Image of Evan Olin, tattoo artist

The Removery is fortunate to have Evan Olin, a talented artist, working in partnership with us from his shop, Powerline Tattoo, in Cranston, Rhode Island. As an art student in college, he didn’t imagine his work would lead him to tattooing, but his professors told him painting and illustration was a dying field. He’d just gotten his first tattoo and thought, “Maybe this is an option.” He liked the idea of dressing how he wanted, listening to good music all day, and doing something he truly loved.

He completed his bachelor’s degree in illustration at the Rhode Island College of Design, and then went down a less traditional path: using his background in classical art for tattoo design. Now, his shop has a staff of nine talented artists, including himself, who are hand-picked for their excellent work and have won a number of awards.

Evan’s passion for tattoo work has never ceased. “I’ve never looked back. It totally changed my life,” he says.

Evan’s style

A master of realistic drawing, Evan especially loves working with dark themes in creative horror designs, portraits, wildlife and animals, and other subjects that lend themselves to realistic drawing.

Every tattoo that he and his staff do is an original work of art. Their shop features no “pick and stick” designs. Instead, they work with clients to create a tattoo that’s uniquely theirs. They encourage clients to bring ideas or reference materials, and they’re also happy to work with them to fully develop the concept. They take pride in helping clients flesh out an idea, creating something that is exactly what the client wants, even when the client isn’t sure what that might be.

“You’re not reselling this piece of art,” Evan points out. “You’re getting it because you love it and because it means something to you. In that sense, it makes it one of the purest forms of art.”

What he loves most about his work

These days, the sky is the limit when it comes to tattoo designs, says Evan. “At the same time, it’s so much more challenging than doing a painting,” he adds. “Your canvas isn’t gonna bleed; it’s not gonna squirm. If you don’t like the way a painting’s coming out, you can just ditch it and start over. You can’t do that with a tattoo.”

Tattooing still isn’t for everybody, though it’s getting more mainstream—and that’s part of its charm, Evan notes.

Why laser work is essential

While Evan loves a challenge, at a certain point, the limitations of covering an existing tattoo with another one adds too many restrictions. When he does coverups, he usually does them overwork that has already been lasered, he says. This is especially important with a realistic design because you need to follow certain parameters to stay true to the reference image, he explains. You’re not going to improvise on the design a lot, so you need more of a blank canvas to work with. Having the original tattoo lasered gives you more options, even if the tattoo isn’t completely gone. That’s why Evan refers clients to the Removery for laser work before doing cover-ups—so they’ll be completely satisfied with the end results.

People who are interested in a tattoo from Evan’s shop can view each artist’s portfolio of work and then schedule a consultation about what they want. You can view Evan’s portfolio here.

Learn more about becoming a Removery partner like Evan so you can make sure your clients are fully satisfied with their tattoos!