Why No Glute?

Glutaraldehyde is a toxic chemical that is used as a cold sterilant to disinfect and clean heat-sensitive medical, surgical and dental equipment. It is found in products such as Cidex, Aldesen, Hospex, Sporicidin, Omnicide, Matricide, Wavicide and others and has recently been put into use in body art shops to sterilize equipment. Unfortunately, although glutaraldehyde is a very effective sterilant, body art shop users appear to be uninformed of the health risks associated with overexposure to the vapors. More >

All In The Family
by Suzy Kissee

Today I met a man with moko. It was an extraordinary experience. OK, so you're saying to yourself, "She's in the tattoo world. What's unusual about that?" What was unusual is that he is a member of the Native American tribe of Chumash Indians. I had no idea that facial moko was part of the Chumash culture. More >

To Defend and Protect
by Suzy Kissee

In my professional life I am a field biologist. I have worked on all sorts of projects from hazmat emergency response to restoration of native vegetation. As a result, I end up writing a lot of reports about a lot of biological stuff. Why? Because every project I work on has at least one oversight agency dictating how things are done. They issue permits with conditions that my clients must comply with or risk paying steep fines. They are the REGULATORS... More >

A Rose By Any Other Name…
by Suzy Kissee

Well, summer is over and there is a wind coming out of the south, a sure sign of rain not far behind. Coming with the weather change are the inevitable seasonal changes to my skin and different maintenance measures for keeping my tattoos looking their best. As I exfoliate and moisturize, I am again reminded how grateful I am to have an artist who not only has crazy artistic talent, knows how to put ink to skin, but also has such thorough knowledge of human musculature and knows what works where. More >

Caveat emptor…
by Suzy Kissee

Caveat emptor…let the buyer beware. We have all heard it but, holy cow! Should it really apply to tattooing???

In any group there is always a dissenting opinion. Most times it makes for great, lively conversation and debate. We agree to disagree thereby giving everyone a chance to be heard and a chance to change their mind. Taken too far, it can become something ugly that effectively shuts the door of the open mind. More >

Something Creepy This Way Comes...
by Suzy Kissee

Historically, the tattooing industry has been considered a sub-culture that has roots firmly planted in mystery. From the Maori tribesmen who used tattoos for intimidation of their enemies to the dark, back-alley "shops" where grizzled old merchant marines had their travels indelibly inscribed on their skin, tattooing has been associated with the brave, the fearless, and the double-tough. More >

Views From The Verge
by Suzy Kissee

So you're probably asking yourself, "Who the heck is she and what in thunderation is a verge?" First, my name is Suzy and I have the honor to be asked to serve on the Editorial Staff of IABAP and write a semi-regular column. More >

Practice What You Preach
by Suzy Kissee

It took me quite awhile to commit to my first piece of tattoo art. Some of my best friends have been in the business for years and I have heard the "empty canvas" jokes for a long time. Don't get me wrong; they weren't trying to influence me to do something I was not ready for. They were merely opening the door so I knew I was welcome when I was ready. More >

As You Sow...
by Suzy Kissee

The other side of the tattoo experience coin is the shop and the artists who work there to create the wearable art we all love. As a wearer of art and the self-professed Chief Cheerleader for the industry, I'd like to change my focus and address the other side. More >

Flushing Benjamins
by Suzy Kissee

OK, so by now we have completely covered how to behave as a tattoo client. We don't bring food or unruly children into the shop. We are there on time with our reference material in hand. We have seen enough of those silly reality tattoo shows on TV that you don't even have to tell us what to expect. More >