Tattoo artist Steve Myles talks about the dangers of social media

Not so long ago, tattoo artist Steve Myles went to the Brugge Tattoo convention and little did we know, it was his first convention ever.

We took the liberty to ask him a few questions and we ended up talking about apprenticeships, meanings behind tattoos and more. Here’s what we learned about Steve Myles.

His journey in the tattoo world

Before Steve entered the world of tattooing he was actually a musician and played in a post-metal band called Cuda (or Kuda, we’re not exactly sure). Not only did he play in the band, but they toured together!

So this wasn’t Steve’s first time in Belgium. He’d been here before, more specifically in Brussels and Antwerp. But how did he got into tattooing really?

Well, in his very late teens he ran a punk venue and he needed gig posters, so he actually started drawing/designing them himself. From there he figured out he wanted to give it a shot and he did, a few times, but didn’t get very far with it. He told us it’s very hard to break into the industry and well, he’s not lying.

Pssst, here’s an article full with tips about breaking into the industry!

Luckily, his partner Tasha Wild (click here to see her interview) was already in it for 10 years. So, when she decided it’s time for her to open a shop they teamed up. Steve helped with setting things up and Tasha taught him how to tattoo!

If that ain’t relationship goals, idk what is.

A man with a hat and glasses tattooing and arm

His apprenticeship experience

With his own words, it was pretty chilled out.

He started out with setting up and decorating the shop and once that was done, him and Tasha went straight into the ‘learning how to tattoo’ part of the apprenticeship.

Steve did acknowledge that he was very lucky about his apprenticeship and that he knows not everyone had it that ‘easy’. He shared that he’s definitely heard some stories from apprentices before.

A leg with black old-school tattoo of a Lyecan

Tips for beginners?

Because he started in an unconventional way he wasn’t really sure if he had anything to add to what his colleagues say so he just repeated it and told us: draw a lot, get tattooed a lot… and smash your head against it until something works.

We know, it sounds difficult when you don’t have strict guidelines like you do with professions you can go to college to, but if you start from there you’ll come across something that’ll work eventually.

Would he ever mentor someone?

When it comes to him taking on an apprentice, Steve told us he doesn’t want to be a mentor before he’s hit his 10 year mark in the industry… and thank God for that!

Not because he’s a bad artist, that’s not what we’re saying at all, if anything his work is epic! It’s just… a lot of artists take on someone as their apprentice before they’ve even mastered their own skill. So, props to him.

Tattoo meanings and social media

We asked Steve if he thinks that tattoos should have a meaning, a one million dollar question if u ask us.

He’s quite tatted up and from what he told us, only 2 – his first two, tattoos were with a significant meaning. In fact, he obsessed about what they were about.

After that however, he was taking on the mindset of ‘If I like it, just get it somewhere on there.’  But there’s also no strict rules and according to him, it’s just up to the person.

Then we asked his opinion about social media

He told us he keeps up with one video and one picture a day (we have to say that it is working for him), but tries to leave it at that. Steve shared that according to him it really isn’t good for anyone in terms of mental health and confidence.

Especially, if you’re a creative person, because it’s really easy to get caught up in the comparison game. He called it a ‘recipe for being unhappy’. It’s not really nice, but he did power up to what other artists say – you can’t do without it. If you’re tattooing, you need an Instagram.

Steve also touched on a really good point, the algorithm and everything that gets you visibility is already difficult

A huge back tattoo in the old-school style of an animal fighting scene

to master as it is – and then Instagram goes and changes things every so often and makes it even more difficult. People hate it, but people can’t without it so they just uploading so that the platform can keep existing.

Quite a controversy, huh?

So, these were Steve’s point of views on a few topics. We have to give it to him, he’s got quite the hang of things and is really conscious about his choices – respect!

What do you guys think about social media? Discuss it down below!

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