Interview by Dave Wolff
How old were you when you got your first tattoo?
- I was the guy who ran out and got his first tattoo the second I turned 18.
How many tattoos do you have?
- 16 seperate done in about half as many sessions.
Which tattoo is your first and which one was your latest?
- My first was a simple blue cross on my left arm. My latest is the first letter of my bands logo on my right.
How long did it take you to build up your collection?
- 15 years but I only get tattooed occaisionally.
A lot of fans tattoo lyrics or favorite band logos, have you ever done that or plan on ever doing it?
- I personally wouldn't tatoo lyrics. It's just not my thing although I've seen some done really well. I have thought about doing a bands logo, but so far I've only done my own band.
How often do you create your own design or have you ever gave a tattoo artist free range? - Most of my tatoos have been my own design with creative flair provided by the artist. I grew up drawing and doing art so prefer to design my own but with the advice of the artist.
Do you have a piece or a few pieces that have the most meaning to you? Why that specific piece(s) is your favorite?
- I have my two daughters names and birthdays tattooed on my upper arm. Those tattoos mean the most to me for two reasons: They represent two days my world changed for the better and they remind me of whats important.
Which one of your tattoos was the most painful and where is it? - I have a tattoo of the zodiac symbol for aries with fire surrounding it on my right forearm. I did it in two sessions. The first session I hadnt eaten all day and I was 'partying' with the artist and after about three hours of single needle fill in I almost passed out.I got really light headed and had to stop the session. I went back about two weeks later to finish an I let him go back over parts that were already healing. It was worse than the first time. Needless to say the tattoo got infected and a huge chunk of it rotted out leaving a scar in some small parts of it.
Which one of your tattoos took the longest to complete?
- The aries symbol was 5 hrs.
Did you pay for all the work you've had done? What was the most expensive tattoo you've paid for? - Most of my work was done by friends with a couple of shops mixed in...a little over 100 is the most I ever paid.
Which artist(s) did your tattoos? - Friends mostly.
How many tattoos have you gotten out of your hometown or while on tour?
- None as of now although I hope to change that on a future tour.
Do you regret getting any of your tattoos, now hate, want to replace, or have covered up, and why?
- I'm on the fence about replacing my first tattoo. The blue cross on my left arm. I have two reasons to replace it: First I got it at point when I was younger and my beliefs were different. It no longer represents who I am. All my tattoos have apersonal meaning. I'm not into getting tats just because they look cool or an artist is really good. The second reason is that it wasn't done very well by the artist at the little shop I went to. Lines intersect where they shouldn't and the coloring is off.
Have tattoos affected your life? If so, in what way?
- They brought me along the path to feeling comfortable in my own skin. Something I didnt feel as a teenager.
Have you ever been discrimination in the workplace and outside the workplace because you have tattoos?
- I have been turned down for jobs before because of my tattoos. I offered to wear a long sleeve shirt or cover but "company policy" only allowed short sleeve shirts and no visible tattoos. My right arm is covered to the wrist.
What are your thoughts about tramp stamps that many females get and so do some dudes? - I feel you shouldn't get a tattoo either in style or placement because of a trend. It's like the old tribal armband tats people used to get. Once the trend fades you look silly. Unless your covered and have sleeves and tons of other tats. Then your just running out of room.
What advice would you give to someone who was going to get their first tattoo?
- Pick a good one and don't follow any trend. It's your skin and it's for life.
Do you have any new tattoos planned or underway?
- I plan to fill my right arm up into a full sleeve. Mostly oriental scenary and landscape staring from the ocean on my wrist and leading up to the clouds and heavens on my shoulder.
Do you have an activity that you would like to mention or plug?