For the last couple of weeks, illustrative tattoo artist London Reese has been documenting the progress of his latest full back piece on Instagram. Now that the piece is finished, Reese has shared a fully healed photo of the tattoo and we couldn't be more impressed. For an artist who usually works in color illustrative, Reese still manages to knock pieces out of the park when he tackles other styles.
Take a look at the piece above and see what it looks like when Reese works in black and grey. This gorgeous stylized elephant, which Reese has labeled "Forever Deathless," is comprised of amazingly detailed fine line work, soft shading, and an overall gorgeous drawing. Being an illustrative artist it is crucial that Reese be a phenomenal drawer as well as tattooer, and this piece represents just how well Reese can compose a large-scale design.
Everything from the mandala-like background to the intricate headdress to the subtle geometric design in the elephant's trunk make this piece stand out. The lighting contrast that Reese rendered through his black and grey shading techniques shines without overpowering the details of the drawing.
For anyone interested in getting work from Reese, check out some of the coolest pieces in his portfolio right here. Also make sure to check out the amazing Vatican Studios in Lake Forest, California, a shop known for their remarkable resident artists, such as Reese, and the breathtaking interior which has been designed to look like a miniature version of Vatican City.