“Tattooing” – Kat


mis-skittyName: Miss Kitty (Kat)

Hometown: Minneapolis, Minnesota

Current StudioLive Fast Die Young Tattoos

When did you first start tattooing?  This is always a long answer.  I started working in a tattoo shop when I was still in high school, just as a receptionist.  I don’t think the shop knew this since I was also a college student at the time doing PSEO at the University of Minnesota for High School credit.  I believe I neglected to tell them that I was technically in High School, since I knew this would nullify my chances of employment.  I didn’t know that I wanted to start tattooing then, but I was definitely interested in tattoos and had been an artist or at least interested in and creating art for as long as I can remember.  There weren’t a lot of women in the tattoo industry then, and none that I knew in Minneapolis, so I didn’t have a lot of role models.  It wasn’t until a tattoo artist saw my illustrations in an informal setting, complimented them, and told me I had potential in the tattoo industry.  Jumping ahead to the exciting part, I got my start in the industry doing receptionist and grunt work for a couple years.  In roughly 2000, I started doing my tattoo apprenticeship under Adam Ciferri and later Trevor Kennedy.  I began tattooing professionally in 2002.  My first job was working at the Ink Factory under the talented Jay Langer and with the talented Bryan Lewis.  I remember when I showed Jay my portfolio fresh out of my apprenticeship.  I was expecting to be turned away and was only hoping for part-time work.  He said he would hire me full-time, and I was ecstatic.  The rest is history.

What would you say is your stylistic forte as a tattoo artist? I have a solid background in traditional tattoos, and this style is what I gravitate toward most often.  However, I absolutely love tattooing the female form–pin-ups, women’s faces and figures of all varieties.  Floral work is always enjoyable, as are tattoos centered upon nature themes.  I also really enjoy tattooing Dia de los Muertos imagery, and what artist doesn’t love skulls!?  A friend of mine and also an artist, Dan Kytola, told me that a “style” is a mistake that one repeats over and again.  I try to bear this in mind when I find myself drawing the icon for things that are familiar to me rather than the thing itself.  I try not to box myself in when illustrating, but rather consider the best way to execute each idea individually.  

misskitty_3What do you think is the biggest misconception about your job?  My friends and clients who know me joking call me the “perpetual motion machine.” I never stop working, and you won’t find me out on the town after work; you will find me at home, probably drawing.  I think some people believe tattooing is a lax job where an artist might stroll in to work at noon after just waking up, “draw on people” all day, then hit up the town for the evening.  I believe the television programs on right now help to perpetuate these misconceptions and stereotypes.  These ideas that are perpetuated in the media are so far from the truth.

What is your favorite part about your job? I do enjoy the problem-solving aspect of tattooing.  I like when people pose their ideas, and I get to dream up how to put it all together in an aesthetically pleasing way.  I also enjoy getting to know my clients and constructing tattoos that suit them as people.  I am very fortunate to be doing what I do, and there are countless wonderful attributes to being a tattoo artist.

misskitty_2We heard you have some exciting news. Scott and I are leaving the shop and opening up a new shop mid-January.  It is called Broken Hearts Tattoo Club, and the location is on the intersection of Lowry and Washington Street, just a couple blocks off of University; 635 Lowry Avenue Northeast.  You can still find me at Live Fast Die Young until mid-January though.  Stay tuned for more details!

See Miss Kitty’s Tattoo Portfolio and more HERE.

Photography by Savanna Ruedy.

About The Author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.