Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Featured Tattoo Artist | Jon Sanford

Name: Jon Sanford
Age: 24
Location: Portsmouth, NH

What attracted you to tattooing?
"The lifestyle and background that I saw that was associated with tattooing when i was a kid. Seeing the type of people that wore them, and the overall toughness of tattoos always struck an interest with me. I was always a little punk so I figured getting tattoos was just a way to continue that when i got older."

Was it hard to find an apprenticeship?
"It was hard at first to find an apprenticeship, but I lucked out and found a place where i could learn the basics and continue my career after that."

How many years have you been tattooing?

"I've been tattooing a little over 2 years."

What inspires you?
"There really isn't any one thing that inspires me. Seeing things in every day life inspires me. People, music, movies, art, are all things that i draw inspiration and motivation from."

Who are your favourite tattoo artists?
"Bob Wicks and Ben Corday are two iconic tattooers that I look up to and draw influence from. More modern tattooers i would say i look up to shops as a whole rather than individual tattooers. Blackheart Tattoo, King's Ave, Smith Street, Spider Murphy's and a handful of others are putting out some of the best tattoos in the world. Always looking forward to seeing new work from them."

How would you describe your tattoo style?
"I would say my tattooing is American Traditional but a little bit more stylized and detailed. I like my tattoos to look like vintage and classic but with a modern feel to them, if that makes sense."

What have you learned in your years in the industry?
"What I've learned and my advice for possible tattooers coincide with each other. I would say that I've learned, through trial and error, that the best thing to do in the "industry" is to keep to yourself and try to learn as much as possible. Have your thoughts and opinions, but there's a time and a place for them. I'm always trying to progress and push myself, if i wasn't then I don't think there would be any reason to keep going."

What advice do you have to people considering careers in tattooing?
"For someone considering becoming a tattooer, I hope that they're doing it for the right reasons."

What are some of the best things you have experienced as a result of your career?
"The best things I've gotten from tattooing are the people I've met, the places I've gone, and watching myself progress as an artist. It's a great feeling seeing how much you've learned over a period of time and having other people notice it as well."

Where do you currently tattoo? 
I currently tattoo at Iron Works Tattoo in Portsmouth, NH