Today we bring you an exclusive interview with one of the finest tattoo artists in Colombia, Daniel Acosta. Enjoy it and don’t forget to check his Facebook page so you can stay updated with the latest of his work.
Who is Daniel Acosta?
Proud of being Colombian, I was born in Villavicencio (Meta) but I’ve spent most of my life in Bogotá, where I started my tattoo career and empirical artist, I’m a stay-home person, what makes me happy is sharing with Diana, my girlfriend and having quality time in my life.
¿What’s the process for making a tattoo?, from the moment that someone says “Hey Daniel, ¿can you make me a tattoo?
Well, the process has several stages, I like to listen to the people to know the intention behind getting a tattoo, is just not about the shape but the intention that prints the soul into every piece, after that, I take about 20 days per design since I like to work on a full proposal in color, so people can get a close idea of how the final result is going to look like, after listening to what they have to say and going through changes, we’re ready to work.
¿What’s the weirdest design someone has ever asked you?
Haha one of the most especial ones was a Diomedes Díaz’ (Colombian music artist) portrait in a forearm.
A funny story behind a tattoo
Haha, I think that no story has ever overcome this one so far: I had to fix a tattoo made by a client’s Mom as a punishment for having lost a school year … it’s something hard to beat.
¿Which artists made an influence in your current style?
Well there are many influencers in my current style; from tattoo, great artists from my country such as Julio Cesar Díaz, Miguel Dark, César Gómez and Ed Perdomo. From other places in the world there are artists such as Joaquín Forero, Peter Auritch, Adrian Lee, Jeff Gogue and Tim Biedron. As for my relation with illustration, graffiti and art in general, people like El Mac, Retna, Kofie, Android Jones, Dave Mnkean, Alex Ross, Manara, Odd Nedrum, Caravaggio and Velásquez have made an influence in my work.
¿How do you see the relation between tattoo artists and designers?
In this moment the relation between both creative fields is really tight, if you look at the trash polka trend and others coming from East Europe, they have a lot to do with elaborated illustration concepts, besides, it’s becoming more common to see artists and designers experimenting with tattooing as a way to grow intellectual and technically, is also common to see tattoo artists getting involved in fields that only designers used to explore, this because the point of view of a tattoo artist is very particular in a graphically speaking, I feel like this interdisciplinary union has generated some great results for both parts.
We see that in addition to your work as a tattoo artist, you have been doing some beautiful paintings, please tell us a little bit about this.
See, there was a point in my life in which I felt creatively stalled in my tattoo career, so I decided to go deep into painting and everything changed, from my mood to the way I perceived and make the projects I got involved into, I turned out to be an almost therapeutic experience returning to do paintings and I especially thank master Jorge Mantilla Caballero, an amazing artist from Santander, thanks to him my painting methods changed completely, and that’s something I’ll be eternally thankful for.
¿What about Colombia the Magnificent?
After noticing that in countries like Mexico, Chile and Peru the plastic, tattoo and street artists have a strong visual identity of their roots and they transport them to their corresponding disciplines, so I thought it was pertinent to run a study of what Colombia has to offer graphically, that’s how COLOMBIA THE MAGNIFICENT was born, it’s a plastic project in which I plan to explore the native families of my country and bring all that visual richness that they have, this is the first approach that I show you, I decided to focus in 3 specific groups that practice body painting as an important medium for their rituals and culture, the Embera Chamí people, the Ticuna and the Nukak Makú.
The project will reach its initial phase by the end of the year; I hope to be able to explore other 2 indigenous groups: Wayúu and Kogui, then go through afro-Colombian heritage and finish with the country people of the mountains. This is just the beginning.
Tell us about Violent Tattoo, ¿how was it born?, ¿where are you going with this?
Violent is a store that has been around for about 9 years, it’s located in Chapinero (a neighborhood in Bogotá), I worked sporadically next to the founder for about 3 years and we became good friends, then he decided to make a 180º turn to the project and well, thanks to the trust he has on me he considered me to be part of this new stage, the idea is to become a reference point for tattoo artists in our country and eventually in Latin America, we know this implies a lot of work but we’re willing to make a difference.
¿What are your upcoming projects?
This year I want to finish the first stage of Colombia The Magnificent, if everything goes well I will make an exposition to show all the works, I also want to work with at least two samples of the art group from VIOLENT and next year I will make a graphic novel, I hope to have it published for the Book Fair of 2015 and make a call to create full back tattoos in collaboration with several artists from the country, we hope to make a sample of this and maybe publish a book, well, I hope so! haha…
Thanks a lot Daniel for granting us this interview, our best wishes and all our energy so you can keep up the great work!
Remember that if you’re interested in Daniel tattoos you can reach him through his Facebook page and visiting Violent tattoo where he’s going to be doing his art.