Joe Baker is a Pittsburgh, PA artist and tattooer.
I’ve been an artist for as long as I can remember and a tattooer for around a third of my life now (just over a decade). I’ve done many things and have had numerous passions, but nothing has consumed me as tattooing has. From the first time I was tattooed at the age of 16, I was hooked. Not only had I just physically changed my appearance, but I had this incredible feeling of self-empowerment. I couldn’t wait to get my ass back in that tattoo chair.
Finally I had the chance to feed my new addiction and got my second tattoo, a sweet tribal armband. That’s right, a tribal arm band; and I rocked the shit out of it. Needless to say my tattoo days were put on hold for a while due to disapproving parents. Apparently, in their eyes- an armband wasn’t cool enough to allow me to continue tattoo endeavors while under their watch.
I had just turned 21 and had found my way back to the tattoo chair. The flood gates opened and an obsession was born. From that point on I got tattooed every chance I could. As an artist I was always drawing and designing and decided to get one of my own designs tattooed on me. I strolled into the shop one day and asked the owner if he would tattoo my design on me. ‘How ’bout you tattoo it on me?’ was his response. Those six words changed my life forever.
Middle, middle, middle and here I am 10+ years later, a professional tattooer. I have since had laser removal and got rid of my killer arm band along with the entire sleeve that it was a part of as well as my first tattoo to further my collection and knowledge of tattoos.
I now get to spend my days in the artist chair, as well as, the client chair. There is no greater feeling than seeing a client’s face when his or her tattoo is finished. Just knowing that he or she feels the same thing I felt that very first time I was tattooed and every time since, puts a smile on my face. I am always interested in new things that will help me grow as an artist and as a person. Help me better myself and let’s share this artistic experience together.
– Joe Baker