Michael Stade


How long have you been tattooing and how did you start your tattooing journey?


I have been tattooing since 2008. I was fascinated by tattoos already as a child. I remember looking at old drunks in town sitting with their blue-green tattoos on their forearms and I thought it was so cool. I guess that’s where my passion for tattoos sparked, and already when I was 15 years old me and my friends started to build our own tattoo machines out of Sony Walkman motors, syringes and sewing needles. When I got a little older I started hanging out at tattoo studios getting tattooed as much as I could, sponging up knowledge every time I was under the needle. One thing led to another and after years of trying to find my way in different occupations, I always found myself coming back to this passion. So I finally decided to take a leap and started tattooing. 



Do you remember what was the first tattoo you did? If so, tell us what it was and for who.


It was made with that Sony Walkman machine I built myself and I tattooed some flames on the belly of my friend, it was horrendous. 



Please, tell us about your current tattoo style and how it has changed over the years.


I started like a lot of other tattooers doing flash or flash style tattoos, old school or neotraditional style. Once I started getting comfortable in this matter I started trying to evolve myself into something that felt like me rather than trying to copy others’ tattoos. That I would say is my main thing, that I’m trying to not do tattoos rather trying to find what is “me” in tattooing. I am mainly focusing on a lot of black ink and negative space, I’m in love with nothingness turning into something. Lately, I’ve also dabbled a lot in putting in one accent color, usually red, I find that black and red are truly the most complimentary tattoo colors out there. 



Does anyone or anything inspire you?


Patterns in everyday life inspire me, could be a piece of fence, window, or leaf. 



Are there any tattoo artists who are extremely admirable to you? If so who?


Yes, I think there are a lot of tattoo artists out there that push the envelope of what can be made, and make something out of the ordinary, Instagram is full of them. 



Do you have any memorable tattoo story or a customer that has stuck with you through all the time you have been tattooing?


I met my wife thanks to tattooing, that’s the most memorable and beautiful thing I can think of. 



Is there any art form that fascinates you also except tattooing? Maybe do you have any other passion or something that you really enjoy doing? 


My biggest passion in life is skateboarding and to me, it is an art form. I do it every day. 



Do you like visiting or exhibiting at tattoo conventions? Would you recommend any of them?


I love meeting people and it’s nice to go to conventions and to travel but I don’t really like the stressful and tight spaces to work in. 



Any artist you planning to get tattooed by? Who has tattooed you already?


Just like many other tattooers, I have a lot of shitty tattoos but I do have a few funky ones that I really like and in the future, I would love to get a tattoo by Timur Lysenko because of his quirky and cool style. 



What are your plans and dreams? If you think about yourself in 10 years, what do you see?


I wish, hope, and dream to still be a tattooer in 10 years, and that it’s a lifelong journey to me. I envision myself having some kind of private studio to give my clients a more fulfilling experience of getting a tattoo.



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