Tatu Baby has most certainly become a notable figure within the tattoo community. With determination and a remarkable aptitude for art, the ink artist, born Katherine Flores, was able to not only stand on her own two feet alongside the predominant male artists in the competitive tattoo industry, but she also surpassed a lot of them.
Today, Tatu Baby is a new mom to little Deniro Roman Soto, and she also recently opened up a shop in her hometown of Miami. The talented Latina ink slinger took some time out of her hectic schedule, for her first print interview since becoming a mom, to chop it up with Urban Ink about her new tattoo gallery, the balance of her many roles, her re-emergence in reality TV, and her budding romance with another well-known Latino tattoo artist.
In 2015, you officially opened up your own tattoo shop in Miami.
A couple of months ago I opened up a new shop called Till The End Tattoo Gallery. I used to work very privately—me and my business partner, Cesar Morales—and I think it was time to take that big step—opening up a big street shop. It’s a huge commitment, a lot of responsibilities, so it took a lot of work. But we finally opened the doors, and thank God, everything’s been working out great.
How many artists do you have in there now, other than Cesar and yourself?
Right now we have four artists. We have Loz Sorevilo and Alex “Chino” Brenes. They’re both good black and grey artists. They started with us when we had the private studio. They were still in the process of learning and getting better. I think that we all grew together. They’re now more established with their skills.
We saw you pop back up on Ink Master for its “Redemption” spin-off. How did it feel to tattoo on camera again?
I think when it comes to filming, it’s become very second nature to me. When I go, I feel comfortable, however I am excited because the end result is that the world is going to see what I’m capable of. So I kind of just put my game face on and get to it.
Did you miss that environment?
To be honest, yes. I missed the filming and the tattooing, the challenges, working with the whole network. It’s an overall great experience. Like I said, I feel very comfortable with it. It’s definitely something that I like to get into.
Is Tatu Baby done with reality TV?
Hopefully not. I’ve been working on a couple of things, so si Dios quiere [God willing], hopefully everything goes great, and people will see me more on TV.
Tell us about the documentary, Miami Our City, that you recently worked on.
[Jose Navas], a Miami director, contacted me and said that he was working on a film. It’s a Miami-based documentary, and he wanted to use all of the local Miami celebrities. People that represent our city, have done a lot and accomplished a lot in their careers People who represent Miami in a great light. He also wanted to show people how Miami has changed throughout the years. How it’s a Latino-centric city, and how what we’re doing over here is positive. The concept sounded great to me. Me being a Latina female tattoo artist and achieving what I have achieved, so, I was like, “Hell yeah, I want to come out in that documentary!”
We haven’t featured you since you became a mom. How have you been able to balance being a new mom, a shop owner, and an artist?
Becoming a mom, being a businesswoman, and tattoo artist, is definitely like juggling a lot with only two hands (plus opening a new shop). But, thank God, everything has worked great. I am a very hardworking woman, I am very dedicated to my family and my work, and I just try to balance it out as best as I can.
He’s based in L.A. and you’re in Miami. How are you able to keep the romance going strong despite the long distance?
It’s very difficult. Long-distance relationships are hard, and when you have two hardworking people, it’s even harder. Right now, we’re trying to make the best of it. Thank God we have the resources to travel and see each other as much as possible. Hopefully in the future, we’ll see if maybe one of us moves closer to the other.
Miami won’t be Miami without Tatu Baby, though!
(Laughs.) Hopefully, I can convince him to move to Miami.
What’s next for Tatu Baby? Where do you see yourself five years from now?
Five years from now, I hopefully will own my shop here, and maybe in another city. And just continue traveling and working hard, and continue doing better tattoos.
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