Tattoo Age: Grime (Part 3/3)

Tattoo Age: Grime (Part 3/3)

GRIME: The idea that I would
create something that’s going to elevate tattooing is
pretty ridiculous. Because people are going to do
what they’re going to do. So I might be able to do a good
tattoo now and then and somebody’s going to get it. But there’s still going to be a
thousand other people lining up to get fucking really
horrific tattoos. HENRY LEWIS: He’s a well-rounded
tattooer. You can tell he has
like a background in traditional Americana. I think that’s kind of like
working with Hardy, where he got that from, and working with
Aaron Cain and Marcus Pacheco, that biomechanical
work that he does. I would say his style is
definitely rooted in Japanese work from the Masters. He’s taken notes from like
Horioshi III, Filip Leu, and he’s well-rounded in all these
different facets of tattooing. He’s coined the “Grime Style.”
And that’s all taken from these educated styles of
tattooing and mastering them and then flipping them. [MUSIC PLAYING] CIV: I like the unexpectedness
of his work, where I’m a fan of all the black claw stuff,
and the silhouette, and the really strong images. But then he’ll just bust out
some pain in the ass little single needle stuff just
to show skill. I think anybody who has
identifiable work, whether it’s traditional, or Japanese,
or just their own style, people are going to want
to collect from you. I think tattooers took notice
quicker than just fans. Because I think when you’re in
it, you can kind of see when something is special. CHRIS O’DONNELL: It just seemed
like he had some other ideas in his head that he wanted
to get out and not just emulate his favorite
tattooers. Grime started doing lots
of eyeballs with fire. -Is this the kind of fire that
people would copy from him? CHRIS O’DONNELL: The second he
started doing this kind of stuff with this signature fire,
it was horrible how many people were ripping him off. Everybody started doing that. It was so obvious what they
were looking at when they would draw a tattoo. GRIME: I did some strange style
of fire for a little while that people definitely
borrowed some of that stuff. But the thing is, it wasn’t that
good what they borrowed. I thought they borrowed
it, whatever. But it wasn’t that good. I would never tattoo
that flame now. I guess it just made me maybe
frustrated, but it also made me just try to be even more
creative, try to make me push my work in a way which wouldn’t
be able to be copied in a way that would make
it look like I did it. I think my work, for the most
part, is too specific for the client, I think, to be taken
and just pieced together in another way and then look like
a straight rip-off of me. CHRIS O’DONNELL: That’s part of
what makes Grime Grime is that he doesn’t want
his tattoos to look like anybody else’s. He wants to express himself,
desperately express himself through what he’s creating. And why not? That’s what he’s here for. But it also spills over in ideas
like I guess I’m going to submit work to that person
for that book they’re publishing. And he’d be like, I’m just going
to publish my own book. Why wouldn’t I just publish
my own book? Why do that? That’s how he thinks. He’s like, why don’t I just
create it myself? When he used to live with me
in Richmond, I would go to sleep 1 o’clock, 2 o’clock
in the morning. And he’d stay up all night with
headphones on and tons of tracing paper, just really
aggressively drawing all night, and then he would
be up before me. That definitely made me feel a
little lazy, having him on my couch doing that every night. This is a picture of Grime
working on his sketchbook, or journal that eventually turned
into “Two Year Autopsy.” He had a brand new sketchbook that
I think Chris Duncan had given him for an art show. And the idea was a year would
go by and him and a bunch of different people would fill
up their own sketchbooks. He would do caricatures
of himself. He would do collage. He would write. He would put anything that
he was working on. It was like a diary,
a visual diary. He was traveling a lot, too. We would go to conventions
in Europe. We did Tin-Tin’s Convention two
years in a row in Paris. That was great, because we would
go with enough time to explore the city. There’s a couple days in Paris
where he would go out by himself with his camera
and just do self-portraits with a timer. He wasn’t just tattooing. Everything was an art project
at that point because he wanted to use material
for the book. I like reading about
what he’s thinking. GRIME: Yeah, on one hand, I like
to stay fairly private, but it is a little cathartic. But it also is like aiming
in two ways. I put it out there as an
exercise, but I also– the writing itself is
an exercise for me. I enjoy writing. The words I choose and how I
express the thought and the feeling, it’s rewarding. It’s real. I like it. CIV: When Grime did the book
“Two Year Autopsy,” it was like two years on the road of
tattooing, but mostly two years of torturing himself
over predominantly women, which everyone enjoys doing. -Do you feel like a lot of
people come and try to speak to you about some things
that are more personal? GRIME: No. I don’t think people– no,
most people don’t. Maybe they just don’t feel
comfortable doing it. Maybe they just feel
uncomfortable going, so like, hey, so– I read about that one
part where you’re spilling your guts. Should we talk about it while
you’re tattooing me? Yeah, I think most people
probably have a lot more tact than that, in some
ways, you know. CIV: He sent it to a
psychologist to read and then critique it. And the psychologist said
something like– I’m paraphrasing, but it said
something like this is the most self-righteous bunch of
masturbation and pompous blah, blah, blah, just crushed it. And he was so excited that he
got this horrible review from a psychologist about it. “Two Year Autopsy,” I think,
is an example of travel, torture, hard work pays off. It seems the more frustrated and
tortured he is, the work gets better. YUTARO SAKAI: We all do, but
he’s almost like chipping away his life to make it. I think that people, whoever has
his tattoos, they have a piece of his life. Being this type of tattoo
artist, like fully custom every day, I think it’s a
really stressful life. GRIME: Oh my God. Fucking people. YUTARO SAKAI: He’s definitely
kind of a celebrity of tattooing. And he seems to not have much
of his personal time sometimes, and it’s hard
for some people. CHRIS O’DONNELL: I don’t know
if I’ve seen Grime get burnt out or in a burnout
phase tattooing. But he always kind
of seems like he was up too late drawing. You know what I mean? Like he always just seems a
little tired or preoccupied. He looks like he’s always
stressing about whatever project he’s working on. GRIME: Some of it’s my ego, I
think, not wanting to say no to a project or a thing that
I know that I can do or I’d like to try. Although I’ve obviously learned
how to say no over the years, and I’m better at it as
time passes, but there are still some things that I think
maybe get out of my control, and that creates difficulties
for me. Dude, that’s shit. Conventions suck. I just want to go
and make maybe a couple tattoos or something. Now it’s like a whole
fucking thing. GRIME: It’s my job. GRIME: No, there’s no fun. I work every day on there. There’s nothing to do but work. That’s it. GRIME: What if I didn’t feel
like it’s just all pressure and it’s all everything
is everyone wanting something from me. GRIME: I know. HENRY LEWIS: The man’s always
working on something, I can say that much. There’s always some
iron in the fire. Which is amazing, too,
because it kind of keeps me on the ball. And it just keeps me wanting
to produce and create. And like I said, art for
the sake of art. GRIME: Maybe a little bit ego,
just wanting to say I’m here. Some kind of base– somewhat of a base artistic
kind of bend, which is, like, I’m here. This is my mark I’ve
left kind of thing. There’s something about that. -These are all the paintings
that are in the– GRIME: Yeah, my “Two
Year Autopsy.” -Let’s see them back here. GRIME: I’m just pissed
off all night. I don’t feel like I’m
an artist right now. I have in the past. I don’t feel like I’ve
been creating lately. So it makes me feel less
accomplished as an artist. -Do you have any concepts
started or– GRIME: They’re in
my head, dude. What do I need to do? Either you do it or
you don’t, yeah. There’s not a thing
that I want to do. I just feel like I get ideas
for things I want to do. And then I’m like, OK,
I’ll fuckin’– I’ll write them down or I’ll
have an idea about it and get some stuff. And I want to do other shit. Do I want to do a fucking
watercolor of a traditional tat. Fuck that, you know? I want to do shit that’s
in my brain. I want to do cathartic work. Because to me, that’s
what art is. It’s the expression
of yourself and your point of view. If you don’t have a point of
view, what the fuck you got? And I think that’s what makes
people drawn to art, is they feel the person’s emotion or
personality come through. GRIME: No. Don’t remind me. I think I’m going
to do that soon. I need to. I need it. I have responsibilities
though. I have two dogs. I can’t just go fuck off. They’re human. Jones, motherfucker. Right? Owww! Hey, whose head’s that? And you know, I think
we change as people. I change as a person as I age. And so I seek different
things. And maybe things become more
difficult than they were when I was younger. Or maybe I just get
tired of them. Or maybe I have more work
than I ever have had. Maybe it’s a combination
of all those things. Jones! Mr. Jones! Come! Get your ass down here! Leave it! Ah, all right, what am
I standing here for? -Because we are walking
up here. I guess this is where you bring
your dogs a lot, huh? GRIME: Yeah, sometimes. Did you get that? Me and the dog drinking
at the same time? -Uh-huh. GRIME: OK, good. What kind of soundtrack are
we doing for this thing? -What kind of what? GRIME: Soundtrack we doing
for this thing? [MUSIC PLAYING]

100 thoughts on “Tattoo Age: Grime (Part 3/3)

  1. I think he gave up giving a fuck about other people after no doubt living through the the-never-ending shit they woulda given him throughout his life. I don't blame him.

  2. It takes a lot to come from an accident like that to actually even like yourself the slightest bit never mind "worshiping himself".

  3. I never said I did, I was just giving my opinion of him. It,s what I think, not what I claim to know. Although, from his actions and the things he says you can get a good idea of him.

  4. I'm simply admitting that he has a tremendous amount of talent. Maybe rather than insulting people for being honest and telling them to get a life you should come to terms with life and accept that jealousy is a thing that happens and not get so upset over it.

  5. gimme a fuckin break! the dude does wild outrageous tats with a burnt face! thank god he didnt lose his eyes! he is just like any other tattooer!! he has his own vision. a burnt face doesnt make you tattoo any different, just gives you a bit more inner feeling on visions i think. i like his visions on how the world could look through his tattoos. of course he's pissed about his face being burnt! fuck…wouldnt you!!??

  6. He really is that good, and the problem isn't so much that he and others are aware of it. I think the contention is that he inadvertently is putting down a lot of other hard working tattoo artists, who are doing work that he considers maybe mundane, when to them it's the best they've done to date. He really is highly talented, and with such gifting should come humility, so as to not condescend others who can't inherently achieve that same level artistic genius, although they sure are trying.

  7. One of the main reasons he has managed to get so far, is precisely because he is self critical to the point of being arrogant. If he ever settles down and feels content with his craft it will a monumental betrayal of all of his values. He just hold everyone else to the same rigorous standards he holds himself.
    His humility comes in the form of humor, taking the piss out of everyone and everything, including himself. If you don't like him you don't know him, easy.

  8. I understand his push for perfection. and I'm not saying he's blatantly trying to dis others work, as I said, it seems to flow inadvertently. Though I do believe alot of other tattooers do have the same rigorous standards, though they maybe lacking an artistic giftedness which seems to flow easier from Grime's mind to ability. To be humble is truly a virtue that's hard to obtain when you're on top, a little empathy upon those who's work doesn't match his own is not uncalled for.

  9. Also it doesn't mean in the least that I don't like him, I never said that. I just don't agree with his attitude on certain things. We are all flawed. Though when someone relays criticism in love intending to help you to grow, it is better to be received than defended against. Of course it's his right not to care, though some are interested in being better human beings.

  10. I hate comparison's,,but to me his style tattooing is like what Mear is as a writer very individual each in their own write…dope as fuck Good shit Vice keep em' comin'

  11. omfg hes my fav tatto artist atm- except my tattooer x) / awesome how Grime went threw this, gettin soo good remarkable guy.

  12. This guy inspired me on a whole different level i watch watching all these different tattoo documentaries looking for inspiration in what sort of tattoo i want as my first tattoo fucking boom grime goes and inspires me on career and life goal level even though its not relatable to tattooing exactly I think what drove him i can relate to… cool mofo must say.

  13. he did my back piece, i spent 30 hours with him just bullshitting, and all the shit he's been thru he has the most right to be an asshole if he wanted to, but no he's just the complete opposite, he literally said to me i wish i can express myself through tattoos without having appointments every day for the next year, just shows that it's not about the money, its about the art

  14. All these Assholes on here commenting, "He's the best"  "Isn't his work fabulous"  "I love Him" etc etc… Lets say if you were in a restaurant, & a disfigured person came sat down near you, you'd haul ass outta there in no time, or in the street, you would cross over to the other side, pronto…  sympathizers piss me off.

  15. this dude trying to be so deep. he basically. copied dozens of grate tattooer san gave it his twist.dont even get me started how he stole almost everything from Ed Hardy…….meh' tattooing is dead !

  16. I'd love to travel to cali and get some really nice work done. Louisiana is too full of shitty one way traditional artists.

  17. Don't matter what anyone looks like! Who really gives a shit! He's one bad ass fucking artist, the more pain u go threw, the more intense the work gets! Talk about seting the bar high

  18. He makes me want to feel ashamed of my tattoos Becuase I didn't fly to another state to get something done by a world renowned artist. Jesus.

  19. I really appreciate his work from art to tattoos. I grew up on 80s 90s skateboarding and I can see where he’s coming from. Your mad sir I like it haha

  20. I first heard about Grime through an old school skateboard forum, and he said something kind about a painting on a deck I did. Meant a lot to me. He has a lot of humility for such a talented, intense artist

  21. with or without the tattoos you are the same person
    it is sad that you think the tattoos add something when really they show the emptiness which was hidden before you got them and now you display it to everyone who looks upon you – you are empty inside and you are trying to build a shell that pretends there is more there than what is real – you are empty
    do you really have demonic powers or do you just want to pretend by putting satanic images on your body ?
    either way – if you don't repent and call upon the name of the only way to salvation – Jesus Christ – you will die in your sins and on judgement day – you will be cast into the lake of fire to be tormented eternally for ever and ever

  22. it's hideous and satanic – then someone says – it's beautiful – reminds me of those that talk about war and people getting torn apart by bombs as being beautiful – and all those demented individuals who flock to the theaters to watch people getting ripped up and torn to pieces and call it entertainment
    there is hell to pay after this life is over for all the ungodly people who show how they hate Him and love death and suffering
    they paint their body with pictures of hatred and death – they will be found guilty on judgement day and be cast away from God forever
    there is grace given now and time before you really die – to repent and call on Jesus Christ to forgive you
    you can be made whole – then you won't need or want pictures of hatred all over your body

  23. Cool that Henry mentioned Filip Leu. I was lucky enough to get tattooed by him when he was 18 years old. He was already miles ahead of everyone I had been to at that point.

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