Originally posted on the BMEzine.com NEWS section, this interview was conducted over the course of a month in July 2008 and published in August of the same year. Some of the personal details of David’s life have evolved since the interview.
Practical Magic: The Tattoo Art of David Bruehl:
When I was first introduced to the art of David Bruehl — work with a solid illustration base and easily recognizable style — I immediately thought, “This guy should tattoo.”
Never one to leave it to the whims of fate, I grabbed the bull by the horns and told him as much. Apparently, I wasn’t the only one to suggest it. David quickly transitioned from a mild mannered illustration student at the well regarded S.C.A.D. in Savannah to a tattoo apprentice in the heartland of Indiana. Quicker than you could say abracadabra, he was on his way to becoming a skilled, versatile tattooer.
David is now in his seventh year of tattooing with an international reputation for his client-centric process, continues to paint and, most importantly, is the husband to his wonderful wife, Kimmy, and father of two amazing boys, Zeke and Abe.
Shawn Porter: Hey David.
David Bruehl: Hey Shawn.
SP: Let’s do the getting to know you. Where were you born?
DB: I was born in Oklahoma City, OK, on November 7, 1979.
SP: I know you have at least one sister — the hot one that I have a crush on. Any other siblings?
DB: That sister, Sheryn, is technically my half-sister, along with my other half-sister, Treisa. I’ve known them as long as I’ve been alive though, so it’s all the same to me. They’re respectively 11 and ten years older than me. (Irish twins!) I also have a younger full sister, Jessica, who’s two years my junior. I essentially grew up among women; I wasn’t really close with my dad.
SP: What were you like as a child? Typical “artsy dreamer” or more conventional kid?
DB: I always looked at myself as a normal kid, but moving back to Oklahoma has resulted in getting my extended family’s impressions of me as a child. Several cousins have described me as, “the kid reading a science book while everyone else was playing army men.” They all seemed to think I was going to be a scientist until I was around 11 or 12 years old, when I started always carrying a sketchbook.
SP: When did you discover you could draw? Did your family encourage it?
DB: I drew a little Halloween bat when I was about three that everyone made a big deal about — how much it looked like what I was drawing. They gushed over the thing so much, I still retain that memory as my proudest moment as a kid. I think on some level, my need to create seeks to relive that moment.
SP: Were there any other artists in the family?
DB: My grandmother painted and worked as a gallery artist, mostly doing wildlife themes. When I was a child, she would bring me with her to her art association meetings, and as a result, I viewed art as being something one could do as a career from the very beginning. She’s retired herself from painting now, unfortunately. Around the time I started attending art school as an adult, my mom introduced an art program into her school district and works as an art teacher now.