0039 0541 28013
Via Tempio Malatestiano 35
47921 Rimini Italy
What year did you start tattooing?
About 10 years ago—in Rimini there were a fair number of tattooists, but none of them were looking
for a trainee. Only my regular tattooist, who eventually became my maestro, noticed my constancy and my true involvement in this activity, and after about a year he took me in his studio as an apprentice. It has surely been
a fundamental experience, and there I realized it would become my profession, especially in the toughest moment of the apprenticeship. I remember that tattoos weren’t that popular, as they are now, and an apprentice had to work a lot of hours during the day—especially in the summer—and earned very little, or even nothing sometimes. For two years I didn’t even touch the tattoo machine.
Where did you apprentice?
I had my apprenticeship with one of the first tattooists in Rimini. For more than two years, I was cleaning the studio, sterilizing the working equipment, setting the needles, welcoming the customers at reception, and making tons of handmade stencils without touching the tattoo machine. During the day, I kept on looking and looking at the tattooist at work, trying to learn as much as I could. This was an important period for learning
about customers too. After the apprenticeship, I worked for another studio for two and a half years, in which, further than tattooing, I used to manage the whole studio and also the work of other tattooists who were there for summer. My career’s beginning was very hard, and to me tattooing is quite demanding, even now. Since
the very beginning, I’ve always been very accurate, so even my first works had a very clean-cut look. Time, exercise, and my will to improve have made the rest, and I can really say that all that brought me where I am now, but I’m very down to-earth. I strongly believe that apprenticeship is the best way to become an all-around tattooist, able to do any kind of tattoo without difficulty. But things are so different nowadays, it’s hard to find reliable people who really want to learn this profession with patience and humility.
How do you describe your style?
The style I love to perform, and the style people address especially to me, is my personal version of traditional.
I like it because it’s similar to me, as it’s direct, clear, and solid. It has a unique strength and balance. I deeply admire the style of big name such as Sailor Jerry, etc., but I think it’s so reductive to use their flashes, only employing the colors of that period. I don’t like to reshape their flashes and put my name on them, as if they were my draws. I respect those who do it, but I think that working out my own draws is definitely more interesting, perceiving what my customer wants, and then performing it in my personal traditional style: solid line, tons of black, and full colors.
What inspires you as an artist?
I haven’t had any kind of formal artistic study. Since I was a kid, I’ve always drawn spontaneously. All I draw becomes a tattoo anyway, a flash set—something related to tattoos. Mostly, my inspirations come from books that have not necessarily to do with art: I buy a lot of books about symbols, objects, anatomy, ethology from the 18th and 19th centuries. I really like European painting from the 13th to 15th century, and advertising—propaganda’s illustrations from the first half of the 1900s. I don’t know if artistic studying is useful in tattooing. The difference between me and some other tattooists is that I don’t pair my work with painting, and I really don’t see a link between tattoo and painting.
What sets you apart from other artists?
It is not [an attitude like] “one question does not arise above all others, and I must say that it is not.” In the words of one of my clients and faithful fans, my work is inconfondibile— unmistakable—and that to me is a beautiful compliment. If you want to know who I am and what I stand against, you’ll also have to understand the tide of the latest generation of tattoo artists, who have no knowledge of the profession but believe they do, and no respect for those who work and sweat.
What other mediums do you work in?
When I paint, I uniquely use liquid watercolor, such as ecoline. I find it very effective and practical. Painting is very relaxing, just the opposite of tattooing. I’d like to try oils, using more colors to diversify my works, just
to sneak out a little from classic tattoo flash.
What tattoo artists do you admire most?
If only I could do what a name like Rudy Fritsch does. He’s worked hard for years, although he always manages to amaze me with his unique and unstoppable work, both technically and in researching his style. I got to know him well personally and host him in my studio and work with him. It was a very big experience for me! He’s a great tattoo artist and a great person.
What kind of tattoos do you look forward to doing?
I’d like to make a back piece completely designed by me with a mystical theme and highly symbolic. Perhaps not too traditional in taste, but something with impact, using the typical bold, super solid technique.
Is there anyone that you would like to tattoo?
Madonna, Valentino Rossi, James Hetfield of Metallica? You asked me … I’m actually doing a friend of mine now—he’s completely without tattoos and is beautifully fair-skinned. I want to tattoo him because today someone like him is the true alternative.
Before someone gets a tattoo, what advice do you give them?
I always have a strong concept in my mind before to start a tattoo: a deep respect for the customer, and for myself. I’m friendly, but also stubborn if I think that something is not possible to be properly realized. Anyway, I don’t put my ego in front of everything: For that, there’s the free draw and flash sets. I always try to understand properly what the customer wants, so that I can do the best subject for him. I’m very exigent
with myself, and prior to getting the final draw I do many trials. After many years of hard work and big devotion, I can finally say that my customers trust me, and they leave me a lot of freedom to express my work. Honestly, this is the best way to have a great tattoo. I believe that when the customer interferes too much in the subject’s realization, the results aren’t excellent. In these days, with the internet, specialized magazines, and conventions, anyone can choose his or her own tattooist, with the preferred style. Compared to the past, it’s easier and cheaper to travel now, so people can easily move around to get tattooed.