At just 19 years old, Oliver Peck began tattooing in his hometown of Dallas, Texas, focusing on the classic American traditional style that he has rarely strayed from since.
“I started out in my last years of high school and I just wanted tattoos so I figured out how to hand-poke tattoos and then made a ghetto hairdryer-rotary machine,” Peck told Inked Mag. “I got a bunch of my drug addict friends to give me money so I could buy some tattoo equipment, and to repay them I tattooed them all. I tattooed hundreds of people and I had never seen a tattoo magazine or been to a shop—I didn’t know that it was a career possibility.”
That career has blossomed into something more than most artists could ever imagine, and Peck is now one of the most recognized and well respected tattooer in the industry.
Peck first made the leap onto the silver screen with appearances on Miami Ink when visiting then-wife Kat Von D, but has since become a household name as a judge on his hit show, Ink Master.
If your familiarity with Peck is limited to his TV appearances and Guinness Book of World Records stunt (he did 415 tattoos in 24 hours, a record that has since been shattered), you're missing out. Oliver Peck is one of the premiere traditional tattoo artists working today. He's not some glossy TV star, he's a tattooer's tattooer who has done a lot to build the industry, and owns one of the most well respected shops out there, Elm Street Tattoo, as well has Hollywood's True Tattoo.
Peck's work is everything a traditional tattoo should be. Simple, strong, bold, and clean. These tattoos are built to last, easily legible, and absolutely timeless. Using limited color palettes, bold black lines, and beautiful whip shading, Peck creates tattoos that capture the spirit of America's tattoo traditions, but refine them for the modern age with flawless execution.
If you want a tattoo from a true Ink Master, you're in luck. Peck keeps his skills sharp by still working part time at Elm Street. If you can swing it, we can't recommend hitting up his yearly celebration for Elm Street Fest, where you can get tattooed by Peck's handpicked tribe of celebrated artist's in one of the most dynamic tattoo events you'll ever see.
If nothing else, Peck is a perfect example of a tattooer that may have become a star, but still retains the spirit of tattooing in his no-bullshit approach to the art form and to life in general .