In a city where many locals have a creative side, some New Yorkers choose to wear their art on their sleeve. Those individuals turn to New York City’s top tattoo artists to produce wearable art that blurs the line between creator and creation. For those thinking about inking, here are the tattoo artists in New York City you need to know.
The stick-and-pokes of your youth are all grown up at Welcome Home, a North Greenpoint tattoo shop co-founded by standout creator Tea Leigh. Leigh’s portfolio of subtle hand-poked designs features flowers, fruits, tarot images, and even portraits of clients’ pets. With the goal to help clients feel empowered by body art, Welcome Home provides an experience, not just a service.
You can’t look away from Brooke Herr’s creations, which is convenient considering many of her abstract designs require a second look. Herr’s airy, hand-poked tattoos have included wisps of lavender, softly scribbled sigils, and barely there female silhouettes. A must for minimalists, Herr’s subtle, organic work gives new meaning to the phrase “second skin.”
Rukus’ work will remind you that tattoos are meant to be fun. Colorful (and occasionally confusing) designs, such as a mummy riding a dinosaur, a friendly reminder to “call your mother,” and animated characters from Bob’s Burgers and The Simpsons, form the core of Rukus’ repertoire. Also specializing in bright, abstract designs, this traveling tattoo artist will make you look twice.