A Guide for Students of Body Modification
By: Richard LeMay [email protected]
I have decided to distribute this publication free of cost for the better learning of my fellow artists. I have worked on this book for two years with no monetary gain and ask that you may distribute this as much as you like as long as the information is not changed. This book is to help you and many others, please respect that idea and my hard work. Don't change the information. You may feel free to contact me for further information on tattooing via my email ( m [email protected] ) or you may find me from time to time on my favorite tattoo forum, ( http://www.ink-trails.com ) For the record, I don't want to hear any crap about misspelled words, your getting this free and I don't care about grammar.
© Copy Write Richard LeMay 2008 All Rights Reserved
I would like to thank everyone that made it possible for me to write this book,
I would like to thank Casey, (my loving fiancé), for putting up with long nights. I would like to thank my current apprentice Rustina Taylor for helping edit and for all her hard work, because I can't spell at all. Airik Moore, my second artist, thanks bro for running the shop while I'm occupied or just plain beat. I want to thank the half of my family that supported my decision to be a tattoo artist, and thank the other half that supported me in other ways. I also want to thank every friend and client I, and the Shop have. I could not have been what I wanted if not for you guys. I also want to give a big shout to all the moderators and members of www.ink-trails.com for dealing with me at my most stressed, you are a great bunch, and a wonderful site.
Last, I would like to dedicate this book to my son Psyron Gauge LeMay who is due in three months. Thanks for giving me something to work for.
Welcome to my world. My name is Rich LeMay and I am a "Tattoo Artist." I have been tattooing for longer than I have the ability to remember, and its all I have ever wanted to do. I have fought all my life to be a tattoo artist despite the bulk of the world telling me it was a pipe dream. I immersed myself in a world like no other. A battle field of the boundaries set by society which told me that I would be less of a person if I followed my true calling. I have worked my way from being all but homeless at the age of sixteen to operating several studios over the years and now own a respected tattoo studio (Madd Hatter Tattoos in Spencer, WV) at twenty-eight. My own trials and tribulations to see how far I was willing to leap from the edge of what is considered normal life was for the sake of being a tattoo artist. Not many tattoo artists really know what they have or the true level of dedication it deserves. It has been a long and arduous path which I would do again if it were twice as difficult. Tattooing has, for me, been the root that every piece of happiness in my life has grown from. I can only wish you the same fortune I have had.
As I reach the point in my life where I can finally say with pride that I am a tattoo artist (not that I just do tattoos for a living) I see the ideas and true nature of the art fading out and turning into something else. The tattoo industry has become just that, an industry of profit not art. The true ideals of the artistry are fading away as the true tattoo artist becomes a dying breed giving into the next generation. My belief is that tattooing is the last true form of art left in the world. People no longer work to be professional painters unless they are painting a house. There are no more great poets, or play writes that walk among us. Now the last true form of self expression is turning into a drive through industry which is based of everyone thinking that being a tattoo artist makes you the same ranks as a rock star. I have happily written this publication to share with you the opinions and facts I have learned over the years to help instill the next generation of artists with a guide of technical knowledge and the true meaning of what it is to be an artist. I can only hope that the next generation of tattoo professionals treats this industry with the strength and integrity that it deserves. Through proper dedication and sacrifice you will find a joy that cannot be explained by a profession of any other type. You must understand that becoming a true tattoo artist requires all of you; your whole way of life has to be discipline and dedication to what you want to become. There are no part time tattoo artists; you do not stop being a tattoo artist when you go home at night. Your artistry and the quality of who you are as an artist is judged by three things alone, your dedication, your personality, and your technical knowledge of the lifestyle you lead. I hope it will bring you the happiness and peace it has brought me. The last true form of art is left in your hands, treat it right.
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