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From Office Cubicles to Tattoo Needles: My Journey to Becoming a Canberra Tattooist

A realistic tattoo of a woman's face inside of a tigers face

Eight years back, I was stuck in a typical office job in Canberra, just watching the clock and waiting to get out. It was as dull as it sounds, and I just couldn't see myself doing that forever. I knew I had to do something different, something that got me excited. It didn’t matter if it was making graphics on a computer or designing t-shirts; I just needed to follow my heart and find something I loved doing.

Deciding to quit my office job didn’t happen overnight. It came from a deep need for a change. I wanted to do something that felt right, something creative. Sure, I thought about going back to working with graphics since I knew a bit about it, or maybe trying out t-shirt design. I wasn’t sure exactly what to do, but I knew I had to follow my passion.

As I was figuring things out, I believed the right chance would come up if I kept my eyes open. I never thought tattooing would be my thing until one day, something caught my attention and changed everything.

Looking back, my first attempt at tattooing was a bit of a disaster. I bought a tattoo machine from eBay and tried to tattoo a Koi fish on my thigh. It ended up looking more like a sad goldfish. I didn’t even finish it because I was too scared to mess it up more. But messing up that tattoo was a big step for me. It was my first real try at creating art on skin, and it planted the seed for my love of tattooing.

Everything changed the day I saw an ad looking for a tattoo apprentice. I’d always liked tattoos but never thought about doing them myself. Tattoo shops seemed too intense for me. But something about that ad made me send in my art portfolio from school. It was nerve-wracking but exciting, too. Getting that apprenticeship felt like a huge win, and it pushed me to start specializing in realistic tattoos. Now, I’m known around Canberra for my detailed and lifelike tattoos.

I went from hating my desk job to loving life as a tattoo artist. Now, I’m all about making tattoos that look real and mean something special to the person wearing them. It’s a job that lets me be creative and meet all kinds of people. If you’re sitting in an office right now, dreaming about doing something else, think about my story. It’s never too late to go after what makes you happy


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