The Art of Ink: Watercolor

The Art of Ink: Watercolor


(mellow indie rock music) – [Woman] I’ve always thought
differently about tattooing, right from the very beginning. It didn’t make sense to me to be constantly putting
the same images on people. It was interesting
to me to give people more options about what
they could get tattooed. – [Woman] I was always really
interested in tattooing in a way that looked
more like fine art. – [Woman] The
transition of the color, the smoothness and
brightness, I was just, “I want to do this!” – [Man] There was a lot of
flack from other tattoo artists. A lot of traditional
tattoo artists didn’t really understand
what the work was about. – [Woman] A lot of
my friends and peers thought I was absolutely
nuts! (laughing) Like, totally fu (bleep) ‘in nuts, like, “What are
you doing?” (laughing) (moves into mellow funky music) – I had my apprenticeship
in a street shop. And you know, at the
time, I was taught that you start with
a black outline and then you basically, you
shade all of the color into it. But it sort of didn’t
make that much sense to me if somebody wanted
something to look realistic to throw a black
outline around it. So initially, I was just
free-handing a lot of it. And the thing that
I would always hear when people looked at
my portfolio was like “Wow, I’ve never seen
anything like this! “It looks like watercolor!” And it was always
sort of funny to me, because I have actually
never even worked with watercolor,
ever. (laughing) – When I started tattooing, I was a very traditional
tattoo artist. And then, after about three or four years, I
started to experiment. Started adding paint
splatters, and drips, and watercolor elements
into the tattoos, and little by little, streamlined that into
the style that I do now. (moves into upbeat funky music) – I like to incorporate
watercolor elements
into my work, often as background elements
or different layers. I do a lot of watercolor
painting, so the
style of coloring is part of what informs
my tattooing as well. – My background is
realistic style. So I still, like, very
into realistic detail. And I put watercolor
stain around it so it can make the design
more fun and interesting. (moves into smooth funky music) – [Amanda] Tattoo time! (rustling) – Alright. (laughing) – [Amanda] For color work,
I start with a grey line. So technically, everything I do does actually have
a black outline, it’s just mixed with water and
hidden underneath the color. (buzzing) – Some of the elements
of a watercolor tattoo would be washes of
color, drips, splatters. It’s loose, I guess,
what’s a good word for it. – I like to layer the tattooing the same way that I
would layer a painting. So most of what I do
requires multiple sessions to get the correct amount
of saturation and detail. – I made this image for her, a half illustrative way
and half watercolor style. Watercolors tattoo
style is very bright, and beautiful, and
whimsical, so a lot of people who are against tattoo
even think differently now. And I think it’s really
cool for tattoo industry. (moves into funky dance music) – I think Amanda is one
of the artists that, she was pushing an
envelope well before anybody else started
experimenting with stuff. – I initially just
started to kind of talk to a lot of my
friends and clients about this weird idea that I had about, ya know, what would
an abstract tattoo look like. – She was the only other person I had ever seen do
anything like it, and she took into a
completely different direction that no one else has tried. So it was super inspiring. – I feel like I’ve never really completely fit
into the industry. I’ve always just had
very different ideas, so I just decided I was
gonna do whatever the (bleep) I wanted. (moves into smooth
bassy dance music) – [June] I saw Sasha Unisex
work from her instagram. It was so different! It was so original and so cute! – Ondrej was one of the artists that, when I looked
at his stuff, it was like nothing
else I had seen before. Little by little,
the trend caught on, and it became
watercolor tattoos. And more and more artists
sort of took a leap of faith that these tattoos
will have longevity. (moves into spacey dance music) – There are definitely critics who do not approve
of no outline tattoos with minimal use of
black if not no black. – People would make claims that
the longevity of the tattoos weren’t gonna hold up and
that the work wasn’t sound. – With color work, it
may soften up over time, but it’s not something
that’s going to disappear. I mean, you’d really
have to get a lot of UV damage, which
would be the same as putting a painting in
a brightly lit window. – Every tattoo is going to age. Every tattoo will probably need
to be touched up eventually. But there’s a whole lot
more that you can do with a color tattoo, and
there’s a whole lot less that you can do with a
very heavy black tattoo. – The criticism doesn’t
really hold water. (laughing) It
doesn’t hold water. – It’s a style. It’s a preference
in style, I think. And that said, this
is seven years old. So, you know, (laughing)
proving it every day. (moves into airy funky music) – All of a sudden,
this watercolor started to spread out, like,
on Facebook and everywhere. – More and more
people are doing it, more and more people want it. It’s different. People are tired of
getting the same tattoo that’s been done
for a hundred years. – I think the more that artists are attracted to the medium,
the bigger it will be, and the more innovative
it will become. – I really want people to
see that a tattoo machine is just a tool, and, ya
know, there’s so much more that can be done
with it in terms of looking at it as an art form. (moves into funky hopeful music) – I think tattoo artist is one
of the best job in the world. (laughing) You can give someone
happiness every day. – It’s something
that I really enjoy, that I never wanna stop doing. And the more I can do
original art as a tattoo, the more that that’s,
it’s even more fun to do. – It’s incredible
to be an artist. It’s taken me 40
years to realize and to finally get to
the point in my life where, like, that’s
what I get to be! That’s my day-to-day
life now, and it’s (bleep) in cool. ‘Scuse me; I guess
I can’t say that. It’s cool! It’s (bleep) in cool. – It’s exciting for me to try
to create something unique and special for that
one person at that time. And you have a very
intense connection and interaction with that
person, and then it’s over. And there is a new person to
meet and learn something from.

87 thoughts on “The Art of Ink: Watercolor”

  1. Awesome watching this, amazing artist's especially June Jung. I love her dearly. I have 14 tattoos from her and more to come. not only an amazing artist but a beautiful person❤

  2. I think there's a little missunderstanding about watercolor tattoos. The fact that some of the tattoos don't have the border black lines or have a sketchy appearance doesn't mean they're part of this style (obviously these are two watercolor characeristics but no every single tattoo should be considered). [Pink flowers at 3:00, DEFINITELY NOT A WATERCOLOR TATTOO]

    If you guys like this style, JaviWolfInk (on Instagram) has incredible watercolor designs!

  3. ya they only look cool that day, give them 6 mo or a year and then you have a horrible looking blurry tattoo. black is what holds a tattoo together and keeps it in focus.

  4. que carajo es esa mesa llena de punteras descartables y de acero usadas agujas y una maquina eso es un asco ,porque muestra eso?

  5. You've got to be careful with colour choice and how packed in the colour is, if both elements are poor it can end up looking like a bruise around the tattoo. AKA if you want a watercolour tattoo to last DONT GO CHEAP

  6. its so sad thinking about all These Great Tattoo artists Living in the us and that i will Never get tattooed by them

  7. People say these tattoos aren't going to last. Yeah, they won't if you don't take care of them and don't go back for touch ups when you're supposed to.

  8. honestly don't like these types of tattoos at all. they won't last because of so much color and no outline. you'll end up spending too much for touch ups. but it's still art and people can get what they want just not for me

  9. They look so pretty! I honestly kind of like how they look after they've faded even more than when they're newly done lmao

  10. Five second in and I was like… I've been there! Amanda Wachob is amazing and I love the tattoo I got from her.

  11. I want most of my tattoos black but i just know in my soul i am going to get some watercolor work. I've always enjoyed watercolor paintings and how thw colors make me feel,this is so awesome! I

  12. I personally wouldn't like an abstract tattoo because if you can't look at it and tell it's abstract RIGHT AWAY, you'll be getting a million questions about it every day like what is it supposed to be etc

  13. Wow all of these artists are amazing!!! I absolutely love watercolor tattoos! I have a lot of self harming scars that I want to cover up and I've always wanted to do it with a watercolor tattoo. I just need to find the perfect artists to do it for me!

  14. all of my color tattoos are watercolor and i plan on getting many many more, you have to find a good artist who understands watercolor, and when you do it comes out amazing 😀

  15. This is like a scam. This whole style. Several tattoos in this video all ready look like they are falling apart and disintegrating into the skin. Just imagine another 5-10 years. Yes it's true that all tattoos age and change with time but there is a reason why traditional tattoos look the way they do, because they stand the test of time. This is basically a style were you take away all the fundamental concepts on why tattoos are applied the way they are and you make "skin art" for people who think it's cool because it looks different and who really don't want tattoos. Because these things are going to be smudges with time, you are going to be ashamed to call this tattoos after 10-15 years. Don't do it. Buy it as a print or original to hang on your wall if this is what you really want, it's not for the skin.

    And the girl who want's people to come back several times, to pay for several sessions, on a tattoo that's going to fade so much anyway. Great way to make money of people who don't know enough yet. And even if her arm tattoo that she calls proof is 7 years old, show us pictures of when it was fresh so we can judge.

    And the guy who says people are tired of getting the same tattoo that has been done for a hundred years.. he's just ignorant. Turn back the clock 100 years and we are in 1917. Very little tattooing going on. American traditional style (old school, sailor tattoos) came up during the second world war so that's all ready later than what he said. And for anyone keeping their ears to the ground or even barely taking the time to look around it's clear that there is so much novel ideas and styles being done INSIDE of American traditional. This is the voice of a guy who talks like he listened to Jazz music for the first time for one afternoon and concluded it's all the same and nothing new is happening since it was invented.
    Don't listen to these fools.

    The ace card that they think they have is all this talk about their art being original and "high brow" or what not. Again, ignorance and "holier than thou" type attitude. People doing "real" tattoos are also doing art and lots of it, and it's no less original.

  16. "They will not withstand longevity." Ultra weird comment. In what ways? The ink fading? Whether or not the person will love it? The style? Because, from what I understand, tattoos are a commitment and the receiver usually is PRETTY SURE they want it forever, and all the maintenance that comes with it…

  17. If you get a tattoo and need a touch up, I think that's a sign that you got a bad tattoo in the first place. A good tattoo is one that is will actually stand on its own and not need a touch up

  18. If I got the money for a touch up on a tattoo, I would much rather get a new, better, properly done tattoo

  19. i just thing just maybe you not i agree but victor octaviano from brazil could be in this video he is one of the most brilliant waterclours tattoo artist ever he translate the watercolours for tattoos perfectly

  20. Fuck this style. Imagine yourself at 70 with a watercolor sleeve, its going to look like some unicorn took a shit on your skin

  21. Who cares if it doesn't last as long, you just get it touched up… What matters is to have a style of tattoo that you like!

  22. so many people tag shit watercolor and obviously have never actually DONE WATERCOLOR  until you do you wont get that your doing it  wrong ….. like all the shit they just showed

  23. black outlines work as a barrier to help keep the color or shading in place as you age. watercolor tattoos are going to age a lot faster than any tattoo with an outline.

  24. Aesthetics or personal taste aside, it's good to make tattooing for everyone. Not just tough guy bikers and criminals. True art form.

  25. The second article (by Joel Wright) cited as being anti-watercolor tattoo is from an actual watercolor tattoo artist. The article isn't against them, it addresses the common concern of how they age and basically says what these other artists say – they age like most other tattoos. I literally just got my tattoo touched up by Joel (not because of how it aged, because it was my first tattoo and I'm a literal moron and picked at it) which is why I was browsing videos about this stuff. Lo and behold there he is being cited as being against his very profession lol.

  26. There is one comment that bugged me a little.
    "People are tired of getting the same tattoo that's been done for 100 years."
    Yes, dude. Watercolor is new and different. But if you go to an artist and get a piece of custom art made for you, its not the same tattoo that's been done for 100 years. Its your tattoo, made just yesterday.

  27. So I actually have a watercolor octopus, well more so actually an octopus drawing and detail, but with watercolor for the coloring, but still watercolor elements. It works really well though, cuz even if and when the color starts fading, with the watercolor being as it is it'll still look normal. It won't lose much of it's artistic integrity because as they said, it's a bit more loose.

  28. Its not watercolor that is the problem, Japanese and american are based on water color. Contrast is always the issue with every tattoo.

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