Brodie Jackson is a mullet welding, grin bearing tattoo artist based in Lennox Head. Brodie’s obsession with tattoos kicked off when he was 18 and he ‘properly’ started getting tattooed. Having always drawn and painted it was only fitting that he would eventually move up to the North coast of N.S.W, walk into Rock of Ages tattoo studio where he once got inked, and land a job as the desk bitch.
Told his work load would always consist of making coffees and cleaning the blood off the studio floor, but never tattooing. Brodie was determined to prove otherwise. Fast forward two and a half years later and Brodie is not only putting needle to skin, but making waves as an emerging tattoo artist with his traditional flash work that has a iconic surf twist to it. Brodie is one of the featured, collective artists in the upcoming exhibition ‘Wax off’ which opens this Saturday evening at Secret Garden, Byron Bay. We caught up with Brodie at the Rock of Ages studio to talk influences, ink and the Wax Off exhibition.
I know you’ve been drawing and painting for a lifetime how longs it been since you’ve started taking the tattoo thing seriously?
It wasn’t long after I started getting tattoos myself, seemed like the more I had the keener I was. I started working at Rock of Ages in Lennox Head with some really inspiring people, they’re the reason I’m now able to do what I love doing, and I’m constantly learning.When it comes to inspiration, theres a lot of reference to alternative surf culture in your work with guys like George Greenough and Derek Hynd. Who or what else do you turn to for ideas?
Yeah there’s a bunch. People surfing and skating fast, doing real simple shit with control. Old surf films, old people, all my friends – Matt Yeates, James Bobby McLean, Ryan Heywood, Harry Henderson and then just a bunch of stoney things.
You mean wizards, rainbows and bongs? Anyone would think Byron is rubbing off on you. How long have you lived in the area?
I’ve been living between Byron and Melbourne (where I grew up) for the last 7 years. I reckon I’m staying north for good now. It’s a permanent vacation.
Your work is growing fast in popularity, I know Ray Barbee is a huge fan. Tattooed anyone interesting recently?
I’ve really been lucky, all my buddy’s are getting my flash designs or whatever I draw up and a few of the Lennox skate rats are happily giving me their skin too. I guess they’ve all helped me get my stuff out there to a wider audience of late. I’m meeting new people all the time, thats the good thing about this trade.
It’s early days I know, in this short but glorious career, any highlights to note?
Just being able to work where I do now and tattoo with the people who I work with is a highlight. The tattoo shop is across the road from the point, being able to walk over and surf before and after work is a trip out for me, and I fucking love what I’m doing so thats where it’s at I guess.
Tell me about your works for the ‘Wax Off’ exhibition…
I’m still working on them. A few are close to finished but I’m painting everyday so I’m sure some stuff will make it in there last minute. A couple are of friends surfing, some are nude chicks.
Byron’s got a pretty bloody talented mob in town these days… How important do you think shows like this are to showcase their talent?
Yeah, this area is the goods. My mates are a constant source of inspiration, they’re all doing cool shit. It’s good to see what people have been making at a show like this.
Last up, give me your top few albums to listen to when you’re tattooing…
– OM ‘Advaitic Songs’
– Ariels Pink Haunted Graffiti ‘Before Today’
– AC/DC ‘Back in Black’
You can see Brodie’s work alongside a shit tonne of other talented folk at the Wax Off
exhibition in Byron this Saturday the 10th of January at Secret Garden. 121 Johnson St, Byron Bay.