Stew is a born Kiwi. He is from the north of Auckland, the Wellsford area. He grew up on a farm. His father is English New Zealander and his mum was from Samoa. She died several years ago at a too young age and Stew and his sister were brought up by their father. In memory of his mother, Stew has decided to have a traditional Samoan tattoo designed by Warkworth Ink. The family used to live in a Samoan town in the inland of the island and they were farmers and growers. The origins are reflected in the weaving and crop patterns of the tattoo. The open flower at the bottom of the design represents the beautiful personality of Stew's mum.
Anke, a backpacker from Germany wanted a typical Pacific Tribal. And since she has no family connection to any particular area she was very flexible about the region. She said she loves the creatures of the sea. We suggested a Tahitian style tattoo. There are lots of turtles, octopusses and fish in Tahitian tribals. We tattooed on the inside of the foot and it worked perfect. We all find it very appealing.
SARAH (New Zealand)
Sarah came to see us in April 2007 and when she took off her t-shirt her problem became clear. A couple of years ago her friend had tattoed the word 'sexy' on her shoulder. It was done as a 'homejob' with a sewing needle and ink from a pen. She was very unhappy and wished she would have never allowed for the tat. Since Sarah is a cute girl who likes sarcasm we suggested something wicked and came up with the idea of a realistic image of a red back spider. The target was to tattoo as naturalistic as possible including shaddowing the insect's body sitting on a sandy rough surface. Now 'sexy' has become a statement in a different way.
Gaetane arrived in New Zealand and wanted to take a tattoo home as a souvenier. He is thinking to start collecting tattooes from all the destinations on his journey around the world. He wanted to have something original from Aotearoa (NZ) but mentioned that of course he does not believe it should be a typical Maori tattoo. He is French after all. So we asked him what he thinks about transferring an authentic painting or carving into body art. We found the image of an Maori face on a wooden carving. Chris scanned it and put it on computer and a vector image was created from which the tat stencil was printed and then tattoed. After 4 months Gaetane came back to the shop and told us that he now thinks about an African mask and will have it done when he arrives on the black continent.
The classic English Bulldog. Jamie from Kent brings his 'true-red-blue' tat back from New Zealand.
John from Sussex wanted a original Maori Tribal but had no idea whom he could approach to design the tattoo for him. He wanted to have his family background and his work as carpenter included. We used a design from a headpiece of a northern tribe (iwi) longboat (waka). The carvings on the boat 'speak' about the iwi as craftsmen in timber works. John's parents and brothers are also included. Can you see them?
He is now back in England and sent us an email to announce his next visit to New Zealand for an extension of his tattoo around the chest and the back.
Marcus and Birgit (Austria)
Some iwis use an additional colour (either blue or red, or both) to highlight family relationships or bloodlines.