The Art of Inking with Tattoo Artist – Karthik Bengre (Sculp Tattoos)

The art of inking permanently/semi-permanently on a human body is a very precise and unique branch of art which needs a lot of skill, professional knowledge, dedication and passion. Tattooing or tattoo art has been present for as long as 3370 BC and it has much history associated with it. Previously, tattooing in the body has been regarded as a very “Unsocial” thing to do. It has been condemned, it has been associated with witchcraft and black magic and it was the general consensus that “Respectable” people don’t tattoo themselves.

But all that is History now. Tattooing is a hugely popular culture thing to indulge in now and over years it has been legalised and widely accepted across all social strata. A tattoo is a very personal, intimate and physical thing for a person sometimes bordering on spiritual. To get something permanently inked in your skin, you need to feel connected to the subject of your tattoo.

So keeping all these in mind, let us get to know a few professional tattoo artists and their views about their craft. Starting with Bangalore based artist – Karthik Bengre from Sculp Tattoos Studio. Leaving a stable IT career, he ventured into tattooing to follow his desire for becoming an artist. And 9 years down the line he is not only successful but a first-class and well recognized Tattoo Artist. His passion for art are his biggest motivators. Read on to know more about him.

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P.S. All the pictures and videos are owned by ©Karthik Bengre and reproduction in any form, without prior permission, is prohibited

The artist – Karthik Bengre

Q. Please introduce yourself.

Hello, my name is Karthik Bengre and I am the creator of Sculp Tattoo Studio. I was born and bought up in Mangalore and further moved to Bangalore after graduating from college. My parents live in Mangalore and are both retired.

Q. What made you start your work as a Tattoo Artist? Please share about your journey and how long have you been doing this?

I have always aspired to be an artist. When I moved to Bangalore tattooing seemed to be a very interesting field to be a part of as it involves engraving the work of art on someone’s skin for a lifetime. One of the most challenging fact for me was to switch my career from being an IT professional to a tattoo artist.
I have been in the tattoo industry for about 9 years now and everyday there is something new to learn when it comes to art.

Q. Is it necessary to have a specific set of qualifications to become a Tattoo Artist?

Well, I personally believe that the Individual should have knowledge of art, then the Best training you can receive through an apprenticeship from a well experienced professional artist. It takes years if working under the right guidance to gain the knowledge of this art form, but with practice, everything falls into place.

Q. Is being a tattoo artist your full-time profession or do you work elsewhere? Is it possible to make out a sustainable career out of this craft?

Yes, I am a full-time tattoo artist.
Yes it’s possible to make out a sustainable career if u are serious with your work

Q. What would you consider your biggest achievement so far?

For me my biggest achievement is Happiness to see in the client face I often meet my old clients and when they express how happy they are with their five-year-old or a six-year-old tattoo that is a beautiful feeling. To sum it up tattooing has given me so much happiness, so I believe that in itself is a true achievement.

Q. What is your signature style of art that represents you as an artist? What does your work aim to say?

My signature style of work is free hand, and abstract work and I do only customised work
the main reason I love free hand style of art is because of the way it flows on the body
Through my art I want to put it out there that a great piece of art is created by both the client and the artist, there should be a great rapport between the two individuals then we can create something both of them love.

Q. What is the one thing that you like about your work and one that you dislike?

I love everything about my about my profession, it gives me great joy to create art,
The only thing that I dislike is when someone disrespects the art and the artist.

Q. When a client is unsure about which tattoo to get, how do you get the idea/inspiration/reference to suggest them? How long does it take approximately to finish one piece of art?

When a client is unsure about what they want to get I usually give them time to think about it. I sit with them to understand them and try to give my inputs on what I think is suitable for them. As I said earlier a beautiful piece of art is a collaboration from both the artist and the client so unless they are 100% sure about what they want I prefer to give them time.
Every tattoo is different and the time consumed is subjective, it depends on the size, placement and the amount of detail that goes into it.

Q. Who are your biggest influences?

My biggest influence is my surrounding, it might be nature or an artist of a different craft. They inspire me to do something creative in my art form as well.  

Q. How do you manage your family life along with other commitments and schedules?

My family lives in Mangalore if in need of a break I just drive down and spend some quality time with them.

Q. What are the biggest challenges that you face as an artist? What is the biggest misconception that Tattoo artists face?

My challenge is holding on to your talent
It only works when I believe I am amazing artists, Trusting my talent, I always believes talent has no limits
Miss conception – [any one can be a tattoo artist]
But I believe (every tattooer should be artist )
Tattoo artist are not employees they are self-employed there are so many responsibilities to Take care off

Q. How do you ensure that clients do not suffer allergic reactions to the ink used in tattoo applications? How do you deal with an anxious client? 

At Sculp, we give great importance to hygiene, we make sure that the client is well aware that we use fresh needles to sterilized tattoo equipment’s. We are very transparent when it comes to hygiene.
We do get a lot of anxious clients and the only way to deal with them is to make them feel comfortable about the entire process and taking it slow.

Q. Sometimes, when doing a tattoo art on intimate parts, how do you make sure that you and your clients are comfortable?

We have a separate room where we work on intimate area tattoos, we make sure that the client is comfortable first and then start working on the tattoo.

Q. Apart from being an artist, what are your hobbies?

Apart from tattooing, I love photography, exploring new places sketching and painting.

Q. Please share your experience with different brands/projects you have worked on?

I had worked on a collaboration with Harley Davidson for one of their campaigns.

Q. There are a lot of shoddy people on social media or as clients who either try to discredit others or stalk them. How do you deal with such people or negativity in general? Does it bog you down or affect your mental peace?

There are several negative things people say on social media, I don’t let the negativity affect me or my art.

 Q. What advice would you offer someone considering this career?

For anyone who is looking to start a career in tattooing I would say just go for it! Things will fall into place in the end.

Q. What are your future plans? Are you happy with the way your career has shaped up?

My future plan is to be happy with whatever art form I do. I would love to explore a different form of art.

Q. Lastly, any word for our blog? Thank you for your time!

It was a pleasure speaking to Weekend Trivia, good luck on the blog!

Thank you, Karthik, for taking out time to talk to us, and having such a wonderful and heart-to-heart conversation. We got to know a lot of things and we are sure that our readers would be much benefitted from this. Team WeekendTrivia wishes you all the best for your future endeavours.

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