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Tattoo Artist Spence Harker

As the Dark Side Tattoo Collective shop owner and full time artist, we bring you Spence Harker as our featured Tattoo Artist. Get to know more about him and his shop in our exclusive interview below.
Brought to you by Zappa.

Meet Spence Harker as our features Tattoo Artist

Full name: Spence Vader Harker

Shop: Dark Side Tattoo Collective

Years tattooing: 13

Tattoo style: Black and grey realism, medium to small full colour

Hourly rate: R1200

Spence Harker of Dark Side Tattoo CollectiveSpence Harker tattooing a client at Dark Side Tattoos

Give us some insight into your journey of becoming a full time tattoo artist? 
I learnt to take my drawing to a higher level when I was pretty young. Both my father and brother can draw and that definitely helped hone my drawing ability. I guess as a bit of a weird kid you tend to seek out others like yourself and I found myself hanging with likeminded individuals. Got my first tattoo and thought “I gotta give this a go”. That led to an apprenticeship.

What does the world of tattooing mean to you? 
I guess from a point of view, it means that regardless of society’s prejudices, there is a place for everyone. A society that looks only at your skin for the art. Personally, it means that I can change someone’s life even if it is a tiny piece. It’s a world that can give confidence, frame memories and add a little therapy in the process.

What does a day in your life usually consist of? 
Besides my girlfriend (Angie Kasdeya), also an amazing tattoo artist, our dog (Vader) and cat, (Domino), the rest is food and tattooing. Studio life also begins every morning with the crew  talking about life and cracking lame jokes. Basically it’s all family. Owning Dark Side is the best job I’ve ever had.

We talks tattoos and more with artist Spence HarkerSpence Harker tattooing a client at Dark Side Tattoo Collective

Tell us the story of Dark Side Tattoo Collective, from it’s beginning to now?
I was lucky enough for this rad studio owner, Kitty Andrews,  to give me a chance as a junior artist. I stuck beside her for eight years. I feel I grew most in those eight years as a tattoo artist. She emigrated to Germany and to my surprise, she handed me the keys to the business. With a fire in my step, I took everything she gave me and transformed it into what it is. Dark Side was born. After many Star Wars pun names.

What can clients expect from the shop?
We strive to bring our clients the perfect mixture of hygiene, friendliness and professionalism. We definitely try to make sure our clients feel comfortable and secure and that they leave with the best tattoo.

What goals do you have for yourself in your career and well as your shop? 
In terms of my personal career, I would love to travel a little more and tattoo in a few different countries. Learn new and exciting things from other tattoo artists. Plans for the studio are just to keep going up and growing while never losing who we are now.

Interview with tattoo artist Spence HarkerIntroducing our featured tattoo artist Spence Harker

How do you like to make sure you keep progressing as an artist?
I think understanding that as an artist, you never truly ever stop learning definitely keeps you in line. To keep progressing we have to push ourselves and make ourselves uncomfortable to learn new things. Being patient helps, if you’re patient.

What style of tattoo do you enjoy creating the most and why? 
I love to tattoo black and grey portraits with a little bit of surrealism. Pet photos are always a blast. I also love to tattoo full colour cartoon stuff. I was trained to take a stab at anything really but those three are my favourite.

Spence Harker of Dark Side TattoosOur weekly tattoo artist featured brought to you by Zappa Sambuca

For anyone wanting to book and appointment with you, what’s the next step?
The best way to get an appointment with us to hit us up on Facebook at Dark Side Tattoo Collective and Instagram at @darksidetattoos_sa. Also the studio number is 082 966 8985 to get hold of the studio Manager, Jason, and he will help you out . Popping us a visit to check out the studio vibe is also a great way to go.

Dark Side Tattoo Collective
Contact: 082 966 8985
Address: 3 Andre Street, Glenanda, Johannesburg
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Tattoos by Spence Harker

A selection of tattoos done by Spence HarkerTattoos done by Spence Harker
Photos by Alexander Wolf Photography.

…Photo Gallery…

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