Tattoo Artists and Art

We why love black-work tattoos

Meet Essie, one of our new bloggers! She’s an inked nerd that writes about ink and… well, nerdy shit. Today she wants to tell you about why she thinks blackwork is so amazing.


Tattoo styles are always evolving and changing. Whilst we still have traditional tattoos, we now also have neo-traditional, trash polka, realism, portrait, watercolour… the list goes on, but includes my personal favourite… blackwork.

Tattoo design by Kyle Patrick

Tattoo design by Kyle Patrick

I love blackwork because I love the mix of bold lines and detail, all achieved without an ounce of colour (of course, the description is in the name). I constantly pour over tattoos from artists like Daniel Baczewski, Thomas Eckeard, and Kyle Stacher, to name a few. Every blackwork artist has their own style and ‘twist’ within the medium. Floral is super common in blackwork, as well as re-done traditional tattoos in this style.

I love that blackwork can encompass pretty much every other tattooing style… you can make a traditional-style design blackwork just as easily as you can make a blackwork piece realism. That’s the great thing about tattoo and tattoo styles, they all feed and build off of one another.

Tattoo by Thomas Eckeard

Tattoo by Thomas Eckeard

I’ve have tattoos by two ‘blackwork’ artists; Kyle Patrick and Austin Huffman. Whilst I’ve had other styles of tattoo put on my body, such as traditional and neo-traditional, I always find my way back to blackwork.

I think the no-hiding aspect really draws me in. With blackwork, you can’t have unclean lines. Blackwork really showcases an artist’s talent because you CAN see the mistakes within lines if they’re there. A lot of designs use a lot of geometry, and some artists use straight lines to help ‘shade’ a piece. It is easy to spot crooked/shaky/uneven lines. Also popular is stipple shading, where the artist uses small dots to create depth.

Daniel Baczewski

Daniel Baczewski

All tattoo styles are beautiful in their own way, and not everyone likes every single style out there on the market. I know I’m personally not a fan of watercolor tattoos, though I can respect and appreciate a good watercolor tattoo on someone else. Art is all about appreciation, and tattoos are no different.

Kyle Stacher

Kyle Stacher

Merry Morgan

Merry Morgan


Words: Essie Stone, The Inked Nerd
Images: Instagram, As Credited

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