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Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Seppuku Tattoo wants YOU!

Ohayo gozaimasu Seppuku Ronin! I apologize for the lack of blogging, but the studio has been consistently slammed. We have been to two Hell City Conventions, a weekend of tattoo seminars, a paint jam at Off The Map, Ali was in Switzerland getting tattooed by Filip Leu, and a host of other events that have kept us all spinning and jet lagged.

I'm bumping my blogs about lettering tattoos and tattoo TV shows, give them a read.

After a very successful partnership spanning three studios over eight years, Seppuku Tattoo is saying goodbye to Matthew Lukesh at the end of this year. Matt is relocating to Iowa, specifically the Platinum Rose Tattoo Gallery, owned by the extremely talented and handsome Josh Fields. 

In early 2012 we were on a search for new talent which netted us one Ali Chin Chin, and we wrote this blog citing what it was we were looking for.

Matt has some pretty big shoes to fill, so we will be looking at a lot of people. Let me take a few minutes to give you a run down of Seppuku Tattoo, and why it would make a great home for another world class artist or two.

Seppuku began in 2005 and is in its eighth year. We build a new studio in Savannah, Georgia, in an attempt to open in a city that hadn't yet been over run by shops, and also to honor our non compete contracts. Almost immediately we started traveling, attending events and winning awards. Johnny took off to attend the CMJ Music Festival, where he was a guest of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame the very first week we opened our doors. The first month we were open, we crashed the Prick Magazine Tattoo Party at the Jinx in Savannah, and Johnny took the shop's first award for Best Small Color. The Savannah shop was set up as a gallery, and hosted a series of art shows that included Jeral Tidwell, Johnny Crap, Rob Schwager, Brian Morris, Jason Goad, author Paul Grushkin, Brian Ewing, Stainboy, Jason Cooper, and of course Jeff Wood. Now free from being dictated to by our former owners, we expanded our art, began studying painting techniques again, and incorporating fine art theory into the tattooing. Matt's paintings transformed dramatically. They had formerly been based on tattoo flash styled imagery, and shot forward into proper fine art. Matt's tattoos likewise took giant leaps forward, especially being able to experiment in way we had been forbidden to do before. For example, we were never allowed to tattoo color portraits. Now Matt is known internationally for his brand of realism, having clients travel from as far away as Amsterdam. Not to be outdone, Johnny found himself being asked to paint the cover of Skin & Ink Magazine in December 2009. We would be onstage painting in the Wet Paint Projects at Hell City and at the Mad Hatter's conventions, and at closed door all day Paint Jams at Keith Ciaramello's Kustom Kulture Gallery.

Seppuku worked hard to be included in the very ethnocentric Savannah society. We hosted a number of late night fetish balls and sponsored a number of live concerts. We were at the Trustee's Theatre with Paul Grushkin as he presented his coffee table sized tour de force, 'The Art of Modern Rock', to an audience of hundreds. We held a poster show with a number of the book's artists at the Jinx. The studio participated in art shows in Charleston, including a number of poster shows, and the Munny Show. We held book signings, participated in art shows, and Johnny even performed a Halloween wedding at the studio. For all our efforts, and how well received each event was, we felt that Savannah was just not for us, and we moved home after a five year run.

Seppuku attended a number of conventions, particularly proud to be invited to the ones run by our peers, like Durb Morrison's Hell City Tattoo Expos, and Billy Easton's Richmond Tattoo Convention. Normally we are the kind of people that scoff at awards, but on the other hand, it is fun to take an award from a show surrounded by so many peers. Or taking nearly every award, like we did at the Savannah Harley Davidson Haunted Coast Run. We also received a sizable amount of attention from the magazines, notably Skin & Ink, International Tattoo Arts, Tattoo Society, Tattoo Energy, Tattoo Savage, Tattoo Revue, all the Outlaw Biker publications, and a number of Best Of issues. Matt is published in books from the Publishers of Bizarre Magazine, including 'The World's Most Incredible Tattoos'. Both Johnny and Matt appear in 'Cranial Visions', and other artist compilation books. Johnny and Matt also are quoted in Chris Dingwell's book, 'Inside Out'. Johnny's introduction to the book is actually cited by a number of book reviews. 

Johnny continued to move in his former worlds, attending a number of events as a poster artist for Drowning Creek studios. In addition to the Rock Hall Show in Cleveland, he also attended the TRPS Festival in Golden Gate State Park in 2008, and Stainboy Reinel's book signing and poster show in Orlando, The Living Dead Dolls Show in NYC, and a CBGB's Benefit Art Show just prior to their closing. He's been published in a stack of books about rock art, has artwork that appears in Guitar Hero 3, had a poster turned into a DVD for the All American Rejects, and created a poster for Hot Topic's GH promotions. His first paying writing gig was for an article on the release of the 'Art of Modern Rock' book. Johnny is sent photos of people tattooing his posters on them from as far away as South Africa. 

Seppuku has had the honor of hosting great guest artists, including Josh Fields, Dee Dee Seruga, and the aforementioned Chris Dingwell. We've had a number of tattooists & poster artists travel to receive work from us. We also hosted the multi talented Dingwell teaching his 'Painting Without Fear' seminar at the studio for a closed door all day event. Each Seppuku artist is dedicated to getting work from great tattooists as part of the learning process. Some of the artists we've collected from include Filip Leu, Horiyoshi 3, Bugs, Jeff Gogue, Paul Booth, Sean Herman, Josh Duffy, Nick Baxter, Joe Capobianco, Chris O'Donnell, Tomo, Josh Fields, and Ivana Belakova. Ali and Johnny are committed to traveling overseas to continue their collections. 

Seppuku is in Bloomingdale, NJ. We chose the locale for two main reasons; legality, as its still illegal to tattoo in portions of NJ, and the fact that's its not near anyone else, almost an impossibility in this day and age. Although in a sleepy town in the hills, we're right off several main highways, and only 30 minutes outside of NYC. We enjoy being able to attend art shows, gallery openings, conventions, seminars, as well as everything else New York offers, but come home to lakes, rivers, and great hiking. 

In the future, we plan on continuing as we always have, creating great art in all mediums, and creating a great space to get tattooed in. We plan on doing more things outside our doors, as our space isn't quite the art gallery the old joint was. We plan on continuing traveling, both as tourists, collectors, and as tattooists. We will continue to abide by the bushi code of honor, loyalty and trust. We will be enemies of the status quo and killers of mediocrity. We have great plans for the studio, and great plans require great artists. 

If you're tired of walking the demon road of meifumado as an assassin for hire, there can be no better place to call home than Seppuku Tattoo. All qualified ronin, please contact Johnny Thief at Domo arigato gozaimasu!


  1. I wish I was halfway even decent. Good luck to y'all with your endeavors. It sounds like a great place to work, a place with talented and passionate people.


  2. Tattoo means body painting. Now it is a more popular art and style in the world. Men and women both like to do this. Celebrities commonly do this style. It is also a new fashion. To paint human body painter needs some equipments. Especially painter needs painting machine. It is a tattoo machine selling website. You can visit this site and you can collect tattoo making machine from this site.

  3. Hello,

    I guess celebrities are also getting good tattoos..

  4. Nice blog ..! I really loved reading through this article..

    Thanks for sharing such a amazing post with us and

    keep blogging...

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  5. Really it was an awesome article...very interesting to read..
    Thanks for sharing..