Tattoo Artist interview with Piotr Gie

6 February 2015

81 PiotrGr SPECIALARTIST 150x150 Tattoo Artist  interview with  Piotr GiePiotr Gie, article and photo gallery in Tattoo.1 Tribal #81
Look at Piotr’s tattoos, visit the tattoo gallery

What inspires your art?
I’m inspired by everything I see. The people I meet, the places I visit on a daily basis all inspire me in a certain way. I look through the internet every day for photographs and illustrations, and I follow graffiti artists and tattooists from around the world on Instagram –  they are also a great inspiration for me. My other source of inspiration is music – I listen to rap every day, all day, even when I’m drawing I listen to rap for inspiration.

How did your passion for tattoos first start?
I’ve liked tattoos ever since I was a young boy. My older brother had a few (done at home) and I decided that once I grow up and started earning money, I would get one too. I became good friends with the guys who did my tattoos and they offered a job working at the reception. I was already really into tattoos. I would spend all my time at the studio, taking photos and making videos of guys tattooing. After about two years behind the desk and doing a few small tattoos I thought to myself – why not try to make a living out of it?

Can you briefly describe your technique and how it has changed over time?
Above all, bring on colourful tattoos! The world is so colourful and I like to present my ideas in a multi-coloured palette of shades. I always start my work in the same way, first I draw all the lines very carefully, using blacks and adding shadows then after this stage the real fun begins for me. I like to do the colouring, not copying or transferring ready colours from paper. I have “something” – some plan of what colour should be used in this tattoo, in my head and I mix the available colours together to get a shade that’s even more crazy and unique. My technique is changing all the time or rather it’s a natural evolution – when you already know something about the job, what you do and how you do it is rearranged in order to take a step forward and find new ways of getting a certain effect as you imagined it.

How important is the design on paper and how is it different on the skin?
The project is very important to me, I prepare a design the day before. Some clients want to see their projects in advance but I always have a hundred ideas in my head and it’s difficult to find the right one. The best idea always comes just the day before a session – I get a feeling that a certain idea is the best for this particular client and I’m sure that we will both be happy. Working with pencil on card is probably the best way for me. When I have finished the sketch I use tracing paper and drawing pens to refine the project. There’s a fundamental difference between the colour of card and paper and the colour of skin so I don’t colour a project on a piece of paper but I try to choose the right colours when I see the skin, and like I said before, I mix the available colours to get a unique effect.

Are there any tattoo artists that you consider your teachers or landmarks?
I haven’t had any specific teachers. I’ve learned most from my colleagues at the studio: Rafal Jedrychowski, Bart Janus and Jarek Gorajek. I’ve spent most of my time with them and as they are realistic tattoo artists, they work in a completely different style which I think for me and my work brings a fresh effect. What I see, I analyse later and come to my conclusions. Lots of guest artists visit our studio, so I also have the opportunity of watching them for a few days, working with them and learning something new.

How long have you done this work?
I’ve worked at the studio for 6 years already. As I said, after about two years behind the desk and doing a few small tattoos I thought to myself – why not try to make a living out of it? So then I started to learn seriously, but I feel like I wasted the first couple of years because when I moved to Scotland almost 2 years ago I started to learn everything from the beginning again. Now I know how to tattoo properly.

How much does the person who requests the tattoo influence your creation?
I try to get as much information as possible about what kind of idea they want, where on the body and so on. If I have all the information I need, all I want is their trust and freedom to prepare the design. Most clients who come to me now know my work so they know what to expect, what kind of style I use.

What’s the most enjoyable part of tattooing? And the most boring?
To be honest I like the whole process, especially the moment right before finishing when I can see that the final effect is what I wanted and then I just start smiling icon smile Tattoo Artist  interview with  Piotr Gie Then I know that the customer will also be happy and there is some kind of connection being made between us:) And that is great. Sometimes I don’t like setting up, not because I’m lazy but because I’m already too excited about the tattoo.

When does a tattooer become an Artist?
If you create something from scratch, you express yourself in this way. So really every thing made by human hands, not in the factory and not by machine, is a kind of art. Each one of us is an artist, because every day we create our own reality around us. In other words, if you approach each project individually and create it yourself, then for me you are an artist.

What is your philosophy?
I think that’s the hardest question. The most important thing is to realise that you live in this world, and not to waste time, because we live only once. Making dreams come true, that’s it . So I followed my dreams, I am doing tattoos, I travel and I love my wife. This is the whole philosophy of happiness.

PIOTR GIE
Rock’n’Roll Tattoo Studios
Dundee (UK)
Facebook.com/piotrgie.tattooer