Veloci... ah screw it! even I can't spell that well. Dinosaurs rank right up there with crayons on everyone's list of childhood favorites. Technology has managed to bring us so close to these creatures that are from so far away. The separation of time between our species and the question we all have asked ourselves 'how would we fare against them?' draws us to dinosaurs and fascinates children and adults alike. It's a Velociraptor by Karen Masters, done at Cardinal Tattoo on the historic Gallatin, TN square.
This is a healed photo of a portrait of Johnny Cash that Will did at Cardinal Tattoo almost a year ago. He prides himself on creating artwork of lasting beauty, as does everyone at Cardinal Tattoo. Many artists publish photos of their fresh work, but never healed. The reason for this is that fresh work, with additional pigment trapped in the top layer of skin, will always look better. Even overworked pieces, with damage to the skin too drastic to heal properly, can be mistaken as a good tattoo by the untrained eye. If you want to get a good idea of the quality of your artist's work, ask to see healed photos of their work. If they don't have any healed photos, or if the healed product doesn't look as good as you'd expect, remember Cardinal Tattoo is open seven days a week from noon to 10pm!
Our beloved founder and fearless leader, Will, has been tattooing since 2005. He's won scores of awards for his tattoo work across a multitude of genres. It's as if one day he just decided to become the best at something and willed it into existence. Now, Will would probably tell you he's not the best at anything, that he's not fearless, and that awards don't really count for much. But we're not here to talk about Will, we're here to tell you about a young lady he decided to apprentice three years ago. Tasha Grey is one of two apprentices that Will has taken on in the last 13 years. Her development as an artist and tattooer has been aggressive and ahead of the curve for young tattooers in an extremely competitive industry. This new school Wednesday Addams is a testament to that progress and a hint at things to come. Visit Cardinaltattoo.com regularly for updates on Tasha's progress!
Everyone's favorite super-powered science experiment (outside of Wolverine, Deadpool, The Toxic Avenger, and, well you get the idea...) Elle from Stranger Things has captured hearts and imaginations for two seasons of hit Netflix fame. Her stoic vulnerability, fierce loyalty, and silent strength speak to her fans in a way that they can't speak for themselves. Don't we all identify with being stronger than we're asked to be on a daily basis and the fear of not measuring up when faced with a real challenge? Eleven is the person we all hope to be, the hero of our own story. Visit Cardinal Tattoo when you've found your inner hero and want to let the world see it!
With the onset of tax refund season and the resulting uptick in new customers unfamiliar with our services, it's time we revisited some of our policies and the reasoning behind them:
1. Cardinal Tattoo will not tattoo your boyfriend or girlfriend's name on you, spouses only. Reason: Getting a tattoo removed or covered up is a small thing when compared to getting a divorce and if you're not ready to make that commitment, you shouldn't get the tattoo either.
2. No hands, neck, or faces unless you already have one of those locations on your body tattooed; you have at least one full sleeve; you're independently wealthy, or a convicted felon. Reason: Getting a highly visible part of your body tattooed can make it tough to get a job. If you've already got it done or you have a lot of tattoos, you already understand this and have had to deal with it. Independently wealthy people don't have to worry about getting a job, and convicted felons are already screwed with regard to finding good employment, a little thing like a tattoo won't hurt their chances anyway.
3. No racist, hateful, or gang-related tattoos, to include Confederate flags. Reason: If you want these tattoos and don't understand why we'd rather not do them, we don't even want you in our establishment. No discussion. You shouldn't take pride in showing people how ignorant you are.
4. To set an appointment, you must leave a $60 or $100 non-refundable deposit which will be deducted from the total cost of your tattoo. If you don't want to leave a deposit, go somewhere else. Reason: If you're not willing to put your money where your mouth is, you're probably not going to show up.
5. If you have an appointment and don't call to reschedule (at least 48 hours in advance) or you don't show up, you will forfeit your deposit. If you wish to set another appointment after a no-call, no-show scenario, you will be required to pay for the entire tattoo or session in advance. Reason: We lose money when scheduled appointments don't show up, we can't afford to take a risk with someone who can't keep an appointment or let us know they won't be able to make it.
6. We don't like price-shoppers. It's offensive when someone comes into our establishment to ask a price, only to leave and come back twenty minutes later to schedule an appointment. It's obvious you've asked around and come back to the least expensive place. While Cardinal Tattoo is not interested in being the cheapest place in town, we do offer great value. Rest assured our first quote on a given tattoo is our best. For that reason, if you leave after getting a quote, when you come back, the price will increase. It's simply a matter of pride in what we do and not wanting to be mistreated by people looking for a 'deal'. If our best work at a fair price isn't good enough for you, please go somewhere else.
7. We close at 10pm. That means we won't start a tattoo that we can't finish by 10pm. If you show up at 8:30 and want to get a tattoo that will take three hours to do, you're going to have to schedule an appointment. Reason: We get tired too. We work 10 hour days, at least five days per week. Unless you're willing to pay double, don't even ask us to stay late. If that doesn't work for you, please go somewhere else.
8. If you call and ask us if we have time to do a tattoo, the answer is always 'yes!' That doesn't mean that we have time to do a tattoo right now. You may have to set up an appointment for later that day, later that week, sometime next month, or even later that year, depending on your individual needs and the artist's availability. If you try to put us on the spot, the answer will be 'come on in and we'll see what we can do for you' or, 'walk-ins are done on a first come, first served basis, the sooner you get here the better off you are.' Reason: We're not trying to lie to anyone, but we understand that people tend to want the best tattoo they can get, even if they do get in a hurry sometime. We also understand that if we tell you 'no' you're definitely not coming, while if we tell you 'yes' then maybe you'll show up, be impressed with the quality of work and people at Cardinal Tattoo, and schedule an appointment. Besides, people who get angry when they can't get a tattoo right now aren't really the sorts of people we'd like to spend our time working on. It's not fast food, it's permanent, if you're in a hurry, please go somewhere else.
9. If you don't like something about us: The way we look, the clothes we wear, our taste in music, our religious or political views, our sense of humor, our business practices, or anything else we do for that matter- please go somewhere else. Reason: Life's too short to deal with the frustration of not liking the person you're getting tattooed by or the place they work. Getting tattooed should be an enjoyable process. This is why Cardinal Tattoo is very up front with the way we conduct business, so that potential customers can determine whether they want to work with us or not.
If you've read this far, thank you. We appreciate the small fraction of the population that cares enough about this art form to educate themselves about it. We appreciate your interest in Cardinal Tattoo and look forward to serving you. We will continue to do our very best.
Daniel came into to Cardinal Tattoo with an idea for a Christian-themed tattoo incorporating the concepts of the Armor of God and the Lion of Judah. Representative of Christ, this roaring lion conveys a sense of the power of God's Judgement during the Endtimes. We will continue with a piece of armor with the Crusader's Cross on his chest. Stay tuned to Cardinaltattoo.com for more!
Skulls are fun. If you're a guy and have enough tattoos you probably have one. If you're a girl and you're cool enough, you may too. They remind us of death and our own mortality, they creep us out and so many people think they're evil. But they're not. How could they be? Skulls are inanimate objects, like pencils or screwdrivers. The only meaning they hold are the ones we assign them. This particular skull, it's just badass. Enjoy!
The Incredible Hulk, The Strongest One There Is, single-handedly cemented Wolverine as one of the most formidable characters in the Marvel Comics Universe in his first appearance in The Incredible Hulk #181. And how did he do that, you might ask? By not killing him. Long touted as the single strongest hero in the Marvel Universe, Bruce Banner's angry alter-ego was fought to a stalemate by a man with knives in his hands. Not unlike the first time Rocky fought Apollo Creed, he didn't have to win the fight to be declared heir to the brawler throne, just hold his own in the face of insurmountable odds. This battle is one of the most famous events in all of comic book history, and our own Will honed a significant portion of his young drawing skills emulating his favorite comic artists. It is to his great pleasure to be able to perform this particular tattoo, a first for the young man getting it. Love comics? Visit Cardinal Tattoo on the historic square in Gallatin, TN, between the hours of noon and 10pm, seven days a week to book your appointment now!
Also known as The Lord's Supper, this familiar image represents our Lord's dedication to finish His sacrifice for us, exhibiting full knowledge that He would be betrayed and killed all too soon. At a time when so much seems uncertain, a Father's love is something we can all count on. This particular rendition isn't quite finished, as our good friend Jordan will be returning to Cardinal Tattoo soon to finish the all-too-tender parts on the outside of his chest and the background in a final session.
Wendell has been getting tattooed at Cardinal for the last couple of years and this is the result of his latest session, part of a sleeve dedicated to Asian-themed artwork. This depiction of a skull with a samurai helmet is a striking one. Stay tuned to Cardinaltattoo.com for updates on Wendell's sleeve, or visit Cardinal Tattoo at 110 North Water Avenue to start your own!
This is a three-day-old photo of a portrait of Ice Cube that Will did on our very own Tasha Grey. The product of a five and a half hour session, this particular portrait is Will's promised Christmas present to Tasha. Cardinal Tattoo has artists specializing in black and grey and color realism; new school and neo-traditional; and traditional American-style tattooing. We enjoy what we do and sincerely hope you will visit us and see what all the fuss is about!
Religious imagery has been a staple of tattooing since its inception. People have tattooed images of their gods and religions on themselves for thousands of years. Now is no different, but ask yourself who you would want doing your religious tattoo, someone of a like mind, or someone just trying to make a buck? At Cardinal Tattoo we are proud to be home to artists of varying creeds who are proud to be able to put indelible marks of faith on those who would seek them. Home to Christians and Atheists, Buddhists and Wiccans, the collective mindset of the artists at Cardinal Tattoo is one of embracing the freedom of religion offered us by the Constitution of these United States of America.
It just so happens we live in the South, and most people around here are Jesus folk. So here you go! Please enjoy these images that are a celebration of faith!
With Tax Refund season fast approaching, Cardinal Tattoo thought it best to give a few pointers for those of you who may be new to how this works. Every year starting about the second week of February through March, people are getting their tax refunds in. This is unbudgeted money for a lot of people, some of who may be claiming themselves on their taxes or filing taxes for the first time. A little 'found money' never hurts, but spending that money without a plan could. Especially where getting a new tattoo comes in.
Every single years it happens: As people cash those checks, tattoo shops the nation over fill up. Walk-ins abound, appointment books fill to bursting. Oftentimes people will call shops and ask if they have time for walk-ins, calling until they find a place that does and completely disregarding those that don't. Makes you wonder- why, during the busiest time of year, would a tattoo shop have time for walk-ins? Hence our pet name for tax refund season: Future Cover-Up Season!
Every. Single. Year. Loyal customer comes into Cardinal Tattoo, looking to spent that $600 tax refund check that's burning a hole in their pocket only to find out the whole shop is booked our for an entire month and some of our artists even more. Disgruntled, they decide to go someplace else, give them a shot, only to come back months later to ask us what we can do to 'fix' the tattoo they got somewhere else. Every year.
Don't be that person! Act now! Call or come by the shop and leave your deposit in anticipation of your refund. If getting tattooed is something you're planning on doing with the money anyway, waiting until you actually have all of the money just puts you further back in the queue. Don't deal with the frustration. A sixty dollar deposit books five hours, a $100 deposit books 10! Beat the rush, don't wait get what you want, you owe it to yourself.
Cardinal Tattoo, open seven days a week from noon to 10pm 615 527-7102, we hope to see you soon!
Patrick began his Harry Potter tribute leg sleeve a few months ago in preparation for competing at the Full Moon Tattoo and Horror Festival's tattoo competitions. After winning multiple awards at the show, including best portrait and Tattoo of the Day, he was excited to get back to work in order to finish his leg by next year's show. It's great to be able to share work like this with everyone in and around Nashville as well as holding our own in competition! The Full Moon festival is an annual tattoo convention held in Nashville and has a horror movie theme, complete with horror film celebrities, that is held right before Halloween every year. If you haven't been to a tattoo convention before, put this one on your calendar kids, 'cause it's tons of fun!
Cardinal Tattoo's resident realism artist, Will, recently completed this awesome portrait of Heath Ledger as the Joker from the Dark Knight series of Batman films. Regarded by many as the best portrayal of the character ever, we feel like Will did this 10 hour piece justice. If you're in the greater Nashville or Hendersonville areas an are interested in black and grey or color portraiture or realism, Cardinal Tattoo is the place for you!
As tax refund season approaches, we ask that all of our valued customers take the time to schedule any tattoo appointments well in advance of the upcoming rush. From the middle of February to the end of March is the single busiest time for walk-ins and last-minute tattoo decisions. Take measures to prevent this extraordinary influx of new clients from inconveniencing you by scheduling any tattoo you might want before summer now. Cardinal Tattoo is already open seven days per week, ten hours per day and during the busiest time we tend to extend our hours in order to serve all of our annual tax refund customers in a timely fashion. Once again, please be sure to book any prospective tattoos by mid January or risk having to deal with a longer -than-usual wait time. Thank you for your understanding.
This portrait of Michael Myers is a part of an entire modern horror slasher sleeve. Try saying that five times fast! Samantha came into Cardinal Tattoo after researching for the best black and grey artists in the middle TN area and decided Cardinal Tattoo was the place for her! Visit us between the hours of noon and 10pm any day of the week to find out what all the fuss is about! Cardinal Tattoo is located at 110 North Water Avenue across for the courthouse. Our number is 615 527-7102. See you soon!
Dakota visited Cardinal Tattoo for the first time a few months ago to get his Frankenstein portrait which can be found by scrolling through this blog or in Will's portrait gallery. The Bride of Frankenstein was next, followed by this newest edition of Bela Lugosi's Dracula. We still have the Wolfman and the Invisible Man or maybe the Mummy. Love old horror movies? Stay tuned to cardinaltattoo.com for much, much more!
Cardinal Tattoo will be closed on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, returning to normal hours on Tuesday, December 26th. We will be open from noon-5pm on New Year's Eve and open for normal business hours on New Year's Day. We would like to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Really though, this crystal ball moth WIP by the indomitable Tasha Grey just goes to show how far she's come in such a short time. Tasha started at Cardinal Tattoo three years ago and has worked diligently to hone her craft ever since. You'll be seeing more of her very soon, so stay tuned to cardinaltattoo.com for updates on her, as well as special events and our artists' travel schedules!