The Order Custom Tattoos
The Start of The Order Custom Tattoos.
The road began about three years ago when I built my own shop here in the heart of the Magoebaskloof mountains in the Limpopo province of South Africa.
There is absolutely nothing here, no malls, no walk-ins absolutely fuck-all.
Where are you originally from ?
It has always been Kimberley in and Pretoria, but I would say mainly Pretoria as I spend the last sixteen years in Pretoria before building my shop here in Magoebaskloof.
Tell us about your tattoos.
All of my tattoos have very specific meanings, not only the design of the tattoos but also where on my body I chose to place them. All of my tattoos flow into one deeper and
What is your favorite tattoo ?
My favorite tattoo and the one that really means a lot to me is the symbol of The Order custom tattoos which also has a very specific meaning and story behind it. Many years
ago I asked my dad to choose a tattoo and whatever he chooses I will also get, then, later on, I got the emblem of The Order on my forearm and when my dad saw it he said
but he also wants the same design. So I got the emblem with my birth date and my father got the same emblem with his birth date. The meaning behind it of relationship
and what the symbol represents is something close to my heart.
What is your favorite tattoo style?
I believe that an artist should have a well-rounded knowledge of every style. Some people might differ but if you have an in-depth knowledge of all the styles and this isn’t necessarily just about tattoos but knowing the history behind art. The reason is tattooing these days are just a new way of expressing something that has always existed. There really is nothing new but only a new way of expressing the art. Even though this is my belief an artist almost always leans more towards one style than another, and I think this has to do with what you get exposed to the most and that can also change as time progresses. I would say my favorite style is pointillism and neo-traditional or a mixture thereof, I also use very specific colors, and don’t have a very big color pallet. I buy colors that work and are complimentary and then there are colors that I just don’t like and I won’t even stock them.
How did your passion for tattoos start ?
I got an art background from a very young age, I was always in the art industry and know nothing else. I had no other jobs in any other industry, it was always art and everything to do with art. I didn’t start doing tattoos for a quick buck but it was rather an extension of my very
intensive art background. I later went on to further my studies in art and studied visual communication. Out of that, I got a very wide spectrum of visual art, everything from illustrations on paper and every form of digital art was part of my life. Sitting in front of a computer for years almost killed my passion for art because you don’t really physically draw
anymore but do everything digitally and then one day some of my friends started doing tattoos. For some of them it was great for others it was a total fuck-up butt that whole process made me rethink my future in art and physically start drawing and sketching again. as my friends had no real art history and they just followed the rules. That inspired me to physically start doing art again after doing only digital art for about seven years and out of that, I started doing tattoos. Getting started was easy, when you pick up a tattoo machine every scruffy friend is there to get tattooed and that is where my love for tattooing started, it
wasn’t something I ever thought to do, but my history in art led me to it.
How was your first tattoo application ?
Like most of us, I bought a tattoo kit, the lowest form of tattoo equipment you can
possibly buy, and now you’re ready to go. One of my friends wanted a tattoo and he was willing enough to allow me to do a tattoo on him. That first experience of doing what I could already do on paper or digital on a person’s skin with needles, like any tattoo artist would know is nerve-wracking as you have no knowledge of the skin, how it works and how it is going to heal. None the less in the process of doing my first tattoo I instantly fell in love with tattooing and the thought that the art and effort you put in will forever be on a person’s skin and you basically allow a person to carry a part off you on them. Luckily my first tattoo had no blowouts and it wasn’t the worst tattoo I saw.
Where do you see the industry in 10 years ?
To start with, I want to say that in European countries the industry is a lot
bigger than in South Africa for the fact that it is visually more acceptable and economically they are ahead. Regarding South Africa, I can say that in ten years the industry will be in a great place. There are more artists than before, people also realize and can now see the difference between good and bad art. Artists are also growing artistically and there are more and more people with tattoos. On the other hand, tattoos are a luxury and not a necessity and are also reliant on the state of our economy. If things keep on going the way it is now the industry might not do so well ten years from now. Overall, despite the economy, I think the industry in South Africa will never be the same in the sense of hove people see tattoos and in that regard, I see a bright future for the industry.
Your overall opinion of the tattoo Industry.
When entering the industry I was like most other artists, against apprenticeships. I think that most people have a bad experience regarding this as they usually make coffee and sweep the floors for up to three years before they actually pick up a tattoo machine. Luckily I had a big enough art background and no one had to teach me how to draw or how to have the most important aspect of being a tattoo artist, which is having an art background.
So I decided that all I have to do is to learn the medium of tattooing. We are lucky enough to live in the information age and every professional tattoo artist has a YouTube channel.
So if you put enough effort and time into it you can watch them closely and learn the methods, techniques, and styles and bring what you’ve learned into your tattooing and teach yourself. That is exactly what I did. I watched so many YouTube videos t wasn’t even funny and every time I designed something I applied a little bit of what I’ve learned until I got the hang of it. So my experience of the industry from the start was that people are not willing to help you and apprenticeships for the majority doesn’t exist. Although as you progress and people see that you are really committed you get more helpful people.
I think in any industry there are those who think they know more than they actually do, and then there are those who know a lot but are still humble about it. As much politics as there are and people unnecessarily stepping over each other, the industry will always work itself out. Those who are bad will fall off the bus and those who are really worth their salt will stay.
Do you have any roll models ?
I don’t really have any role models and I can’t really think of names but what I do look up to are certain traits in a people and I will admire a certain trait off that person.
There is no one out there that I think is a great role model in totality except for Jesus.
What is your advice to clients ?
First off, people have this presumption that a doctor is a doctor, and a tattoo artist is just a tattoo artist, but the reality is that everyone has different styles and things they are really good at and things they are not so good at.
DO YOUR RESEARCH...
First of all, you as the client need to figure out what style you like. If you don’t know what styles there are maybe that is a good place to start. Secondly, you have to go and look at artists that specialize in the style you want and who can do it the best. Choose the best artist out of the candidates that you have chosen. You also have to take into account the artist’s ability to design, an artist whose designs ain’t that great will always deliver mediocre work.
Most people don’t know good design, that is why you as the client must make sure you pick a good artist not based on only your opinion but everyone else’s out there as well..