Tattooist inking out a quiet life at new Bay business
FIREBOMBING, bullets through shop windows, violence, threats - tattooist Jake Tulk has seen it all.
Growing up in the diverse suburb of Cabramatta in Sydney's west then having lived and worked in the volatile environment of the Gold Coast tattoo industry, nothing much fazes the 23-year-old.
But he became weary of the high life of the glitter strip and has chosen to settle down here on the Fraser Coast with his wife, who grew up in Hervey Bay, and their two-year-old daughter, and is now one of two specialist tattoo artists at the recently opened Masters of Mayhem Custom Tattoo in Scarness.
Unlike the bikie-controlled parlours of the Gold Coast scene, which have hit headlines in the past week for all the wrong reasons, Jake says that here, local tattoo businesses have a good relationship and that trade is booming.
"Business is going great - we are booked out," he said.
"I get here at about 10 in the morning and I'm here till 10 or 11 at night."
And the clients who walk through the doors are of all ages - above 18 of course - and from all walks of life.
He's even tattooed a 90-year-old lady - on her breasts.
"She had two butterflies done - she'd always wanted to do it," Jake said.
"Back in the day, the people who got tattoos were generally criminal-type people, but like anything, it's evolved.
"These days it's much more mainstream - there is heaps of demand for it."
The business also promotes a family-friendly atmosphere - there is even a kids' play area to cater for mum and dad clients.