PLEASE READ IF YOU ARE A TATTOO ARTIST, COLLECTOR, ENTHUSIAST, ETC:*
The Personal Care Products Safety Act (S.726), introduced by Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Sen. Susan Collins, and the related Energy and Commerce Committee draft legislation are concerning to me for two reasons. First, should ingredients in tattoo ink be nominated for review, the timeline to provide substantial proof of their safety, despite decades of use without negative consequence, is insufficient. It takes years to test ink that will be in the skin permanently to fully account for the range of possible long-term effects and technology with that capability was only developed very recently. Second, the FDA does not have experts with the relevant experience of working with and understanding the tattoo industry and our products, which differ greatly from those of traditional cosmetics.
Click HERE to download a letter to send to your representatives and congressmen/women and help preserve safe and responsible tattooing.
3/1/2019: Indiana Tattooers Gallery
I'll be taking part in the Indiana Tattooers Gallery at the Murphy Building in Fountain Square, Indianapolis as part of the First Friday Artswalk. Super excited to show art with loads of amazing Indiana Tattooers, thanks to Fountain Square Tattoo for putting this on!
6/15/2018: Fountain Square Tattoo
I'll be working with the crew at Fountain Square Tattoo in Indianapolis on Saturday, June 23rd. WALK-INS ONLY!
9/24/2017: Fountain Square Tattoo
3/12/2017: Louisville Tattoo Arts Convention
I'm working the Louisville, KY tattoo convention alongside Aaron Roberts and Samantha Leyes of Black Sword Alliance, Richard Brumbaugh of Tattooed Heart [Lafayette, IN], Chad Leever of Revolution Tattoo [Lafayette, IN], and Jason Profant of Time and Tide [Bloomington, IN]. The convention takes place April 27, 28, 29, 2017 at the Kentucky Exhibition Center. More details posted as available.
3/20/2016: Black Sword Alliance Shop Updates
I'm very excited to announce that beginning May 1st 2016 I will become co-owner of Black Sword Alliance Tattoos alongside Jay Williams, Samantha Leyes, and Aaron Roberts. Shop founder, Sean King, is moving on to some amazing opportunities out west and I wish him the best in all those endeavors and look forward to working with him when he swings through as a guest artist.
2/14/2016: Black Sword Alliance Welcomes Aaron Roberts
I'm excited to announce that my good friend, Aaron Roberts, will be starting full-time at Black Sword Alliance starting February 25th. He can be contacted directly for booking at email@example.com and his portfolio can be found HERE. I believe his drive, character, and work ethic will be a great addition to our crew and help Black Sword Alliance provide the finest tattoos in Muncie and surrounding areas.
10/21/2015: BLACK SWORD ALLIANCE IS MOVING
Black Sword Alliance is relocating! Starting Monday, November 2nd you can find us at 604 W. McGalliard Rd, Muncie, IN 47303. The new shop is located directly in between G&J Auto Body (with the cadillac sticking out of the front of the building) and Ms. Ray's Palm Reading, and directly across from the McGalliard Muncie Liquors and Starbucks. Thanks for all your support at the old shop, we are moving up to a nicer location to better serve our clients!
I'm taking a much needed vacation so I will be unavailable to tattoo on September 11th-15th. I will answer emails when I return to work on Wednesday, September 16th. Thanks.
1/15/2015: FULL-TIME AVAILABILITY
Starting Valentine's Day 2015 (2/14) I'll be tattooing FULL-TIME at Black Sword Alliance. My schedule will be Wed-Sat Open to Close, appointments available, walk-ins always welcome. As always, all styles of tattooing offered, your design or mine. Thanks for your continued support!
12/27/2014: Tattoo Availability
(All dates at Black Sword Alliance)
MONDAY-FRIDAY, 6PM-8PM, Appointment only
EVERY SATURDAY, NOON-9PM, Appointment or Walk-in.
9/11/2014: Upcoming Tattoo Availability
All dates at Black Sword Alliance
SATURDAY 9/13: Noon-9PM, open from 7-9PM
8/18/2014: Upcoming Tattoo Availability
*All dates at Black Sword Alliance
Saturday August 30th, NOON-8PM
Saturday September 6th, NOON-8PM (open after 3:30pm)
7/27/2014: Muncie Tattooing Update
Starting Saturday August 2nd, all Muncie Tattooing will be at Black Sword Allilance, 1304 E. Princeton Ave, Muncie, IN 47303 (Same road as Target, corner of Broadway and Princeton Ave). 765.216.7687
I'm excited to work with my Uncle Sean and old shopmate, Jay Williams. Although still part-time, I will have expanded WALK-IN Availability as well as appointments.
7/27/2014: Upcoming Tattoo Availability
(All dates at Black Sword Alliance)
Saturday 8/2: 1:00PM-11:00PM
2/17/2014: Upcoming Tattoo Availability
(All dates at Lucky Rabbit Tattoos)
Saturday 2/22: 3:00PM-10:00PM
Sunday 2/23: 11:00AM-5:00PM
Saturday 3/1: BOOKED
Saturday 3/2: 11:00AM-5:00PM
Saturday 3/8: NOON-10:00PM
Sunday 3/9: 11:00AM-5:00PM
1/20/2014: Tattoo Superstore
I'm excited to announce that the newly re-launched Tattoo Superstore (formerly an Intenze Ink company) will be carrying some of my tattoo flash. Go check it out!
11/26/2013: Tattooing Update
I will be available for tattoos (mostly) every other Saturday starting December 7th at Lucky Rabbit Tattoos in Muncie, IN. I'm happy to be working with some of the best guys I know and to have the opportunity to continue tattooing the best clients around.
I will be working mostly by appointment with walk-ins welcome as they are available. If you would like to schedule an appointment you can email me to be put on a client list. I will email everyone the week before the next availability and book appointments in the order of emails recieved.
Thanks so much for your continued support!
10/28/2013: New tattoo hours and other happenings
I'm excited to announce that I took a position at the Indianapolis Museum of Art on the exhibitions installation team as a Preparator. Those of you who know me know that I have a background in fine art installation, art handling, and gallery work. I am happy to have the chance to get back into this field but also a bit saddened to leave tattooing full time. If I tattoo it'll be by chance or appointment somewhere in Indiana. Thanks to Genuine Tattoo for being welcoming and stand-up Tattooists.
8/29/2013: Main Street Tattoo
5/29/2013: Devil's Palm (LLC) and other changes
I am in the process of overhauling my website and social media to reflect a new direction in both style and philosophy. I've created the umbrella, Devil's Palm (LLC), incorporating my tattooing, writing, artwork, and other creative projects together to make a more fluid environment to create and share. In recent months I've been in a process of exploration and creation in a style I've come to think of as Neofolk Intermedia. The philosophy behind this style is to bring archetypal themes, imagery, symbolism, and characters born of the human condition, ancient myth, and folklore into the modern world and examine them through a new magnifying glass and new media. It's safe to say that tattooing has led me in this direction as all tattoos have roots in both historical symbols and the socio-economic trends of modern human thought, brought to life only through the rudimentary and nearly barbaric craft of exchanging blood for pigment. The old becomes new, the strange familiar. So why Devil's Palm? Simply put, the Devil has strong roots in the human myth and folklore that makes us, us. He/she is the human manifestation of the darker side of Life, the unknown. The idea of the Devil is essentially what makes us a part of the visceral current of nature and that is what I feel Neofolk is about---a re-earthing of traditional styles and modes of thought with a contemporary aesthetic. And to be honest, Devil's Palm sounds cool. Keep your eye out for new work, and as always, thanks for your support!
3/6/2013: Metanoia pop-up art show
I am taking part in another pop-up art show in Muncie, Metanoia. I'm showing an older piece (2008) that has never been shown in public, and this will likely be the last art exhibit for me in Muncie for awhile.
3/2/2013: Bloomington Update
I will be joining the crew at Genuine Tattoo Co. in Bloomington, IN full time starting the week of April 8th, 2013. I am pretty much booked here at Lucky Rabbit until the week of March 18th, at which time I will switch to WALK-INS ONLY. This should allow me to work in Muncie and Bloomington both a little more fluidly. Here is a list of my last available appointments at Lucky Rabbit:
NO AVAILABLE APPOINTMENTS, LIMITED WALK-INS
2/19/2013: Genuine Tattoo Co.
I will be tattooing at Genuine Tattoo Co. in Bloomington, IN on Monday the 25th and Tuesday the 26th. Walk-ins both days. Stop in, say hi, and get a new tattoo!
2/6/2013: Tattoo Flash Group Show
I have a new five sheet tattoo flash set and an 18"x24" one-off sheet on display at 111 Arts Gallery and Tattoo Studio for the First Thursday Arts Walk in downtown Muncie, IN. Artwork from local tattooers on display. I'm super stoked to have been invited to be part of this show!Opening Reception is Thursday, February 7th.
12/2/2012: Upcoming Art Shows
I'll have a few newish pieces of art at Savage's Ale House for a group show as well as a couple brand new robot themed pieces in the first group show of its kind titled, "Robot Run," at The Artist Within. Both shows are for the First Thursday Arts Walk in downtown Muncie, IN and run all month long. Opening Receptions are Thursday, December 6th from 6-9pm.
11/9/2012: Live Loud Tattoo
I want to thank everyone at Live Loud Tattoo for their hospitality and for letting me tattoo with them this weekend. If you're in Cincinnati, go check them out.
10/30/2012: Cincinnati Guest Spot
I will be tattooing at Live Loud Tattoo in Cincinnati, OH on Novemer 9th-11th. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to book an appointment.
7/15/2012: Monkey Thunder
6/12/2012: Quality Noise Indiana
5/31/2012: Quality Noise Indiana
Make sure to check out Quality Noise Indiana, Monday nights from 11PM-Midnight (eastern standard time) on Max 93.5/96.7 FM. This is a totally rad weekly radio show (yes, RADIO, it's still around) dedicated to playing mostly Indiana bands, largely focused on Muncie and surrounding areas, as well as hand selected vinyl's and obscure picks that would not normally be played on the radio. This whole thing is put on by Frank Reber of Reber Recording
I'll be featured on the June 11th show and my lovely wife, Brittany a.k.a. Bruisey Ricardo of the Cornfed Derby Dames, will be featured on the June 18th show. I hope to help out and/or be a guest again in the future, but regardless it's a show worth listening to! If you don't have an old AM/FM radio lying around or just miss the show each episode can be listened to for up to a week on Soundcloud.com.
I would like to thank everyone who has been tattooed in recent months and will in the days ahead. I've got to do a lot of really fun designs and have begun the treacherous trip down the road to developing a style of my own. Artistically, in every medium from paint on wood to ink in skin, I hope to never stop learning, growing, changing, and pursuing that elusive thing that is style, identity, and purpose. I can't do any of that without my awesome clients to inspire me and push me to try new things or the people who purchase and support my artwork. So, thank you, thank you, and thank you!
2/9/2012: Changes around the shop
There have been a few changes around the shop, some good, some are just changes. We lost our long term resident piercer and shop manager, Jay Williams, to his personal business pursuits. Be sure to stop by Indiana Laser Tattoo Removal and setup a consultation to get that scratcher homemade tattoo lasered off or taken down a notch for us to cover up. We now have Alan Vedge piercing full time and my wife, a.k.a. Bruisey Ricardo of Cornfed Derby Dame fame working the front desk part time and keeping things organized. Stop in and take a look around, we still love you.
12/24/2011: Happy Holidays
It's Christmas eve and the shop just closed for the Holiday's. We'll re-open on Tuesday the 27th, but I will not be in until Wednesday the 28th. Have a happy and safe Holiday!
12/15/2011: Savage's Ale House T-Shirts
11/3/2011: Painting Show Comes Down
My painting show is now down to make way for Janell's work. Should be a good show, so if you are in the Muncie, IN area, stop by Savage's Ale House tonight for the opening alongside the Arts Walk!
The T-shirt I designed for Lucky Rabbit is now available online HERE.
10/7/2011: Thanks to all...
Thanks to all who made it out to my painting show last night. I had way too much fun and I hope everyone else did as well. The paintings will be on display all month, so be sure to stop in a take a look. And don't forget to eat some food, drink some beer, and be merry!
10/5/2011: First Thursday Arts Walk, my art show at Savage's Alehouse
Hey all, Muncie's First Thursday Arts Walk is tomorrow. This is the biggest one of the year with ton's going on. YART will be having the art yard sale, 111 Tattoo and Art gallery will have live music, art, and live sculpture, there will be openings at The Artist Within, Gallery 308, Gordy's Fine Art and Framing, Blue Bottle Coffee, live music, artist demonstrations, a soup walk benefiting Second Harvest Food Bank, and much much more! Oh yeah, I have an opening at one of the raddest bars in town, Savage's Ale House. They have been kind enough to put The Muncie Burger on special and as always, PBR and Hamm's are only $1.
Every year it seems we get Ball State students interviewing us for a class. This student had pretty good questions, and I enjoyed answering them. So, in case anyone was wondering some of this themselves, I'm posting it here.
Name: Joshua Chatwin
What led you to tattooing?
Luck I suppose. I guess I kind of fell into it. It's something that has fascinated me for as long as I can remember. I used to see the old sailor tattoos, the dingy, faded, blown out, almost illegible designs that were real crude and crooked on the skin, and I thought they were the coolest things I'd ever seen. A lot of my real early drawings as a kid were of Conan the Barbarian type muscled up action figures and monsters, superheroes and such, and they usually had tattoos. So when I turned 17 I got my first tattoo and then another, and then another. I was finishing up the art and creative writing programs here at Ball State when I began doing extensive cover-up work on some of my first tattoos with Dan Stewart here at Lucky Rabbit. Every two weeks for five or six months I was getting tattoo work done on the coverups so I got to know Dan pretty well. After awhile I worked up the courage to ask for an apprenticeship. I had no idea how to draw tattoos, coming from a fine art background, so by the time I actually brought in a really crappy tattoo design portfolio almost a year had passed. I suppose Dan saw potential in the drawings and took me on as an apprentice. I started in December of 2009, did my first tattoo in February of 2010, and quit my crappy customer service job the next week on Valentines Day. I haven't looked back since.
What inspires you?
That changes quite a bit on a regular basis. I slowly came to realize that tattooing, at least the type of tattooing I like to do, is at heart a form of Folk Art. Primitive, raw, decorative, and usually humorous. So lately American Folk Art has been a big inspiration. Antiques, old photographs, old illustrated field guides and Sears catalogs from the turn of the century, advertisements, and so on all kind of filter in. I've been doing a lot of folk art inspired paintings that really have nothing directly to do with tattooing but have affected how I approach tattoos. I still draw from the fine art world to. I stop by the Ball State Museum of Art on a regular basis and try to peek into the galleries downtown every so often. A lot of times I get more inspiration from going to a play or hearing the right song with the right people at the right bar with the right beer. Everything just filters in and comes out somewhere. In a painting, in a tattoo, in a poem or short narrative. Of course other tattoo artists inspire me. The guys I work with are awesome, but I also draw a lot from contemporary greats like Uncle Allan from Denmark, all the guys at Fifth Street Tattoo in Brooklyn, Kowhey from Japan, Tilt from Champaign, IL, and so on and so on. Getting tattooed is also inspiring and always a learning experience.
What is your favorite style of tattoo to do?
I guess I sort of touch on this above, but I suppose it would be called American Traditional a.k.a. Old School (a term I really loath). I like tattoos that look like tattoos. Thick outlines, lots of black shading, and solid color. Tattoos that will look great even after years of abuse, sun damage, aging, etc. There is this amazing photo realism movement happening in tattooing right now that I sincerely respect and admire technically, but it just does not float my boat. Realism has never been my thing, in any medium, so I guess my mind just doesn't work that way. I enjoy the more illustrative qualities that can be pushed with American Traditional, and you know, if a style of tattoo can survive over a hundred years of cultural shifts and fashion changes, I think that says something.
What do you know about the history of tattooing?
I guess I've never sat down and really thought about the history of tattooing. I know a blurry, self educated version that is probably not accurate in most ways, sort of like what they teach you about American history in High School. So I suppose I know this: It's one of the oldest rituals known to the human race and has been done for spiritual, medicinal, hierarchical status-quo, fashion, and identifying purposes. Thomas Edison invented what would become the first tattoo machine, an electric pen used for engraving. A tattooer by the name of Samuel O'Reilly modified Edison's design for tattooing and patented the first tattoo machine.. Much of the western, American Traditional is heavily influenced by traditional Japanese tattooing. Tattooing was outlawed in most of the county in the late 30's, only to become legal again in the 90's ('97 for Indiana), and responsible tattooers are largely the reason why. We self regulated and then invited Health Boards to regulate and inspect. It is still very much illegal to tattoo outside of an inspected shop, so don't go to tattoo parties and end up with Hep. B or C, or worse. Reality TV shows about tattoos are far from the reality and should not be trusted.
How would you describe tattooing? How do you think of tattooing?
Intimate, but slightly masochistic in nature. The closest thing to shamanism left in a culturally vapid world. I mean, no matter what the design is, a loved one's name or a snake and eagle fighting, a person comes to me for one reason or another and wants this image, this symbol, put permanently on their body. I am just a means to an end. A way for that person to express themselves. But I get to put a little of myself into the design, make it my own. So in a way they get a piece of me as well. It's one of the last real human exchanges. I'm seeing some part of a stranger's body, touching it, and causing them pain for an extended amount of time. You get to know someone, even if there is no conversation. You have to be comfortable with that kind of contact. For however long that tattoo takes place we are both physically and mentally tried and connected.
Is there a down side to tattooing or tattoos? If yes, what?
There is not so much a downside to tattooing or tattoos for me. I live pretty comfortably, drive a decent car, pay my bills, have fun, get to spend a lot of time with my wife and daughter, have time and inspiration to make art outside of tattoos, and tattooing pays for and allows for all of that. The only major issue is an over saturation of tattoo artists who are only in it for a quick buck. People who can't really draw, don't know how to properly use a tattoo machine, and have no interest in making the best tattoos they can. The assholes who tattoo in their kitchens, scarring people up and spreading disease because they think anyone can tattoo. Not everyone can do it. Not everyone in 'legitimate' shops can do it. It's a tough, physically and mentally demanding job. We see and hear so many horror stories and have to fix so many hack job tattoos because some kid ordered a Chinese kit on ebay and thought he was a rock star. So personally, no downside, but on a wider scale, the 'scratchers' of the world undercut and drag the artistry of tattooing down.
Anything else you'd like people to know?
Like that I enjoy the feel of wool socks, or my favorite author is Tom Robbins? In all seriousness, I guess I want people to at least think about who tattoos them. No matter where they go, check the portfolios, look around and judge how clean the place is, make sure they have an ultrasonic and autoclave for sterilization, look for sharps containers for used needles, check for health board and blood borne pathogens certification. Sadly, just because they have a store front does not mean they have all of this. I've seen it with my own two eyes. Also, make sure it's a design you want for the rest of your life, and yes, it is ok to get a tattoo that does not hold a special meaning for you. Sometimes it just looks aesthetically pleasing and that is enough!
9/28/2011: New Twitter!
I have created a Twitter account specifically to feed the facebook fan page. If you are privy to Tweeting, jump over and follow me:
Joshua Chatwin on Twitter
9/27/2011: Lucky Rabbit T-Shirt design, Chatwin edition
I designed a t-shirt that ended up a shop shirt. It can be found HERE and purchased at the shop for $20.
9/23/2011: Death Pissed In The Houseplants Again
More information can be found on the Facebook Event Page
Savage's Ale House is kind enough to showcase some of my recent paintings during the October 6th Arts walk. Come on out, drink some beers, eat some Muncie Burgers and have a look at what I've been doing for the past couple months.
These paintings are heavily influenced by American folk art, myth, snippets of my own poetry, everyday life, distant, foggy memories, and indirectly, tattooing. I would love for you to look at them.
21 years of age or older only.
9/18/2011: Upcoming Painting Exhibit
I have a painting exhibit in the very near future at Savage's Ale House. This show coincides with the First Thursday Arts Walk in downtown Muncie, more details to come.
9/17/2011: Tattoo City Underground
Just spent the weekend at the Tattoo City Underground convention in West Indianapolis (Plainfield). Had a good time, met some good folks, did a tattoo trade, tattooed some Indianapolis area tattooers, and had the chance to celebrate Oktoberfest with some long-time friends of mine. All weekends should be so kind.