Skin & Bone is a combination gallery and tattoo studio. The gallery will exhibit art and ethnographic handicrafts related to tattooing, while the studio will have Colin Dale tattooing alongside various guest artists throughout the year. Through his years of travelling and tattooing around the world Colin has had the pleasure to meet and work alongside a wide range of tattoo artists and experts working in ethnographic and other specialized styles. Amongst these friends, we have hand-tattooists from Borneo, Polynesia and Japan as well as some of the world's leading artists in Blackwork and Dotwork coming to visit. Check the homepage to see some of the work

Saturday, 1 June 2013

Artistic Process: Hand Tattooing

I've gotten to the point in my career where technically everything I do by machine I can also do by hand... and sometimes better :-) The only difference is time. Over the last several years I've been pushing my tattooing culturally by refusing to do certain styles with machine. At the same time I've also tried to push my tattooing technically by attempting new styles using only hand tools. Here are a few examples of things I've been up to the last few weeks



Haida Thunderbird
Some of you may remember this design from the Copenhagen Ink Fest which I tattooed on Pernille... this is one I did on her father a few weeks earlier. 
Although I've done two of these designs, it is still an original piece and should not be copied

Started on this Haida Owl last week. Got the outline done, now we're only missing the dots

Started some "Colinesian" around some previous work by another artist. Framework is done on the lower portion, just have to fill in the patterns

I've done quite a few "Vejvisers" in my day and as I've explained I have nothing against re-creating historical images as they are not mine to start with... I consider them "Viking Flash"
This compass however is a custom design telling the story of one individual... if you copy it, the gods from the four corners of the world will turn you into lead before casting you into the abyss to slowly melt... only to have karma and the Valkyries insure that it happens all over again for the rest of eternity

Here is a piece I've done depicting the hero Sigurd with the dwarf Regin who is forging Sigurd's father's broken magical blade into a new sword, "Gram".
I did this piece on a newly educated blacksmith... although he would have loved to have gotten the design tattooed by hand he lacked the time and money :-( However we were able to compromise by outlining the design with machine and then hand poking the dots which was almost as quick :-)

Here is the same design I did several years ago only using hand tools on a much older blacksmith travelling down from Norway. I don't think I've posted this as it was after the homepage was set up but before I started the blog... I've also never gotten a properly healed photo of it.

Here is a photo from the stave church portal from Hylestad, Norway... which is now replaced with a copy while the original is housed at the University of Oslo.

I hate tattooing colour! Everytime I do it I swear I'll never do it again.
Then I look at the photos and think... that was pretty cool

Rune magic to help Kim

And finally a little Inuit sewing on Kit, a Danish pensionist living in Sweden just a short detour on the way to our cottage. One fresh, one healed 
After getting the first one she said the ladies in her sewing circle were quite impressed... so I wouldn't be surprised if these elderly women begin reviving the tradition :-)

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