Tricia "Figgy" Atkinson opened Figure 8 Ink Studios, Art School & Private Tattoo Studio, in 2015 with a dream to bring her passion and knowledge in the Arts to her community. Tricia was born and raised in downtown Fredericksburg, VA and comes from a long line of educators in this area. Tricia graduated 8th in her class at James Monroe High School and then went on to earn her Undergraduate degree and State Art Instructors license in Studio Art from the University of Mary Washington, Magna Cum Laude. After graduating she was hired by Spotsylvania County Schools and taught Art 1-4 at Massaponax High School from 2008-2016, running a busy schedule of dynamic modern lessons in a variety of media, as well as sponsoring the National Art Honor Society, Art Club, and earning many awards on county, state, and national level Art competitions with her students, including countless gold and silver Scholastic Keys, one of the most prestigious high school art competitions in the country. The Art Department at Massaponax was voted Best in Virginia 2015 by Virginia Living Magazine, and many of her students have gone on to art schools and successful careers across the country.
Retiring from public school in June 2016, Tricia now has turned her talents in the Art education field to running a full curriculum of art classes in a variety of media at Figure 8 Ink. She has designed and built a beautiful classroom in her new building that is the culmination of over a decade of teaching, including the last 5 years teaching privately at her first Studio location. There are avenues and materials to explore for most projects that can be imagined. She continues to lead community art shows, paint party events, private art parties, volunteer activities, and annual international art education trips. She was the featured artist at Fredericksburg's Annual Via Colori chalk art festival in 2016, a judge in the annual Zombie Walk event 2016, and a vendor at the Art Attack and Earth Day Festivals for many years.
Tricia also received several awards at Tattoo Conventions in 2016, including 1st Runner Up at the Miss RVA Tattoo and Arts Expo Pinup Competition, as well as winning both awards at the same event for Best Hair and Best Make-Up. She also won 1st Runner Up at the D.C. Tattoo Arts Expo 2017, and also Best in Show Skate Deck Design for 2017 at the DC Expo. Figure 8 Ink Studios won the prestigious title of “Best in the Burg” Tattoo Shop 2020, a community voted contest run by the Free Lance Star local paper. The same publication also did an extensive interview and article write up of Tricia’s career and goals for the future, which came out August 10, 2020.
Tricia uses her experiences teaching in public school, connections in the art community, her undergrad degree in Art, her masters degree in Education Technology Media Design from Full Sail University, and her years of travel abroad to give a unique and engaging approach to Art studio management.
Tricia also is a popular licensed professional tattoo artist in the Fredericksburg area. She was sponsored and worked part-time 2012-2015 at Ugly Bishop’s Tattoo Shop, by owner Bishop Walker. She then opened her own studio in 2015 in her first location on Courthouse Shoppes Center, where she rented for 4.5 years and successfully combined the tattoo shop and art school uses. Then in 2019, after almost a year of negotiations and challenges, she purchased a historic commercial building at 10745 Courthouse Road, renovated, designed, and reopened it in January 2020. The new building is a direct reflection of Tricia’s vision for an artistic space for both tattooing, art classes/parties, and piercing, and truly embodies the motto “Let us help you create”. With a theme of clean but decorative style, once described as “‘new age baroque”, the new shop is inviting, inspiring, and has designated areas for each of its uses. Tricia also has plans to soon convert the outdoor green space into a winery-esque outdoor party area where she can lead large scale paint parties in the warmer months. By investing in this “forever home” for Figure 8 Ink Studios, Tricia is excited to continue developing and sharing her ultimate vision of bringing art in many different forms to her hometown. Where does the name of Figure 8 Ink come from? It references the use of the shape figure 8 as a successful, aesthetically pleasing dynamic composition tool in both the Fine Arts world and the tattoo world, and is an ancient technique to draw the viewer's eye over the artwork, on whatever surface, canvas or skin. The electricity and motion of a working tattoo machine is also often described as a Figure 8. When first studying tattooing Tricia was intrigued at this connection to both fields and tributes that as an ode to the multiple uses of her shop. Tricia is a talented and diverse tattoo artist and is known for her excellent customer service and the creation of custom art pieces that reflect the personality and tastes of her client. She believes that getting a tattoo should be an enjoyable experience in which both artist and client together produce an artistic representation of self. Her professionalism and distinct background offer a unique level of accessibility to this booming arts-based culture. She is known for her strong work in a variety of styles, especially decorative neo-traditional, illustrative color, and realistic black and grey. Beyond teaching, traveling, and tattooing, Tricia also enjoys pursuing her other personal interests which include fashion and cosmetic design, interior design, modeling, educational podcasting, vloging, cooking, music, family and friends time, movies, nature, alternative health, personal art, and collaborating with her crew on a variety of community projects.
Black & Gray
Trash Polka Style
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