By Phil Kyle
So I got to Brighton on the 26th of February. The day after was the Magnum Opus pre-tattoo convention party. There was a shit-ton to do in that short time.Had to haul my drum set over to the Prince Albert where the party was..had to pack for the Brighton convention... had to get prints made etc... You know, all that last-minute shit...
Meanwhile, when I was crossing the English Channel from France things were already hopping at Magnum Opus. The crew was all doing their thing and there were guests already making tattoos. Pino Cafaro, Federica Marshmallows, David of Plastic Surgery Rome was chilling and Sara Samez too. Some Proud crew!!!
Drew Horner was kicking it blueberry style and we invented moth sex... ha-ha! No need to get too involved with that, anyway...
The Friday arrives... Time to get to the Brighton race course nice and early to set up the booth. It was Guen’s first convention being a part of the M.O.H.C crew.
We had a nice spot for our booth with windows that are the entire view of Brighton. Then back to the shop, finish up there and greet loads of folks coming into town for the convention. Thanks for all the visits to the shop people!
So night approaches we go for dinner. Me, Bob Done, James Hate, Adam Turner, Big James and Pete and John from Kraken, (I can't believe I remember that... Ha-ha.) before the party we loaded up on venison pasta to have accelerated healing powers.
Then off to The Prince Albert to get the party on. The night was hosted by Kraken rum. Lots of people chugging down. The bar was hopping and the DJs were blasting boss tune-age. Was a great beginning to an awesome weekend. Lots of socializing,tattoo talk and toasting.
Later in the evening Peter and The Test Tube Babies took the stage upstairs at the Albert. They totally rocked the place as usual. Being punk rock legends its only normal.
Then it's saturday. The convention begins! Bob Done, Guen Douglas, Adrian Willard, Luci Lou and myself were in the booth and Adam was working the front like a mofo. Some headaches floating around the convention from the night before... but no matter! It was punk as fuck!
The list of artists kicked plenty of ass. Lots of solid tattooing in all styles from all over the world. Woody once again has made this event worth seeing and working at if you make tattoos. Thanks Woody! And thanks to all the staff of the Brighton convention.
Its one of my favorite conventions being its a home town gig and get to show people all the fun stuff to do in Brighton, which I will go through in a minute.
So Saturday was awesome lots of contests and event type things going on around the convention. I usually miss a lot of these things while tattooing but I did get to judge a contest with Claudia De Sabe and Adrian Willard a Magnum Opus OG. Lots of beautiful work was entered in tattoo of the day and the winner was Miss Arianna with an awesome clean tattoo. I wish I had pics. Sorry.
Saturday night involved some food and drinks. And getting ready for Sunday. Sunday was another good day. Lots of attendance and everyone was making sick tattoos. After the convention shut down we all grabbed taxis to drop off all our equipment back at the shop. Mad dash to meet at Donatello’s restaurant. We reserved for 50 people. Got our meal on and then some social drinks. Then hot the after show party smoked 100 cigarettes and lots of chewin’ the fat going on. Good to be able to hang out with all the tattooers from everywhere. You really only get to see each other at these events.
The rest of the week or so that was left was more work and lots of hanging out with the guys from Nine tattoo in Brighton and Crystal Morey and the Gomineko Tiger Crew, Horimasa, Horishin, and Horiken, as they were guesting at Nine for the week or so between conventions. And now Horimasa dubbed the Gomineko Crew.Got it tattooed on his hand even!
Lots of tattoo activity and the start of the Karaoke King club. Dan Sinnes is hot on the mic! Especially Queen songs. So dinner then off to Lucky Voice, a karaoke club where you get a room with just your friends so you don't make an ass out of yourself in front of strangers but people who expect you to act like one anyway... Your friends, ha-ha!
So we hit Lucky Voice in Brighton... It's almost becoming our local at this rate. Dan Sinnes, Kent Smith (Tattoo Artist Magazine), William Thideman, Sandy, Crystal and myself.
Shit kicked in singing some boss tunes from the 80s. Even some old punk stuff as those where chart busters in the UK. Sex Pistols to Billy Idol to the grossest 80s shit you can imagine. Was a fucking riot.
The Monday before Milan convention we all went to Magnum Opus and had a massive tattoo party and feast.
We all were trading tattoos with Horimasa, Horishin and Horiken. Lynn tattooed Horimasa and he tattooed her. I was tattooing Horishin at that time then I got tattooed by Horimasa and I tattooed him as well and Crystal as well. We all traded paintings and prints. What a fucking cool experience. And my first time ever tattooed Tebori style as well.Excellent. Horiken tattooed Martijn and Adrian... total madness.
Meanwhile, upstairs in the peanut gallery Guen and Crystal whipped up some Cracker Chicken,cheese sauce and broccoli and Guen made some bad ass cupcakes. It was a buffet of goodness. All cooked under the supervision of white wine... After the combined effort of tattoo and food coma a few beers helped wash is all down.
Fucking awesome day and a once in a lifetime experience.
(Phil Kyle is a tattooer and contributing blogger for Tattoo Artist Magazine. Phil can be found at Magnum Opus Tattoo in Brighton, England.)