Meet the Off the Map Staff #6: Gabe Ripley
Gabe is the shop owner and he's kind of like the troll in the basement, but he's actually the computer geek upstairs. You might catch of glimpse of him in the tattoo shop, but more often then not he's got his face buried in his computer in our offices above the shop working on websites for tattoo artists or our tattoo convention the Paradise Tattoo Gathering.
1. How long have you worked in the tattoo industry and how did you get started?
I started hustling tattoo websites for Darkside Tattoo in 94/95ish. I realized I couldnt really afford the tattoos I wanted to get but was real sharp with computers and started trading computer work for large tattoos. the computer work turned into a lot of new customers for the shop, so we decided to do websites for other talented tattooers and TattooNOW was born.
2. What is your favorite style of tattooing?
Personally I have a lot of color tattoos, some realistic, some illustratory, one or two surrealistic... I have plans to get some black and grey work done...
3. Who have you been tattooed by and who's on your wish list?
Hmm, well, Ive been working on the collection for a bit and very lucky. Some notables are Joe Capobianco, Tin Tin, Nick Baxter, Yang Zhuo, Oleg Turanskiy, Tony Ciavarro, Mike Demasi, Jeff Gogue, Alex Depase, Lou Jacque, Dana Helmuth, Durb, Dee Dee Seruga, Nate Beavers, Johnny Berrios, Julio Rodriquez, Sean Ohara, a few others... Lots of lasering from Jack Morton of Rethink Your Ink. In a few years I'll have all the crap off me and all good tattoos! I have a few big spaces left, but want to put some large tattoos on them, so the wish list has to be pretty short... I have an appointment just about set with Guy Aitchison (!!!). Id also like to get tattooed by Bob Tyrrell, Robert Hernendez, and Filip Lieu... A big Gogue piece, maybe another big Joe Capobianco piece maybe... Jime Litwalk too. I think thats it...
4. If I wasn't working in the tattoo industry I would probably be:
Probably freelancing for big corporations and spending the loot on vacation with my family.
5. One piece of advice for someone looking to get tattooed:
Tattoos are easy to put on, and difficult to take off. The art of tattooing really is about doing it perfect the first time. not an easy task!