Meet the Artist: Chris Jenkins
This August, Loose Crew Tattoo Artist Chris Jenkins will celebrate four years of professional tattooing. He joined the Loose Screw team as he finished out his apprenticeship. He says “It was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.”
Jenkins’ mother calls his tattoo style “Demented Cartoon.” He refers to it “Neo-fictional Realism.” What you’ll discover when you learn more about him, though is that his favorite part of tattooing is bringing a client’s vision to life.
Keep reading to learn more about this artist.
Where did you grow up?
I grew up in a small town in Jersey called Sparta.
What brought you to Richmond?
I moved south for college and when I graduated, I moved to Richmond for a teaching gig. I didn’t really have the desire to move back North at the time, but I told myself I was only going to be around here for about a year.
What drew you to the craft?
I’ve always been into art, just like any other tattooer, but I vividly remember when my dad got his first tattoo. I was so intrigued by the entire process and culture. He would take me to his appointments with him, and I remember turning my bedroom into a tattoo studio. I had drawn flash, put them on the wall, then would tattoo my brother with markers haha! That was the beginning of the journey. While I was in grad school, I started getting tattooed pretty seriously, and that’s when things really started to take off in that direction for me.
What are your favorite kind of pieces to work on/what’s your tattoo style?
The types of tattoos that I enjoy doing the most are illustrative in nature. I know that’s broad because, technically, anything could be considered illustrative. I find myself being drawn towards things that are more nerdy or philosophical, by nature, though. I do also enjoy putting my little twist on pop culture content, as well.
How do you like to practice your craft?
When I’m not tattooing, I’m usually in my sketchbook, on my iPad, or playing video games. I’m constantly observing everything around me, and how colors interact with one another in nature. Not to be an advocate for video games, but they’ve become so visually stunning that it’s a win-win! I get to have some fun and conjure up new color schemes and content matter!
Where are your favorite Richmond restaurants?
I’ve got a couple favorite spots to eat in Richmond. Galaxy Diner is the go-to in Carytown. I usually get the blackened chicken wrap with mac and cheese. I hold the lettuce because nobody wants hot and wilted lettuce on their wrap. Other places I frequent are City Dogs, Deep Run Roadhouse, Mom’s Siam 2, and Metro Grill.
What are your other favorite places in Richmond to spend your free time?
In the remainder of my free time, depending on the weather, you can find me at a couple different spots. If it’s warm, I’m either at the Randolph courts ballin it up or out on the links (golfing for those that don’t get that reference). If it’s cold, I’m probably just staying inside or going to a local bar.
What has been your favorite moment in your tattoo career?
My favorite moment of my career, thus far, was the first tattoo I ever did. I sat down and felt like that’s where I belonged. It was the most comfortable, and reaffirming, experience I’ve had in almost my entire life.
What are you looking forward to at this year’s Richmond Tattoo, Art, and Music Festival?
The thing I’m looking forward to most is getting to see, and kick it with, my homies from all over that come to spend the weekend there. It’s such a great time partying with fellow tattooers. We, as an industry, are definitely one-of-a-kind.