Tattoo Photography Services
Creating Memories From The Heart For The Heart
Let me help you document your tattoo journey photographically.
I have always been fascinated with the art of tattooing…body art! Twelve years ago, an annual tradition was started in Hawaii, The Pacific Ink & Art Expo, later to be called The Hawaii Tattoo Expo. It ran for ten years & I was blessed to have had the opportunity to document & become their Oahu photographer. In the time it ran, I was able to meet so many talented tattoo artists from all over the country and many local artists whom I have become friends with! This also sparked my traditional tabori, poke style tattoo journey, a full sleeve designed by @tatsuotoshithefirst, Horitoshi Family. This being my first tattoo, I would have loved to have someone document my journey with this process unfortunately, it’s very difficult to take pictures of myself while I’m being tattooed.
The above photo of Sulu’ape Keone Nunes & Keli’i Makua was featured as a vehicle wrap on the official Hawaii Tattoo Expo van. It was also featured on the cover of the Honolulu Star Advertiser cover story for TGIF.
There are many different types of individuals out there who get tattoos just because they can, for others, it’s almost an addiction. Then there’s someone like me who wants a meaning or story behind the inked art. It’s not to say that one way is right or the other is wrong, it is a personal journey that you have to decide on.
This picture was captured by a friend of mine, Eric Malina, for the start of the second sleeve on my left arm. I was honored that my friend Sulu’ape Keone Nunes, @suluape_keone, took on my request to do a traditional Hawaiian tap-style tattoo, also known as Kakau in Hawaiian.
These are the moli “tools” of Keli’i Makua I captured at the 2019 Pacific Ink & Art Expo.
With my mindset of wanting someone to document the process, I’ve started to reach out to tattoo artists to offer a very niche style of memories. Theoretically, like an engagement photo session, having a tattoo inked permanently on your body is hopefully a once-in-a-lifetime thing you want to move forward with.
I was so ecstatic that I had a great opportunity to document 2 new clients of Tatsutoshi, the first with a full bodysuit & the second with a full back. For the full-back tattoo, I was able to capture Tatsutoshi sensei doing the initial pen drawing on his client’s back. For the full-body suit, I started with the first shading session & missed the preliminary drawing & outline sessions.
Rice, on his first tattoo session with Tatsuotoshi sensei as he, draws the initial design before line work.
Micah, his first shading session after finishing all of the line work at a previous session.
Haruki, another tattoo artist, having a session with Tatsutoshi sensei
On one of my recent Honolulu photography sessions with tattoo artist Tatsutoshi sensei, the first of the Ikebukuro Horitoshi family, @tatsutoshithefirst. He practices the art of tabori tattoo, which entails a bamboo or metal stick with a group of needles at the tip & is used to “poke” the ink into the skin, very similar to what a machine does but at a slower pace, see image below. From my understanding, this tabori hand poke style lasts longer & looks better as it ages. A full-body suit or a full-back design will take years to complete, but I have committed myself to documenting their tattoo journey…Aloha
Before going forward with your tattoo photo session, it’s very important to get permission from both the tattoo artist & the owner of the tattoo shop to have me come in to photograph your tattoo session.
How much notice do I need to schedule a tattoo photo session?
I prefer at least four weeks’ notice prior to your photo session appointment. However, depending on my schedule, I can schedule you with a minimum of two weeks.
How long will I spend photographing your tattoo session?
Each session will be a minimum of 20 minutes at the location of your tattoo artist shop. You’ll receive 20-30 edited pictures.
For pricing, please check my PRICING page.
When will I receive my final edited pictures?
Delivery of final images will be in 5-7 days and will be delivered to a private Dropbox folder, there, you have 30 days to download your pictures. All final edited photos will be delivered in a low-resolution jpeg format.
How can I pay you?
I do accept Venmo, PayPal, or cash.
What can I do with the pictures you deliver to me?
You can use all images I deliver to you for personal use on your website or to share on any social media platform, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter…As the photographer, I hold all copyrights to the pictures I provide you.
What you CANNOT DO with the pictures I deliver to you?
You are prohibited from selling all images that I deliver to you for any monetary gain. Such as printing multiple copies & reselling said pictures as physical prints and or digital downloads. Selling the pictures to a magazine or for commercial use in print or digital form. Please understand as the photographer of these images, I own the copyright to all pictures taken & cannot be resold in any form, in print or a digital format, without my permission.