Tuesday, December 11, 2012

West Side tattoo artists notice trend

            Tattoos were once associated with inmates and gangs but are now becoming cultural icons in America.
            Gary Grundtisch, co-owner of Ink Assassins at 429 Grant St., says a trend that he’s been seeing is mother and daughter as well as father and son duos getting tattoos together. 
            Tattoo acceptance in America is increasing not only shown by the number of people who have them but in the types of people that are getting tattoos.
Dan Erickson of Ink Assassins plies his art
            Rob Pawlewski, owner of Dead Man’s Hand Tattoo on 561 Forest Ave., said he’s “seeing more straight-laced people getting tattoos.” Pawlewski thinks that much of the acceptance of tattoos comes from the tattoo culture reflected on television.
            Shows like LA Ink help bring tattooing into the mainstream society. Pawlewski, however, says that it’s a double-edged sword. Shows on television help normalize the tattoo culture but sometimes that involves highlighting the industry in an unrealistic light.
            Although tattoos are gaining acceptance throughout America, deciding to get one is not a decision to take lightly. Pawlewski advises that if you’re getting your first tattoo out of impulse, you may end up regretting it.
            “A first tattoo should be meaningful and it should be done by an artist that you’re comfortable with,” Pawlewski said.
            For those who jump the gun and have a piece that they’re no longer satisfied with, they can be fixed or covered up.
            Grundtisch said that  the tattoos he fixes are poorly done by artists still learning the skill.  What can’t be removed can at least be improved on, he said. By Jason Murphy