Artists

Mac

Mac's Tattoo Photos link

The Gilded Lily Tattoos - Mac Tattooing Born in the slums of Long Beach, Mac moved to the beautiful redwoods of the San Lorenzo Valley as a small child. He grew up surrounded by art, as he was raised by a father who was a working artist his whole life. Apart from limited high school and community college art classes, Mac has been self taught his whole life. Picking up a pencil at the tender age of three he proudly showed his parents his first drawing. “It's a tiger, because I said so” he proudly proclaimed! And so it began. Struggling in community college, Mac ceased to see the direction his professional life would take. At the age of nineteen he received his first tattoo. It would be an experience that would change his life forever.

Watching someone knowledgeable in the art of tattoo apply his design to skin, it appeared to be a no brainer. In a naïve fashion he believed his artistic skills would be easily transferred to this medium. Having difficulty finding a start as an apprentice, he struggled to begin in the tattoo world. Out of stupidity and frustration he managed to get ahold of some poor equipment and gave himself a tattoo. The results were disastrous. But this did not dissuade young Mac from continuing. Instead it gave fuel to a small flame of inspiration. If tattooing was this difficult, he wanted to do it even more. Armed with limited knowledge and a lesson in sterile technique from his mother, the nurse practitioner, he began his journey into tattooing. The next two years were quite an experience. While being a self taught tattoo artist is not something Mac would recommend, it was his path. It was a long difficult struggle to be able to apply even the simplest of tattoos. It was only due to the thirst for knowledge and the kindness of a few people that he was able to achieve a rudimentary level of skill.

Ian

Ian's Tattoo Photos link

Ian was born and raised in Santa Cruz County, growing up in Aptos. You may remember him from such jobs as, "Carousel Cones at the Boardwalk," "Jiffy Lube," and "Knocking on your door to sell you a newspaper subscription". He has been drawing ever since he could hold a pencil, but never thought he could have a successful career as an artist. As an adult he moved to Denver to learn how to fix airplanes.

While in mechanic school he started getting tattooed by a guy named Caveman. He brought his sketchbook with him one day, and Caveman's reaction was "Dude, this is really good! Why aren't you tattooing?!" So he got some equipment, and Caveman taught him how to tattoo in 2005. By this time he was an airplane mechanic by day, and tattooing by night. He soon realized how lame tattooing in his kitchen was, and got a job at a nearby shop, Ink for the Soul, where he worked until they closed. From there he quit the airplane gig and went to work at The House of Ink full time, then moved to Bonaroo Tattoo.

After almost 10 years in Denver he was getting homesick, and decided it was time to move back to Santa Cruz. He had met Mac a year or so earlier while doing a guest spot in town. He ran to the warm bosom of The Gilded Lily, and he's been here ever since.

He enjoys doing American Traditional and Japanese tattoos most of all. While confident in all styles, he feels that these hold up best over the years. Whatever the tattoo, his goal is for you to be happy with it for the rest of your life. He enjoys working with clients on designs to achieve this. His vast collection of his hand painted flash is also on display in The Gilded Lily. It's not only to look at but to help you select your next tattoo. Yes people still do that.