PHOENIX -- It was all about good vibes and a little bit of pain this weekend, but the pain of sitting through a tattoo is all a part of the fun at the Body Art Expo in Phoenix.
The ink that formed a skull and roses on Marissa Marquez’s forearm was just in its color shading phase, and Marquez sat quietly through the pain.
“I feel like it’s an accomplishment,” said Marquez. "Being able to just experience it and go through it because it’s satisfying, you know, when it’s done and you waited all that time you went through all that pain and you look at it – it’s like…it’s satisfying.”
This was not her first tattoo, but it was the first one she had done by Crash Manson. He’s been doing tattoos for 19 years and that surely played a part in Marquez’s choice to get her artwork done by him. But it was also his attitude.
“He’s a really, really cool guy.” Marquez added, “He made me feel comfortable.”
And vibe is really an important piece to factor in when choosing a tattoo artist. "LA Ink" star Ruthless highlighted the importance of connecting with a tattoo artist.
“You always want to vibe with the artist,” she said adding, “You gotta have that trust and definitely love the portfolio…”
Ruthless was one of many tattoo artists who came from out of town specifically for the show. Ruthless pointed out that the people from LA and Phoenix have very different vibes that can easily come together for something like the Body Art Expo.
“Ultimately I think…we all meet in the middle when it comes to art and the appreciation for it,” she said.
Phoenix is a major stop on the tour and Jonny Velez knows how important the scene is out here.
“I came out here just to be a part of the industry out here,” Velez said. “Most of the best people are out here.”
Those who attend the event can catch the Extreme Freak Show by Enigma. Art contests and various competitions will take place throughout the weekend along with a human suspension show.
The Body Art Expo will be at the Arizona State Fairgrounds through Sunday. The event will be from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. You can purchase a one-day ticket for $20 and children under 10 are free with a paid accompanying adult. For more information visit the Body Art Expo website.