Artists: Jin O
Kaleidoscope Tattoo Art Studio
FRESHLY INKED: What year did you start tattooing?
JIN O: I started work 8 years ago in Korea.
How did you get into tattooing?
I met a guy who was a tattooist but who could not draw. He needed someone to draw the design on skin. I started as a drawer, then a few months later started tattooing. Tattooing is illegal in Korea. It was pretty much underground culture so it was very difficult to get into. I was lucky.
Where did you apprentice?
I am self-taught. I wish I had a apprenticeship. I think I am still learning.
Do you have any special training?
I have a fine art degree.
What conventions have you worked at? Have you won any awards? What are some of your best convention memories?
Mostly UK conventions. I have won a few awards. Best of convention at Newport Tattoo Convention, best black-and-gray for Tattoo Jam, best back piece for Liverpool Convention. My first convention was Arctic Tattoo Convention in Norway. Small but friendly—it had a very good atmosphere.
How do you describe your style?
Most of the time I have problems finding words for my style.
What inspires you as an artist?
I get inspired by every art form. Love films, painting, books, music.
What sets you apart from other artists?
I try to connect with my customers. I want to know about a person—what does a tattoo mean for them?
What other mediums do you work in? I paint on canvas and paper.
I would like to learn digital painting.
How have you branched out from tattooing?
I also paint.
What tattoo artists do you admire most?
Filip Leu. He is an amazing artist in many ways.
What kind of tattoos do you look forward to doing?
I would like to do storytelling types. For example, Pandora’s box, Ophelia’s death.
Is there anyone that you would like to tattoo?
Artists, painters, musicians, writers, dancers, etc. Their stories inspire me.
Before someone gets a tattoo what advice do you give them?
Remember, you will have it all your life.
Is there a tattoo that you haven’t done yet that you are dying to do?
Haven’t done any bodysuits. Would like to do one at some point.