If you have ever come across disapproving looks because of your tattoos, try having a healthy tattoo coverage and then working within the adult industry. Strangely, Tallulah has found that she gets more negativity of her career choice than her tattoos, which is quite refreshing.
Tallulah and AJ have more than a passing interest in body art, choosing to get work from a wide variety of sources and artists. Both are extremely happy with their tattooed frames, and I can’t say I blame them, but some seem less enamoured by their ink. It’s a shame, but beauty is in the eye of the beholder and Tallulah’s reflection suits her just fine. Neither AJ nor Tallulah have plans of stopping their ink quest just yet as they have firm plans for more tattoos with a wish list that grows daily.
Where did you both grow up and what were you into as children and teenagers?
Tallulah I grew up in Tamworth, just outside Birmingham. It’s a fairly smallish town that didn’t interest me much as a youngster. I spent a lot of time in my room at home, listening to music.
AJ. I grew up in Coseley, near Wolverhampton. I was into motorbikes at quite an early age and music, bands like AC/DC, Iron Maiden, Guns’n’Roses. I also did quite a lot of hanging about smoking and drinking as a teenager!
When, where and how did you two meet?
Tallulah. AJ and I met in 2005 at the Carling Academy in Birmingham. It was a very random evening; he used the highly romantic line, “Do you wanna fag?” to pull me. Obviously that was back in the days when you could smoke in clubs…I’m so easy, hehe!
At what stage of your lives did you first become interested in tattoos?
Tallulah. Well, whilst I was growing up and listening to music, I used to read lots of music mags and as I got a little older,tattoo mags, and these introduced me to all of the heavily inked people to whom I had never been exposed before. At the time, I thought it was pretty cool, but never actually imagined that one day, I would be that way myself. I was really into the art that went into the tattoos and by the time I was 17 or 18, I was really into different styles of imagery and enjoyed collecting books, clippings, drawings, paintings, etc. I also found that the type of imagery I was attracted to influenced my style, in terms of clothes, hair, make-up and décor.
AJ. I remember first becoming interested in tattoos during my time at college and I got a bit of dodgy tribal on my arm. Luckily, that was saved by being incorporated into another piece some years later.
Tallulah, what was the first work you had done and why was it chosen?
Tallulah. The very first piece I had done was a small swallow on my left bum cheek. I chose it very quickly as I was feeling flustered under the glare of a room full of scary biker dudes. I remember lying there with my fishnet tights around my ankles and my ass in the air, (laughs). I still have the tattoo though.
Tallulah, tell us about the different pieces you have and about the inspiration behind the designs.
Tallulah. All of my ink is fairly girly. I have a ‘Hell Babies’ sleeve and a ‘Lady Luck’ by Jo Harrison, from Modern Body Art, a gypsy girl, matching swallows, and a daddy’s girl rose by Dawnii at Painted Lady Tattoo Parlour. My winged heart chest piece is also by Jo Harrison and I have a Geisha butterfly by Amanda Toy at Classic Original Tattoo. I have a zombie girl by Drew XIII, also at Painted Lady Tattoo Parlour and my ‘Doll Face’ knuckles are by Andy at Andy’s Body Electric.
I love all of my pieces and the people who did them for me. Unlike some people, I don’t have a meaningful story behind the chosen designs. I have what I have because I like pretty pictures.
Why have you chosen female artists to do the majority of the work?
Tallulah. Because hot girls rock! I’m partial to perfume and a pretty face (laughs).
What is it about colour work that appeals to you?
Tallulah. Getting colour work wasn’t actually a conscious decision, it just kind of happened. All of the artists and designs that I liked tended to favour colour, but I totally love black and grey work and am hoping to get some real soon.
You both work in the adult industry. What is it about the work that you enjoy and what are its most challenging aspects? How do the roles of male and female differ in terms of the amount of work you get and the money paid?
Tallulah. Yes, we’ve both done some work in the adult industry. We’ve worked with some cool producers, directors and photographers, fellow models and performers. We’ve done work, which includes content for DVDs, websites, magazines, adult TV channels, coffee table art books, as well as some great live performances at clubs and conventions. I work more than AJ, but that’s mainly due to his relaxed attitude and the fact that he does it for fun rather than for a living. AJ also works for a company behind the camera, which tends to take up a lot of his time.
Women do get paid more than the guys, which kind of sucks as they do all the hard work. I wouldn’t say that either of us finds any aspect of adult work ‘challenging’ as such. Having said that, it's much harder work than some of you might imagine and it generally involves a fair bit of travelling, which can be tiring.
How does your work impact on your relationship, either negatively or positively?
Tallulah. One negative aspect is that after spending all day being sexy and horny for the camera, when I get home I sometimes can’t be arsed, much to AJ’s annoyance. On the other hand, one positive factor is that both AJ and I have got to experiment with many different sexual deviances and practices. That has actually helped to ensure that we have a fucking excellent sex life for ourselves as we have such a good understanding of what each other is into.
Do you encounter many negative reactions from friends or family or others who know what you do?
Tallulah. If people don’t know what we do, we don’t necessarily tell them. That saves all of the questions and false friendships. My family knows that I model and my mum definitely knows that she’s not going to see me in the Littlewoods catalogue. It’s as much as she needs and wants to know. Any of our friends that know are cool about it and I have never experienced negativity with regard to doing porn…but I have about being tattooed! Weird eh?
Why do you think that there is still a tendency for the general public to stigmatise or look down upon those people working in that particular industry? Do you think outlook is changing?
Tallulah. For me personally, I find it hard to believe that there are people out there who have a problem with it. I rarely come across these attitudes, and whilst I understand why some people may be offended by it, ultimately it’s a choice that you make and everyone should be able to make the choices that best suit them. As regards a changing outlook, I feel people should be passionate about whatever view they take.
Has the fact that you are quite heavily tattooed affected the amount, or type, of work you are offered?
Tallualh. Definitely…the girl next-door look and teeny stuff is obviously way off the mark for me. I work predominately in the alternative side of porn and fetish, which ranges from wearing a bit of rubber to some totally obscure jobs. I have played both sub and dom roles, but I am naturally quite powerful and that always comes across on film, but I love sub roles if I’m working with the right person.
Like any job that involves performing or acting, sometimes I have loads of work and sometimes things can be a bit quiet. I’ve always got plenty of things to do however, as my website needs constantly updating. Being tattooed does limit the style of work that I do, but that’s cool. It means that the work I do get is the kind of stuff I’m really into, (normally).
As your tattoo coverage has increased has your sense of body image changed? If so, how?
Tallualh. The first time I got a large piece done, I cried when I got home. I think that was a mix of the feeling you get after being tattooed for a few hours combined with the look of a totally new me, that was pretty emotional. My body image right now is awesome; I love what I see in the mirror. Personal happiness is so important. You wouldn’t believe the amount of people who say to me…”but you’re so pretty, why have you got all of those tattoos?” That kind of reaction always leaves me speechless…I love the way I look, and so do many others.
What plans for the future do you both have in terms of life in general and tattoos in particular?
Tallulah. We’re both totally happy with our life and hope it stays that way. Tattoo wise, there are some artists I’d like to get work from in the future. In fact there are so many, I may run out of skin. These include Valerie Vargas, Paul Naylor, Tim Kern, Phil Kyle and Helen from Gung Ho Tattoos.
AJ. I want to finish off the pieces that need finishing and I really want to ink the other side of my neck…I’ve got some ideas for that.