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Tattoo Artist Rodwin Proctor

Thriving on creating and turning surrealistic imagery into eye-catching tattoos, Rodwin Proctor is our featured Tattoo Artist. Check out our interview with the Cape Town based artist below…
Brought to you by Zappa.

Rodwin Proctor features as our featured Tattoo Artist

 Full name: Rodwin Proctor

Shop: Descriptive Art Collective

Years tattooing: 3

Tattoo Style: Black and Grey Realism/ Blackwork Geometric

Hourly rate: R1000

Interview with Tattoo Artist Rodwin ProctorWe talks tattoos with artist Rodwin Proctor

Tell us your story of how you became a full time tattoo artist? 
I always enjoyed hanging out at tattoo shops as a young kid with my mom. I would continue to go and visit tattoo shops as I got a little older even if I couldn’t get tattooed, the judgement-free environment and mutual interests between myself and the artists I was around always made me feel comfortable. I began studying graphic design at a college but wasn’t 100% sold into the idea of it being a career, I would often hang out at a shop after class and eventually was offered the opportunity of an apprenticeship, which I had never even considered, of course I jumped at the opportunity and said yes. I still graduated college whilst apprenticing every day after class. After graduating I spent a few more months honing in on what I had learnt before actually tattooing myself and then letting the full-time journey begin. In retrospect I could not have imagined a better career path and am truly grateful to be able to draw on people every single day.

When did you first know this was the career for you?
I knew that this was the career for me when realising that I had to work on my own issues and anxieties in a creative way. Being tattooed gave me a sense of confidence I had not entirely appreciated before, and being able to create art whilst processing emotions is a powerful tool for perspective. It’s rare to be in a work environment where you get to meet new people each and every day and spend such an intimate experience with a stranger. Being tattooed gives you a sense of self-worth whether it’s conscious or not, and being able to connect with others whilst giving them a chance to self-reflect or express themselves through the art of tattooing is super important to me.

Rodwin Proctor tattooing a client

What does the world of tattooing mean to you?
The world of tattooing is a sacred and mysterious place to me. We still do not entirely know when tattooing began or the meanings behind tattooing in ancient cultures, it’s amazing to see how far technology has come and I feel privileged to be part of a new generation of tattoo artists who have amazing tools at our disposal. I will always feel humbled by the years of progression set out by older generations of tattoo artists and wish to positively influence the world of tattooing as much as I can, even if it’s one client at a time.

Take us through a day in the life of Rodwin?
I wake up anywhere between 7 and 9am, having spent the night before designing. I wake up feeling zombified but excited. I’ll arrive at work at 10am and have everything ready for my client at 11am. Most days I’ll finish tattooing between 6 and 8pm and then go home to design and continue the cycle.

What style of tattoo do you enjoy creating the most, and why?
I enjoy surrealistic imagery the most, anything weird and out of the ordinary is exciting for me because it evokes a “did I see that right?” Reaction out of people. I’m a huge animal lover so any animal imagery is fun to do, as well as sacred geometry. I’m a fan of psychedelics and believe that geometric shapes are the make-up of everything in our world.

Tattoos and more with artist Rodwin ProctorInterview with Tattoo Artist Rodwin Proctor

What steps do you take to make sure you keep progressing as an artist?
I try to make sure to ask my clients specific questions to make sure I fully understand why they want the tattoo. The reasoning behind the tattoo keeps me motivated as to trying to tell their story in a creative way. This leaves room for no boundaries when designing and keeps me motivated because no designs are going to be the same and the workflow isn’t too repetitive. Even though I enjoy sentimental work, cool-looking and funny tattoos are just as fun to do. I enjoy spending time in nature when not working to decompress and not over-complicate the work I’m thinking about. I get inspired by nature as the shapes and textures are always true and not in the image of another person or artist.

What do you feel have been some of the best evolutions when it comes to equipment and ink in recent years?
I believe using iPads or drawing tablets to design digitally is a huge improvement to the workflow of a tattoo artist. I believe you should still understand and practice traditional drawing mediums but the options for customisation and new near-perfect artworks is a huge advantage. Rotary tattoo machines have also development a lot as they are now much more powerful than they used to be whilst still being gentle on the skin allowing for fine work that won’t cause the client too much skin trauma.

Rodwin Proctor tattooing

Tell us something most people don’t know about you?
I’m a reptilian alien sent to mind-control the population through dope tattoo ideas [laughs]. I’m a huge fan of tarantulas.

Given the opportunity to guest work out of any shop, which would it be and why?
I would love to tattoo in any studio environment that’s setup in the heart of nature. A cabin in the woods or a space setup on top of a mountainous area would be amazing, I don’t know of any “commercially successful” tattoo shops like this.

For anyone wanting to book and appointment with you, what’s the next step?
Kindly email Descriptive Art Collective through; Ask for Rodwin, forward through some reference images of the type of tattoo, the size you’re looking for as well as where you’d like it to be on the body. We’ll setup a consultation to meet up and the book a session!

Rodwin Proctor of Descriptive Art Collective tattoosOur weekly tattoo artist features brought to you by Zappa Sambuca

Descriptive Art Collective
Address: 15 Oxbow Crescent, Ibis House, Century City, Cape Town.
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Tattoos by Rodwin Proctor

A selection of tattoos done by Rodwin ProctorTattoos done by Rodwin Proctor
Photos by Grant McLachlan.

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