In our second installment of our Artist Feature, we meet up with a HK - Filipino Tattooer and artist. Jacob Tang owns and runs Lucky 6 Tattoo in Kwai Chung, with roots in Graffiti and Skateboarding. We feel like it's the perfect blend of the culture that we built this company on.
'Always try to motivate others to keep it up, to just keep going.'
Gahyao : Hi Jacob, why don't you introduce yourself?Jacob : I'm Jacob Tang, a Hong Kong Artist and shop owner of Lucky 6 Tattoo.
I grew up in Hong Kong, and spent most of my early life here. It wasn't until I reached university that I spent a lot of time in Manila. I went to University of the East, and studied Fine Arts. I didn't know much Tagalog, and really had to hit the ground running. It was somewhat of a culture shock, especially coming from HK, but the years I spent in P.I really shaped me as an artist.
G : Tell us more about how you got into tattooing?
J: I had 2 classmates (in Philippines) that showed me their tattoo art (oriental style), they invited me to go see their shop. I remember going there and it was so sketchy! It was right next to the highway.. There was no tattoo table in the shop, just a wooden chair, a wooden table and an electric fan. It was very dusty too!
During this time, I was really looking to expand my art, and wanted to explore other mediums to expose my art.
G : You spearheaded Lucky 6 Tattoos, how did the shop come to be?
J : Why Lucky 6? Well, 6 is my birthday month (June), and luck is all about good things coming your way..It started out with just me and my partner, but now it's evolved into a place where I can provide a space for other's to grow in their art. I now have 3 artists and 1 apprentice working here.
G : You also mentioned that you do some graffiti work - would you say this plays a big influence on your design?
J : I grew up skateboarding, so skating came first, then with that culture I got into graffiti then tattooing. The composition, the way of thinking is the basis of a good tattoo, much like a graffiti piece.
G : Run us through your tattooing process, from idea to completion.
J : Coffee, coffee and more coffee! I need to drink coffee before anything else. I then get to the researching, I spend a lot of time working with the client's ideas, what they like and don't like, which body part I'm working on.. People normally come to me for my style (Neo-Japanese), so they trust my designs.. After this, I look at more realistic topics and references and mix it all together.
G : Any weird client stories or memorable ones?
J : One memorable tattoo, was this client who asked for a flying cat, she really liked my style and trusted me with the whole process.. She liked the tattoo so much that she even asked me to add my signature to the piece after, that was fun.
G : You have a lot of ink yourself, which is your favourite?
J : I have a Jesus tatt on my torso, which I tattooed myself.. When I first got into tattooing, I knew for sure that I wanted to pursue the life of an artist, this tattoo was my commitment.
G : Any tips for people who want their first tattoo?
J : First tattoo, you have to make it meaningful, do something you won't regret. Always look through the artist's portfolio, make sure you find someone who's good with the style you want.
G : Any advise for people who want to get started with tattooing?
J : Follow the 3 Ps - Practice, prepare and patience. These days, a lot of the younger artists want shortcuts, but tattooing (good tattooing) takes time.
G : What do you think when you hear Gahyao (Ga Yau)?
J : Lucky 6 and Gahyao have the same idea, the same principle. Always try to motivate others to keep it up. If you like drawing, tattooing or skate, just keep moving & give it a chance.
G. Where can people find out more about you and your work?