All posts by Louis Santos

The Layout

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The layout

First thank you for reading my blog.

In this blog I would like to share how I have been working lately. I have been working with an app called “photoshopmix”

With photoshopmix, I can create a layout for my customer before starting the tattoo process. With this layout, it gives the customer a quick overview and taste of what they are going to get, and which direction the tattoo is going to take.

The clients have ideas about their tattoo, however is really hard to visualise sometimes what’s going to happen. So in my opinion, as a professional artist, it’s our duty to clarify what’s going to happen in the tattoo process. It’s in our hands to put them at ease, as we all know, a lot of clients they come in to see us worried, and not sure about how their tattoo is going to look.

With photoshop mix, I can quickly and easily give a layout and perception of what it could possibly come ahead, being able to add and erase picture and mix them pretty easily.

Thank you for reading!

Universal Studios

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My trip to Universal Studios at Orlando, Florida, was so far the best experience in my life time. Universal Studios is an amazing place. I have had seen videos in the past, liked it, and fancied it, however it’s nothing like being there.

If you are a fan of movies it’s a must to visit Universal Studios. The level of entertainment and artistic inspiration is out of this world. As an artist it was no just a holiday for me. It was a true art lesson.

If you are an artist too, I would highly recommend it. I’m not a big Harry Potter fan, I appreciate it, however I was blown away with the Harry Potter world and rides.

The biggest attraction of Universal Studios is Harry Potter, so if you are a Harry Potter fan, you would not be disappointed.

Universal Studios have 2 Parks. So each park has different attractions, from different movies, however both parks have a Harry Potter attraction, with 2 Rides and 2 worlds.

My favourite rides were, the transformers, Spider-Man, King Kong, and the 2 Harry Potter ones. Some of them were in 3D, so in 2D.

I was there for a week, however it’s not enough to see everything. That place is so huge, and I would for sure be back again, to explore another rides and places.

To see videos of my trip check out my YouTube channel or Facebook, I will be uploading videos and pictures.

If you haven’t been to Universal Studios, I would highly recommend. It’s a mind blowing experience.

Thanks for reading.

My book, work in progress, by Louis

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The progress of my book is currently on the way. To stick to one idea for a very long time, is really hard, as we change our mind, as we go about in life, sometimes I feel like changing the concept or the first idea I had, however is important to keep to the foundation idea, so the book makes sense when people look at it.

I’m very inspired by artists who make video games, because they usually take a couple of years to complete their work on one title. Games like “God of War” took at least 4-5 years to make. It’s a lot of work involved, and keeping the endurance to complete such a large project is not easy. As we live in the age of distraction, internet, iPads can be a big distraction. However I have some tricks to keep focused.

One of my tricks is to turn the tv off. I know it sounds funny, but if you are trying to get a book done, or a video game done, it’s important to get rid of distractions. Or even turning my phone off, that really helps too.

Little changes like that, can add tremendous time to what you trying to achieve. And help you to get things done, instead of just having ideas of never finished projects.

The hardest thing I find, not to get distracted by is playing video games. As I love playing video games, and I feel like it’s an artistic lesson, the graphics nowadays are really awesome. So I try to play a game from time to time,to refresh my mind and give me new ideas about art. Even playing games sometimes gets out of the list of things to do, when I’m trying to get a drawing done for my book.

I do a page, which it takes me up to a month, then I take a brake, doing some painting, to keep the variation on how I approach my art, if I draw all the time, as much as I love it, it gets a bit overwhelming, when I just use one medium. I love to jump from medium to medium to keep fresh and exited about picking up a new tool, like pencil, brush and iPad, digital art and traditional art are the two mediums I use.

I hope to achieve my project, I’m in a good position in my life, where I got rid of most of my distractions in my personal life, now it’s up to me to jump on the drawing table and enjoy myself.

I will keep posting updates about my book, hope you enjoy this picture, thank you for looking.

All the best!

An exiting project by Louis


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Martin has been an awesome guy from day one, very patient, easy going and allows me to work with a good frame of mind.

When a customer is easy going, in my opinion, their tattoo comes out better, as it’s a “natural process” there’s no worries, and your mind is not bouncing around trying to work out, what you can, and can not do.

And that’s what I advise if anyone wants a tattoo. Is to look at the artists work and make a decision, if their style is what you want on your body forever. As you are trusting the artist and giving him the freedom, to work with a good frame of mind, that will result in a good and successful tattoo.

That’s why I like clients like Martin, who trusts what I do. And not once question me when’s it’s going to be done. He tells me what he wants. Explains himself clearly, and let’s me take this information and render the tattoo with my own twist.

We have done a full sleeve for him. It was an awesome experience. Now we are working on his back. On his back we doing a Phoenix, as you can see in the picture. The Phoenix will be looking at a dragon, which it will be on the other side of his back, with the head at the top of his back, looking down at the Phoenix.

I’m really, really exited about this project, as I love doing Fantasy, it’s a great opportunity to me to display a style that I have so much passion for.

I would like to thanks Martin for the opportunity, and I couldn’t be happier for having such a cool guy as a customer, it’s really a blessing.

All the best, thank you.

Judge Dreed, and my first comic experience!

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I can remember my first experience with comics. Art came about in my life in a comic form. I remember the first comic drawing I ever saw. It was a drawing of Conan the barbarian.

I was a kid in the 80’s in the warm and dangerous streets of Brazil. I used to walk with my gramma to buy bread once a week. Arriving at the food store, after shopping, we ended at the check out, and there was a man stood, with a few sketches on his counter, he must got bored sometimes and started sketching. That’s when I saw the drawing/ sketch of Conan.

I must been about 6-7 years old. And I remember clear as a day light. I grabbed my grammas hand and shouted… look gramma! Look! Pointing at the drawing. And the guy started laughing of how excited I was because I saw the sketch, he passed it over to me. And I was so impressed with how good the drawing was. As a kid, it seemed like the coolest drawing ever.

While my gramma got the shopping thought the check out, I couldn’t stop staring at the drawing, I felt so overwhelmed by it. And as I realised my time looking at it was over, as my gramma called me to keep walking, as she was done with the shopping, I asked the man in the counter, if I could keep the drawing and he said no. My gramma asked me to give him back the paper and I was so sad I couldn’t take it home with me. However that sketch was strong in my mind.

As soon as I got home. I wanted to draw and emulate the sketch I saw. As a 7 years old kid, I thought I could do that drawing no problem. And as soon as I started drawing I slowly realised my drawing wasn’t as good as the man in the counter at the food store.

I run over to my gramma and asked, gramma… how come my drawing is not as good as his? And she calmly replied, he is a lot older than you, so he’s been practicing it longer. At that moment I just wanted to be an adult then, just to be able to draw like he did.

So yeah, that was my first experience and appreciation with art. As I’m older now, I can tell that sketch I saw of Conan, was a copy of Frank Frazetta’s amazing work. His a true legend of fantasy art.

Thank you for reading.

A new insight

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In life, we always have lessons from living. I’m 36 years of age, and the older I get the more I trust someone, and invest in someone which is myself.

The best investment you can make is on yourself, believe me. Being nice to other people and trying to look after them, you always gonna be disappointed. Because I can guarantee you, people are only out there to look after themselves.

I will never ever train someone up again to be a tattoo artist again. Because they will only want to do it for themselves and they are not caring about us, just to benefit them.

Artists in my opinion, when they want to learn, they begin humble. And as the time goes by, they develop their skill. And it’s great to see them developing. However with development also comes “the ego”.

As clients start to tell them… “ah! You doing great” “your work is great” their humbleness slightly fades away. And the “ego” raises and raises in their being. They think they are better than they are, they think certain styles are easy to do, and for a fact, the quality of the style they claim to be easy, is not at a world class level, what they can achieve. They never draw or study a style and they think is really easy to do.

It’s a sad and a shame, as all we know that, the more you learn, the more we realise we don’t know something, and our learning capabilities is endless.

To think something is easy and not producing the best quality it can be. It’s a disappointing ego of a sad man. Who will live his life believing he can do anything and not being humble or smart enough to study and practice something, before going ahead with it.

Respect the masters at something you doing or want to do. And know that your work is not as good as them. With this attitude you will always push yourself further and don’t rest until your work reaches that level, if you wish.

And that’s the beauty of humbleness, is to no matter how great you become at something, you always gonna be grounded, take a step back, and push it a little further.

Guesting at Renegade Tattoo Netherlands

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I was on the road a few weeks ago. I went to do a guest spot at Renegade Tattoo, Netherlands.

I met Paul, while guesting in New York, at Inborn Tattoo. As soon as I met Paul, we got on straight way, and he seemed really friendly. At the end of our guest experience at inborn tattoo, he invited me to come and guest at his studio in Netherlands.

2 years later, there I was, meeting up with him again. The studio was really friendly and had a lot of space.

I loved chilling in Amsterdam, and guesting at Renegade Tattoo in a small town called Beverwijk. Traveling is important to open my mind and inspire me artistically and personally.

Getting out of my comfort zone is a blessing, as sometimes we get stuck in our routine. So i feel very grateful to have the opportunity to be able to get out of my routine, learn and experience new things.

I will be back at Renegade Tattoo. They seem really genuine, and not like them kind of people who are only out there for what they can get.

Regards
L. Santos

Walking with Nature by Louis

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As an artist being around nature is a must, it refreshes and clears your mind, nature is the foundation of life, so the more in touch we are with it the more alive we feel.

I used to want to live in town to be closer to work, to be able to focus on my work more. However living in Leeds city centre, my mind wasn’t at its best, considering noise, pollution and lack of nature. When I tried to relax, I wasn’t really feeling it, it was almost like I wasn’t grounded enough.

Now moving to a new area, far away from the city centre, I feel like I’m in a different world. Waking up and hearing the birds singing, breathing fresh air, I feel like a different person. My mind is in a better frame and I feel like I’m more creative.

I’m getting settled at my new place, however i feel like, I can’t wait to get back to my work, draw, study and paint. I feel like this time I’m more motivated, more relaxed, and now I can feel I’m gonna get stuff done. As I’m not in the city centre, I do not have the distraction I used to have, with friends inviting me to go go out, even knowing I declined a few of these invitations, to focus on my art, not in a bad way, as I do love them.

I understand life is about balance, however as a 35 year old man, I’m done with partying and getting drunk, this is not at my list of satisfying things to do anymore, I want to live art, and that’s what satisfies my soul. In the end of the day, if we don’t express ourselves, what’s the point of living? And as time is limited, we have to embrace every moment we have to express and create our world. I believe the more we express ourselves, the more alive we will feel. So that’s the direction I’m gonna take, even a bit further now, as I’m in a different place in my life.

Thanks for reading

Regards
L. Santos

A Classic Customer

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In this blog we would like to dedicate to our classic customer Rafa, from Spain. He’s been living in the U.K for the past year.

Rafa is a client like no other. He’s getting tattooed by Joe. He is still learning English, and everything he wants to say, it has to be translated by me “Louis” to Joe.

First time Rafa came to the studio to get tattooed, it was his first tattoo, so he really didn’t know what to expect. However we noticed he wasn’t coping with the tattoo very well, he was struggling to sit for his session, and really pulling funny faces like he couldn’t cope with what was going on.

We understand getting tattooed is not easy, and it can get very irritated after a while. However while Joe was tattooing Rafa on his first session, it seemed like Rafa was in agony, then I nicely asked Joe to take it easy on him, Joe answered quiet lost saying… I’m hardly touching him.

I thought, what could it be? If Joe is hardly touching him, why is he struggling so much?

We only found out after, one of Rafas best friend “which in my opinion is not really a friend” had recommended Rafa, that in order to have a good tattoo session, he should not go to sleep the night before his tattoo session. Stay up all night, and drink as much alcohol as he could, it would be the best thing to do before getting tattooed.

Believe it or not, as it was Rafas first tattoo, he literally believed what his friend told him, and had a night out the night before his first session. He didn’t have any sleep and stayed out drinking all night. No wonder why he couldn’t cope with his tattoo session.

A good sleep is essential before your tattoo session, so drinking alcohol and not sleeping well only makes your body more sensitive the following day.

We thought it would be a funny story to share with you guys. Rafa is a really funny customer, we always having a laugh when he comes in. It’s funny seeing Rafa and Joe trying to communicate, in Spanglish.

In the end we are all happy and Rafa is happy with his tattoos, but for sure we recommended for him not to have a drink of alcohol and have a good sleep before his sessions. Now me and Joe are tattooing Rafa, I’m doing his lower back and Joe is doing his arm.

Thanks for reading our blog

Regards
Familia Tattoo

The Power of Sacrifice

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The power of sacrifice

In order to achieve what you want, sacrifice is crucial in the process. But how far can we go with this? How brave are you to sacrifice something in order to have something else? That’s a question that makes me think a lot. Would you feel completely satisfied when you finally got what you wanted? Or would you lack and feel unfulfilled in other areas?

I believe in order to achieve something massively, you have to sacrifice something for it. However, I mean it in a big scale. Let’s say for instance, if you want to be world class at what you do. To be world class at what you do, it’s not easy at all, as you have competitions all around the world, and to overpass all these other competitions, you must do what they are not doing, like working or studying, while they are enjoying the sun shine.

Albert Einstein sacrificed his kids for science. I wouldn’t recommend anybody to sacrifice their kids for what they do. However that’s why I believe it’s not gonna be another scientist like him, as we know, not everyone has the courage to sacrifice their kids for what they do. I think that’s why he took it to the next level, because he had the time and dedication to do it.

Michael Jackson, sacrificed his childhood for music. 

Thanos sacrificed his daughter for what he wanted, I would recommend you to watch “Avengers infinity wars” That’s what inspired me to make this blog. Thanos is a fierce villain, who has the desire to collect these stones, in order to conquer power and powerful energy. However in one of the scenes, he sacrificed his daughter for one of the stones, and that really made me think how far some people can go in order to get what they want.

How far would you sacrifice? It depends how bad you want it! 

Thanks for reading!