Stranger 82/100 – Jay

100 Strangers - JayStranger 82/100 – Jay

I ran into our next stranger as he was on his way to open a bank account for his new tattoo business.

Meet Jay.

Tell me about Tattooing. When did you get into that? “I was around 19 when I got into it. My brother was the one that really was the first one to tattoo in our family. So, he got me into it.”

Where do you want to be in ten years? “Honestly, an empire. Yeah, an empire of tattoo shops, some property and definitely having a shop in Europe. I heard the Netherlands are really nice. I’ve been to Sicily. But I do want to check out the Netherlands. I’ll be going there hopefully this September. I’ll at least be able to go out there for a week and check it out and, you know, meet some people.”

What advice would you give to your younger self? “Save up every dollar. I’d start with that. When I started tattooing, I realized that I could have definitely had a shot when I was about 22.”

If you had saved up? “Yeah.”

What did you spend it all on? “Hell, I was young. {laughs} I was young, man. What did I not spend it on?”

What made you realize that you needed to save money? “I did end up in a few situations where I was actually incarcerated. I was in jail for a little while… nothing serious… just six months. After that I was like… I just need to focus on my art.”

What is your biggest challenge right now? “That’s kind of a tough one because I mean it’s like, right now, I feel like the path has cleared up a lot. So, I guess staying focused… because there’s always things that are just popping up and trying to take you off your task. Yeah, just staying focused that’s basically number one.”

Technical Notes: It was a clear, sunny day, so I positioned Jay in a shaded area facing the bright street. I used a reflector to light up his face.

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