Lauren Carroll (Loz) is the co-founder and owner of Sharp Art Studios and has been tattooing since 2011.
I love, and always have loved, the way tattoos look. I used to hang around outside tattoo shops when I was a teenager – I wanted to be a rockstar and they always had cool tattoos. I got my first tattoo done when I was 15 and my second when I was 16 – I thought I was so badass! I wore belly tops for a whole year to show them off – even in winter.
A friend of mine started out as a tattoo apprentice years ago – he tattooed me and encouraged me to have a go. Me and Nick started practicing on each other. It was a cool way of getting into art again. I started tattooing a lot of my friends and have tattooed myself a bit too.
Art at school and college was OK but I wanted less theory and history – I wanted to be hands on all the time. I love painting. Being able to experiment on canvas opens up my range. If I find a new way to do something on canvas I always bring it to my tattooing – so I can bring something fresh and new to my work while being confident in the end result.
I enjoy blending and contrasting colours – hard bright edges against subtle deep shades. I really like powerlining as well – I find it really calming for some reason! I like how this playing with line weight can alter the style of a tattoo – it adds depth as well as attitude.
I love tattooing anything with a mystical twist on it – women, creatures, landscapes. I love nature. I also like horror stuff – sexy vampires or dark animals and birds. I like working on a lot of varied projects though – I also enjoy doing portraits and mandala / ornamental pieces – having this sort of diversity in my work is really important to me – it never gets boring that way and means I’ve always got a mint piece of work to look forward to.
Sharp Art Studio is my second home – working with family really. You always put pressure on yourself to make great tattoos but it’s a really chilled atmosphere and I feel totally at ease here. I love having regular customers who completely trust you – and having new clients put their faith in you is awesome.