I have known and tattooed Matt for many years. We were introduced by our friend Jez in the early 80s at “Frascos”a bar in Eastbourne. His first tattoo by me was at a very old school shop I was working at in Old Town in Hastings , I had Good times there and it was a great place to learn my craft. It was there that our friendship was cemented.We both had a sense that there could be Bigger more exciting possibilities with tattooing.
I think the real breakthrough was the tattoo monthly ‘International Tattoo Art’ founded and edited by Jonathan Shaw. Of course there were previous publications such as Ed Hardys ‘Tattootime’ series , but they were not being sold to the masses on the news stand. It seemed to be a time when there were very few tattooists that I could relate to, but seeing ‘new ‘ tattoo work in the ‘ITA’ was encouraging and inspiring , it confirmed my view that tattooing could be more than just a mark ,It had to move forward.
In Dec 1993, I set up a shop In Eastbourne. Matt used to travel down from London most weekends to work the desk and generally keep the wheels oiled. During that time there was a ‘Golden’ period at the shop , it was more like a club or a meeting place than a tattoo studio. We were discovering new approaches to tattooing, mixing All styles, Asian x Pattern x Trad x etc . We talked, Played music , hung out, partied , and we did do a lot of tattooing, sometimes into the early hours .
Thank You Matthew for allowing me to tattoo you, …and learn.
Those were the daze. x