Skin Deep 169

It is with a real sadness that I have to announce the death of a superb tattooist, all-round good egg and great human being - Dave Ayres from Skin Deep in Bristol. Dave died when his motorcycle hit a stationary car on Sunday 25th January. I personally didn’t have the pleasure of meeting Dave but from the amount of posts on the Skin Deep forum, Dave was a very well respected tattooist and a lovely man. We have published many of Dave’s tattoos within the magazine over the years and he was well respected for his Japanese tattoo work and his offbeat sense of humour. 

Tattooing has lost a great ambassador. Skin Deep sends its condolences out to Dave’s family and friends.

This got me thinking what a close-knit family the tattooing community is. I recently spent a weekend over in America at Rick Harnowski’s Green Bay convention and it struck me just how friendly the artists were and how much they were prepared to help each other out. As I wandered about the show, I was constantly greeted by a big smile and a ‘How you doing?’ at each booth. Each artist stopped what they were doing and were more than willing to answer questions and chat. This is the same in the UK, and as far as I am concerned the days of the grumpy bloke standing outside his studio, fag hanging from the corner of his mouth scowling at all who dare to cross his threshold have long gone. This can only be a good thing for the industry; with so many newcomers discovering tattoos, the industry needs to be a little more accommodating.

In the ‘good/bad old days’ – depending on how you look at it - tattooing was seen as underground and banned in many countries and various states in America. New York only allowed tattooing to take place again as late as 1997! Of course tattooing took place there but as an underground movement. Since then, the state has exploded with some of the world’s best tattooists setting up home there. 

At tattoo conventions all over the world there are tattooists happily swapping information and helping each other out with equipment, supplies, and offering free advice about techniques - such is the growing warmth of the tattoo industry, and I find this very encouraging.

I guess what I am trying to say is that we are blessed with being involved in a wonderful industry and community that is tattooing, and despite all the doom and gloom that is being spread about at the moment by the government and banking sectors, we mustn’t lose sight that we will always have that warm, passionate and caring community that is tattooing. 

Long may it continue.


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