Double Tap That | Tattoo Icons
The tattoo culture is a fascinating thing (you may have noticed we like it a fair bit). It’s a subculture – an entire developing microcosm – with a thriving heartbeat and a living pulse. Forever evolving, taking new forms. A true art movement, in a whole heap of ways. But its journey into popular culture is still an ongoing thing. For the broader mainstream, a full sleeve of tattoos can still earn you sideways glances and the occasional shudder from the particularly prudish. That’s why we love a bit of anything that explores our day-to-day relationship with the tattoo culture as a society.
None more so than 36-year-old Seattle based artist Cheyenne Randall’s study into tattooed icons. A project that came about through sheer serendipity when he busted his kneecap good and proper and spent several months bed ridden and out of the game. He was watching ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest’ and wondered what Jack Nicholson would look like if he were tattooed up. A picture swiped from the ol’ internet and a few self-taught lessons on photoshop … and bam – Randall’s first Tattoo Icon was born. It hit social media in a fiery blaze of love-heart glory, the appetite for the seeming juxtaposition between a classic, infamous portrait and the sharp edge of densely adorned American-style ink staggeringly vehement. He made another, and another … by the time his kneecap was healed two months later, he was a demon on photoshop and had a 200 strong army of creations. All with a cult following that wait with baited breath for the latest.
It’s pretty clever, too. Randall uses old images to avoid any messy copyright issues and sticks to traditional American-style ink that he’s perfected over time and practice. Even to the sharpest of eyes, the tattoos are warped and wrapped damn-near perfectly to the bodies of his icons, presenting a seamless image that creates a wormhole into an alternate universe somehow.
You can buy his prints for pretty reasonable price (Gary and Cathy actually have tatted Audrey hanging in their kitchen) and follow on Insta for his new explorations along the frays of cultures and worlds.