Ron Henry Wells


“I was dicking around on Facebook one afternoon and I stumbled upon a photo that Chad Koeplinger had just uploaded. It was a picture of a tattoo he was about to start. A snake and mongoose and roses as a full back piece. I believe he drew most if not all of it on. I ended up just staring at it like a freak for a few minutes when something hit me. That’s the exact same feeling I got when I listened to Bad Brains for the first time when I was 15. I was immediately blown away, and genuinely inspired. I felt the need to work as hard as I could so maybe, some day I might do something that makes someone else feel that way.

I was inspired by something that literally just happened that in tattooing. Not something that happened in 1935, of 48, or 74. Something done by someone who is a current tattooer working very hard in tattooing RIGHT NOW. For some reason I thought about just how often that happens to me on a daily basis in regards to tattooing. The more I thought about it, the more I began to realize that yes, I definitely missed out on some amazing things that happened in tattooing based on when I got involved in the craft, and even more amazing historical events just due to date of birth, and as much as I love those reading about those things, and hearing the stories, as much as I feel like I missed out on some serious history, I realized that I am INCREDIBLY LUCKY to be a tattooer in this day an age.”

Laughing Hyena.

Jump on over to Ron’s blog to read the rest of this- it’s very much so worth the read.


  1. That was a truly great read.

    I’ve been getting that same sort of feeling by a lot of the tattoos Thomas Hooper has been putting up on his blog in the past week. His work is amazing to begin with but I feel that he’s bringing it to this level that I didn’t even know was possible and I feel genuinely lucky to be able to see tattoos like that.

    There’s a lot of bullshit out there but there’s so much good as well.


  2. I still get like that; I’ve known Mike Wilson for 20 years and the last time he dropped something on Facebook I found myself just sitting there and smiling thinking “fuck that’s cool”. And I’m not even a tattooer!

    We’re really lucky to be where we are now. It’s great to idealize the 30s-50s tattooers, but Jesus man. Wilson, Koeplinger, Hooper, Jondix, Dave Bruehl and Grime and Fred Corbin…. everyone tattooing with their own identity, totally different styles in some cases but that we have a forum (the internet, constant conventions, etc) where we can see these guys churning out such amazing work makes me happy.


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