Freshly Inked Interview with Jake Swist
Jake Swist is an amazing tattoo artist with a unique style and the ability to bring our favorite characters to life. He's also the owner of Cocoa Village Tattoo. Enjoy this interview and to see more from Jake stop by his Instagram! @Tattoosbyjakeswist
What made you want to become a tattoo artist?Ever since I can remember I have been surrounded by tattoos. My uncle who was close in age and more like an older cousin was a tattooer. He gave me my first tattoo at 14 and once I turned 17 I started apprenticing at the studio he worked for.
Was there another career you almost pursued?No, I worked a few odd jobs here and there when times were slow for extra cash but tattooing has always been my home.
If you had to name your specific style of tattooing something new, what would you call it and why?If I had to label it I guess I would call it “cartoon realism”. I really enjoy taking flat cartoons and giving them value and dimension. Though I do sometimes use different line weights in my work, I do try to give as much shape as possible to my subject matter.
What's a challenge that comes along with tattooing?
My short attention span... I am my own worst critic. I will tear apart my work until I have figured out what I can do better, and at the end of the day it boils down to patience. You can’t rush your best work.
What do you consider the biggest bonus or perk to being an artist?
Tattooing has taken me places I never would have visited otherwise. I am definitely grateful for the fact that we as tattooers get to travel the world doing conventions and guest spots, meet tons of other rad artists and basically turn work trips into vacations.
What's your advice for people getting their first tattoo?Research your artist. Take the time to see if their artwork is what you are looking for.