Built To Last

My love for Traditional tattooing has led me to a place where I thought I would never find it. The Gold Coast!  Known as the California of Australia, tattooing wise its better known for its own take on the Chicano, southern Cali, east LA style of black and grey wash clown, girls, guns, cash, hot rods, and script.  Without a doubt, the artists leading the charge of these styles are the some of the best in the biz hands down.  A good buddy of mine told me about a traditional artist caught up in this mix who because of his demographic doesn’t get to do a lot of his own style of tattooing, Neo-Traditional.  I decided to take a trip down to the beach and check out what he had going on.

Adam Smith laying it down


His name is Adam Smith as his Instagram army better know him as Builtolast and that he certainly is.  A no-nonsense old school artist who done his time as an apprentice in the US, quickly developed his own unique traditional minimalistic style with his signature dirty lines that give his work his very distinctive style.  Taking a quick look at his wall of original flash, he seems to be the only one allowed to display his flash at the studio, I spotted a piece that would no doubt be a timeless bold traditional statement that I just had to get.  A bulldog head and cutlass piece, a personal take on the panther head and dagger who can resist a grumpy bulldog head wearing a flannelette shirt?  With a custom 14 needle liner on hand, we got to work, punching solid bold lines just what the doctor ordered.  4 and a half hours later we are done and the result is not only one of the cleanest tattoos I’ve ever seen but has gone down as my favorite tattoo of all time.  In my opinion, Adam Smith is the best traditional artist around  Enjoy.

checking on the progress


his flash corner


the traditional boss

the end result