The incredibly talented Miss Jo Black works from a beautiful and humble studio in the quiet town of Frome, Somerset.
Miss Jo now shares this space with awesome artist Will Dixon and a Junior Artist Merry Morgan, who is putting out gorgeous work under their professional eyes.
The studio is full of intriguing sights, such as a wall full of framed artwork, taxidermy creatures and of course fluffy happiness in the form of Spike, the dog and very recently, the cutest Pug puppy you will ever see! Honestly, I almost exploded with the “squueee” of cuteness!
I personally discovered Miss Jo Black and her studio a couple of years ago through the wonders of Instagram! I fell in love with her designs, as it tends to be a style I like to illustrate in myself, though never to such an epic level! Maybe one day, with plenty more practise!!
I was lucky enough to get a spot with Miss Jo in June 2013. Can’t believe it has been over a year already!
For a long time I had wanted a tattoo of a Scorpion to celebrate being a “Scorpio”. Not only that, but these creatures really fascinated me! Miss Jo had the PERFECT flair to make it come alive! But first a bit of background to my design.
The idea had changed forms so many times over the years, until one day I came up with a Fight Club inspired mash-up with my Scorpion. Sounds random? That is because it is! Yet I knew it was perfect!
So if you know Fight Club, you will be familiar with Marla Singer (Helena Bonham Carter in the movie adaption). She is so fabulously crazy, yet somehow she manages to be saner than The Narrator / Tyler Durden!
My favourite quote to describe her, was that she was…
“a predator posing as a house pet”
One day many years ago, a close friend described me to be just that, as he had heard it in Fight Club. Maybe I should have been offended, but I actually quite liked it!
This comparison stuck in my head for a while, which in time led me to imagine that she (the Scorpion side of me) was Marla. A fierce yet very feminine force. That the Scorpio within me was that predator.
Marla Stinger was born. PUN intended!
Anyway, Miss Jo was an absolute diamond and agreed to helping me with this design, and I love her interpretation. Which is a very good job, considering it is on my body for the rest of my days!
Miss Jo is one of the sweetest tattoo artists I have ever been blessed to meet. I don’t like using “sweet” to describe people usually, because it can sound sickly, but that is not the case here. There is sadly a snob like attitude within the industry at times in my experience, and when I say sweet, I mean Miss Jo was nothing but friendly and kind to help me feel at ease with those pre tattoo nerves! No arrogance at all.
Not to mention, she did an incredible job by taking my basic idea, pulling it all together in her own way to create something so feminine and unique.I felt so confident in her ability, that I gave her free rein with the choice of colours, and I am so pleased with the result.
The teal colouring around the edges especially provides a stunning contrast to the pinks and grey tones, which take up the largest space in this piece. With the tiny detailing such as the filigree and the jewel’s on the Scorpions body, the whole image comes alive and creates a sense of depth.
I find a lot of Traditional tattoos can come across as very flat, as that is the signature and rather historic style. Simple colours and steady lines.
Neo Traditional tattoos, like Miss Jo’s, can be so eye-catching in comparison, as the colours tend to be more adventurous, and the line work, as much as it is still very solid, can be much more delicate and detailed. As you will see from these examples, Miss Jo is well practised at this, the more you look at her work, the more details you tend to notice.
The tattoo took about 6 hours in total, and personally I have to say the thigh was the easiest area I have had work on. I actually started to fall asleep at one point! I think it helps that she uses a Rotary machine, instead of the traditional coil. They seem to cause less trauma to the skin, which in turn means the healing is much smoother as there is less bleeding during the process!
Here is a taste of some of her other work… I just love it all!
Like Miss Jo’s work? Then you must go and check her and the guys out using the information below…
22 King Street, Frome, Somerset. BA11 1BH