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CHOOSING A TATTOO ARTIST

Our artists have a variety of styles, talents and artistic backgrounds. Please check out our portfolios and select an artist whose work complements the tattoo you are looking to get. Or, feel free to call us (503-236-7878) and discuss your idea a bit more and we can help steer you toward the right artist for the project.

Custom tattoos often require that we spend time preparing a drawing prior to your tattoo appointment. Because of this, we encourage you to schedule a consultation with the artist you will be working with to get started.

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Artists
Mikal Gilmore

Mikal Gilmore

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Since my first tattoo when I was 18, at Sunset Strip Tattoo in Hollywood, I felt at home in tattoo shops. I knew then and there I was going to have a lot of tattoo art on my body. I became forever fascinated with the art form.

I was born and raised in Los Angeles, then moved to San Francisco in my early 20’s. I have always made art, crafts and music, and I am grateful to have lived in major metropolitan cities with access and exposure to rich and diverse art. In 2001, I walked away from the business sector to finally pursue my passion for creativity as my day job.

I spent the next 3 years working among 3 tattoo studios in San Francisco where I apprenticed and learned all about the art form. I then worked at the esteemed Black & Blue Tattoo from 2004 – 2007 before relocating to Portland and working at Infinity Tattoo from 2007 –2009. I now feel very lucky to tattoo here in Portland among some of the best tattooers on the West Coast.

As of September 2009, I am the proud 1/2 owner of New Rose Tattoo along with Traci – another amazing artist who also shares my appreciation of custom artwork in a welcoming environment. I have a strong work ethic, a great attitude, and a high level of professionalism. I am a versatile artist and tattoo in a variety of styles. I am particularly drawn to birds, flowers, traditional Americana, Japanese and Tibetan tattoos and enjoy black and gray pieces as well as intense color tattoos.

When not tattooing I like to have adventures with my family of four and wonderful friends, snuggle my Chihuahuas, ride old bicycles, cook and enjoy nature on foot.

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Traci Manley

Traci Manley

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After growing up in Portland, I moved to Northern California to attend college. I majored in Graphic Design, with a minor in Photography. It was a great way to explore painting, drawing, illustration, and art history on a deeper level than I had previously done at my mother’s kitchen table. After graduating, I moved back to Portland and did freelance design work, while also working as a pastry chef in various restaurants. I took a break from working in the back of the kitchen to open and operate a small espresso bar. And while it was successful, after a few years I missed doing creative work. I’ve always been drawn to tattooing, and the fascination with it led me to learn as much as I could about it. I had always wanted to learn how to tattoo, but something in the back of my head kept telling me I couldn’t. In 2004, I squashed that little voice and began my training. It’s something I have never regretted.

I love tattooing, and am continually inspired and challenged by it. So many things influence my work, from traditional art to old matchbooks, but I especially love looking at the designs found in vintage textiles. I enjoy collaborating to create a design that will last a lifetime.

In my free time I love going to Powell’s, working on my house, reading, watching bad reality TV, and hanging out with my dogs, Wally and Marla.

Traci accepts a limited number of new clients each month. Once all available appointments are booked, new appointment times will open up at the beginning of the following month. Please call the shop to schedule.

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Leslie Hero

Leslie Hero

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I fancy tattooing images that are alive with skin, fur, leaves, scales, wings, tentacles and I take great pride in illustrating my love of nature through my work. I find the most satisfying part of the tattoo process is the actualization of adorning my clients’ skin with images that are important to them. To have one’s exterior disclose what lies within is a phenomenal act of openness. The objective I’ve set for myself is to create designs that are precise, balanced, and achieve natural flow with the body, while fulfilling the desires of the client and creating a long lasting ornament. There is constant challenge and reward to be found in the craft of tattooing, and I love every bit of it.

Beyond tattooing I can be found at home cooking, napping, or watching movies with my wife and three cats, or out and about hiking in Forest Park, browsing at Powell’s, or enjoying a dark microbrew.

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Mark Ledford

Mark Ledford

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Originating from the Shenendoah Valley of Virginia, Mark Ledford has tattooed since 2004 in Oregon, West Virginia, Maryland and North Carolina. He is proud that he learned to tattoo at the legendary Sea Tramp Tattoo Company under the tutelage of Jeff Johnson and Rio DeGennaro.

When he is not busy tattooing or drawing, he loves to be with his wife and daughter. His favorite things to do are cook for his family, as well as camping and fishing.

He is most excellent at American Traditional, neo-traditional and Celtic tattooing, although his favorite tattoos to do are those that make his customers happy and will last a lifetime.

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Carrie Smith

Carrie Smith

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Carrie Smith has been tattooing in the greater Portland area for the last three years. She graduated from Portland State University with a Bachelors of Arts Degree, with a focus on drawing and printmaking. After her completion, her desire to learn tattooing became a goal and a passion.

She enjoys getting to know clients, hearing their interests and perspectives on designs, as well as drawing the custom pieces that are soon to be tattoos.

In her spare time, you can find Carrie painting, knitting, collecting antiques, getting tattooed, meeting new friends, and spending time with family.

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Consultations

Consultations are in-person meetings where you discuss your tattoo idea, placement on the body, costs, etc. with your artist. It’s also a good way to meet the tattooist and make sure that they will be the right person for you to work with. Consultations generally take between 15-30 minutes and we do not charge for this service.

For your consultation, please bring PRINT OUTS (no pictures on your cell phone, please) of any visual references or images you are attracted to and help explain your vision for the piece you want to get. A little homework up front on your part really helps us draw the tattoo of your dreams!

Your artist will collect a non-refundable deposit from you to reserve your tattoo appointment and drawing time. The deposit is good for 6 months and goes toward the cost of the tattoo. The deposit will be forfeited if you decide not to get tattooed, do not show up for your appointment, or if you change your mind mid-process and your new idea requires new artwork and additional drawing time. For larger pieces requiring more time and research, an actual drawing fee may be required in addition to a deposit to hold your appointment.

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On the day of your tattoo

Arrive rested and hydrated. Eat a meal or hearty snack before your tattoo and avoid aspirin and excesses of alcohol and caffeine. For larger tattoos and/or all day sittings, it’s a good idea to bring some food to fuel yourself throughout the day. There are also plenty of eateries in the area if you prefer.

We do not mind if you bring a friend or visitor, however we do have limited space and cannot guarantee that they will be able to sit with you during the duration of your tattoo. Please check in with your artist about bringing guests if you have further questions.

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The life of your tattoo depends on the care it receives during the healing process!

Aftercare

Keep the bandage on overnight. Remove the bandage in the shower. Clean the tattoo gently with clean hands/fingertips and warm water; do not use a washcloth or anything abrasive. Use Cetaphil cleanser or another mild soap. Make sure the tattoo is clean until it is no longer slimy. Pat/blot dry with a clean paper towel and always let your tattoo air out about 15 minutes before applying any lotion. For the first day, let your tattoo air out until the evening.

DO NOT re-bandage your tattoo! Let it breathe with loose clean cotton clothing or exposed to the air (just not direct sun). Wash your hands and apply a small amount/light coat of a clean, fragrance-free lotion such as Cetaphil or Curel Original Unscented 2-3 times a day maximum with clean hands for 2 weeks (minimum) or until your tattoo is healed.

Always handle your tattoo with clean hands and don’t let people touch your new tattoo!

Starting about day four, your tattoo will start to peel/exfoliate and the temptation to pick and scratch will be great. Don’t do it! DO NOT PEEL, PICK OR SCRATCH. Itching can be relieved by applying a bit more lotion, or by gently slapping the tattoo. Use common sense. If it hurts, don’t do it.

During the healing process

  • DO wear loose, clean cotton/soft clothing and/or expose to air (but not sun!).
  • DO NOT use aloe, Neosporin, etc.; they make the skin heal too fast.
  • DO NOT swim, sauna, or soak (shower OK)
  • DO NOT expose to direct sunlight.

Once healed, preserve your piece of art and always protect your tattoo with sunscreen of at least 30 SPF.

The Tattoo is Your Responsibility. Use Common Sense!
Feel free to call the shop or stop by if you have any questions

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