Artists: London Reese
MD Tattoo Studio
9545 Reseda Boulevard
Northridge, CA 91324
What year did you start tattooing?
How did you get into tattooing?
I started using markers and pens to design tattoos on my arms and all over my friends’ arms in junior high. I kept doing it throughout high school until I was old enough to get a real tattoo. I became obsessed with designing, drawing, and collecting tattoos. I was in college when I decided that I wanted to try tattooing.
Where did you apprentice?
I did not ever have a formal apprenticeship. I just collected more tattoos and asked the artists a ton of questions. I hung out at shops as much as I could. Most of the time, the artists were cool guys willing to share some knowledge.
Do you have any special training?
No. I grew up with a pencil in my hand. I was always drawing on something. I began taking introductory art and design classes in college when I started learning how to tattoo.
What conventions have you worked at?
I have worked a few local California conventions, the Reno show, Detroit Motor City show, and Hell City in Phoenix. I look forward to joining the circuit and doing conventions much more often and traveling the world.
How do you describe your style?
I like to do a mixture of graphic realism and neo-traditional illustration.
What inspires you as an artist?
I am constantly inspired by the world around me—life, nature, and the human form. I am inspired by the craft of being an artist. Working with your hands and creating tangible works based off of the vague ideas and concepts formed in our minds is an extremely powerful thing.
What other media do you work in?
I try to attempt working with new mediums as much as possible. I typically do a lot of illustration but I have also been playing with media such as watercolor, oils, and other varying mixed media lately.
What tattoo artists do you admire most?
I admire tattooers who constantly push the limits of the medium by aggressively and progressively challenging themselves as artists.
What kind of tattoos do you look forward to doing?
I look forward to bringing powerful concepts to life—like large-scale pieces using bold graphic realism that tells a story which both inspires and raises questions.
Is there anyone that you would like to tattoo?
Before someone gets a tattoo what advice do you give them?
Eat well, sleep well, and breathe.
Is there a tattoo that you haven’t done yet that you are dying to do?
I really want to tattoo the character Chubbs from the Adam Sandler film Happy Gilmore. I want to do a graphic portrait of him with his broken wooden hand holding an alligator eye. Don’t steal my idea! Ha ha.