Tim Hendricks – The Importance of Traditional Tattoo Apprenticeship.

Tim Hendricks and his apprentice Bryan ✞ Black stand with tattoo legend Thom DeVita.

Hendricks speaks on the importance of Traditional Tattoo Apprenticeships, patience, hard work, and integrity.

This me and my apprentice @_bryan_black_ taking a photo with the legendary Thom DeVita. Many years ago Bryan asked me to apprentice him when he was a teenager, at the time I was too busy and traveling too much to teach him, so I turned him down. Bryan persisted. I told him to just take an apprenticeship at one of the shops in our area, he said he’d rather wait for the opportunity for me to teach him. In the meantime he took art classes to better his drawing skills. He patiently waited years, YEARS, and once I was able to spend more time with him he gave it 100%. He was over my shoulder watching me tattoo any chance he could, he must’ve wound at least 1,000 coils in my workshop, learned how to make needles even though it’s irrelevant these days, built his own machines, power supply and clipcord. All the while scraping by financially to make ends any way he could. He built his career from patience, hard work and above all, integrity. I couldn’t be more proud of this man, he worked his ass off and learned how to tattoo a proper way, the same way that people have been learning to tattoo for hundreds of years. Even though it was hard on him sometimes, and hard on me sometimes, I have some of my best tattoo memories from those years. Bryan is like family to me now, we have a brotherly bond for life and I’m grateful for the opportunity to have taught him. With all the talk about tattoo schools lately I just wanted to share this story with the younger generation, this is one example of a proper way to learn. You learn to tattoo from other experienced tattooers, wether it be one specific person or many(like myself). You don’t learn at a “tattoo school”, except maybe how NOT to tattoo. I would like to call upon all my tattoo brothers and sisters to please share their story, either of your apprenticeship or of your teaching someone. These stories are so lovely to hear and it’s a way to show the youth the beauty and soul in an apprenticeship and the lack thereof in a “tattoo school”. @nocttattooschools #notattooschools #shareyourstory

A post shared by Tim Hendricks (@timhendricks) on


Leave a Reply