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Daily Inspiration: Meet Tyler Renfrow

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tyler Renfrow.

Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?
I’ve been living in the Memphis area since I was 14 and started making digital art around 15-16 years old. At that time, art was always just a hobby for me, and then when I was 25, I started working at Illusion Ink Tattoo full time and pursuing art and tattooing as a career.

I started an apprenticeship at that time and I knew that was exactly where I was supposed to be. Most of my younger years I found it hard to keep attentive in life but for tattooing, it was the exact opposite. It was something new and exciting every day and always challenged my skills.

People are another big part of it for me… some days you will be celebrating the birth of a father’s new son, and the next you may be creating a special memorial for a loved one that has passed. So many people seek tattoos for different reasons and for me it’s an honor when someone asks me to help them accomplish that.

I’ve been tattooing at Illusion Ink Tattoo for 5 years now, and for the past two years have been focusing primarily on my black and grey geometric style. This is something I have been truly passionate about for some time now am thankful for the great clientele base that allows me to create the art I do.

We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
Nothing worth having is ever easy in life.

To learn to tattoo, I went through a very traditional apprenticeship that included, long hours, learning how to run a tattoo shop, drawing every day, developing a clientele, and learning to manage social media.

But in the end, I knew it’d be worth it because this was truly something I wanted to achieve and do in life.

Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know about your work?
I am a black and grey geometric tattoo artist, who specializes in creating large bodies of work.

Creating geometric tattoos is a beautiful thing, where I usually try to aim big where it creates a visual effect to the human eye when you look from afar, but when you get close it is filled with intricate patterns.

I love creating deep layers with geometric patterns and mandalas using a footwork technique that I’ve developed over the years. All tattoos start with a digital design process and from there they are turned into tattoos and the real process starts.

Most large pieces and sleeves are done in multiple sessions and over the course of months and sometimes up to a year depending on the client’s pace. Some projects take true dedication on the client’s part, but when all is said and done it is totally worth it!

Is there anyone you’d like to thank or give credit to?
through the years my team of support, clients, family, and friends has been there constantly. Firstly, None of this would be possible without the clients.

They are the real MVP, since I’ve started tattooing the stream of people wanting and seeking me out to be tattooed has been amazing. with this, I have been able to constantly grow and try new things throughout the years. Next would be my two mentors, Carl Boshers & Bobby Lampley.

These guys were relentless with me in the pursuit of tattooing, and they believed in me and pushed me even in the hardest of times. And lastly, behind the scenes, 100% of the time, would be my family. They have been there every step of the way.

My mom tells me all the time, “I knew you were gonna find what you’re supposed to do!” and to my loving fiancé and daughter, I couldn’t be more thankful for y’all to be by my side every day.

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