Inkoming - 178

Published: 01 November, 2009 - Featured in Skin Deep 178, November, 2009

Air your views or have a rant and we’ll give one letter a free, yes free, t-shirt! Aren’t we nice?

Underage Ink

Dear Skin Deep

Firstly, may I say congratulations on such a great magazine. I look forward to it each month and now to the point.

I’m writing in response to Neil’s editorial in the August issue of Skin Deep concerning the girl who had the stars tattooed on her face and about waiver and consent forms. 

I run a studio in Blackburn; it’s unbelievable the amount of clearly underage people who come into my studio and ask for a tattoo, obviously this is refused. Many
of these young people are then in my face saying that, “So and so down the road has tattooed me”. Some of these kids are as young as fourteen!

This draws me back to the girl with the stars on her face. I’m sure that I speak for many professional artists out there that with our profession comes a huge responsibility to help the client get the best tattoo and given the best placement for their chosen design. Yes, we all know the girl asked for the stars but what the hell was the tattooist thinking about tattooing fifty odd stars on the face of a young girl? I know times are hard but in this case I feel that the artist was at fault as well as the client, as either myself nor any of my tattoo friends would do such a tattoo in the first place.

This is our career, people! We all love the tattoo industry and I’m sure that I speak for ninety nine percent of artists who read this, it’s the one percent of irresponsible folk that will help to drag down the image of tattooists just when the acceptance of tattoos is becoming stronger, so money has to come second sometimes!

Anyway, rant over.

Love the ink!

James Monnery, Blackburn


'Virgin' on the Weekend

Hi Neil

I am writing with regards to your editorial recently (July 174). I am a veteran tattoo convention. The very one in which you had your very bad experience. As a newcomer to all this, I was going to write in anyway to tell you what a fantastic time I had. I turned up Saturday morning with my almost finished sleeve (courtesy of Paul @ Skinshokz), my other half (who has no interest in tattoos whatsoever) and a little bit of apprehension. When I walked into the main hall I was greeted by the buzz of tattoo machines. It was awesome! I was surprised by how friendly everyone was and how they all had time to talk about their tattoos. We wandered around the various halls and frequently stopped at the bar before staggering back to our hotel at 3.30 the following morning just to start again on Sunday. I didn't see any trouble at all and had the best weekend in a long time.

If you've never been to a convention before, give it a go. Don't let the actions of a vast minority put you off. 

Damion, Leeds 


'Ello 'Ello, Is That A Tattoo I See?

Dear Neil

I have contacted you before about the police and tattoos (see Letter of The month issue 177), but I wanted to tell you when I went to watch England play football this week. I am a member of the England fan club so if you want to travel abroad to see England, you have to give them your passport so they check any
public disorder-related offences due to England’s history with football violence.

I have two full sleeves, and love showing them off so most of the time I have short sleeve shirts on. Once I got through security at Heathrow, the police called me over to check my ID card. FINE. I then went to bar with my brother and one of my mates for a drink and as we were sitting there minding our own business, I got a tap on the shoulder. Another copper said "Hello lads."

I said, "Not again." 

He said – quote – “I saw the England shirt and the tatts and said to myself ‘high risk”.

I understand that the police have a job to do but I find this old fashioned, stereotypical view of tattoos by the police highly offensive. They must be told during training that all people with tattoos are thugs!

I am proud of my tattoos and will not cover them due to people’s ignorance. I have never been in trouble with the law and if I was going to cause any kind of trouble, the first thing I would do is to cover my sleeves.

I wonder how many of us encounter ignorance like this from the police?

Cheers for letting me moan 

Steve Burge (proud to be inked)


Winning Letter

Travelling For Your Art

Dear Skin Deep

I’d just like to share with you a picture of my new tattoo, that I am very proud of. The tattoo was expertly done by Paul Naylor from Indigo Tattoos in Northwich, Cheshire.

The tattoo is a portrait of the artist Robert Lenkiewicz who was my teacher and friend for five years. Robert was an amazing painter and mainly painted people; life-sized, some in groups, some in massive groups and lots of other subjects too.

He was a modern day Rembrandt and did about twelve thousand paintings. Of the four books available on him the best is ‘Robert Lenkiewicz: Painting and Projects’.

My tattoos, especially this one, give me a great deal of pride and I love showing them off. 

Paul is a great bloke; I live in Bristol and travelled to Northwich to have the tattoo done. I heard of Paul through Skin Deep Magazine, so I want to thank you for that too.

Many thanks to both Paul and Skin Deep, 



Skin Deep 178 1 November 2009 178