This week I began to look at the individual aspects of tattoo culture. To do this I began to more in depth with two different yet very similar styles of tattoos. Black and Grey, and Traditional Japanese.
The Japanese are a honorable group of people who pride themselves in honor and traditional. This reflects in their tattoos as well. The Japanese view tattooing as a scared artwork that reflects year of practice and is often up to the artist to determine whether or not the client is worthy of the art work. A major part of this style of tattooing is that each tattoo is designed specifically for each body part so that it flows into a tattoo body suit. The stress to keep traditional Japanese tattooing honorable is something that true artist in this culture value. Horiyoshi III, is a Japanese tattooist, that believes that he, the artist is in full control of the tattoos and cares very little about what the client wants he doesn’t plan ahead and freehand most of his designs because he values the moment of tattooing. He views the spiritual bond of tattooing of art and the body as an entity that is righteous. The Experience of tattooing he relates it to life, by describing the moment. “Cherish each stroke of the needles and each second of life”
Here is one of Horiyoshi’s full body sleeves.
Black and Grey Tattoos were originated in southern California and was brought to light by the Cholos and Chicanos, who began to tattoo in prison with DIY tattoo machines. Much like the Japanese, the Mexican American artist view this style of tattoos in a certain light. the Chicano style focusses heavily on Family, Religion, and the Streets. this style is one that Japanese as far earing your tattoos as a rite of passage, The Chicanos viewed tattooing as a personal experience and in the tattoo series on Viceland, titled Needles and Pins explores gang tattoos in LA where we see the personal side of tattooing. Countless artist in this episode, stressed the importance of the relationship between the artist and the client. The artist that were tattooing symbols and gang affiliated tattoos were cautious of who to tattoo. They became aware of who was real, and deserving of certain art illustrations, because if the wrong person saw it, it could mean death to owner