Cre­ate a strik­ing fan­tasy tat­too

From ini­tial de­sign con­sid­er­a­tions to ink­ing on the body, tat­too artist Ien Levin shares his process for pro­duc­ing en­gag­ing skin art

ImagineFX - - Workshops -

Tat­too artist Ien Levin pro­duces en­gag­ing skin art.

Since my early child­hood I’ve been draw­ing, try­ing out ev­ery tool and medium I can get my hands on. In my teenage years I was an air­brush artist, then a pho­tog­ra­pher. But I’ve never at­tended art school and didn’t ac­tively try to im­prove my draw­ing skills be­fore I be­came a tat­too ap­pren­tice. In­deed, my in­tro­duc­tion to tat­toos was ac­ci­den­tal, yet had a big ef­fect on my life.

There were al­ready a lot of tat­toos on me and by then I had lost my in­ter­est in pho­tog­ra­phy. So I de­cided to try some­thing new. I wasn’t aim­ing to be­come a well-known tat­tooist with a recog­nis­able style. But I be­came fas­ci­nated with the art of tat­too­ing and in turn worked as hard as I could to get where I am now.

My main in­spi­ra­tions are wildlife, sci­ence and en­gi­neer­ing in all forms, re­li­gious/oc­cult so­ci­eties, the Mid­dle Ages and math­e­mat­i­cal/geo­met­ric art.

It’s dif­fi­cult to ex­plain my process when I de­sign a tat­too. I have a dis­cus­sion with a client, then I draw the de­sign and tat­too the skin with my de­sign. The process from start to fin­ish can take any amount of time – like any art form, re­ally. Paint­ing a pic­ture isn’t an ex­act sci­ence, and like­wise nei­ther is tat­too­ing one of my de­signs.

Be­fore tak­ing the de­sign into Pho­to­shop, I use pen­cils and pens, rulers, com­passes and trac­ing paper. Noth­ing spe­cial. It’s what you pro­duce at the end of the day with these ba­sic tools that should catch the eye.

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