Artists: Dmitriy Samohin
What year did you start tattooing?
I started tattooing over 10 years ago.
How did you get into tattooing?
I decided to become a tattoo artist during my time in the army. I discovered a tattoo magazine, went through it, and that is where I decided to become a tattoo artist. I was intrigued by this type of art form. I wanted to create on skin what is possible on paper or on canvas.
Where did you apprentice?
I am a self-taught artist.
What conventions have you worked at? Have you won any awards? What are some of your best convention memories?
I did a few conventions in Russia and Odessa, and last year we went to the Brussels convention in Belgium. In February of this year we were at the Graz convention in Austria. I have several clients who go to conventions as well and enter my work into contests. I have awards from Russia, Odessa, USA, Norway. All conventions are pleasant to attend, and I treasure good memories for each one.
How do you describe your style?
I do not like to attach my work to any one specific style. I am aware I am known for my realism, but I like every style. Every style is interesting to me and I like to do them all. The wide variety of styles keeps my work interesting and fun.
What inspires you as an artist?
My inspiration comes from everyday life—things I see walking down the street, things I hear, things I read, sometimes things just get triggered during conversations with people. My basic everyday life inspires me.
What sets you apart from other artists?
I think each artist sets their own style. Each artist is unique and famous for their work. The only difference I can think of is that some artists create work that is that different from the others, and in that way they are looked at as unique. Same as for any artist, either if that is in music, art, photography, etc. There are always a few that stand out.
What other mediums do you work in?
I paint or sketch whenever there is free time.
What tattoo artists do you admire most?
I like many talented artists, but to name a few: Shawn Barber, Alex De Pase, Robert Hernandez, Zhivko, Boris, Jeff Gogue, Victor Portugal, Phil Garcia. There are many other quality artists I also admire.
What kind of tattoos do you look forward to doing?
I like every tattoo. If I agree to do a tattoo it means I approve of the design or the idea. All my clients know I stand behind every piece I do, as I make it clear I will only agree to do what I believe in. I am not afraid to debate an idea or say no.
Before someone gets a tattoo what advice do you give them?
What is most important is that each person knows what they want. Hearing they had the desire for a specific tattoo is reassuring. Many people ask me to do something I want to do, but that is not something I will ever do. It is so important that each person knows I will work with them to create a design and work with them on their idea—giving advice, etc.—but it is their body, their life, their tattoo they will wear forever, and I do not take this lightly. I want my clients to be satisfied, happy with the work I lay on their body.