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Thursday, September 24, 2020

The top 10 tattoo artists in Toronto

The top tattoo artists in Toronto are not to be confused with your regular scratchers. While it goes without saying that all artwork is subjective, there is a collection of artists whose designs and efforts toward inclusivity have made an imprint (literally and figuratively) on the city's tat community. 

Here are my picks for the top tattoo artists in Toronto.

Amber Robyn, Chronik Ink

Working alongside a slew of renowned artists at Chronic Ink, Robyn strays away from the studio's hallmark neo-Asian designs with incredible illustrative works. Cover up tattoos for self harm, abuse and surgery scars are a specialty. Side note: Robyn's digital art is what sci-fi dreams are made of. 

G.No, Tattoo People

G.NO's work remains untouchable in the watercolour and fine line game. Working out of the South Korean-born brand Tattoo People, G.No's small, floral designs lend her body art a storybook quality that's unmatched. 

Jay Decator, Passage Tattoo

There's no denying the power Passage owner Decator, who's been in this game for over 27 years. Decator is, for good reason, in high demand. Adept at several styles – from line work to black and greys and irezumi – he stays in high demand with an impressive resistance to industry burn out. 

Cysen Ai, Golden Iron

The founder of this Chinatown studio has been tattooing for a decade and has won a number of awards for his Asian traditional work, though his realism and black and grey tattoos are equally as impressive.

Thaila Dixon a.k.a. Vegas Ink

Pushing for representation and inclusivity for Black and brown femmes in the tattoo industry, Dixon a.k.a. Vegas Ink is an artist using her platform to call out anti-Blackness on the scene, whether that be on her personal account or affiliates like upcoming Tru Tattoo Shop or The Rose Underground.

Kyle Hollingdrake, Okey Doke Tattoo Shop

Nobody does American traditional quite like the folks at Okey Doke, including OG Okey Doker Hollingdrake. Longevity is key, and this artist stays churning out pieces with a portfolio that runs from black and grey tats to any type of commissioned artwork. 

Aaron Hill, Under My Thumb Tattoos

Formerly of the Harbord shop Speakeasy, Hill has moved his more than 10 years of experience, unreal flash tats, and American traditional and Japanese body art to the collective Under My Thumb on College Street.

Roumen Kirnkov, Passage Tattoo

Realism is taken to new heights by Kirnkov, whose portraits and black and grey work speak for themselves. Crying saints or Renaissance art-level portraits of your ma and pa never looked so good. 

Brittany Randell,  Always Tattoo Studio

Always providing a safe sapce for BIPOC and queer communities to get their tat on, Randell a.k.a. Humble Bee Tattoo focuses on working with black and brown skin. Her pieces range from portraits to florals. She's also got a flash Instagram account, with new designs weekly.

Tiff Lee, HeartStrong Tattoo

HeartStrong founder Tiff Lee's neo-traditional pieces are playful, animal-themed peices with some witchy themes. This spacemaker has an all-inclusive M.O. for artists and clients, with firm policies on colour tattooing for everyone. 

by Tanya Mok via blogTO

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