It shouldn’t be a surprise to learn that many of the world’s best tattoo artists are New York tattoo artists. It is New York, after all.
But when you take a good, hard look and see the sheer quality and beauty of the artwork on show amongst all of these great artists, the mind truly boggles.
New York City is a dream travel destination for many all around the world, and when you see just how high the quality of tattoo art is in NYC, it only fuels the fires more.
The Best New York Tattoo Artists
So, who are some of the best tattoo artists in New York? Where can they be found, and what kind of art do they specialise in?
We’ve put together here a list of ten of the best tattoo artists in New York City for you to browse and enjoy. Next time you visit New York, give them a call (though you may want to book some of them in advance). Here are ten of the best tattoo artists in New York.
Michela Bottin (Soho Ink)
Michela Bottin is one of the most stand-out and original New York tattoo artists working right now.
Her anime and cartoon-inspired tattoos are mesmerising to behold, capturing all of the life and breath and beauty of the artwork they’re based on.
Whatever kind of animation you’re basing your tattoo off, she can emulate it on your skin to a scary degree of accuracy, with all the same electric energy and vibrancy of traditional hand-drawn art.
Take a minute to admire her work and see how it shifts and bends in style. It’s phenomenal artwork. Michela Bottin is, unquestionably, one of the best around.
Nico Negron (Tattoo Afterlife)
If you like your tattoo art to be hyper-realistic black and grey, you have to visit Nico Negron over any other artist in the area.
Nico has an uncanny ability to capture life on skin, and present the darker, gothic side of realism in stark and admirable beauty.
His work is vast and deep and dark; a real treat for the eyes. There’s a focus and a subtlety to it that demonstrates real mastery of the art of tattooing. One of the best New York tattoo artists, without a doubt.
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Giorgia Mae (Grit N Glory)
Originally from Melbourne, Australia, Giorgia Mae is today one of the most beloved and celebrated tattoo artists in the industry.
With a wide breadth of styles from bright and bold neotrad to sombre black and grey and beyond, Mae’s art is a treasure trove all on its own.
She has a particular knack for bringing art to life, making even deep blacks and greys pop with vibrancy and excitement. Her art is a pleasure to behold, truly.
Adam K. Perjatel (Green Apple Tattoo)
As anime fans, we at Books and Bao have been following Perj’s work for some time now. His work is utterly and completely indistinguishable from its influences.
Seriously, have a scan through his Instagram page and behold his ability to capture manga and anime art on human skin. It’s phenomenal, masterful work that never fails to shock and impress.
Perj is unquestionably one of the best New York tattoo artists working today, and if you enjoy anime and tattoos – a venn diagram which is essentially a circle these days – then you owe it to yourself to head to New York and get tattooed by Perj.
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Chu (Yant Tattoo Studio)
If you want your tattoos to be nerdy and entirely fresh, Chu is one of the New York tattoo artists you need to check out and visit!
Chu operates out of Yant Tattoo Studio in Chelsea, NYC, and produces a unique style of tattooing that is all their own!
Taking inspiration from pop culture (video games, anime and manga, and cartoons), Chu’s art is cute and adorable, but also unlike anything else you’ll ever see!
Often when we get tattoos inspired by our favourite things, we run the risk of getting a carbon copy of that thing rather than a unique piece of art by an artist with their own vision. That won’t happen here with Chu.
They implement this genius approach to tattooing, inspired by our childhood colouring book scribbles, to create this crayon effect that you’ll either love or hate. I personally love it!
Brandon Schultheis (BlackSails Studio)
Take note: this is how you do neotrad tattooing. This is how you bring traditional American tattooing to the 21st century
Nautical themes, bright and bold colours, thick and defined line work, all brought to bold life with an animated flow that can’t be beat.
There’s such a vigour to Schultheis’ artwork – it’s loud and brash and powerful. There’s a real hypnotism to the colour and depth of it that catches your gaze and holds it.
If you love your neotrad tattoos and you’re looking for the best tattoo artists in New York, this guy is the real deal.
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Joe Friedman (BlackSails Studio)
Another BlackSails artist with serious chops, Joe Friedman has incredibly diversity, able to put his own spin on traditional design, as well as art inspired by cartoons, anime, and video games.
There’s a youthful excitement to his artwork; you can tell that Joe is a tattoo artist who loves what he does, and puts everything into it. His tattoos are fun, exciting, and flavourful.
If you’re looking to get a tattoo inspired by your favourite stories and animation, or are looking for a truly deep and gorgeous neotrad tattoo design with beautiful use of nature and colour, Joe is your man.
A New York tattoo artist who does the city proud.
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Brooklyn-based Virginia Elwood is keeping the old school flame of Western tattooing burning bright, and this is what has her standing out amongst New York tattoo artists.
Her work toes that line between old school tattoos and neo traditional; a line that does get blurred sometimes and it feels like Elwood is doing much of that blurring.
Her work is very much inspired by, and looks to be using techniques implemented by traditional American tattoo artists, but she injects a fierce new fury into her work that has you sitting up and paying attention.
She’s burning borders between styles and we love to see it. Yes, Virginia, you’re great.
Brittany Lynn (Empire State Studio)
There’s a cool and soft charm to Lynn’s tattoos. She uses this fantastically unique pastel quality which provides a muted and rich sweetness in her tattoo art which allows her to stand out massively in the oversaturated world of tattooing.
She’s at her peak when she’s tattooing flowers and animals – all things of nature. They live and breathe and take an almost dimensional shape that leaves your jaw on the floor as you explore her works.
Brittany Lynn will surely go on to be remembered as one of the great New York tattoo artists.
Joice Wang (Grit N Glory)
Joice Wang is a legend of the tattoo industry. Her flowers are unlike anything else in the entire world of tattooing, let alone only New York. Just take a look at the soft and subtle lines, colours, and shading on display.
She’s in an arena all her own in the tattoo world, with a very specific niche that she is queen of.
If you’ve been seeking the perfect flower tattoo, and you want something that’s both photo-realistic and all the same uniquely a piece of art, you need Joice Wang, one of the best tattoo artists in New York without question.
Krish Trece (Soho Ink)
Krish Trece isn’t only one of the best tattoo artists in New York, but one of my personal favourite tattoo artists on Earth. Her art speaks to me in an organic way, made with intricacy and pure style, full of bright, bold, fun.
I can’t get enough of her art, honestly. There’s so much talent on display here, it beggars belief.
Krish specialises in neotrad designs that are incredibly modern, fit the curve and shape of your body to an immaculate standard, and seem real enough to be living and breathing.
Her portraits, her animals, her muted tones and dense lines and intricate shading – it’s all perfection. If she’s not the best tattoo artist in New York, she’s at least my favourite.
Marek Pawlik (Inkology)
Originally from Poland, where a ludicrous amount of the world’s best tattoo artists hail from, Marek Pawlik is certainly amongst them. His art is all about large designs of heavy colour and deep, dense boldness.
Animals, flowers, all things of nature are his specialty, and he brings them to life in a vibrant and exciting way. Jungle scenes and underwater vistas that look like a painting you’d be proud to hang over your mantle (if you have one).
Pawlik’s tattoo art is energised and exciting, making him one of the stand-out New York tattoo artists working today.