Wiz Khalifa digital art work in progress by Louis Santos

Digital Portrait of Wiz Khalifa 

Hello everyone, thanks for reading our blog. It’s a good way to get to know what’s been going on behind the scenes at our studio in Leeds City Centre.

As I love my art, 2 styles that always comes to my mind when I consider drawing or painting is fantasy and realism. So portrait is one of my favourite styles of realism to tattoo and draw.

We play a lot of hip-hop in the studio, is a kind of music kind of chilled to work to.

Actually Joe got my in to hip-hop. I was more of a rocker before getting in to hip-hop.

So listening to a lot of hip-hop since working with Joe. I have got to like artists like 2pac, Snoop Dogg, People under the stairs and Wizz Khalifa.

So that’s where it comes the idea for this portrait. Digital painting is the best way I like to approach, to painting or drawing a portrait. It’s very practical, with no drying time.

Tattooing or drawing a portrait, is really fun for me. Sometimes the choice is mine to draw or paint a portrait I feel like I want to paint. Or to try to translate on my clients skin who needs a tattoo portrait of an important person in their life.

Thanks for reading 

L. Santos

Portrait Tattoo drawing studies

Portrait realism studies.
I’ve always been passionate about tattooing and drawing portraits.
In my opinion, drawing a face is the most fun part of the body to draw. I love tattooing and drawing old faces, as the texture is so vivid. Old people have a lot of story to tell in their faces.
Tattooing a portrait is probably the hardest subject to tattoo. That’s why I like to work on paper, before I attempt the skin.
I have had seminar on portraits by Nikki Hurtado. And I have had online portrait classes, which it divides each section of the human face, and study each part of the face, step by step. That was a very important and perhaps most enjoyable online class I have ever had.
Portraits are very welcome at Familia Tattoo. I’m definitely passionate about it, and will carry on to draw, paint and tattoo portraits.
Thank you for reading 


Geisha Japanese tattoo by Louis Santos

I did this Geisha and hanya mask Japanese tattoo in Ibiza. I visit Matthew, who is from Leeds, we have a good time relaxing and tattooing.

Zombie sleeve work in progress

Today, I had an epic day. Thanks to Max, for giving me the opportunity to do this Zombie sleeve for him.

It’s really fun for me to do a Zombie sleeve, and I’m sure to make the most of this opportunity, to give the best I can to Max. 

The best part of doing a Zombie sleeve in my opinion is the freedom I have to express myself. As the subject is crazy, I can just go crazy and everything will be fine.
Working on this devil, I have made sure to get my dark areas in the background to give a morbid mood. Textures in the foreground, but only working on my mid tones in the foreground, controlling my dark in the foreground.

Zombies and devils are very textured creatures. And I love doing textures. It’s fun to keep finding the in and out textures, following the shape of the the subject.
I would like to thanks Max, for this opportunity. And it’s a bonus he’s a really nice and chilled guy, so I’m very happy working with him. 
Sometimes I could say I’m blessed to do what I love, and work with really nice people, it just makes the day seem effortless.

Thank you for reading

Japanese Dragon Tattoo Leeds

Hello everyone, thanks for looking at our blog. I am now taking a look back, at some Japanese work i have done in the past, and having some memories of my Japanese Tattoos i have done, over my time i have been tattooing in Leeds.

Dragons are really good for cover-ups, its a beast with many textures and scales, so that for a cover-up is a very sensible option.

I remember to have done this dragon all free hand. I feel comfortable free handing dragons straight on skin, as i have drawn them many times before. Free handing, also gives a opportunity to get a better flow of the human body.

Every time i draw a dragon, i think like a crocodile face, that helps me to follow the shape and structure of the dragons face.

I learned to draw Japanese tattoos, just for the fact of being in a tattoo studio, you always gonna get asked for it. And i am also passionate about the style. I am gonna draw some new Japanese Tattoo ideas.

My ideas always gonna have a fantasy twist to it, as i like to push the boundaries a bit further, and brake the rules a little bit.

Thanks for reading our blog, until next time

Japanese Tattoo Realistic

I love drawing a style before i tattoo it. Being an art focused tattooist outside of the tattooing craft, it gives me the opportunity to develop knowledge, and push the boundaries, learning lessons, before going about the subject on skin.

I have been drawing Japanese tattoos since the beginning of my career, i am a big fan of Shige. He is a tattoo artist from Japan, who completely broke the rules of Japanese tattoos. Japanese tattoos were very traditional, every one used to stick to the rules. And Shige came along and changed all that, making Japanese tattoos more realistic.

So i like to bring a bit of realism when i approach a Japanese tattoo and drawing.

I have been tattooing Japanese tattoos in Leeds for the past 10 years, i will upload new ans past Japanese tattoos i have done over my career of 13 years.

I love drawing and tattooing Japanese Geisha, they look calm and graceful.

Japanese Tattoos have an amazing way of flowing in the body like no other style does.

Thank you for reading, until our next blog,

Are video games good for artists?

Vídeo Games and being an artist.

Hello everyone, in this blog I would like to talk about video games as an artist. And discuss a bit if video games are good being an artist.

I started playing video games when i was a kid, purely for entertainment. Being a kid is amazing for playing games as you have all this free time and no responsibilities whatsoever. So a 4 hour game play, would happen with no worries at all.

Then we grow up and have responsibilities, which it makes it harder to spend hours playing video games. But then growing up, we have the money to buy the consoles and purchase any game we want.

Nowadays games are unbelievable , the graphics are out of this world. And I truly believe games are an art form. And if not one of my favourite type of art forms, games and movies are probably my favourite ways to get inspired by art.

So I do believe games are a great way to get inspired by art, in the same way I have fun playing a game, I study art while playing games. 

A great way to study art when playing a game is with observation. I observe the drawings in the game, how the characters move in the game. Atmosphere is also a good subject to learn in gaming, composition, and how they place colours to give a certain kind of mood in the world of the gameplay.

One game I recommend for artistic inspiration is “God of War” what a game. I played it first time for ps3. Now on PS4, it’s even better. That game is so good, that it took, maybe 4 years to make it. It shows you, when things are done properly it does takes time.

Im inspired by a Brazilian artist who is the Sony art director in the game “god of war” his name is “Rafael Grazetti” should check his Instagram, he’s amazing,

The only down side about playing games in my opinion , is the amount of time it takes out of our lives. So I try not to play for more than 2 hours, sometimes I only play for one hour. Time has to be restricted, as I have to look after myself physically, and focus on my art.

Above all, I think it’s important and inspiring playing games as an artist, as it’s probably the hardest art form out there, so why not being inspired by these amazing artists.

Thank you for reading 

Art book work in progress by Louis

My book work in progress 

This is a new sketch I have been working on. It’s a mermaid coming out of the water. She will be accompanied by a Egyptian lady, who will be surrounded by an Egyptian army.

Eventually the mermaid will be surrounded by under water creatures. I was inspired by the movie “Aquaman” to draw this mermaid.

Today is Sunday, Sunday is a very chilled day, so I will make the most to do a bit of work on my book. Sometimes I find it hard in between having a life, and working on my book. However sometimes I sacrifice having a life to get my book finished. 

I understand I have to get a balance in life. However sometimes, when i need to get something done, I must stop doing other things, in order to achieve those goals.

I was thinking the other day, I must have a reason for doing my book. I believe everything in life you must have a reason for doing it, if not I feel like, it wouldn’t be heart felt. 

Wherever you go, go with all your heart. I love this quote.

The reason why I’m doing my book, is to maybe give the tattoo world a new idea, where art can be taken, I feel like a lot of tattoo artists nowadays are working on photoshop. And duplicating images, which I’m cool about that. However I wish to think outside the box.

 I believe the tattoo world has given me so much over the years, so I think now it’s time to give back. 

So I’m not doing my book for money, as I know once my book is done, it’s gonna get copied and copied. And I don’t mind that, I’m doing this to give, not to receive.

I believe giving is a powerful thing to do. We must learn to do that, more and more. The feeling of giving is one of the best feelings you can have, to be able to help someone and have an impact in their lives.

Thanks for reading our blog, until next time.

The mind set

The mindset of a tattoo artist 

Our mind is the cause of everything that happens around us, so being in a clear and healthy state of mind will dictate the outcome of your tattoo work, or work in life in general.

I had a seminar by an artist called “Alex de Pase” he is an amazing tattoo artist from Italy. Watching his seminar, what most stood out to me, out of all the valuable lessons he was giving away in his speech, was “the better life you have, the better work you are going to do”

The way I translated that to my life was, first of all, look after myself physically. I believe once I take care of my body, doing a sport, or going to the gym, we already put our minds in a better place.

Another way I like to keep well mentally, is to read. Not only about art but about life as well. Reading has a valuable outcome which is inspiration and knowledge. New ideas becomes more natural after being inspired by a book.

At last I like to worry as less as possible, and focus on what I want. Instead of worrying what other people been saying about me, or what other people mite think about me. All that’s non sense, and if I learn how to erase all that, it’s a lot easier to stay on your path as an artist.

Thanks for reading our blog.

Until next time.

Louis Santos

An investment on education and inspiration

An investment in education and inspiration 

Thanks for reading our blog. It’s a good to way to get to know what’s going on in our Leeds Tattoo studio.

We are currently building our art gallery, however I will keep a separate blog for that subject.

In this blog I would like to talk about the importance of inspiration and education as a tattoo artist.

We are human beings with emotions, and our emotions can go up and down from one day to another. However with education and inspiration is easier to keep on focused on our journey as an artist.

Nowadays with the access to internet that we have, it’s a lot easier to find online classes and access information which will inspire and guide us as artists.

Watching videos, buying DVDs reading books and magazines about art, it’s a way I find useful to progress, inspire and open my mind about art.

Reading and studying keeps our mind strong, to keep on going on our journey as artists. And not matter what comes in our way, we are going to not deviate from our path, and not let anyone who comes in our way, take away our inspiration and motivation.

That’s one of the biggest lessons I have taken as an artist. 

Keep on track


L. Santos