I'm too old for this shit, but damn, what an adventure! I thought I could write something short to share the TAM Road Trip journey and give TAM Blog a little more content. I believe the potentials we have with the TAM Blog are pretty evident, and given enough time, can be fashioned into something powerful, entertaining and educational…
Okay... What was this trip about?
We spent a full day at each of the shops below, and gathered as much footage as possible with just one very busy videographer, who exhibited supreme dedication to the project.
We filmed a wide array of content, starting with short interviews with everyone except (I'm calling you out, dude), Mr. Eric Rieth of Seventh Son Tattoo in San Francisco, who flatly refused to be on camera (whom I deeply sympathize with, because I am exactly the same way!) but immediately answered all of the same questions for me, casually, when the cameras were off. Ha-ha. It was awesome. We also filmed some group interviews at the shops, when possible and several really long interviews for future feature TAM articles.
Ed Hardy took the time to do two interviews with us, one conducted by Nick Bubash, the and another by me, while preparing for his opening on Thursday at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, which was absolutely amazing, by the way!
I'm always blown away by Ed's generosity and graciousness when we talk. Even in the midst of high-society, Ed would come over and tell us about his process and goals in some select pieces displayed, from the Cave of Tattoo Flash to his porcelain works, to several paintings, classic and new. I know very few artists so willing and excited to engage in this way, and the conversation is always deep and inspiring. Nick Bubash was a real treat to finally meet. His article is forthcoming! Stay tuned.
Dan Smith did one of the best interviews I've heard in years and I'm anxious to get it processed and into print/video.
The Sailor Jerry Rum crew gave us access to their really hip Airstream for several of our interviews and my thanks go out to both Dana Dynamite and Jae for being so accommodating. You guys rock!
We also managed to get interviews with Kevin LeBlanc (by Brad Fink), Big Gus (by Carlos Torres), Cobra Custom's artist, Forrest Cavacco (by Chops), Bryan Burk and Bugs (both by me). And full interviews with Henry Lewis (thanks to quick work by Jason Schroder and Shawn Barber), Doug Hardy (by Katie Sellergren), Tim Lehi (by Jason Brooks), Nick Rodin (whose doing his interview for the third time now…) and Jason Mcafee, (by the great Scott Sylvia) thanks to all of you.
Freddy Corbin is set for a feature interview soon and so is Horitaka and the crew at State of Grace Tattoo, and that's just the beginning, I believe.
I'm probably forgetting even more than that! In short, it was the trip of a lifetime...but possibly just the first of many! We'll see if we can get some more sponsors for the next one –but I promise it's gonna have to be a shorter trip next time... Maybe with some days off mixed in there! Then I wouldn't feel so old.
Each day was packed with work, to say the least, but I'm so stoked right now. The potentials are enormous; so let me say thanks to all of the people and sponsors that made it all possible:
Here are the companies who sent us actual capital because they believed in our potentials:
These companies also contributed to the project, whether in trade or with other resources:
Each and every one of these people gave 110% for virtually nothing! And I am (as always) deeply indebted to each one of them.
I'd also like to thank Wrath for purchasing the Sailor Jerry page I sacrificed to help make this trip happen. I know its in good hands and it helped pay for this experiment.
- Kent Smith
- John Niederkorn
- Jason Alexander
- Josh (Ranch Hands) McHale
- Nicki Kasper