Interview with Danny Lepore

1 Apr

“I would always claim that it would be my job when I got older,” said Danny Lepore young tattoo artist from New Jersey.

Ever since the age of twelve he knew that’s what he wanted to do as his career.  In high school Lepore began looking for an apprenticeship, which many shops were either not looking for one, or discouraged because of his age (at the time seventeen).

He did not let this hold him back. A friend of his told him about Tattoo Mania in Staten Island, and told him to contact Jay Cabot. After non-stop calling and bugging Jack, the store owner, they asked Lepore to come in and show his portfolio.

Lepore was given a week’s chance. Turns out he had impressed them enough in that one week for the apprenticeship.

“I always heard that you had to be  ‘the shop bitch’ when you were an apprentice. It really was not like that at all for me,” said Lepore.

The apprenticeship took dedication. Besides for cleaning the shop, Lepore watched Jay and the tasks he did each day. At some points, Lepore would be at the shop six days a week with no pay,and attention his job back at home. The job at home helped to pay for all the necessities his apprenticeship took. (Not to mention the six dollars to get over the Staten Island Bridge)

“I get such a rush from it and i love when my customers are happy. It just makes me thrilled that im giving my customers something that will be with them for the rest of their lives, like a piece of my art is with them forever,” said Lepore when asked about his favorite part.

For all of those who are interested in becoming tattoo artists, his word of advice is to work on your profile and be diligent. He stressed that aspiring artists must work hard, and truly care about what they do and it will all be worth it in the end. He had also stressed that aspiring artists should NOT learn how to tattoo on their own or at home, and that they should learn the proper methods and techniques.

*On a side note, I went to Danny to get my tattoo done. He was very friendly and took his time. When I walked into the shop that day I was in a nervous sweat, after we had decided that I would get the tattoo that day he told me to relax and that it was not a huge deal. As he began tattooing me we chatted and he created a great atmosphere for someone who is getting their first tattoo. I would deffinetly recommend him. I constantly get compliments on what a great job he did.

*Picture courtesy of Danny Lepore.

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2 Responses to “Interview with Danny Lepore”

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  1. So, it is the end of the semester. « Modifying College - May 3, 2011

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