Some of the most creative of expressions are those that reflect on love. Flash mob proposals. Bikers stopping traffic to get romantic. Having someone's name tattooed on your face. And naturally, many will say that you can never go wrong with diamonds.
Now, if you take tattoo art and diamonds...you have my attention.
David Cooper is heavily tattooed gemologist and designer at Jeff Cooper Designs -- a family business specializing in classic, handmade bridal jewelry. David teamed up with the renowned Mike Rubendall of Kings Avenue Tattoo (who's spent plenty of time with Brian), and together they created a beautiful collection that melds Mike's artistic eye with the jewelry designer's signature refinement.
The Heirloom Diamond Pendant, in gold and diamonds, is the first pendant design of their collaboration. To celebrate the launch of the collection, David is offering a Valentine's Day Giveaway. To enter, head to the Jeff Cooper Designs Facebook page, "Like" them, and fill out the contest entry form. The winner gets picked on February 14th.
There's a sweet backstory to this collaboration, which is noted on the Jeff Cooper blog. Here's a bit from it:
Anyone can network on the golf course, but our own David Cooper launched a new creative venture right from the tattoo chair.
I have another giveaway for you from my own personal stash: the 2013 Tattoo World calendar, which I curated for Abrams Books.
Two readers will received the 12x12 wall calendar, which features more than 100 tattoo photos from the world's best artists -- too many to list here. The calendar is based on the Tattoo World hardcover, written by Michael Kaplan and edited by yours truly.
Each month is organized by theme; for example, December is all about the dragon and how different artists interpret it, from Colin Dale's Nordic mythology to Mike Rubendall's Japanese-influenced creations. Every image is credited right underneath with the artists' names and their websites, so you will know right away who did it and where to see more. My role in the calendar was deciding on the artists and pool of images for the designers to choose from. I would have liked there to be less tattoos per month so that the images could be much bigger, but the publishers felt it was better to have as many pix as possible.
But hell, I'm giving two away and they retail online and at major book stores (like Barnes & Noble) for just $13.99.
We'll play it the usual way but with a twist. Two winners will be selected randomly from those who comment on this post in our Needles & Sins Syndicate Group on Facebook or hitting up @NeedlesandSins on Twitter. BUT the comment/Tweet should be about what you'd like to read on this blog in the new year. It need not be specific; something like "greater convention coverage" or "more naked tattooed men, please" will do. On January 17, 2013, we'll put all the names of the commenters into Randomized.com to pick the winners.
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.
Last Friday, we announced yet another giveaway for -- not one but two -- lucky readers thanks to Prestle Publishing and Dr. Matt Lodder.
Prestle offered a copy of the wonderful "London Tattoos" book by Alex MacNaughton to a winner in the US, and then Matt jumped in and offered a copy to a winner in the UK. [Matt wrote the foreword to the book.] Read our review of "London Tattoos" here.
The winners were picked by Randomized.com from those who posted in our Needles & Sins Syndicate Group on Facebook or who Tweeted at me.
And they are: Nicki Hoffman and Claire Woodworth. Congrats!
Many thanks to those who played along. The book is a gem to gift to family and friends and even treat yourself. You can purchase the 304-page paperback from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com in the US.
More contests and gift guide picks to come!
UPDATE: And we have a winner! Two actually. Emails from George Koutroubis and Sean Phillips dinged in almost immediately after posting so George will get the tee and Sean will get a signed Jack Rudy-designed poster. Thanks to all of y'all who played along. The special promo code for Sullen discounts is still in effect.
The name "Sullen" has long been identifiable with tattooing and not for its artists' sunny dispositions. The lifestyle brand, Sullen Clothing, has been partnering with top tattooists (as well as graffiti artists and painters) to bring their art to apparel, prints, and other media. The Sullen Art Collective line includes original designs from Bob Tyrrell, Shawn Barber, Nikko Hurtado, Steve Soto, Jason Butcher, and many other well respected names. And soon, it will feature the work of black & grey legend Jack Rudy.
While Sullen and Jack have worked together on shirts, prints, posters and promos many times before -- including Tattooland's 35th anniversary tee -- this latest project is Jack's first Signature Tee with the Sullen Art Collective. The shirt will be officially released the first week of April but we have one here ready to giveaway to one lucky reader.
TO WIN: Send me an email to marisa at needlesandsins.com with the name of the car club Jack co-founded. [Hint: the answer can be found in N+S archives.] The first person to do so wins the tee. Easy.
We also have a special promo code for 15% off any purchase on BuySullen.com. Just add "NEEDLESANDSINS" upon checkout for the discount.
[Photo of Jack Rudy by Nicole Caldwell.]