Today we are publishing an interview with a talented tattoo artist from sunny Italy, a man who has his own fresh look at watercolor tattooing - Alex Prequel.
- Hello Alex! First of all, please tell me, how it all began for you ? How and when did you come into tattooing? What did you do before?
- Hi! I started tattooing in 2013, I was almost 22 years old.
Mine was a very natural start and I think it had to go like this! If I went back, I would always choose this beautiful job. I have always been in contact with art. I was already drawing as a child, I graduated from an art high school in Italy so I was already passionate and artistically prepared before I even started, at 20 I decided to have my first tattoo done, then other tattoos again and slowly, slowly the love for drawing and the passion for tattoos joined by themselves so from that moment I said: ok maybe it’s time to start doing it.
It went more or less like this!
- What possible career did you leave for tattoo?
- I think if I hadn't been a Tattoo artist I would have been a Rapper if maybe I had moved to a bigger city when I was young. Because I wrote and sang in high school years. GANG
- What does the word tattoo mean for you?
- For me, tattooing means capturing an idea and making it real forever.
- Do you have any special training?
- Not so special but yes, but from what I remember I have always drawn since childhood, already from the nursery. As I said to you in the first question I studied drawing in a specific high school, so it was definitely a point in my favor to have an artistic ability behind me when I started tattooing.
In addition to the preparation in drawing or painting I think it is very helpful also the culture and the knowledge of the history of art, of various artistic movements, the lives of various artists, various different techniques of making art, classical and contemporary.
A baggage of many information and a dozen images in the head this leads to inspiration and creativity more than the fact of knowing how to do it.
- Do you remember your the first customer and your feelings as the tattoo artist, when you did the first tattoo?
- Of course. I did the first tattoos on real skin on myself, something on my legs. Instead the first ever on a client was my mother the lucky one, I made her a stupid tribal star behind her back and I remember it was hell. It took me a long time and it was really tiring to work with the fear of making a mistake with the first tattoos.
- What is the most attractive thing in the tattoo for you?
- The most attractive thing about the Tattoo is being able to carry out a different idea every day. Always a new subject, a new story to tell and interpret.
- What or who is the source of inspiration for you?
- I let myself be inspired by everything in reality: from everyday life and from the philosophy of some things, from the art of the past and contemporary, from street art, from cinema, from technology and this cyber and very social world, from music and travel, I also like to draw inspiration from elements such as water, fire, summer / autumn etc for the choice of colors and some atmospheres.
- Does music help with it? What do you listen on the sessions?
- Very yes. I tell you that I have never tattooed without music from what I remember! it is studied that music and drawing go together perfectly, indeed the brain is stimulated to creativity during the artistic process by listening to music, therefore super! as I said before, you understand that I'm a big fan of hip hop, I mostly listen to that 90% of the time, since I was a teenager.
Various a lot depends on the period or the day, for example from N.W.A., 2Pac, step for Kendrik Lamar and Kanye West, until you get to all the new school and the new Trap releases of the moment!
I could spend hours listing all the artists I listen to haha but mainly American, French and finally Italian rap and wrapped up the Latin Trap.
- Tell me about the style of your work. How did you come to your style?
- I studied classical art. I graduated from art school in Italy, so for years I designed live models, statues of Michelangelo and Antonio Canova, I even did some sculpture. So the first years of my career I went to the realistic black and gray, because it seemed close to what I already knew how to do. Then over time I turned more and more towards the abstract.
I wanted to tattoo something special and above all have a lot of free interpretation in the realization.
In other genres you have to stick to the design you prepare for the client or in the case of a realistic photo, in my style even during the execution on the skin of the tattoo I have the freedom to add many other details to my pleasure that maybe on the drawing did not exist, (obviously if the customer allows it but it is almost always so.) attribute that developed over time.
Mastering one’s style definitely takes time and we always add new attributes from time to time that push our styles to new levels. Sooo it’s always a never ending work in progress.
- What’s features makes your tattoo really yours and unique?
- People who like my style like it because it is the perfect combination of watercolor and Abstract, many artists tend to make a watercolor pushed towards the realistic, others do a very fine and delicate watercolor almost only for girls maybe, mine stands out because it is a mix between sketch-like illustration and watercolor, and I do it anyway with evident though subtle lines that win everyone's trust even those who are at the first watercolor tattoo. And it is also very Unisex if you can say it.
- Do you travel a lot around the world as a tattoo artist? Where did you work already and where we’ll can see you in the nearest future?
- I travel a lot. I have made some trips to Italy others to Europe and in the last 2 years I have made several trips to the United States and I have also been to the orient, to Vietnam. In 2020 you will see me much more in Europe, perhaps more Northern Europe, and also Canada.
- Are tattoo conventions take a part of your life?
- Yes, I already have about 15 active conventions on my portfolio at the moment. And this year I plan to participate in many other new conventions for me.
- Do you have any special country for you, where you are always ready to return?
- I have to see a lot still, as I said before, I have many cities and nations to visit in Europe too, the world is really big! but for what I have already seen if I have to tell you a place where I would always return I think it is California.
- What do you know about tattoo in Russia? Have you ever been there?
- I don't think I'm very knowledgeable about tattooing in Russia but the Russian artists I know are all monsters doing their job. So really nice I would say. And of course I would love to come to Russia too, I have never been, surely the first destination would be Moscow.
- Where do you work now?
- I work in my private Black Port Tattoo Studio in San Benedetto del Tronto, it is a small seaside town in the Marche region in central Italy on the east coast of the country.
- Tell me about one of your typical working day.
- Wake up early, ride to the airport for check in, economy only, excited for a long 12 hour flight I get on board. I touch the sky and I wake up in a new country where the clock goes back 8/9 hours and I still have a day to live and the next day I run to make an abstract.
Come on I'm joking haha!
- How do you rate your popularity? And how do you think it can be measured?
- I don't think I'm still popular. the road is long!
- Which modern tattoo artist do you consider worthy to be called «the best»? And do you have any idols?
- I don't have idols in particular. But one of the most original modern artists is Mashkow, in my opinion, I want to make his name precisely because he is also Russian.
- How you see the future of the tattoo in the next 5-10 years?
- We will see how it ends, I don't know. It is certainly growing rapidly, that's for sure!
- What advice can you give to novice tattoo artists?
- I can advise you to be yourself and try to make an original contribution to the tattoo. this job is a passion and a lifestyle you don't start for money, so keep this note in mind.