Freshly Inked Interview with Dillon Forte
How long have you been tattooing and where do you currently tattoo?
I’ve been tattooing professionally for 12 years now. Currently, I’m based out of my shop in Venice Beach, CA. Before that I worked primarily out of my shop in Oakland.
What's one element of tattooing you enjoy?
It's hard to choose just one element of tattooing I enjoy, but I would have to say the thing I enjoy the most is getting to know my clients. I’m fortunate that through my art I get to meet people from all over the world, and each person has a unique story and perspective on life.
Compared to the beginning of your career, how much would you say your style has changed?
My style has changed a lot since I began tattooing. In the beginning, I apprenticed in a shop that does a lot of American Traditional pieces. It wasn’t until a couple of years in that I combined my fascination for Sacred Geometry with my love of tattooing.
How did you decide to focus on geometric pieces?
I’ve always had a passion for Sacred Geometry. In my opinion, Sacred Geometry is the definitive link between all things. Everything we experience and perceive is only possible because of the mathematical laws of the universe.
Any upcoming appearances or conventions?
I plan on attending the San Diego Tattoo Invitational June 28-30, 2019. Recently I attended the Singapore Ink Show, Nepal Tattoo Convention, And the Island Tattoo Connection in Bali. So I’m excited to participate in a convention thats close to home.
Tell us about your Mount Everest tattoo experience (at over 17,000 ft).
Tattooing on Mount Everest was incredible. I flew for 6 hours by helicopter with my team to a location above Base Camp. Because we ascended so quickly, we could only stay at that altitude for about 10 minutes without oxygen. It was just enough time to complete a small tattoo and snap a couple pictures.
You've had notable clients from Kat Von D, Chris Hemsworth, members of Imagine Dragons, and more. What's been a favorite experience?
My favorite tattoo experience was actually not on anyone famous at all. A couple years ago I tattoo’d my friend on a beach in Hawaii during a meteor shower. The energy of that night was electric, and getting to tattoo a close friend meant a lot to me. I’ll always remember that night and the feeling.
Is it ever intimidating tattooing these well-known clients? People are people. No matter how powerful or successful we all feel pain, we all bleed.
What's an upcoming project for you?
I actually have a few business ventures I can’t talk about just yet, but lets just say that I’m trying to do my small part to make the world a better, more sustainable place.
What's one thing you need with you in the studio every day?
What's your advice for artists to make their work stand out?
Be you. Do what you love and try to think outside of the box. If you’re passionate about what you do, good things will follow.
Any message for our readers?
Thank you for your time! Keep a positive mental attitude and vibration.