This year’s Vice series, Tattoo Age featurd one of my favorite tattooers, the infamous, Grime. He is best known for his highly unique style that combines fluid compositions, extraordinary detail, an abundance of intense, layered colors, all married within aggressive imagery that is unlike anyone else’s.

Please check out the three-part video series, which aired in August on

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

The following black & white photos are courtesy of Vice and taken by Ken Nagahara.

Vice had this to say about Grime’s contribution to the series:

Tattoo Age’s Grime series puts the tattooer’s unique and revered style in perspective while exploring his life, background, and evolution into one of the most accomplished tattooers in the world. The series takes a personal look at Grime through childhood stories, self-published memoirs, and artwork, and features tattoo luminaries Civ and Chris O’Donnell, as well as the other artists of Grime’s shop, Skull and Sword, based in San Francisco.

I personally appreciate that the Tattoo Age series, has taken a non-sensationalized look at the ART and discipline of tattooing. And they have certainly chosen some of the best artists in the U.S. including Dan Santoro (NYC), Grime (SF), Troy Denning (NYC), Mike Rubendall (NYC) and Freddy Corbin (Oakland).

I’ve been fortunate to spend a lot of time at Grime’s shop, Skull & Sword (under the kind needles of the staggeringly talented Yutaro Sakai and Henry Lewis). It has been a pleasure to watch Grime work in person – his skills and work ethic are exceptional.

Though I have not written about his work (yet!), I have mentioned him in previous features. I shared an endearing personal observation about Grime’s kindness in a feature on Henry Lewis and I included a striking portrait of Grime that was painted by Shawn Barber.

If you’d like to own a complete compendium of his work, including detailed sketches and process photos, you are in luck. He has created an impressive oversized coffee-table book, Iron Will that you may purchase from him directly. I’ve seen it in person and can confirm it’s filled with lush color photos, allowing close inspection of his insane skills. This book is so jam packed with awesome, I think it weighs 200lbs. (wink)

Thanks for being such an inspiration Grime!