Custom Tattoo Blog

Cross Cover up

ImageThis is the lovely Lesley; she came in to see me about some old tattoos she had on her back that she wanted covered up. She had a printout of a lower back tattoo featuring wings and a heart with lock and keyhole but wasn't sure that it was the image she wanted. Mostly, she just liked the wings. After we met and she thought about it for awhile, she decided that she wanted a cross for the cover ups and that it would be the base, the anchor for wings spreading over her upper back--which will work perfectly. The cross conforms to the cover up formula: the new image has to be bigger, darker and has to contain more detail, to move and fool the eye. Click on the Read More link to see photos of the drawing and the results of our first session.

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Celtic Cross

ImageCraig came in to see me with his sister when we were finishing up her tattoos. Here he describes his experience in his own words: "I have been interested in getting a tattoo for several years. I knew I wanted the design to be a Celtic cross. Elements I wanted included were knotwork, fleur de lis, and something to represent my zodiac sign Gemini, the twins. Later I did some research online and e-mailed Victoria some photos of Celtic crosses and other artwork that I liked. She included all the elements that I asked her to and created a tattoo for me. I ended up wanting to make some changes and recreated the tattoo in Visio, a vector based drawing program. I also used a program called ArtRage. I worked on several different versions of the tattoo and ended up removing some elements and added a dragonfly and some additional knotwork. When the design was the way I wanted it, I e-mailed it to Victoria. She modified it so it could be tattooed. I am extremely happy with working with Victoria; she has been patient and supportive all the way through this process." Click on the Read More link to see photos of the drawing and the results of our first session, which we did today.

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The Power of Words

ImageAndrea had an amazing experience and wanted a tattoo to reflect it. Here's what happened, in her own words, "As a writer, I generally work alone with my art. With this tattoo design, something special happened. I wrote a short poem at an art collective gathering that deals with the power of words and their impact on the heart, and had drawn a small picture (badly - I am a writer) of the basic design of this tattoo. About six months later, I was at the same gathering, and that night we were working collaboratively with other artists who worked in a different medium. The friend I collaborated with read the first sentence of a story I started and created the first draft of what is now on my arm - it was almost exactly the same as the doodle I did the first time! I showed her the poem and my first drawing, and she painted the design that I now have on my arm. If you look closely you can see her signature in the bottom left root of the tree." Click on the Read More link to see photos of the drawing I adapted from the original watercolor painting and the results of our first session.

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Om Namah Shivaya

ImageAfter some deliberation, Maharaj decided that he wanted a tattoo of the Hindu god Shiva on his right arm. Raj plays the guitar and wondered if we could have Shiva holding a guitar, as well as displaying some of his usual attributes. It took us awhile but after three pencil drawings, I was able to come up with a full color drawing that we were both happy with. It was his first tattoo and Raj sat straight through for three hours without a break! Click on the Read More link to see photos of the drawing and the results of our first session.

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Latina Picante

ImageLisbet loves dolphins and found a fantastic tattoo depicting two swimming through a coral reef. She came in to see me with a printout of it and said, "That's exactly what I want," which made my job very easy. All I had to do was resize it for the area of the body that she wanted it tattooed on-- her right shoulder blade-- and redraw it. Click on the Read More link to see photos of the drawing and the results of our second session.

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Custom Cover up

ImageOn a road trip with some friends awhile ago, Chloe got a small tattoo on her upper back. Now she wanted to do something different and cover that tattoo with something more complicated.She brought in her own drawing of her design ideas and some examples of Nautilus shells and Maori tats that interested her. See the Read More button to find out what we came up with-- before, stencil and after photos.

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Three Children

ImageSamantha and Zachary wanted tattoos with their children's names in them but they wanted different elements (Sam wanted a butterfly but Zach didn't) and different styles of lettering. Zach had a previous tat that he wanted incorporated into his new one. So I came up with very different tattoos (see the Read More button below) even though the names are the same. We are finished with Zach's but are working on Sam's second one (with their son Michael's name in it.)

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Africa Cover up

ImageLyndell had some old tattoos on his back that he wanted to do something with-- he wasn't sure what but when he showed them to me I said that what we needed was a total back cover up, as the old work was pretty far gone (see the Read More button below for pictures.)  For a theme, he suggested Africa, with Egyptian godesses, lions, the jungle, whatever, "just no snakes! I don't like snakes." Because this is a cover up, we had to adhere to the cover up formula (larger, darker, more detailed, body position, etc.) and so the plan is to use the large goddess with her complicated jewelry, costume and wings to do the major work and fill out the rest of the back with the lion and jungle and desert scenes. We completed the gray lining (getting the stencil in the skin as a blue print) yesterday, which took three hours-- and will start tattooing the outline in next week. 

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Purple Lupines

ImageAshley says she's wanted to get a tattoo for awhile but was having a hard time finding the right image. She loves the mountains and does alot of hiking and mountain climbing and wanted something connected to that. She sent me some pictures of her favorite locations and this is the design I came up with. (See the Read More button below.) We completed the outlining and gray shading at her first session and will lay the color over everything at her next session to finish.

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Mucha Girls

ImageLast year Shane came in with copies of some lovely lithographs by Alphonse Mucha that she wanted tatooed on her back, one on each side of a piece that was already tattooed in the middle of her back. (See the Read More button below.) We were able to get the outlining on both pieces done and are now starting to fill in the gray shading and next session, the color. I was really excited to recreate such amazing works of art as tattoos (see the drawings) and am super glad to work on them again.

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Contact me for an appointment at 503 807-7863 or email me at

833 SE Main #104
Portland OR 97214

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