Bold Traditional Blackwork: Tattoos by Matty D'Arienzo

Bold Traditional Blackwork: Tattoos by Matty D'Arienzo

Guess who's keeping old school blackwork alive in London? Matty D'Arienzo, that's who.

It's back to basics with Matty D'Arienzo's old school blackwork. Unlike most blackwork tattooers in the scene, Matty sticks to the traditional style with the elements we all know and love. He retains everything from the bold linework to the thick shading, but uses modern tools and techniques. That's not a negative thing either, because Matty's works are incredible. His thick outlines are unswerving and his details are kept simple yet pronounced. If you love the retro aesthetics, then dig into Matty's blackwork tattoos.

In true old school fashion, most of Matty's tattoos feature classic designs like skulls, webs, and other stable traditional pieces. But that's not saying he limits himself because he's also been known to work with contemporary tribal designs, edgy linework-based pieces, and youth rebellion tattoos that are getting really popular these days. In the past, Matty also worked with color in American Traditional tattoos.

Blackwork heart dagger tattoo by Matty D'Arienzo. #MattyDArienzo #blackwork #traditional #daggerheart #heartdagger #linework

Matty first tried his hand at tattooing in 2005. It was crude little stars in pink ink on his sister, his best mate, and his best mate's girl. After that episode, he got himself a proper training from local tattoo shops in Melbourne for over four years. But it was his move to London and then to the now-closed Into You Tattoo that really helped him rise to the top.

Blackwork tribal #scorpion tattoo by Matty D'Arienzo. #MattyDArienzo #blackwork #traditional #tribal #scorpion #filler

In an interview with Sang Bleu Magazine, he revealed that he revels in giving people their first tattoo — but not for the sake of taking their tattoo virginity. Matty simply wants to be a part of something special; it takes him back to the time he got his first tattoo, exciting and nerve-wracking. 

Images from Instagram.

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