen on its own, naturally."
What do you think makes a good tattoo?
"In my opinion, a good tattoo is something that is readable and something that's going last. Outlines are important, shading is important, solid color is important. I even go a little bit crazy with the saturation of color, which some traditional guys say, "Why do you do that? It's too much." But I don't think too much is gonna hurt the tattoo. I want the tattoo to look like I just did it for as long as possible. It's not high art. It's not your vision on somebody. I know this will sound shitty--and I'm not making points with some people--but I don't think it's fine art. A tattoo is a tattoo. "
Especially considering that you tattoo these tributes to women--what is sexy to you?
"It's not about any one thing. A girl can be drop dead gorgeous and have a killer body that men will drop their fucking drawers for, and I'll look at her and go, "eh." It's something about the way the woman carries herself. It's something you can't put your finger on--and you shouldn't be able to put your finger on. So many women try so hard to be what they consider the perfect woman, and they're missing the point. There is no perfect woman. The fact that you come in all shapes and sizes, that's the beauty of it."
Read the rest in Inked. Get it on newsstands or by digital issue download.
In celebration of the 30th anniversary of The Empire Strikes Back, this Friday from 7-10 PM, Hope Gallery Presents "Distubance in the Force: A Tribute to the greatest movie series in history: STAR WARS."
The show will feature original works by over 30 renowned artists from all backgrounds including Joe Capobianco, Tim Harris, Phil Young, Eric Merrill, Julio Rodriguez, The Beast Brothers, Sket-One, Jime Litwalk, Tony Ciavarro, BEZ KYNST, Bezerc, Lawrence DiGusto, Jr., Tom Strom, Jackee Strom, Amber Carr, Dan Dos Santos, Craig Driscoll, Keith Ciaramello, Nikko, Christopher Uminga, Chuckboy, Silas Finch, Durb Morrison, Matthew Ryan Sharp, Project Detonate, OsiRisORion, Toby Stranger, Ernesto Nave, Dimitri HK, Christian Perez, Martin Silva, Kelly Doty, Steph D, Lawrence Woods, Augie Pagan, Travis Franklin, Jason Allen, Polly Hatter, and more.
There will be also be food, booze, Storm Troopers, and giveaways provided by Gentle Giant.
Then on Saturday, June 5th, you'll be able to view all of the works for sale on the Hope Gallery Shop and purchase the paintings and prints online through July 5th.
Bonus video: The Family Guy video below has nothing to do with the Hope Gallery Show or tattoos in general. I watched it on Hulu.com last night & wanted to share it because it's the best Star Wars parody I've seen. Seriously, you'll hurt yourself laughing.
Following today's theme of I want, I want, I want...
Behold: Joe Capobianco's limited edition sexy art toy called "The Bride."
Working with toy creators Kid Robot, Joe modeled this "Capo Girl" on a tattoo he created for The Baroness, shown below. The figure is 8 inches tall of soft vinyl. As Joe posted on his blog, there's also a very limited number of glow-in-the-dark versions, which look killer cool.
"The Bride" goes on sale tomorrow at 11am EST on the Hope Gallery Online Store.
The official release and toy signing will take place at the Hell City Fest this Friday from 6-8PM, where it will be offered at a special convention price of $75 (rather than $99).
Just another reason to join us in Columbus this weekend.
Joe Capobianco, one of the world's top female fantasy tattooists, as well as illustrator, painter and all around good guy, has a new sketch book out that will inspire tattooers and collectors looking to get sexy.
Knock Yerself Out is a 120-page hardcover filled with all new sketches, drawings, and color studies by an artist who has spent his career mastering the art of pin-up. The book is designed to be used as flash or to spark your own recipe for cookin up some cheesecake. And it retails for the low price of $25 via Pulse Tattoo Supply (the same peeps behind Presto Art, which published the book).
You can get a video preview of Knock Yerself Out on Joe's homepage and check sample pages (not all work safe) on the Pulse Tattoo blog.
Just posted photos on Flickr of the Flesh to Canvas opening Saturday at the Last Rites Gallery.
As usual, it was a packed show with the usual mix of goth chicks, artists with foreign accents who "only paint nude women" (ahem), tattooists and collectors. Paul Booth held court while his minions dutifully hung on his few words; many filled the seats of his theater adjacent to the gallery to watch his documentaries; the Art Fusion experiment, pictured above, also drew onlookers as artists engaged in live collaborative drawing.
Also in attendance, cheesecake tattoo king, Joe Capobianco -- who is consistently the nicest guy in the room everywhere he goes -- and had a piece in the group exhibit. We also bumped into Gene Coffey of Tattoo Culture in Williamsburg, Brooklyn -- who is consistently the weirdest guy in the room -- and he told us of the paintings he's been working on for a future show at TC. [Gene and I were brainstorming ideas for a tattoo he'll do on me when I get back from vacation. I'll keep ya posted on that.]
The highlight of the opening, as always: Paul's lovely mother, who has such a saintly glow about her, it's hard to believe she birthed the Dark Prince of Tattoo.
See more photos of the show here.