Full Color Ocean to Outerspace Side Piece by Terry Ribera
Tattoo and Artwork by Terry Ribera. Follow Terry today on Instagram @terryribera.
Just wrapped up this Full Color Ocean to Outerspace Side Piece on Dylan. He sat like a champ. It was super fun and I’d love to tattoo more things like this in the future. Also tomorrow night at 8pm is our Gand Re-Opening Party at our new location. Come join us for drinks, art prizes and donate a canned food item to Mamma’s Kitchen and help feed the homeless.
When I first started learning how to tattoo, I was very excited, I really liked being called an apprentice. It had an old ring to it like I was the student of some long lost secret culture of artists. Today, people just expect to be given a chance simply because they’ve asked for it. That’s not how tattooing works, or at least not how it used to. I remember being taught how to make needles, and the owner of the shop explaining to me that it was a secret. That this thing that he was teaching me was what the “scratchers” at home tattooing in their garages wanted to know and how I was not to share this precious secret. I remember being showed how to tune machines, I remember seeing these carefully chosen companies to buy product from, machines, pigments. Being told that these where the real companies, the rest where crap. I remember that you had to be told these things, we even made some pigment at one point, although that is mostly a lost art, it used to be an important part of tattooing. I have tattoos on me from ink that we made, needles that we made, machines that we tuned. But this whole secret isn’t being passed down carefully any more. So many artists just give it away to less than deserving individuals. I remember learning to hand paint flash designs because it most resembled tattooing, not just in it’s appearance, but in the process; dipping your nib into the ink, carefully laying down a line, being very fearful of failing during the process. In both mediums you only really get one shot. That’s what I miss, that tattooing used to have a lot of magic to it.
I started tattooing in 2001. I started my career at Tahiti Felix’s Master Tattoo in San Diego. The shop was originally established in 1949. During this time my interest really developed in large scale tattooing. The shop however was a traditional American tattoo shop, where I learned to tattoo on sailors, marines and learned the ropes of tattooing along side old timers Such as Maurice and Hiro Lynch.
Over the years, I have worked in many of the world recognized tattoo shops such as Avalon Tattoo II in San Diego, Memoir Tattoo in Los Angels and Dare Devil Tattoo in NYC. During the Last 13 years, I have focused most of my career on illustrative tattooing. My interest in large scale custom tattooing has taken me across the country and made me an internationally recognized tattoo artist. I have been published in Many of the industries top Tattoo Publications such as International Tattoo, Tattoo Artist Magazine, Tattoo, Flash, Savage, Inked, Tattoo Planet, Tattoo Life, Tattoo Energy and Total Tattoo.
My interest in Art Nouveau, Illustratitive Tattoo work, Biomechanical, Japanese and Asian tattooing has allowed me to grow as an artist and become one of San Diego’s Best Tattoo artist. My distinct and instantly recognizable style has been a culmination of many years of hard work and study. Today, I spend much of my free time Painting in Oil and showing my work in Various Galleries across the country.