Working out of the newly opened The Tattoo Gallery in Johannesburg, we bring you James Rype as our featured Tattoo Artist.
Brought to you by Zappa.
Full name: James Rype
Shop: The Tattoo Gallery
Years tattooing: 10years
Tattoo style: Realism/New School
Hourly rate: R1200
Give us some insight into your journey of becoming a tattoo artist?
I have always had a deep passion for drawing and painting. One day while I was doing a mural I got offered an apprenticeship and I haven’t looked back since.
How would you best sum up a life of a tattoo artist?
Tonnes of effort, stress, self-awareness, self-criticism, and discipline. It’s actually not so glamorous as the T.V. Shows make it seem, and it’s important to love what you do.
What does a day in your life usually consist of?
Usually I have a smoke or a bong and a cup of good coffee, then spend some time with my lovely lady and my two cats before I take on the day’s challenges.
When not working and tattooing, what do you like to do with your downtime?
I make a point to relax and balance out work with other aspects of life. I try not to think about art so that I can appreciate the moment and remember to live life as well.
How do you like to ensure you keep progressing as an artist?
Practice. I try to always push my limits and develop my style constantly. Plus, we all have a few secrets.
What style of tattoo do you enjoy creating the most?
I don’t get stuck on one particular style, although I do enjoy themed colour, black and grey realism, and style mash-up. As well as custom script pieces and a bit of freehand to tie it all together.
Which local and international artists to you aspire to?
Locally – Rasty Knayles, Callum Els, Paige Beckett, Pepe Dimevski and Sandra Flow to name a few.
Internationally – Anrijs Straume, Tanane Whitfield and Thomas Carli Jarlier.
All for their own unique reasons and artistic skills.
What does it mean to you to be working out of the new The Tattoo gallery shop?
The Tattoo Gallery has introduced me to some really interesting people. I am excited to see what ‘s waiting for me in this new chapter.
Where would you like to see your career take you?
To places I’ve never imagined hopefully, possible sponsorship, maybe even to travel more and tattoo abroad. More conventions, hoping to collect a few trophies/ prizes. Tattoo some famous people I admire perhaps. I’ve got to look up and dream big.
For anyone wanting to book and appointment with you, what’s the next step?
For anybody who is interested in getting tattooed by me contact me or The Tattoo Gallery and set up an appointment for a consultation. You can DM the shop on Instagram – @thetattoogallerysa – all the shop details are there. You can also DM me on Instagram -@rypism – or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Send me a few pics of your ideas, the area you would like me to tattoo, as well as a brief description of what you have in mind. Then we can confirm an appointment, pay the necessary deposit and a custom design will be tailored just for you.
Tattoos by James Rype
Photos by Alexander Wolf Photography.