The ultimate jokester is much more than just that: Tommy Montoya may be known for his comedic flair, but his tattoos are something to be taken very seriously. Specializing in old school black and grey realism, Tommy’s portraiture, and more, is respected globally. First seen on the TV favorite NY Ink, his is a household name that’s recognized not just for his antics, but for his incredible tattoos as well. This season of 'The Tattoo Shop' will certainly highlight both sides of his personality.
Tommy Montoya often talks about the importance of family, and how growing up he wanted to be just like his older brother. “I copied everything, I wanted to do everything he did…” He considers his brother to be the main reason he got into tattooing, but Tommy has been around tattooing since he was a little kid. He remembers watching his dad get tattooed in their garage by friends. With 20 years of experience, his work speaks to the dedication and reverence Tommy has for the art of tattoos, specifically black and grey realism. Tommy says, “I think black and grey is like wine and cheese, man...it just gets better and better every year.”
At one point during Episode 6, Garver asks, “Why did you pick up tattooing? I heard you did really well in school.” Tommy laughs and says, “Tattooing looked way funner.” And although Tommy may be known just as much for his class clown attitude as his stunning realism, 'The Tattoo Shop' shows another side. His insightful ideas shared with clients and his fellow tattooers betray the thoughtful artist beneath the humor, and show that being a great artist takes skill, as well as keen attention to detail and introspection.