Boston Tattoo Convention thoughts

I went to the Boston Tattoo Convention today. It was an all weekend event, but I only went today. I have to say, it was a bit of a disappointment.
There were several good artists there, but everything was safe. There really wasn’t much outside of the New Skool, flash style stuff. It’s not to say it was bad (though there was some mediocre artists there) but there wasn’t a huge amount that really caught my attention. Usually at the larger shows there are some artists who really wow you with stuff that you don’t see everyday. Some Old Skool work, or Polynesian or incredible custom work. Now I know that this is a convention, so you want to take your bread and butter stuff with you. I can totally appreciate that. But I always thought the other purpose of the conventions was to showcase your stuff. Bring the really good portfolio stuff. If people see incredible work from you, even if they can’t get work from you there, you better believe they will find your shop and go. I only saw a handful of stuff that would qualify as “showcasing my stuff”.
And I also have to wonder how in the world an artist got away with branding. There was a health inspector there, and it was explicitly stated to all the body piercers and practitioners there that branding/scarification would not be permitted at the show. Well, someone was doing it. Now, believe me, I’ve nothing against branding or scarification. I’ve thought about getting some done myself. But do it right!! No one wants to be inhaling the burnt flesh of someone they don’t know in that kind of environment. They didn’t bring a ventilator or other exhaust fan to help cut down on the fumes. Why?
I saw some other scary stuff there, but I’ll leave it at this. Instead of really showcasing the new talent and styles, it was the usual, safe, almost boring stuff.

3 Comments so far

  1. smeg (unregistered) on September 13th, 2004 @ 1:55 am

    Em: They shouldn’t have been doing it for entirely those reasons. They broke convention rules and MASS laws by doing it, from what I can tell.
    Cassford: I’d wager there are as many reasons to get branded / scarred as there are brands or scars. It could be S&M for some people, it could be reclaiming your body after abuse for others. It could be “because I can” for someone else. I don’t think there is any real defenition of what it means.
    Of course, for some people it’s “f*cking ugly”, but as long as they aren’t judgemental about it, it’s a perfectly valid thought :)


  2. Em (unregistered) on September 13th, 2004 @ 2:47 am

    The burning flesh is pretty gross. Ew. I would like to be warned before I enter an environment where people are burning their skin off.
    Sorry the convention was kind of a bust. I have four tattoos but I am still sometimes put off by completely tattooed folks…


  3. Cassford (unregistered) on September 13th, 2004 @ 3:22 am

    I’ve never quite understood skin branding, other than for marking livestock and slaves that is. Is it the pleasure of the actual experience of branding — an S&M thing?Or is it an artistic thing — like tattoos? A bit of both?



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