With his face and chest scratched, his neck tendons sticking out, and his muscles taut, Bruce Lee raises his fists, ready to take on his next foe. Such photorealistic details surface in each design from The Ink Parlor’s team of experienced tattoo artists. Garnering inspiration from the bevy of designs speckling the shop’s red walls, these needle gurus can render just about anything, from owls wearing monocles to elegant script spelling out a loved one’s name or a sworn enemy’s home address. In addition to tattoos, the technicians specialize in single-hole piercings for areas such as ear lobes and bellybuttons.
Rachael Cross knew she wanted to be an artist her whole life. Instead of becoming a painter, graphic designer, or photographer, however, Rachael chose tattoos as her artistic medium, emblazoning bodily canvases with her vibrant, intricate designs. At Grimms Tattoo—a trusted local tattoo parlor that's been around since the 1980s—Cross meets with customers during an initial complimentary consultation to discuss desired designs. She then adorns them in their choice of artfully rendered images, letters, or paragraphs from the backs of cereal boxes.
For the past 14 years, the needle-wielding professionals at Dragonfly Tattoo Studio have inked skin surfaces in their sanitary workshop. Drawing inspiration from customers' ideas, classic tattoo designs, and recent crop-circle appearances, body branders whip up striking stencils before transferring client-approved images to the skin. Tattoo artisans insert indelible ink into the dermis layer using a multineedled machine, which changes the skin's pigment and permanently modifies the area. Once healed, the skin is branded with a desired image or line of text, such as the name of a close relative or the numbers of a gym-locker combination.