Wednesday, 23 July 2014


When we start the day, it could be with "traditional style" job like this one that Sasha did with super clean lines and super solid color.

Or maybe, a black and grey dragon like this one that Mark did. Notice the details... the shading, the unique style unique only to Mark Lankin!

Or it could be a JEEP like this one that Juan did... perfection. If I was gonna get a Jeep, this would be the one I would want...

Or maybe... just maybe you're a SPICE GIRLS FAN... you could get that too just ask Art (me) to do it..... Personally, I would get DEVO tattooed on me but Curt doesn't give a fuck, he can get whatever he likes!!!

Or maybe you're a Virgin Mary fan...

This is what WE do at the Funhouse.. a variety of tattoo styles and sizes, from realism to traditional, to black n grey... any theme any size. We're not gonna moralize and judge... we do what we do... the way we do it. While doin' it, we get hungry and if it's lunch time, how bout one of these?

Don't care if you like meat or not... we do. This is the TERNERA TORTA from "Las Tortas", up the street from the shop... such a quality sandwich. God... pickled jalapenos, pickled onions.. guacamole, beans, lamb meat... cabbage... all on a quality bun. It's not cheap but worth every penny.

Finish it off with a piece of chocolate cake from BEANS... just look at it... you can see the chocolatyness... even though the frosting is melting like a turd in the summer sun, i can assure you that it didn't taste AT ALL like a turd... such quality buttery chocolaty frosting.... and the density of the spongy cake made for a real filling and fulfilling lunch!!

So, that day, we all worked like dogs.. really! Long day, so guess what? are you hungry yet? ....
how bout now? It was time for round 2 at Memphis Blues Barbeque...


Ryan, Juan and Mark sharing the cooked carcasses of the pigs, birds and cows that donated their muscles and fats to feed us... and thanks to Memphis for gettin' the potatoes, beans, corn and coleslaw for our meal, before the hippies and vegetarians got to it... man, they always try to HOARD and keep this stuff for themselves.



JULY 9 - 11 in Langley. 2 artists per day at our booth. If you want to get tattooed at the convention, please call the shop to see which ones of us will be there on what day. Should be a good event. For more info on the show, go to :






If we're busy, come by anyway, make an appointment to get tattooed at the shop! See you there!

Sunday, 19 January 2014

FUNHOUSE TATTOO - a little overview..

Here's Fester doing another FINE piece!! Perfectly executed Chinese letters.. complete with brush strokes. You could see all the tiny lines from the camel hair brush that it could have originaly been painted with! Don't know if that's what they use in China for brushes...
Fester tattoos with confidence and precision. Natural instinct. He has years under his belt of hardships & good times. He's had to jump some hurdles in his lifetime! All of these things can side track you from your trajectory of being a professional tattoo artists. He stuck with it and now 13 years later.... greatness.

Sasha does too! I don't think you will find another quite like her. ...This feather is so clean and well done. All this talent and ability is from YEARS of work. Working on your own legs... guinea pigging friends, working on Ryan! The amount of dedication it takes to do what she does is unbelievable. The anxiety and stress in the early years from trying to push your limits and occasionally falling on your face compares to accidentally cutting off the wrong foot of a patient with gang green in his toes... well, maybe not as bad. We have all been through it and come out the other side!!

It's as if one day, a light bulb goes on in your head and all of the sudden you're doing stuff like this:

or this shell by Sasha:

Now, because of the TV shows on tattooing, tons of people want to get into it. It's not the Outlaw art it used to be. It's great for business but it's lost it's edge. There are tons of kids who want to get an apprenticeship, or think it' s an easy job. It' s not. People think that just because you're a good artists, you can do this. Or just because you have a degree from some art school that you will be attractive to us to bring you in as an apprentice. Not true. We get tons of inquiries about an "apprenticeship program" or if we need any apprentices. Nobody ever NEEDS one... really. Maybe a helper to clean tubes... sterilize, answer phones... but to find somebody who is willing to dedicate YEARS of their life to learning this trade is a rare thing. It's even more rare to find somebody who is WORTH teaching this to.

I had an apprentice once - Jeremy Riley. He turned out GREAT. He was with me for 9 years!!! He now owns Tattoo Union on Broadway... right down the street from where he started.

For me, every aspect of tattooing is important. It's not just the art of tattooing...Here's a bit about what I do on the side... building tattoo machines.

This is the NEW steel BLACK WIDOW machine. It's coils are not only triangular in shape, the space between the protruding tops and bottoms allow for more winds of wire. It is a strong smooth running machine, yet sensitive and versatile enough to execute the finest details with the smallest needle groupings as well as subtle grey shades.

Most machine suppliers will sell a machine for the fair market price, but now that China is involved, the price does not always match the product. Most artists want to buy a machine which is ready to go. Buy one of those and if you don't know how to adjust of modify it, the price just wasn't worth it. Our machines are ready to go, tuned and set up to be able to perform whatever function you need to perform.

This is the Godoy Machines V3 machine. This piece of machinery has had year of designing and testing. It happens to be our 3rd patent in the works!! The way this machine runs doesn't compare to ANY machine out there. Every component has been dissected and re worked for function and ergonomics. From the precise machining to the tight layer winds, from the deluxe powder coated finishes to the minor details like fasteners and terminals... this is a piece of highly functional art. Because of the coils shapes, there are more layers of wire than on a standard machine. It will operate at between 6 and 7.5 on a regulated power supply. Which is a higher than on our V2 and Black Widow machines. This does not change function. You will not find a smoother feeling machine than this one. This is the Mercedes of tattoo machines.

The Godoy Machines V2... what can I say. Before our office actions with the square coil patent, we were experimenting with a V series coil. The shape of the coil, the angles of the coil... and of course the wire gauges were all things we were studying. We were also concerned with the magnetic field and how to direct it to where we wanted it to go. We slanted the coils, away from each other to re direct the magnetic field to either end of the moving armature bar, and here ya go... the V2 was born. Future modifications lead us to now, where the rear coil is straight and the front coil is angled.


We believe in advancement. We support creativity and originality. The shop environment, though light hearted and fun, is also serious. We are serious about the service we provide and the ethics we keep


Cover ups are serious business. They are a great way to get rid of regret, wether it's the memories of that Vegas trip when you got married by Elvis and got your future ex husband's name tattooed on you or wether it's a souvenir from your f*cked up teenage years experimenting with sewing needle and india ink tattoos! Emotional regret is a different story!!

Cover ups don't have to be so complicated. Any quality artist SHOULD be able to cover a tattoo. The "normal" way to cover a tattoo is to use a color that is darker than the colors used in the tattoo to be covered. Most artists (the mediocre ones) would have chosen a design which was mostly BLACK to cover this tribal, like another tribal or a mountain gorilla or... When in reality, a color that is the same value of the tattoo to be covered will work to blend it into the new design or to cover it. The tattoo in picture is greyish... a dolphin would have easily covered this, leaving plenty of clear skin to put a rainbow coming out of it's ass and not have the colors muddied up by the grey tattoo.

If you look at photo number one, the tattoo looks dark on the skin because the only color to contrast it is her skin color, but if you took a blue ball point pen and drew a line on the tattoo, you would see that the pen is darker than the tattoo and you would know that you have more options than you think!

Tattoo colors in their bottles look thick, dark and dense... they are much like tempera paint, or poster paints, the difference is in the surface they to be applied to. On paper, the color will be opaque, that is to say "solid" because the surface is not as porous as skin is so on paper, these colors can cover spots or patches which are dark. IN the skin, the colors go in transparent so there's no way you can cover a freckle with yellow, or pink or anything lighter in value than that freckle. They will show through, some darker scars will too... birthmarks, the same... GET IT?

how bout now?

In this tattoo I (Art) used shades of battle ship grey and watered down black to do the "base coat" of the tattoo... creating a foundation which would make it easier to add lighter colors around those areas to create depth.

If you need cover up work, think of the images that you like. It's up to us to make it cover that ugliness. You should be open minded because NOT all images will cover all tattoos, for example, a bright yellow happy face would never cover this grey tribal tattoo. The only other option, if your tattoo is super dark, besides tattooing a big black patch is laser treatments... which can be used to lighten the tattoo in order to have more options for cover up designs, or to get rid of it all together.

If anyone can do it, we can. Got one to do really soon, the clown who did it originally, knows who he is. Have a few ideas in mind just in CASE Your original idea doesn't work.


About 8 years ago, the shop was open on Broadway and Ontario. I was in need of another artist to fill a chair and Mark walked in. When potential artists come looking for work, I usually look at their portfolios and take a day or 2 to decide, unless it's real mediocre stuff or poor stuff, in that case, I shut 'em down right there. But Mark was a whole other story. I said "can you start tomorrow?" Ha!! He agreed. Now, we had another secret weapon in the shop to combat any mediocrity in the city.

Every artist has their own style and some artists, these days, don't. They have someone else's style. This can be seen in the trend of repetitive traditional tattooing. Some artists don't travel outa their comfort zone. Mark doesn't have a comfort zone, he's uncomfortable all the time, that's why he does great work like this!!

If I was to categorize his style, I would say it's a cross between action hero comic books and realism. See these dragons he's doing, that's what dragons look like in real life, for your information. And this is what Heather our shop helper and owner of THE GOODS SCREENING AND APPAREL ON BROADWAY AT KINGSWAY just across from the KINGS GATE MALL looks like when she's on the toilet! Go talk to her, maybe you can buff her flamed helmet and then, she can buff yours... if not, go purchase some of their items, or get some shirts printed.

Maybe you're just like the rest of the world and really enjoy collecting fetus skeletons and want to pay tribute to your collection with a tattoo of one in a test tube! Or maybe you are a girl who likes to drive tanks and destroy sh*t. BAM!!!

If so, Mark will do it.

Maybe you want that portrait of your dalmatian. Y'know, that special photo you took of him before he died from smoking may mean everything to you. At least you got one before he died!! And now, you could remember him FOREVER the way he was when he was happiest...before the tar in his lungs turned into tumors and suffocated him to death.

Whatever it is, realistic, Japanese, bio-mechanical, color, black and grey... come down and talk to Mark. Come down and talk about hobos, government, food, Bart Simpson, the dumpster, the socks.


Some of what we do is stuff that most artists in the city won't do. Saying that we do the impossible is close, but if we can do it how can it be impossible? It's skill level that makes it possible! Sometimes, an artist will say "it can't be done that small" and sometimes it's true, there are pieces that can be too small, like some high detailed fonts, but most of the time what these are really saying "I can't do it that small." Professionally, it would be better to tell it like it is to a client because the client will then decide wether to search for an artist who CAN and not have to compromise their original decision on size or settle. Some clients are open minded enough to let an artist "try" or go with it and accept the tattoo in a larger size. John Day's angel (above) took 4 hours... no outlines...just shades of color. No compromising here.

This is Yolanda's cover up... a mediocre under water scene is replaced by a high detailed realistic coral scene.

It boils down to skill level. Some artists will even say "in 10 years the lines will be fuzzy and the details gone"... another excuse. That is something that is impossible to predict! Exposure to sun, their pre disposed aging due to genetics, elasticity of the skin... after care, weight gain, muscle gain... all these things are factors!! But, let's just say, if that were true, that "in 10 years, the detailed, fine line tattoo will look like a turd", then so will the thick bold black lines they prefer to do! May be even worse!!! I don't know which would be worse a faded single needle line which could turn a light grey with shading that will disappear, or a dark bold line which will only get thicker with a grey fuzz around it.

Portraits and realistic work are standards used to measure an artist's general skill by. It takes eye-hand coordination to do these. First a stencil is placed on the skin, marking every subtle shade or wrinkle, the eyelashes, the highlights... and then it's up to the artist to translate the shade or value for that particular area wether it's by mixing the color or thinning down the black ink with water, BY EYE. Some artists excel in "traditional" style tattooing, which today is recognized as trendy, just like the tribal armband of the 90's. It does take some skill to draw a tattoo to match the style of tattooing's early pioneers (skulls with square eyes..), but the technique used to actually tattoo this style of work is rudimentary. Lining with a 7 - 9 needle liner and doing solid color is what most artists learn in their first few months of holding a machine.

This portrait was small, the guy's arm was skinny so he didn't have much room to work with, the face alone was approximately just over an inch wide so imagine the size of the eyes. This is single needle stuff!! The shades making the muscle tones, and facial details wasn't all done in blacks or greys... I won't let the cat out of the bag but any GOOD artist will be able to look at an image and instinctively know what to mix to get there.

Some areas are hard to work on. Just look at the surface of the skin! There are dips and valleys, occasionally there are creases, moles... going from soft areas to hard bony areas!! It's not an easy job... a professional can make it look easy but it can be the most frustrating thing ever.

Some clients have great skin to work on! Even the subtle-est greys show up on them. This portrait was a pleasure to do!! This was freshly done so there is a little redness but you can see on the hat and the collar that Seio's skin was great for portraits. Don't mean to toot our own horn... TOOOOOOOOOOOOOT! But this is what WE CAN do. We are doers. As Wentzle Ruml would say, "I can do it, I'm doin' it." He's the guy 27 seconds in... you must see this movie, even if you don't skate...

SO, after work, do you know what time it is? Hungry?

how bout now?

Work all day... eat in the evening... digest all night... sweat all night digesting meat... wake up, put out a bi- product that looks like the baked beans in the picture.. with a side of what looks like the lemonade in the picture... clean up and do it again.