Artists: Angel Rivera
What year did you start tattooing: After my son was murdered in 2005. I had stopped airbrushing and put my mind to tattooing. I began practicing on pig skin until i felt comfortable enough to inject my ink on actual flesh in September 2006.
Do you have any special training: I am a self taught artist. I would say my color theory and shading came from being an airbrush artist and painter. So I know what to look for as far as contrast, highlighting and blending colors.
Tell us about the style of your work: I have no specif style because I draw anything i see or whatever is brought to me. I do a lot of freehand art (pen to skin), and when shading and filling in it is usually (needle to skin). I like to get into all aspects of tattoo art. I like a challenge, so therefore i will take on anything.
Conventions usually worked: I've been to quite a few conventions. However i only worked one in Steel City Pittsburgh, PA. I plan on working more conventions an get more involved with them.
Where did you apprentice?: I am self taught. I couldn't get a break for apprenticing no matter how much they loved my art no one would give me a chance. I have no idea why. That dark cloud always followed me even with regular jobs. So i just took the initiative myself and learned on my own.
What tattoo artist do you most admire: Well i have quite a few to name because there are some extremely talented artist. They would be Dimitry Samohin, Mike Devries, Nikko Hurtado, Bob Tyrrell, Franco Vescovi and the list goes on. every artist as there own techniques and styles.
Before someone gets a tattoo what advice do you give them?: I first ask them if they are sure they're going to want this tattoo and be proud of it 5 years down the line. Then if i don't agree with the placement I would suggest other areas maybe at a different size or if given permission to spruce it up I make what they want better and tasteful according to the area of placement agreed upon.
How did you get into tattooing: Before I tattooed I was an airbrush artist in North Philadelphia, PA. I worked at Mikes airbrush and that is where i met Adam Carrasquillo, a co-worker of mine. He is a great artist. He gave me the idea of tattooing because he liked my art. He offered to help me put an order in for all the supplies i needed. Adam use to work in Spring City, PA but due to unfortunate circumstances he stopped and continued airbrushing. So when my supplies came in the mail I purchased my set of pig skin and started from there. I first learned fully about machines and tuning. Then off i went starting off with a portrait and other little things like skulls and roses.
What inspires you to be an artist: What inspires me is to put out great work and to build clientele which helps build friendship, family, and networking. Learning new things from different minds sets of different people an artists.
What kind of tattoos do you look forward to doing: I look forward to doing portraits, abstract/surrealism and new school.
Is there a tattoo that you haven't done yet that you are dying to do: A tattoo i am dying to do would be a mixture of abstract, surreal cubism and realism.