Hey everyone, shop manager again. Today I wanted to give a showcase on each of our artists. When someone comes into the shop or messages us with a tattoo idea, one of the first things I do is ask if they have an artist in mind. If they don't, I look at the references and description they've sent and do my best to match them with the artist who I think will be most compatible for the tattoo they want. I love doing this, because it's a really rewarding experience to go through the whole beginning phase of scheduling a tattoo appointment, and then seeing the artist and the client bring their idea to fruition together. Rhona always says a tattoo is a collaborative piece between the artist and the client and I really love facilitating that relationship. I do think it's great though, for clients to have researched or know who they specifically want for a piece. So with all that in mind, I wanted to give some short bios on each of our scheduling artists (Rhona, Damon and Lisa) to help y'all with your decision-making process when it comes to who is the right artist for your tattoo.
Rhona McBain is the most recent addition to Blacklist Ink, and her style of tattooing is quickly becoming recognized and noticed as something really unique coming out of our shop and even our city. She specializes in blackwork, utilizing different sizes of lines to create dimensional, unique, and beautiful tattoos that are one-of-a-kind. Her style is incredibly versatile -- you can go through our instagram or facebook and instantly recognize her delicate floral pieces but still see the same artist with a bad-ass skull or viciously awesome animal piece.
I also love pairing Rhona with first-time clients who are looking for a really unique, custom piece. Watching Rhona take someone's verbal description and turn it into art is a very cool part of my job. Rhona is also a professor at PSU during the week, so she tends to book up very quickly. If this is the kind of artwork that speaks to you about a custom piece, she would love to set up a consultation with you!
Damon Hayes has been tattooing the longest of all the artists at Blacklist Ink. Fun fact: he is the one who encouraged our owner, Wade Rogers, to seek an apprenticeship! Damon is excellent with his clients -- he often tattoos whole families of people, which I think is so cool. He works relentlessly, adjusting his schedule where he can to accommodate people, and even offers a special daily rate for his clients. Damon loves doing a lot of different things, like neo-traditional tattoos and different kinds of tribal, but he is masterful at many different types of tattooing. Right now, he is exceptionally interested in exploring his Native American culture and working on some Native American portraiture. I also personally refer to him as the King of Cover-Ups. I've seen him work with clients that were turned away by many artists because the necessary tattooing required to cover up an undesired tattoo was extensive, but he does really great work with them, especially if the client has had some laser tattoo removal to lighten the existing tattoo!
Also, as a woman in the tattoo industry, I really admire the way Damon treats his clients. It's not news that tattoos decorate various parts of the body, and sometimes procedures require the client to be in different states of undress, which can be awkward and uncomfortable. I have always been impressed at the level of respect Damon offers to his clients, and how he helps maintain a comfortable and easy environment, regardless of where on the body the client is getting their tattoo.
Lisa has been at Blacklist for around 7 years now, and we are super proud to say that we are Lisa's first and only shop. Not only is Lisa an absolutely mind-blowing realism oil painter (have you seen her tiny birds??), but she's also a great realism tattoo artist. Lisa can do so many things, and she's meticulous about giving her clients perfection. Her passion is realism, whether it's doing a bee the size of a quarter or a full-color large scale animal portrait. The way that Lisa can take a photograph and turn it into permanent piece of art on someone's body. Lisa works hard and efficiently to give her clients what they want and loves the opportunity to put her own spin on anything a client brings in. Her adaptability is amazing as well, and she does produce really great work even when it isn't realism.
Also, Lisa's painting skills are unreal. If you're ever in the shop, please ask about her Walking Dead skateboard portraits, or to see some of her animal paintings. They're amazing!!